Title: Monster Hunter International
Author: Larry Correia
Narrator: Oliver Wyman

Kind of a “guilty pleasure” type story. A rousing, Saturday/summer matinee action movie kind of thing. Lots of fun, not a lot of depth. It has fun, memorable characters and a great hook. Reminded me a lot of Charles Stross’ books that start with the excellent “The Atrocity Archives” (I believe it’s called the Laundry Files series).

A lot of reviews of this one go into the author’s “sad puppies” history, but I see little point. The author’s politics might have had some input here, sure, but like I said in my review of Naomi Novik’s “Uprooted”, I love diversity in the genre, and if the authors want to fight the culture wars on the pages of fiction, that’s their business. I’ll take what entertainment I can get out of it.

Still, just as I was a bit put-off by Uprooted’s overtly feminine tropes (e.g. cooking and fashion), some readers may be put off by this book’s overtly masculine tropes (e.g. gun porn). I have to admit that I seem to be much more tolerant of the latter than the former. But it’s not a deliberate choice, it has mitigated over time, and I won’t apologize for it. I figure my determination to “read everything” more than makes up for any extra entertainment value I may find from time to time in gun porn, etc.

All of that is really beside the point. There’s some great action here and a lot of really creative thinking, albeit somewhat contained with the familiar confines of the action subgenre. On the audio side, this was narrated by the excellent Oliver Wyman, who also narrated Fred Pohl’s Gateway/Heechee books, which I’m posting a review of shortly. Wyman’s main strength seems to be in his ability to make his character sound very distinct from one another. This is a great plus in an audiobook narrator, especially in a fast-paced action title like this where the “he said” and “she said” notations are sometimes set aside during rapid-fire dialog.

There’s a whole series here that I might get around to eventually, but it may be a while before I get back to it.

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