Al MacBharrais is both blessed and cursed. He is blessed with a remarkable white moustache, an appreciation for craft mixed drinks– and a most distinct wonderful skill. He can cast spells with magically enchanted ink and he utilizes his gifts to safeguard our world from rogue minions of different pantheons, particularly the Fae.
Anybody who hears his voice will start to feel an inexplicable hatred for Al, so he can just interact through the written word or speech apps. As his individual life collapses around him, he devotes his life to his work, all the while attempting to split the trick of his curse.
When his most current apprentice, Gordie, turns up dead in his Glasgow flat, Al finds evidence that Gordie was living a secret life of criminal offense. Now Al is required to play investigator– while preventing actual detectives who are questioning why death appears to constantly follow Al. Examining his apprentices death will take him through Scotlands wonderful underworld, and hell require the aid of a mischievous hobgoblin if hes to endure.
Glasgow is an amazing city
Edinburgh and the Highlands get a great deal of attention when folks consider checking out Scotland– and for good factor– but Glasgow has layers, like trolls and onions and parfaits. Its the third-largest city in the UK behind London and Birmingham, however even more cost effective. It has universities, plural; a 37-acre Necropolis filled with creepy Victorian-era gravesites and mausoleums for all the goth vibes you need; multiple football groups to cheer (and fight) for; an eldritch organ in the Kelvingrove Art Gallery & & Museum; master distillers of whisky and gin that are the envy of the world; and it used to be that all the New Worlds tobacco was delivered to Glasgow initially and from there to the rest of the European continent. That was a great deal of money and cancer. It was rather the industrial hub in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and the shipbuilding market was big for a long time, however when it collapsed a few years ago, the city population basically cut in half from 1.2 million to 600k– part of what makes housing more sensible there. Now theres a great deal of finance and tech things taking place in Glasgow, and the city has this wonderful richness of varied architecture and neighborhood owing to its long history existing side-by-side alongside contemporary buildings. Basically its a great city in which to set a metropolitan dream, due to the fact that pretty much anything can take place there.
There are countless dishes for ink and great deals of them are combustible
Unintentional fires and home 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 went bad. Without warming the oil sufficiently in advance, the ink would dry too slowly, take in oxygen, and polymerize like rubber.
I learned a lot about the history of inkmaking from Ink by Ted Bishop, which I extremely advise as a good start, and it has a comprehensive bibliography for further reading. The widespread usage of bugs (like cochineal) and squishy ocean animals for pigments was especially surprising to me. (If youve ever consumed food thats red or worn lipstick, youve probably been smearing or consuming uponst thy lips the vibrant guts of bugs who like prickly pear cacti.) A small fraction of the research I did end up being utilized in the book; it was an enormous lovely rabbit hole that runs as deep background for everything Al does, and a few of it that I didnt use for the first book will likely find a place later in the series.
Public transport is quite rad
Ive resided in locations without a good public transportation system most all my life, so whenever Im in a city that has it, Im quickly impressed. Glasgow has a small subway that circles around the city core, however also has a rail and bus system that enables individuals to get around quite well without a car– which is what we did as tourists. Many remarkably, regular routes get you out of the city to lovely wee towns that usually provide an old stone church, a pub, lots of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had actually been there once, which is most likely real since its not an enormous nation and those guys navigated. The relative ease of getting around both urban and rural locations without owning a car 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 scrumptious
For reals. And I love neeps and tatties too. It gets portrayed as this things you just consume on a dare, and yeah, I admit I recoiled the first time I attempted it since it had been developed in my head as A Gross Thing You Will Only Try Once, but damn, I liked it. A lot. Had it as typically as I might while I existed, due to the fact that it is not widely available outside of Scotland.
Now, as a counterpoint: I am not a fan of black pudding, since I attempted that too and it did unkind things to my palate. Super happy for everyone who likes it! Dang, I truly require to discover some where Im at now.
The accents are pure fantastic
The Glaswegian (or Weegie) accent is its own thing, however fifty miles away in Edinburgh you get a completely various noise. Given that the Weegie accent and dialect is distinct from other locations of Scotland, I needed a specialist reader from Glasgow to take an appearance at the manuscript ahead of time and make corrections. I was told that word may get used in the nation here and there, but was not truly a thing that Weegies say.
I didnt attempt to reproduce everything you hear– that would be a huge job– however I did settle on a few words and phrases to regularly render the method a Weegie might say them to provide the flavor of the language while (ideally) keeping it simple to read. Of course, you can listen to the audiobook told by Luke Daniels and value the accents that way.
Kevin Hearne hugs trees, family pets dogs, and rocks out to heavy metal. He also believes tacos are a pretty 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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Now theres a lot of finance and tech stuff taking place in Glasgow, and the city has this terrific richness of different architecture and community owing to its long history existing side-by-side alongside contemporary buildings. A small portion of the research I did wound up being utilized in the book; it was a gigantic beautiful rabbit hole that operates as deep background for everything Al does, and some of it that I didnt use for the first book will likely discover a place later on in the series.
He can cast spells with amazingly enchanted ink and he utilizes his presents to secure our world from rogue minions of various pantheons, particularly the Fae.
Glasgow has a little train that circles around the city core, however likewise has a rail and bus system that permits people to get around pretty well without a car– which is what we did as travelers. Many impressively, routine paths get you out of the city to captivating wee villages that normally use an old stone church, a club, lots of sheep, and a claim that either William Wallace or Rob Roy MacGregor had actually been there when, which is probably real because its not a gigantic nation and those dudes got around.