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Shotgun Sorceress Mass Market Paperback – Oct 26 2010
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Praise for Lucy A. Snyder’s Spellbent
“[A] thrilling trial-by-fire debut . . . constantly surprising.”—Christopher Golden, author of The Lost Ones
“An exhilarating ride of magic and mayhem.”—Sèphera Girón, author of Mistress of the Dark
“Gripping . . . marks the debut of a real talent . . . I couldn’t put it down!”—Sarah Langan, author of Audrey’s Door
“With a cast of unforgettable characters and relentless action and suspense, Lucy A. Snyder masterfully weaves a fantastical plot into a real-world setting, never once breaking stride.”—Deborah LeBlanc, author of Water Witch
“Wildly imaginative and intensely gripping.”—Publishers Weekly
About the Author
Lucy A. Snyder is the Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Spellbent and Shotgun Sorceress, and the collections as well as the story and poetry collections Sparks and Shadows, Chimeric Machines, and Installing Linux on a Dead Badger. Her writing has appeared in Strange Horizons, Weird Tales, Hellbound Hearts, Doctor Who Short Trips: Destination Prague, Chiaroscuro, GUD, and Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet. A Texas native, she lives in Worthington, Ohio, with her husband and occasional co-author, Gary A. Braunbeck.
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Butt kicking characters? check.
Dark fantasy doings? Check.
Humor to leaven the mood? Check.
A thrilling plot? Check.
Some emotional honesty? Check.
Good writing? Check.
Plotwise, this book picks up shortly after the first one leaves off (readers might be best served starting with that one before coming to this). The first half of Shotgun Sorceress deals with the repercussions of Jessie's actions in the previous book. Lots of fun and some weird twists I never anticipated.
Then, things ship from Columbus, Ohio down to Texas and the book really kicks into overdrive. A strange creature called Miko is doing some nasty stuff, and it's up to Jessie and her cast of colorful friends to put a stop to it. I read this novel in a flash, and am already hungry for part 3.
Lucy Snyder has a way of blending urban fantasy, the macabre, a love story, intense action, lucid writing, and quirky characters into incredibly entertaining fiction. I highly recommend this book.
Snyder's story here is a great deal darker than her previous one. Already stressed out after the first novel's adventures, Jessie's emotions are on a hair-trigger now, even considering Miko's power to artificially exaggerate the emotions of humans. In fact, all our lead characters are on edge and snappish for most of the novel, with only Pal, Jessie's familiar, on a fairly even keel. Snyder's character work here really knocks things home, with even minor characters given full and fascinating personalities. The mood and settings are great, too -- from the beautiful but dangerous Faery to a cramped, besieged, and paranoid college campus to a makeshift pup tent in the backyard, all the settings make you feel like you're right there watching the action. And there's a ton of action, too -- Jessie may be a spellcaster, but she spends a lot of her time beating people up, shooting zombies, and running to catch up with the bad guys.
If you loved "Spellbent" -- and you better have, or else -- you're going to love "Shotgun Sorceress," too. Go pick it up.
The magic? Jessie Shimmer does neat stuff with her green oculus, the hellement she seems to have inherited, and her dipped-in-flame glowing hand. Cooper and the Warlock do a few parlor tricks, but none of it is explained at the same level of detail Snyder used in Spellbent. The first chapters deal with the fallout and baby children from the first novel, and have cool tricks (like the extra-dimensional drug stash), but Jessie Shimmer isn't the one responsible for those tricks. All Jessie does is use the toys/powers she gained from novel one. This was a major missing thing for me -- too much gadgets and not enough ubiquitomancy.
Without giving too much away, Shimmer gets more family ties. The Virtues set up a win-win situation (for themselves) whereby they throw Jessie at a larger problem (Miko) that they didn't want to expend resources on. While Snyder has snappy dialogue, she ends without resolution, and with an extremely predictable battle. A cliffhanger sidestepping the issues raised in the novel (including the 'why' of Jessie and Cooper) is the cop-out ending.
Overall, a superficial fast paced novel with action and sex, but one that doesn't deeply examine the hearts of the characters. To be fair, the author does try and explain how Jessie fell in with Cooper, but frankly it didn't make much sense to me. I still don't like Cooper. One reason I'm giving three stars is I don't see what Jessie sees in her dead weight trashy boyfriend. Another is Pal has become a shallow anime-style sidekick stereotype instead of his book one characterization. Hopefully book three is better.
Very few sequels ever, in my opinion, manage to be as good as the first book in a series, but Lucy A. Snyder's Shotgun Sorceress easily earns it's place as the second book in the projected three book series, dealing with her protagonist Jesse Shimmer's newly founded abilities, her familiar Pal.
Shotgun Sorceress picks up only hours after Spellbent, and carries the torch of full-throttle amazingness found at the end of the first book, to all out increasingly strangeness within the first one hundred pages of the second, including one of the best opening scenes to grab my attention in a long time.
After returning from her boyfriend, Cooper Marron's version of hell, and defeating a powerful magic wielder, she's left with powerful magic that she can't seem to get rid of. With her giant half-spider/half-ferret familiar, her boyfriend Cooper, and Cooper's brother The Warlock, the four set out on an adventure to a little town in Texas. A town isolated in more ways than one. With her father's help, Jesse must find a way back to the real world, out of the clutches of a gorgeous and powerful witch, and find her brother.
Shotgun Sorceress is a marvelous sequel, continuing the breakneck pace begun in Spellbent, and reassuring the reader that this series isn't your average Urban Fantasy. That's why I'm giving Shotgun Sorceress 8.5 out of 10 TARDIS's.
If you're looking for a good Urban Fantasy series that's not your typical run-of-the-mill, then pick up a copy of Spellbent, and while you're at it, pick up a copy of Shotgun Sorceress, you won't be disappointed.
The Bad: Plot is a little predictable, takes to many shortcuts, may offend some people
Lucy A. Snyder is at it again with the tales of Pal and Jessie Shimmer, but this time around it gets weirder, more mature, and more raw than Spellbent. The book also has more action, and is paced a little better this time around which is great for longer periods of reading. After beating the Virtii, rescuing Cooper's brothers from his hell, and getting a possessing Goad inside of her she has run into more trouble this time around. The first half of the book takes awhile to get to the good stuff which is everyone getting stuck in a temporary post-apocalyptic Cuchillo, Texas.
Pal, Jessie, and gang find themselves having to meet Jordan in another realm because they killed her brother and they must pay for it. Upon arriving under mutual circumstances they get chased into a portal via another Virtii and are stuck in the post-apocalyptic Texas where an evil goddess named Miko wants a person to give her their souls willingly or she will take them and use them as meat puppets (a fancy way of saying zombies).
Without spoiling too much of the plot they meet some other strange characters, and it turns into a full scale war, but you never get to read about that. I felt Lucy took some shortcuts to make the book shorter, and I would have loved to read more about a battle or two with the meat puppets. The book's main pull comes from it's raw mature theme, and it has more graphic sex, gore, and language than the first book. I was pretty taken aback by some of the stuff in here so people with weak hearts should stay away. The story is more personal with Jessie and you can really see how she's changed and how much crap she can take as a human being.
Shotgun Sorceress really shows how much pain and suffering humans can take, and it still has this surreal edge about it. I love that style of writing, but the book didn't score higher than her last one because she is taking shortcuts again. This series is great for people who want to get right into it, but I like a little back story and a little more detail about what's going on in the world. Lucy is one of the "I don't care what you think" writers and it shows in here books and I wish more people would write more like here. If you read the last one go ahead and read this because it's different (not so much as better) and you'll enjoy it.