… only $1.99 on Kindle right now.

flex-144dpiThe vast, depressing majority of ‘urban fantasy’ these days is just half-hearted noir in fantasy drag, with orcs taking the place of gunsels, damsels instead of dames, elves as substitute street creeps, and magic bolts as stand-ins for pistols. Most of it, therefore, is not very good and there’s way too much of it.

Then, once in a while, something really worthwhile shows up. Like Flex, the first in a new series by the amazingly named  Ferrett Steinmetz. It’s the first book in the ‘Mancer series, and its rules are simple and devastating: not only does magiv exist in the modern world, side-by-side with modern life, it has horrible consequences. Every act of ‘mancy rips a hole in probability and reality; it’s already reduced Europe to a violent wasteland, and America is well on its way. ‘Mancers are rounded up and either bent to the government’s will or imprisoned, and yet more are showing up all the time. The genie, quite literally,c an’t be put back in the bottle. And worse is coming…

Steinmetz is a damn strong writer. His imagery is vivid, his ideas are uncommon and unexpected, and there is a welcome relentless logic to the world he’s created. If you’re going to make magic ‘real,’ he seems to be saying, it has rules … and the rules can bring tragedy as well as power — no exceptions.


Flex is the first in the ‘Mancer series, and it a semi-brilliant attempt to make new addicts, you can get it for a mere $1.99 on Kindle, right now Just click here and get a copy. With so much imitation and repetition out there, it’s a joy to find a new set of stories that are neither of the above.

Let us know what you think.


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