Sunday, 2 September 2012

Review: Mogworld

Mogworld by Yahtzee Croshaw

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sir Terry Pratchett pretty much has the actually-funny funny fantasy genre locked up, but this is a good contribution to it. The protagonist (who insists he isn't a hero) reminds me of a Tom Holt protagonist: a bit of a loser, hapless, unhappy with his life. There's even a nerd girl, another staple of Tom Holt, though Holt probably would have called her Jane rather than Meryl.

Because Mogworld has a setup where nobody dies permanently, the ultraviolence and slaughter is not as horrifying as it otherwise would be, and I was able to take it as funny, which I couldn't have done if it meant more. A book told from the perspective of a walking corpse who serves an evil necromancer wouldn't normally be my thing, but Croshaw makes it work.

The story moves along at a good pace and the characters, while thin, are amusing in their eccentricity. The main thing that annoyed me was that the first-person narrator, Jim, is supposed to be the son of a pig farmer in a medieval-style fantasy setting who somehow got into magic college (it's never explained how), but a lot of his similes and metaphors are from modern urban life.

If you don't take it at all seriously it's an amusing piece of whimsy. Recommended especially for Tom Holt fans and people who play MMORGs.

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