I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Anywhere But Here by Brian Francis Slattery
Series: Bookburners #2
Published by Serial Box Publishing on September 15 2015
Genres: Adult, Fantasy
Buy on Amazon
The nitty-gritty: And we’re off! The story starts to take shape, we get to know the characters better.
You can read my review of Badge, Book, and Candle (Bookburners #1) here.
The walls of the room were hair and plaster. No. Splinters and sinew. No. The policeman didn’t know what the walls were. And, within a breath, it didn’t matter anymore. Things that felt like fingers, or snakes, rose out of the floor and coiled around him, curled into his mouth. Then the policeman was somewhere else. He was a winged serpent in a crystal cave. He was a gargantuan snail with a thousand colonies of sentient insects anchored to his shell. He was a huge, many-legged thing nestled inside a silver egg. When he hatched and spread his wings across the sky, the world would shudder with wonder.
Following last week’s episode, Sal Brooks is now an official member of Team Three of the Societas Librorum Occultorum, and has moved to their home base in Rome. Sal is introduced to the Black Archives, where dangerous occult objects are brought and stored, to keep them out of the hands of civilians. Once there, Sal meets archivist Asanti, and along with the other members of the team—Grace, Liam and Father Menchú—they prepare for their latest assignment: occult activity has been detected in Madrid, and before you know it, the team heads out to try to contain some very strong magic that has escaped from—you guessed it—a book. (I’m sensing a trend here…)
Once again, this second episode takes less than an hour to read, and much like television, it’s broken up into manageable chunks with natural pauses between them, where commercials might fall if this were a TV show. This was my first experience reading a story by Brian Francis Slattery, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. In fact, I liked this episode better than the first one, maybe because I’m starting to see the overall story take shape. We’re introduced to a new character named Asanti, and like Liam, Grace and Father Menchú, there appears to be more to her than meets the eye.
Sal still shines as my favorite character thus far, and I guess if I could pinpoint a “main” character it would have to be her. Sal’s brother Perry, who was taken over by a demon in the first episode, is now safely ensconced in the Vatican where Father Menchú and company can keep a close eye on him. Sal’s motivation to join the group is clearly her desire to help her brother rid himself of the demon and return to normal. In addition to a new adventure each week, part of the focus will probably be on Perry and his demonic possession. I love that there is a clear end-game in sight, although I expect lots of twists and turns along the way.
I won’t go into the plot, but I will say that I loved the dream-like storyline of Anywhere But Here. The team tracks down the man responsible for unleashing the power of the book, and the scenes that take place in his apartment are wonderfully strange and magical—and yes, a little creepy as well. After reading this episode, I’ll definitely be tracking down more from Slattery. His writing has a lovely polished quality to it, and his imagery is simply wonderful. Despite the danger and uncertainty facing the team as they try to contain the out-of-control book, this episode had a lighthearted quality that I loved, with lots of humorous moments between the characters. Combining horror and humor is one of my favorite things, and Slattery does it really well.
Anywhere But Here is now available to purchase on the Serial Box website, and if you haven’t started the series yet, you can download Episode #1 for free! Next week I move on to Fair Weather by Margaret Dunlap. Let me know if you’re reading Bookburners too!
Big thanks to the publisher for supplying a review copy.