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Monday, October 29, 2007

The Garrett Files

The Garrett Files by Glen Cook. Fantasy.

This is an omnibus of the first three Garrett fantasy/mystery novels. Garrett is a P.I., a human with no special magical powers, who lives in a world peopled with a variety of supernatural creatures. He lives with his partner, "The Dead Man," who's a Loghyr--450 pounds of dead flesh housing a mind that's capable of telepathy and telekinesis and tele-what-have-you... when he feels like it, anyway. He also has a butler/housekeeper/cook named Dean (who's perpetually trying to hook Garrett up with one of his innumerable personality-rich nieces), and a penchant for redheads.
  • ****½ Sweet Silver Blues.

    In this introduction to the series, an old marine buddy of Garrett's has died and made Garrett an executor of his will... a will in which he left a fortune in silver to an ex-flame of Garrett's, who was apparently also an ex-flame of his friend's.

    So Garrett has to go back to the Cantard (where the war over silver mines is ongoing) to find her, and it rapidly gets complicated.

    There's magic and mystery and espionage and action and even a little romance, though Garrett's idea of romance doesn't involve monogamy.

    I had a little trouble keeping all the characters straight in the beginning, but even so, I was hooked, and very glad that I'd bought the first two omnibuses.

  • ***** Bitter Gold Hearts.

    Here, Garrett is hired when a Stormwarden's son is kidnapped. But he's not hired to find the son, or to deliver the ransom--he's asked his advice, then he's paid and sent on his way.

    The plot thickens when a young woman of the household hires Garrett's friend Saucerhead for protection, on Garrett's advice, and ends up dead, and Saucerhead nearly so.

    This story was more of a classic mystery, and I really enjoyed the twists and turns and figuring out whodunit and why. Since it was the second book, I was familiar with the characters, which made it easier to follow, as well.

  • ***** Cold Copper Tears.

    This one is even more twisty. We're introduced to religion and street gangs when what looked like an ordinary (read: boring) security guard job that Garrett passed off to a colleague ends up with Garrett being attacked and the colleague turning up dead after returning Garrett's advance and saying he got a better offer.

    The client disappears and Garrett finds himself up against a cult headed by a would-be god. In addition to his usual allies, he has Maya, head of a street gang who he'd known as a child. But she's not a child anymore, as she keeps reminding Garrett.

    I appreciated how each book seems to reveal a little more of Garrett's universe, and this one, with an abundance of intrigue, was fascinating. I was a wee bit squicked by the age difference between Maya and Garrett, but then so was Garrett.

These stories are a nice blend of fantasy, mystery, and humor, and I understand why so many fans of the Dresden Files recommended them. Garrett's voice isn't quite as vivid as Harry's--he's very much the hard-boiled private eye from those 40s movies. They also remind me a bit of the Nero Wolfe series, which is one of my all-time favorites. I'm looking forward to reading more of this series.


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I have a copy of the omnibus on my shelf. Thanks for the reminder that I really do want to read it!
These sound good. I will keep my eyes out for them!
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