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review 2017-10-14 16:32
The Malice by Peter Newman
The Malice - Peter C. Newman

Series: The Vagrant #2

 

Years have passed since the events of The Vagrant. I'm not certain of how many, but one review I found said it had been twelve years, which is consistent with how Vesper acts. Vesper, the little baby from the first book, takes centre stage as the main character of this one. When the Vagrant, whom she calls Father, doesn't answer Gamma's sword's call (the Malice), Vesper tries to take it to those who would help. Instead of being accompanied by the old goat, Vesper takes along the old goat's baby kid who is adorable and instrumental in the story (and not just as bait). The kid held the book at three stars, despite some of the clumsiness in parts.

 

This is basically an alternate fantasy world with technology that has fallen into a kind of Dystopia after the world is invaded by the infernals through the Breach (a kind of crack in reality). Infernals take over human bodies (sometimes in gross combinations) in order to survive in the new world. Something massive that's being called the Yearning is making its way through the Breach with potentially dire results for everybody, even for the infernals already there, halfbreeds and tainted humans. It is hoped that the Malice will be able to stop the Yearning, which is why Vesper journeys south.

 

Despite feeling fuzzy on how much time has passed since the events of the first book, I'm pretty confident that the source I found stating twelve years is pretty close if not spot on because Vesper certainly acts like she's twelve or thirteen and by the end of the book she's physically grown a bit. So I'm comfortable using this for the "Chilling Children" square for the Halloween Bingo. It could also be used the "Supernatural" and "Genre: Horror" squares, I think.

 

I know I mentioned that the kid is adorable but he's seriously adorable.

 

Previous update:

13 %

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text 2017-10-11 18:30
Reading progress update: I've read 13%.
The Malice - Peter C. Newman

I'm trying to read this for "Chilling Children" but I don't have a clear idea of how old Vesper is. She sounds young and is referred to as a "girl" but if there are clues in the text, I've missed them. I don't remember how long it was after the world was invaded that she was born.

 

I did find this blog article that indicates that she's about twelve, which would match how old she seems, but I don't know if that's right. If it is, then I should be able to use this book for "Chilling Children". I tried reading "The Turn of the Screw" because it was short but I didn't make it more than two pages into it before I gave up...

 

There is an adorable baby goat following Vesper around though. Actually, I've just noticed that she's carrying it on the cover.

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text 2017-04-30 15:24
Good things come to those who wait...
The Malice - Peter C. Newman
The Vagrant - Peter C. Newman
The Stars Are Legion - Kameron Hurley

Sweet! Kobo has a sale that actually includes a book I want!

 

Their Explore titles that are out of this world sale has several interesting books on for $3.99 and under (Canadian, not sure where else the sale is applicable if anywhere), including The Malice by Peter Newman, which I had been dithering about buying because it's normally $13.99. Now it's $2.99! So I won't be getting it from the library after all.

  

The first book in the series, The Vagrant, is on sale too ($1.99), but I already have that. The Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley is on sale for $3.99 in case someone has been looking for an excuse to pick that up (it's pretty awesome).

 

The sale is on until May 8th. Currently looking through the lists for more pleasant surprises...

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review 2016-08-01 04:48
The Vagrant by Peter Newman
The Vagrant - Peter C. Newman

The Vagrant is a harsh fantasy set in the aftermath of what may be best described as a demonic invasion. They’re not exactly demons, but they’re referred to as “infernals” and they came bodiless into this world and stole human shells to house their essences, basically. The original civilization in this world was technologically advanced, but things have pretty well fallen apart now, at least in the south. I’m calling it harsh because some people are left for dead and the infernals who build themselves bodies by reanimating and joining corpses sound gruesome.

 

The Vagrant himself is a fairly noble character and does try to save a lot of people that others want to leave for dead, but he also has a mission (to bring the sword he carries to the Shining City in the north), and is carrying around and caring for a small baby, so he has his own priorities.  The start of the book did start to get annoying because the Vagrant kept getting double crossed by people trying to steal the baby. An “untainted” baby is a rare thing in the south because normal humans who are exposed to the demons can become tainted by them. And then they usually start to mutate. The book does eventually move on from the baby-stealing plotline, however.

 

The novel does get a little awkward in places, but it usually turns interesting again shortly afterward. By awkward, I just mean that some of the conversations turn awkward and there are some places where the parts of the plot just seem to resolve themselves very abruptly. We’re thrown into the deep end at the start but we learn more about the backstory of the Vagrant and his world as the story progresses through flashback chapters.

 

I will note that the book was written in the present tense, but I’m not counting this as a mark against it since I actually felt it worked well here. It allowed for minimal information to be given out about the characters while retaining a sense of immediacy. Usually use of the present tense bothers me (as in it’s irksome) and it didn’t here. I can’t speak for others, however.

 

Looking back at the book from the end, the overall story arc is resolved although there is enough left over that is open-ended to leave room for a sequel. Not everything gets wrapped up but there is an end. Overall, you get enough details for the story but you won’t get much more than that and the information will be handed out piecemeal rather than at the beginning before any action happens. This book isn’t for someone who wants everything spelled out in minute detail. It’s certainly not as obscure as some other books that I’ve read, but you have to be patient.

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text 2016-07-24 02:52
Reading progress update: I've read 117 out of 404 pages.
The Vagrant - Peter C. Newman

I'm not entirely sure what to make of this. So far there's a sword-wielding man, who refuses to speak, carrying a baby around and travelling through a kind of post-apocalyptic fantasy land with demons. It's weird and kind of interesting. Fortunately it doesn't spoon-feed you information but avoids being completely inscrutable.

 

Everyone wants to steal the baby and sell it to the demons, of course.

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