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review 2019-09-21 00:23
Thoughts: Half-Off Ragnarok
Half-Off Ragnarok - Seanan McGuire

Half-Off Ragnarok

by Seanan McGuire
Book 3 of InCryptid



When Alex Price agreed to go to Ohio to oversee a basilisk breeding program and assist in the recovery of his psychic cousin, he didn't expect people to start dropping dead.  But bodies are cropping up at the zoo where he works, and his girlfriend—Shelby Tanner, an Australian zoologist with a fondness for big cats—is starting to get suspicious.

Worse yet, the bodies have all been turned partially to stone...

The third book in the InCryptid series takes us to a new location and a new member of the family, as Alex tries to balance life, work, and the strong desire not to become a piece of garden statuary.  Old friends and new are on the scene, and danger lurks around every corner.

Of course, so do the talking mice.

I went into this third book in the InCryptid series knowing that we were switching perspectives from Verity Price to her older brother, Alex Price.  I hadn't exactly decided on any kind of expectations, but I was still a bit wary about how much I'd like the book based on what little you get to know about Alex from Verity's POV in the first two books.  And while I didn't really squee or love Half-Off Ragnarok as much as I loved the first two books, I admittedly enjoyed following Alex's POV very much.

Alex Price is a science nerd and his sort of socially awkwardness only makes him so much more endearing.  Especially since this book didn't really focus on the quirks of his personality, even while displaying them in ways that I absolutely enjoyed.  I'm not sure how I felt about Shelby, although she seemed a bit one-dimensional and stereotyped--though this could have just been because of the first person POV wherein we only really get to see things from Alex's perspective.

The mystery of who was turning people to stone was actually a rather great premise to start the book off with, and made this an interesting page-turner... even as the rest of the book felt a bit lackluster.

Don't get me wrong--I absolutely enjoyed myself reading this book.  But somehow it just didn't bring about the giddy feels and the laugh-out-loud moments that I'd found so much fun from the first two books.  This could just be because of the little book time you get with Alex's splinter colony of Aeslin mice, or maybe the absence of a specific carnage-loving Gothic-lolita Waheela whom I ended up loving from the second book.  Even Alex's miniature griffin, Crow, didn't really help much, cute as the little snot was.

Nonetheless, this was definitely a great inclusion to the series, and I actually kind of appreciate seeing the cryptid world from more than just Verity's perspective.  And the nerdy scientist thing that Alex is sporting is quite endearing.

We still could have used more time with the Aeslin mice, though... just sayin'...



Halloween Bingo 2019



Source: anicheungbookabyss.blogspot.com/2019/09/thoughts-half-off-ragnarok.html
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review 2018-07-06 12:42
Meet Alex Price
Half-Off Ragnarok - Seanan McGuire

I guess every couple of books, we focus on another sibling: Verity, Alex and Antimony.   We've met them both, through memories or phone calls, but we didn't get much of them.   Alex is a geek who's speciality is reptiles.   Crypto-reptiles to be specific.   (So.   Many.   Snakes.   Yay!)   He works at a reptile house in a zoo as a visiting employee, while trying to breed Basilisk in the backroom, dating another visiting employee who deals with the big cats (and is a super-hot Australian), while trying to figure out why Ohio's frog population is down - and what to do about the cryptozoological replacement in the ecosystem.   If the trend continues, winged frogs will be exposed as a Real Thing That Exists, and he's afraid that the rest of the cryptozoological world will soon follow. 


Which will expose them to the Covenant, and also freak out the rest of the world.   What's a geek-boy to do if he ever wants to have another date with that super hot exchange chick he works with?


Well, let's just have him meet his patchwork family - literally in the form of his Revenant grandfather who's patched together from dead bodies.   (He was alive once, but Mad Science intervened after his death.   Now grandpa works at the morgue - partly for body parts for him and the rest of the Revenants.)


When people start turning to stone, Alex has to discover what kind of 'mythical' creature is behind this, if it's a sapient one or a more animalistic one being used, and how to stop them.   (Basilisk, for example, are cryptozoological and have animal tendencies/brains/mental capacities, while Gorgons are sapient - thus can take part in the human world as long as they put a wig on their hair.   If Basilisk are involved, Alex has to go after whoever is unleashing them, whereas if it's a Gorgon, he can go directly after the Gorgon.)   The fact that his assistant IS a Gorgon and he has Basilisk in the attic - fine, the backroom - complicates things: could he or Dee, or Dee's community be involved?


And how many people-turned-statue does it take to get the Covenant to notice and investigate?   Alex better find whoever's doing this before Ohio finds out...


Sorry, I am tapped out of good descriptions right now, so you get... this.

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text 2018-07-02 14:13
Reading progress update: I've read 284 out of 356 pages.
Half-Off Ragnarok - Seanan McGuire

I have a couple errands to run before work, one after, and also a small thing to do on the computer after work for school. 


Other than that?  I hope to finish this book today and start the next.  I'm enjoying Alex more, although still not as much as I enjoyed Verity.

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text 2018-06-30 21:54
Reading progress update: I've read 119 out of 356 pages.
Half-Off Ragnarok - Seanan McGuire

Alex is so, so flaky!



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text 2018-06-30 18:23
Reading progress update: I've read 76 out of 356 pages.
Half-Off Ragnarok - Seanan McGuire

That sounded a lot more like Verity than Shelby.   I suspect the author misses Verity as much as I do!

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