The Grimnoir Chronicles by Larry Correia

When I interviewed Larry Correia a couple of months ago, I had read some of his Monster Hunter International books, but I had not read any of the Grimnoir Chronicles series.  I didn’t know much about the series, but based on the cover of the first book, Hard Magic, I guessed it was a 1930s hard-boiled detective novel, plus magic, and that didn’t really pique my interest.  But since I’ve recently been listening to audiobooks at a rate of more than one per week, and the first two books in the series had won Audie awards, I decided to give the first one a try.

I’m glad I did.  I listened to the entire trilogy in short order, and I loved the Grimnoir Chronicles even more than the MHI series.  It’s part fantasy, part science fiction, part alternate history, part superhero — and completely awesome.

The books take place in the 1930s, but in a timeline in which people (referred to as Actives) started gaining magical powers in the 1800s.  They follow the adventures of Jake Sullivan, an unjustly imprisoned war-hero/private-eye with the power to manipulate gravity; Faye Vierra, a whip-smart teenage refugee from the Dust Bowl with the power to teleport; and various other characters with magical powers who make up the Grimnoir Society, which is dedicated to protecting Actives from regular humans and vice versa.

I thought all the major characters were distinctive and memorable (in part due to Bronson Pinchot’s excellent narration — there’s a reason the audiobooks have won awards), and I enjoyed spotting the names of some people I know in more minor roles. The explanation for why magic exists in this world is fascinating, with major plot implications for the course of the trilogy. The books are filled with humor and action, but also have some interesting things to say about free will, among other philosophical issues.

About Eric James Stone

A Nebula Award winner, Hugo Award nominee, and winner in the Writers of the Future Contest, Eric James Stone has had stories published in Year’s Best SF 15, Analog, Nature, and Kevin J. Anderson’s Blood Lite anthologies of humorous horror, among other venues. One of Eric’s earliest memories is of seeing an Apollo moon-shot launch on television. That might explain his fascination with space travel. His father’s collection of old science fiction ensured that Eric grew up on a full diet of Asimov, Heinlein and Clarke. While getting his political science degree at Brigham Young University, Eric took creative writing classes. He wrote several short stories, and even submitted one for publication, but after it was rejected he gave up on creative writing for a decade. During those years Eric graduated from Baylor Law School, worked on a congressional campaign, and took a job in Washington, DC, with one of those special interest groups politicians always complain that other politicians are influenced by. He quit the political scene in 1999 to work as a web developer in Utah. In 2002 he started writing fiction again, and in 2003 he attended Orson Scott Card’s Literary Boot Camp. In 2007 Eric got laid off from his day job just in time to go to the Odyssey Writing Workshop. He has since found a new web development job. In 2009 Eric became an assistant editor for Intergalactic Medicine Show. Eric lives in Eagle Mountain, Utah.
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2 Responses to The Grimnoir Chronicles by Larry Correia

  1. Jonathan Langford says:

    So, are there multiple people doing the various voices? I have only limited experience with audiobooks, and all the examples I’ve encountered have a single reader.

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