Review of Garrett’s Mulligan
I had the pleasure of reviewing a book this last month. Let me share my experience!
‘Garrett’s Mulligan’ by Grant Reed is a fantasy tale with a comedic slant and a murder/intrigue plot. I was recommended it by a friend and it’s just that kind of recommendation that keeps us finding new gems that would otherwise have passed us by.
I didn’t have a clue what to expect and it took me a good chapter or so before I realised that I was reading a comedy, due to a fairly serious prologue chapter that details a military assault on a prison. After that it soon becomes clear that this book has a lot of facets. One moment you’re reading the comedy banter between a Private Investigator and his anthropomorphised dragon associate, the next you’re uncovering layers of mystery in an underworld of organised crime and the aforementioned military crisis.
There’s so much going on that it may take you a while to get your head around it, but persevere- it’s something of a rollercoaster and that’s a good thing. There’s a ton of action to keep you hooked while the main plot of murder and mystery unfolds, but keep your eyes peeled, because there’s plenty of little clues hidden in the early chapters that make a lot of sense when the final twists and turns are navigated. That scene depicted on the cover, for example, is not nearly as random as it may seem!
Those twists are untwisted by the eponymous Garrett Willigins. He’s an engaging main character and plays the straight man to his more outlandish friend Merle, a dragon who produces lightning and doesn’t get on with Minotaurs. Oh, they have a robot cleaner too- just don’t call him a golem. Yes, it’s as wacky as it sounds, much along the lines of a discworld novel, but rather more light hearted. Old and new clash frequently so it’s not a story for a fantasy purist, but for those who can suspend disbelief and just enjoy some madcap events in a very rich world, then it’s perfect. Keep your eye on the character of B.S, he’s very interesting indeed.
Grant Reed is Canadian and for a British reader that certainly came through in the text. I can’t help but wonder if the nation of ‘Ponce’, for example, is less of a smirk-inducer for those across the pond! He isn’t a perfect writer in terms of technicalities, but he writes from the heart. Grant tells a tale very well, keeping you going back for more, with well-crafted characters and a gripping mystery. There’s something compulsive yet undemanding about his writing that makes it an easy, pleasurable read. The good news is that this isn’t the only tale by Grant to feature Garrett and Merle.
Garrett’s Mulligan is definitely a worthwhile read and I’m glad that I was directed to it. It should be clear from the description that this isn’t Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, but more of a comedy romp with a fantasy backdrop. If you like the kind of story where one minute you’ll be reading about a gruesome murder and the next you’ll be reading about a robot servant trying to handle a dog, then you’ll love this!