Saturday, December 14, 2013

Review: A Rope of Thorns

A Rope of Thorns
A Rope of Thorns by Gemma Files

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Weird Western/Supernatural Horror/Steampunk
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Fans of Weird West, horror, those interested in Meso-American religious practices
Trigger Warnings for Book 2: killing, murder, discussion of mass suicides, human sacrifice , m/m sex, obscenity, profanity, blasphemy, self-injury, non PC language
Animal Injuries: several horses are killed during a melee

My Thoughts on Book 2: Chess Pargeter has quite a mouth on him. I would love to share some of the creative swearing, but alas, Amazon doesn't like us to use that sort of language. One of the things I like best about these books is the character development. The author creates characters that you love, or love to hate, with depth and quirks. A few of my favorites from this book include Three-Finger Hank and Yiska, as well as Yancey.

This book is set just after the Civil war, so in order to maintain realism, there is language used that many people might find offensive in a modern context. However, one needs to realize that this is how people spoke then, and it is not meant in a pejorative way.

I'm fascinated by the MesoAmerican mythology being brought to life here. The descriptions of things are so beautiful, but then the actual thing being described is horrible. It was not a kind, gentle society, that much is sure, and the gods are some of the most bloodthirsty the world around.

The author describes this as black magic gay porn horse opera. This is fairly accurate, although to be fair there is much less sex in this second book than was in the first. If you enjoy that sort of story, and/or are interested in MesoAmerican culture, be sure to check this series out.

Synopsis: You must let blood to get blood. Arizona, 1867. As consort to resurrected Mayan goddess Ixchel, hexslinger "Reverend" Asher Rook* has founded "Hex City"—the first place in all of human history where magicians can live and work together safely. But this tenuous peace is is threatened by the approach of Rook's former lover, Chess Pargeter, bent on revenge over Rook's betrayal, as he kills his way toward the very same spot, dragging Pinkerton agent-turned-outlaw Ed Morrow along with him. Because Chess, sacrificed in Ixchel's name, has become far more than just a hex: his very presence has torn a crack in the world, remaking everything around him. And as the cycle of Chess's power approaches its climax, Chess, Morrow, and a young spiritualist named Yancey Colder—caught up in Chess's vendetta—will all have to shed yet more blood as they face down his mysterious patron demon, known only as the Enemy... along with every other enemy Chess has already made along the way.

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