When his newest apprentice, Gordie, turns up dead in his Glasgow flat, Al finds proof that Gordie was living a secret life of criminal activity. Now Al is forced to play investigator– while preventing real detectives who are questioning why death seems to constantly follow Al. Examining his apprentices death will take him through Scotlands wonderful underworld, and hell need the help of a naughty hobgoblin if hes to make it through.
Al MacBharrais is both blessed and cursed. He is blessed with a remarkable white moustache, an appreciation for craft cocktails– and a most distinct wonderful talent. He can cast spells with magically captivated ink and he uses his presents to secure our world from rogue minions of numerous pantheons, particularly the Fae.
However he is likewise cursed. Anyone who hears his voice will begin to feel an inexplicable hatred for Al, so he can only interact through the written word or speech apps. And his apprentices keep dying in strange freak accidents. As his individual life collapses around him, he devotes his life to his work, all the while trying to split the trick of his curse.
Glasgow is an exceptional city
Edinburgh and the Highlands get a lot of attention when folks think of going to Scotland– and for good reason– but Glasgow has layers, like trolls and onions and parfaits. It was rather the commercial hub in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and the shipbuilding market was huge for a long time, however when it collapsed a couple of years earlier, the city population basically cut in half from 1.2 million to 600k– part of what makes housing more sensible there. Now theres a lot of financing and tech things happening in Glasgow, and the city has this terrific richness of varied architecture and neighborhood owing to its long history coexisting alongside contemporary structures.
There are countless dishes for ink and great deals of them are flammable
Unintentional fires and property damage were so typical in the old days that inkmakers had to do their thing outside city walls on a calm day in case shit spoiled. The main offender behind the ruckus was boiling linseed oil, which smells really terrible, produces poisonous vapors, and can take off at any time. Without heating up the oil sufficiently ahead of time, the ink would dry too gradually, soak up oxygen, and polymerize like rubber. The industrial procedure now is much safer, however doing it the old-fashioned method is flirting with spontaneously flammable doom.
I learned a lot about the history of inkmaking from Ink by Ted Bishop, which I highly recommend as a good start, and it has an extensive bibliography for additional reading. The extensive usage of bugs (like cochineal) and squishy ocean animals for pigments was specifically surprising to me. (If youve ever consumed food thats red or used lipstick, youve probably been smearing or consuming uponst thy lips the colorful guts of bugs who like irritable pear cacti.) A tiny fraction of the research study I did wound up being used in the book; it was a gigantic charming rabbit hole that operates as deep background for whatever Al does, and some of it that I didnt utilize for the very first book will likely discover a place later in the series.
Public transport is pretty rad
Ive lived in locations without a decent public transport system most all my life, so whenever Im in a city that has it, Im easily amazed. Glasgow has a little train that circles the city core, however likewise has a rail and bus system that allows people to get around pretty well without a cars and truck– which is what we did as tourists. Most impressively, routine routes get you out of the city to lovely wee towns that typically provide an old stone church, a pub, great deals of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had been there when, which is most likely real given that its not a massive country and those men navigated. The relative ease of getting around both rural and urban areas without owning a lorry showed me that my lead character didnt need an automobile. Taxis and hitchhiking would get the slack whenever public transportation and a stretch of the legs couldnt manage the journey.
Haggis is freaking delicious
For reals. And I enjoy neeps and tatties too. It gets represented as this things you only consume on an attempt, and yeah, I admit I winced the very first time I attempted it since it had actually been constructed up in my head as A Gross Thing You Will Only Try Once, but damn, I liked it. A lot. Had it as often as I could while I was there, since it is not widely offered beyond Scotland.
Now, as a counterpoint: I am not a fan of black pudding, because I tried that too and it did unkind things to my palate. Super delighted for everyone who likes it! Dang, I actually require to find some where Im at now.
The accents are pure brilliant
I didnt try to replicate everything you hear– that would be a big task– but I did decide on a couple of words and expressions to regularly render the way a Weegie might state them to provide the taste of the language while (hopefully) keeping it easy to read. Of course, you can listen to the audiobook told by Luke Daniels and appreciate the accents that method.
The majority of Americans familiarity with the Scottish accent originates from Shrek and other home entertainment, but invest a long time in Scotland and youll recognize that there are a wide range of accents throughout the nation. The Glaswegian (or Weegie) accent is its own thing, but fifty miles away in Edinburgh you get an entirely different noise. Because the Weegie accent and dialect stands out from other areas of Scotland, I needed a specialist reader from Glasgow to have a look at the manuscript ahead of time and make corrections. One word that needed to go that individuals often associate with Scotland: Laddie. I was informed that word may get used in the nation occasionally, however was not really a thing that Weegies state. Likewise, calling somebody a jammy bastard has definitely nothing to do with jam or even pajamas.
Kevin Hearne hugs trees, pets doggies, and rocks out to heavy metal. He also believes tacos are a quite cool idea. He is the author of A Plague of Giants and the New York Times bestselling The Iron Druid Chronicles series.
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He can cast spells with magically enchanted ink and he uses his gifts to safeguard our world from rogue minions of various pantheons, particularly the Fae.
Now theres a lot of finance and tech stuff happening in Glasgow, and the city has this terrific richness of diverse architecture and community owing to its long history coexisting alongside modern-day buildings. A small portion of the research I did wound up being utilized in the book; it was an enormous beautiful bunny hole that operates as deep background for everything Al does, and some of it that I didnt use for the first book will likely find a place later on in the series.
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Glasgow has a little train that circles around the city core, but likewise has a rail and bus system that allows people to get around pretty well without a car– which is what we did as travelers. A lot of remarkably, regular paths get you out of the city to captivating wee towns that usually provide an old stone church, a bar, lots of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had been there once, which is probably real considering that its not an enormous nation and those guys got around.