Unshapely Things (Connor Grey #1) Plot Overview:
After part of the Faeire World suddenly manifested in the middle of Boston, the fey that came with it had to go somewhere.
Welcome to the ‘Weird’.... where many of the Fey have made their homes. It’s filled with magic, wonder and strange alien creatures - it can also be a rough and dangerous neighborhood.
Connor Grey was once a powerful Druid with the Guild (fey law enforcement agency), after an accident on a job he is now all but powerless. No longer useful he’s on disability and trying to make ends meet with the odd consulting job. Things aren’t exactly going well for Connor and he recently had to move to the edge of the Weird himself.
Now someone is brutally killing fairy prostitutes and cutting out their hearts, when the Guild decides its not an urgent matter they kick the case to back to the human police. With no idea what they are dealing with the police turn to Connor for help navigating the murky depths of the Weird in search of a serial killer.
As Connor starts to investigate the crimes, he doesn’t realizethat the answer might just be closer than he ever would have imagined. He will need to work fast to unravel the mystery and prevent catastrophe.
What I thought:
Unshapely Things is an investigative Urban Fantasy story,there is a good mystery/crime plot that compels most of the action and author Marc Del Franco has spent considerable time building a very detailed world.
The story is set in Boston where part of the Faerie realm has merged with the human one bringing with it its many strange citizens and magic. The author spends a lot of time crafting the cityscape and its many inhabitants. The descriptions in the book are detailed and well-written and they really help you get a sense of the people and place.
It’s nice to read a good story with a male hero. It usually means the story will be action focused rather than romance focused which is definitely the case here.
The many different fey that inhabit the world are interesting, one of the better characters is the tiny flit, ‘Stinkwort’ (a.k.a. Joe), with his small size and pretty pink wings Joe doesn’t look like much, but looks can be deceiving. Joe’s character is not only the much needed light relief; he is a really great character in his own right. I hope we see more of him and his world in the future.
The start of the book is a bit slow because there are a lot of descriptions and characterizations. It’s OK to start with as we need to learn about this new world but after a while it can become a bit tedious. Sometimes even during the action the author would stop and describe something and this detracted from the flow of the story
It also got a bit repetitive which slowed the story down again. Things the character does more than once like his morning ritual for example don’t really need to be described again if nothing changes. Also the details of the case were rehashed often as the character worked thought the mystery – I think the majority of readers can remember what they need to if it has already been mentioned.
Despite these pacing issues the novel does keep moving along pretty well and it ended with a good conclusion. If you find that you don’t get into it right away keep going because it is worth it - once you get into it you won’t be able to stop, the story grabs you and pulls you into a very absorbing world.
Final Comments and Overall Rating:
If you like magical murder mysteries, this will likely be right up your alley.
There were many good points to this novel, the plot and characters were all well done. The whole Fey/Human world merging is not exactly a new idea but the author does well to bring his own flavour to it and has created a new and interesting place for us to explore.
Conner Grey Series: 1. Unshapely Things, 2. Unquiet Dreams, 3. Unfallen Dead, 4. Unperfect Souls, 5. Uncertain Allies, 6. Undone Deeds