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  1. #1
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Sixty-One Nails by Mike Shevdon

    Hello all,

    I've read and reviewed Sixty-One Nails by Mike Shevdon, and I managed to interview the author too (he's a member of this forum).

    Has anyone read this yet?

    It's a magic in London sort of story, with fairies (feyres), trolls, and all the other English magic creatures of lore, scampering about beneath and among our feet. It has action, and some romance, but it primarily focuses on Niall (the main character) trying to save his butt and the world from bad magical creatures.

    I've checked out some of the other reviews (over on GoodReads and Amazon), and it has been well received - for the most part, though it is not everyone's cup of tea.

    One particular complaint that I noticed was that someone thought the characters were acting too young for their age. Niall is 42 and his cohort is hundreds of years old.

    I'm 42, and I hadn't thought that at all when I read the book. I thought Niall was a little image conscious, but I hadn't thought he was immature or was acting out of character for someone his age. Does that just mean I'm immature?

    Did anyone read this and have similar thoughts about the characters maturity or lack of it?

  2. #2
    Palinodic Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Okay, I want a semi-spoiler on this one. I'm not clear exactly what the world threat is in this series or at the start of the series, though I'm intrigued by his use of folklore (a favorite thing of mine,) and the Quit Rent ritual. Is it a big secret?

  3. #3
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    You know, I'm never good at determining what might be a spoiler or not.

    Spoiler:
    Basically, there's two kinds of fey - tainted (mixed with human blood) and untainted. The untainted don't like us too much and are eroding the barrier between our world and theirs. The Quit Rent ceremony maintains that barrier, but has been corrupted over the last few years or so. It is up to Niall to fix it and save the world!

  4. #4
    Jack Bauer Bastard's Avatar
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    Half asleep at the moment, so won't say much on it, but really enjoying this series.

  5. #5
    A Fantasy Freak
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    Enjoyed this one a lot as well as its sequel and am looking forward to the 3rd book this June.

    I don't recall thinking Niall acted very immature, but maybe a little...I think I cut him some slack since he was introduced to an awful lot of craziness really fast.

  6. #6
    Jack Bauer Bastard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alle View Post
    Enjoyed this one a lot as well as its sequel and am looking forward to the 3rd book this June.

    I don't recall thinking Niall acted very immature, but maybe a little...I think I cut him some slack since he was introduced to an awful lot of craziness really fast.
    Also, didn't his introduction to magic kinda rejuvenated him in manner? I don't recall the immature aspect either myself.

  7. #7
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Maybe it was just that reviewer. I hadn't thought it was immature, though I did find it odd that he had such a hang up about her appearance.

    And, yes, they were able to change their appearance and somehow I think it changed them physically as well. What I wonder now, is what did Blackbird look like during her pregnancy? I mean, what age? He never really specified but I figured it was the hot, 20 something look. And I figured he defaulted to 20-something too. Not sure how that all worked with the fact that she's a few hundred years old...

    Anyway, I did enjoy the book as well and I'm well into the second book and enjoying that too.

    I thought the whole tainted/untainted infertility/fertility thing was an interesting way to tie English folk-lore with more modern notions. The whole void thing was cool too. I wonder how that's going to play out.

  8. #8
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alle View Post
    ...he was introduced to an awful lot of craziness really fast.
    Yes! I thought that too. I figured I'd be doing some pretty stupid things considering all that happened to him in the space of one day. Hell, I do stupid things now. Doesn't take anything out of the ordinary prompting that.

  9. #9
    A Fantasy Freak
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bastard View Post
    Also, didn't his introduction to magic kinda rejuvenated him in manner? I don't recall the immature aspect either myself.
    Yes it did IIRC, plus he got into much better shape physically too with all the running about he had to do. So glad there are two more books to look forward to!

  10. #10
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    There are three more books to look forward to. There's The Road to Bedlam (reading that now, not like the first but good so far). Strangeness and Charm is coming out this year. And he's started a fourth that I think will be coming out next year sometime.

  11. #11
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    I realized I didn't really answer Kat's question about the use of English folk-lore in this series.

    The author incorporates the historic sense of the folk-lore and myth into our normal world. There are fairies, goblins, leprechauns, trolls, and what not. As well as the wraith-kin that are essentially the bad guys in the book. However, they are all colored in darker hues than say what we might be familiar with in a children's book. And they all mix with humans except for the wraith-kin (the void folks), and that's where the crux of the conflict for the series seems to lay.

    Would you say that's about right, Bastard and Alle?

  12. #12
    Palinodic Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    No, no, you answered my question fine, tmso. It sounds quite interesting. It's the sort of thing I quite like.

  13. #13
    A Fantasy Freak
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    tmso: for me there are only two since I read Road to Bedlam as soon as it came out. I love the way folklore is woven into the story and world. The story and writing is exactly what I love.

  14. #14
    Just read Sixty-One Nails and was impressed with it, engaging and interesting with great potential as a series, have just ordered the 2nd. I'm delighted to have found this and Rivers of London recently, and depending on the second installment I'll decided which is my 2nd favorite urban fantasy - after the Dresden Files.

  15. #15
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    I'm almost done with The Road to Bedlam (the next in the series). I don't think you'll be disappointed with the second, but it is different. Not as fast paced, but still very good.

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