Monday, 30 January 2012
This Dark Magic - Chryse Wymer
Title: This Dark Magic
Author: Chryse Wymer
Genre: Urban Fantasy
"This Dark Magic" by Chryse Wymer is a self published dark fantasy novella set in a city that appears to have fallen on bad times. It basically follows the trials of journalist Charlie Landers as he gets caught up in the machinations of someone using dark magic to control and exploit people for their own gain.
The story is quite quirky as it tries to embrace fantasy, horror and even a little comedy. The setting of the novel was nicely handled with a short and punchy sentence structure that helped make you feel the desolation in the city and its residents. As it is a novella don't expect any deep character development but the protagonist himself was the best part of the novel in my opinion; his wit, and dry humour was enjoyable to read. Then there were the chapter titles, all of them seemed to contain a little bit of humour within that had me smiling as I started each one.
The novella itself seemed to be well edited to me which was nice to see in a self-published book as I have seen some horror shows in the past. The one issue I did have with the writing though was in some of the descriptive techniques used: some aspects of the story would have better served by a straightforward description than by using some rather convoluted metaphors or similes. The best example of that is the following line, “The skyscraper resembled a rectangular soup can, not brooding and cool but ugly and barely functional”. In all honesty I am still not sure what this sentence is even trying to make me picture in my mind.
I also think the shortness of the story did let it down a little bit as it seemed to result in the author quickly jumping from scene to scene which did leave me a little bit confused at times as I tried to follow what had happened. However, this did reduce as the novel progressed and by the last few chapters I felt I could follow the scene changes without any real issue.
Overall, I think this would be a good quick buy for people that enjoy Urban Fantasy and want to try out something new. Personally, I found the wit and dry humour in the story to be enjoyable, and it was just a shame that the short length resulted in a rather jumpy narrative.
Challenges Book Counts Towards:
Ebook Reading Challenge (The Eclectic Bookshelf)
Ebook Reading Challenge (Workaday Reads)
Free Reads Challenge
Speculative Fiction Challenge