*I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
I was pleasantly surprised when listening to this story. Jack did a gruff, rough type voice for Spade and it feels to fit him and the story perfectly from the first word. Then when Crizlyk comes in I'm impressed with his voice. It's different, and feels to fit the size of the being. All the characters have their own tones along with personalities that fit them with the descriptions given in the story. Words and vocals work together to give us a complete feel for the characters in their situations. There was something small I noticed in the audio book through. There are times when Jack sounded different than his normal narration of the story telling. Almost like the section was cut out and a recorded section seamlessly spliced in. What I heard was a different tone than the story around it. It was a small catch and I'm not sure if that's what it is or my iPod, but I caught it in different sections through the story. But don't let this take away from the story as it's well done all around.
Okay. This story is plain fun. You have your fantasy beings - Orcs, Ogres, Dwarves, Elves and more. Then you have your noir mystery feel as Spade is a PI. Then you throw in skeletons and zombies! LOL! Yes! What a combo in one story! And there are the small jokes I enjoyed, like Crizlyk biting the Orcs. lol.
We get the adventure in Spade's case that includes fighting with wands, magic, and fists on ground and in the air. So much damage! lol. Awesome fights as we view the world.
Spade is a dwarf that has his own secret ability, but with the way it makes him feel he doesn't use it much. He also is one that loves to drink and maybe not shower as much. It also seems his brains fall when a beautiful woman is in sight. He missed the clues in a few scenes. I had picked up early on who the culprit was, and I was right.
There was a point in the book where I was waiting for the conclusion. Anticipation? Maybe. But I was ready to get to the end.
Something this book touches on is prejudice. The goblins and hobgoblins have been treated like the dark dirt that no one wants to even step on. They are tired of being treated so poorly with no rights. Though they go to an extreme that's not good, but it raises thoughts on the subject. And can be related to subjects in the world. I like that in the fun there was something solid tucked in there.
This story is different in that it's a fantasy with a noir mystery feel to it. I really like that blend! And there is spice to the characters. Spade is one that doesn't take or give bull. He's a straight shooter with a dry sense of humor. This was well done as his personality is one that's not going to be liked by many other characters. And we see that. But everyone still needs to work together because if not, things are going to get messed up with to many hands working in different directions because they all don't know what's going on. (Mostly Spade will be a problem if he's not told the truth because he's working his case.)
I would enjoy following Spade along on more adventures. I liked him and his friends. Plus, here are hints that there is more to a history of a friends people and I would like to learn more about that. I do hope to see more books!