Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Slimy Underbelly-Kevin J. Anderson

Slimy Underbelly
Kevin J. Anderson
Kensington, Aug 26 2014, $15.00
ISBN: 9781617731143

In the Unnatural Quarter the weather wizards (Alastair Cumulus III and Thunder Dick) compete for the bragging rights of top weathermancer; which leads to chaotic conditions from blistering heat to a whiteout blizzard in an hour.  Private investigator Dan Shamble of Chambeaux and Deyer gets to the office where his girlfriend (and office assistant) Sheyenne the ghost lectures him for being out in a snowstorm.  Shamble’s partner Robin Deyer the human lawyer completes the Recompose Spa case for Mr. Lurmm the frog demon.

Supervillain in training and junior mad scientist, twelve year old Jody Caligari, Jr. needs their help but says his payment will make them feel good for doing it pro bono.  The lad explains his slumlord evicted him from his sewage lab and kept his experiments based on his being a child. Irked Robin says that is age discrimination and accepts the case over Shamble’s objection; he has doubts about a client who only reads graphic novels.  Meanwhile something underground has caused deaths, bad plumbing and horrific smells above ground.  With his neighborhood turning into a cesspool, Dan’s inquiry leads to Ah'Chulhu.

The latest Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. paranormal investigation (see Hair Raising, Unnatural Acts and Death Warmed Over) is as always a terrific timely satirical thriller as Kevin J. Anderson amusingly lampoons values in which feuds are the weird norm.  Whereas Jody is a great client, the usual suspects help the hero work the inquiries.  Included is a short story (previously published as an e-book) in which the sleuth conducts a Stakeout at the Vampire Circus where performers do their final act.

Harriet Klausner

No comments: