Queen of the Dark Things: A Novel (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

This is dark urban fantasy at its best.  If you're a fan of the way Neil Gaiman plays with folklore and mythology in American Gods, you'll love Queen of the Dark Things.  Cargill blends local folklore and twists mythology so well that you expect to run into these characters the next time you're in Austin.  And while Colby spends his time around creatures, this is also a very human story about loss and trying to find your place in the world.

You can read this one without having read Dreams and Shadows.  Dreams and Shadows made my best of 2013 list, and Queen of the Dark Things might make an appearance on 2014's list too.

C. Robert Cargill will sign at MBTB on Tuesday, May 13 at 6:30 p.m.  

— John


Screenwriter and noted film critic C. Robert Cargill continues the story begun in his acclaimed debut Dreams and Shadows in this bold and brilliantly crafted tale involving fairies and humans, magic and monsters—a vivid phantasmagoria that combines the imaginative wonders of Neil Gaiman, the visual inventiveness of Guillermo Del Toro, and the shocking miasma of William S. Burroughs.

 Six months have passed since the wizard Colby lost his best friend to an army of fairies from the Limestone Kingdom, a realm of mystery and darkness beyond our own. But in vanquishing these creatures and banning them from Austin, Colby sacrificed the anonymity that protected him. Now, word of his deeds has spread, and powerful enemies from the past—including one Colby considered a friend—have resurfaced to exact their revenge.

As darkness gathers around the city, Colby sifts through his memories desperate to find answers that might save him. With time running out, and few of his old allies and enemies willing to help, he is forced to turn for aid to forces even darker than those he once battled.

Following such masters as Lev Grossman, Erin Morgenstern, Richard Kadrey, and Kim Harrison, C. Robert Cargill takes us deeper into an extraordinary universe of darkness and wonder, despair and hope to reveal the magic and monsters around us . . . and inside us.

Praise For…

“Powerful…. Brimming with philosophical conundrums… Cargill’s world is abundant in detail and imagery in the service of the story. … Will keep readers entranced.”

“Hard to put down…this is definitely going to attract readers of contemporary fantasy, particular those who enjoy Neil Gaiman’s adult books or Lev Grossman’s The Magicians.”

“As a result, Dreams and Shadows is a potent introduction to a world where the wondrous is rarely wonderful, the best intentions are guaranteed to roam farthest astray, and the reader is destined to keep turning the pages until the (somewhat) bitter end.”

“A thoroughly enchanting debut novel”

“In this beautifully written debut.... The universe is richly detailed, and issues of destiny and sacrifice give the story depth…for those that enjoy a rollercoaster ride into the depths of strangeness and despair.”

“Exceptional worldbuilding, sure-handed plotting and well-rounded characters, even the nasty ones, abound, and the whole impressive enterprise moves smartly along through a fairy culture with a structure and motivations sharply different from that of humans. A mesmerizing and highly original debut.”

“Richly imagined...an auspicious debut.”

“Dark, comedic, and unsettling, Dreams and Shadows is everything an urban fantasy sets out to be.”

“Cargill proves with Dreams and Shadows that he’s not just a writer capable of creating and presenting dense mythology well

“[T]his is a fantasy about mythmaking, learning the uses of power, and living with the consequences of one’s behavior. Recommended for readers of Lev Grossman’s Magicians series and Neil Gaiman’s adult contemporary fantasies.”

“Cargill’s screenwriting chops bring to life a vivid mix of real and imaged folklore in his fantastical second novel. While the mix of urban fantasy, Guillermo Del Toro-like monsters and academic explanations of this magical world shouldn’t work, it absolutely does.”
Product Details
ISBN: 9780062190468
ISBN-10: 0062190466
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Publication Date: January 27th, 2015
Pages: 448
Language: English