Posted on February 23, 2006 by Flames
Go Beyond the Veil with Christopher Golden!
Oliver Bascombe lives a normal life. He has caring sister, a domineering father and he is supposed to be getting married tomorrow. All of that changes when an old man claiming to be the spirit of Winter itself comes calling on Oliver to get him back across the Veil and a away from the Thing hunting him down.
THE MYTH HUNTERS is the first book of a new dark fantasy trilogy The Veil by award winning horror author Christopher Golden.
When referring to H.P. Lovecraft, Neil Gaiman has said that “Fantasy and Horror are linked…twin cities separated by a dark river.” He went on to describe Lovecraft as beginning as a dark alley way that grew into a major four-lane highway. To continue the metaphor, Christopher Golden’s THE MYTH HUNTERS is a dark path through the woods that both cities share. It is dark, twisting with half remembered tales and warnings from our childhood. There are creatures there, beautiful, fantastic and very deadly.
In this new dark fantasy with a twist, Golden hones his finely tuned horror-craft on a fantastical world where the myths of our childhood are real, but darker than we have ever imagined. It is “Thomas Covenant” meets “The Tales of the Brothers Grimm”, the original versions. Golden has mixed horror and fantasy before with tremendous success in GHOSTS OF ALBION. MYTH HUNTERS is the other side of the coin. While GHOSTS was horror with a fantastical twist, MYTH HUNTERS is fantasy tinged with horror. The result of this chilling alchemy is an extremely satisfying read and tale that immediately pulls you in.
Like Oliver, we get pulled into a fantastic landscape where things are oddly familiar, yet far more dangerous. The result is equal parts enjoyment of the tale itself and enjoyment of seeing how familiar myths fare under Golden’s craft. Golden gives us carefully measured doses of this new world. Again, like Oliver, we have learn on the run, and the effect is perfect.
Unlike other “Stranger in a Strange Land” tales, we also get to see the fallout of Oliver’s disappearance. The actions of his sister, his fiancé, and the police detective charged with finding him and finding the answer to the grisly murders left in his wake. This part of the book was equally enjoyable and followed more conventional horror fare; which I believe is the point. Golden contrasts and compares the two worlds with a variety of parallels that are both subtle and rewarding. Are they two worlds that are the same and have grown apart or are they two worlds that different but linked? We the reader see them sooner than Oliver, but only because we have a foot in both worlds, or both “cities” as the case may be.
My biggest gripe about this book is I now have to wait for book two!
The Myth Hunters: Book 1 of The Veil (The Veil) (Paperback)
by Christopher Golden
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Bantam Spectra (January 31, 2006)
Reviewer: Timothy S. Brannan