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As for this, 3 stars and a pretty good story. What do you get when you cross a down-on-his-luck private eye, a randy elf, a femme feline, a miniature horse, and a whole host of other oddball characters? Well, if you answered, "The book this review is about, you dolt," or something to that effect, then congratulations, you are right and slightly hurtful. You get a gold star. Stalking the Unicorn instantly had me hooked with the appealing characters, interesting plot, and tongue-in-cheek humor.

The story flowed well and at a nice, clipped pa What do you get when you cross a down-on-his-luck private eye, a randy elf, a femme feline, a miniature horse, and a whole host of other oddball characters? The story flowed well and at a nice, clipped pace for a good part of the book. Unfortunately, it fizzled out a little bit nearer the end and lost some of my interest.

I think too much was revealed too soon and the book probably could have lost around thirty pages. However, the plot picked back up some of its steam at the end, which saved the book from being three stars. Altogether, this is an easy and fun read that's a good starter to a series, and which I look forward to the next installments.

If you like absurd humor, zany dialogue, detective work, and an urban fantasy setting all mixed into one big stew, than you'll probably enjoy this book. Fun fact: Mike Resnick is the father of author Laura Resnick. I picked both of their books up about the same time without realizing it until after I had read her first Esther Diamond book. View all 7 comments. Sep 26, Aiyana rated it really liked it Shelves: fun-and-fantastic , humor. This novel is, quite simply, a lark. A tongue-in-cheek noir mystery send-up wherein the detective finds himself hired by a mythical creature, and is thrown into the back alleys of reality to be pitted against demons, leprechauns, and an obnoxiously affectionate cat-woman.

Very fun. It is the first in a short series consisting of three novels and many short stories. It is published by Pyr and is pages including some appendixes with some side information from the story. The cover has the back of the hero to the reader with the Other Manhattan before him and us. As you are reading the book remember to look at the cover as you do because you will see things from the book, I think that it is fun b Today's post is on 'Stalking the Unicorn' a Fable of Tonight by Mike Resnick. As you are reading the book remember to look at the cover as you do because you will see things from the book, I think that it is fun but that could just be me.

The intended reader is anyone who likes urban fantasies, witty stories, and just fun reads all around. There Be Spoilers Ahead. From the back- It's a pm on New Year's Eve, and private detective John Justin Mallory is hiding out in his Manhattan office to avoid his landlord's persistent inquires about the unpaid rent. When Mallory realizes the little green fellow is not going to disappear with the passing of his inebriation, he listens to the elf's impassioned plea that the stolen magical beast must be returned to his care by daylight or his little green life with be forfeited by the Elves' Guild.

Join John Justin Mallory on a New Year's night of wolf adventures in a fantasy Manhattan of leprechauns, gnomes, and harpies as he matches wits with the all-powerful demon, the Grundy, in a race to find the missing unicorn before time runs out! Now I have reviewed Resnick's work before and I love him. His wit is just wonderful in all his writing and this is no different. John Justin, as I call him, is a wonderful hero for many reasons.


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He is witty, he is full of common sense always a plus for me , he rolls with the punches, and he uses everything in his power to do the Right Thing. The side characters do more than just move the story along; they add to the plot. The villain is a demon who is power hungry and because John Justin is from our world he just is not afraid. John Justin is just the best. I cannot give these books the highest praise. Resnick takes all the fantasy tropes and makes them new again.

The whole book takes place in about nine 9 hours. Each chapter at the start has the time that pass in the chapter at the top under the chapter number- for example Chapter Nine am to am. I like that because it just raises my opinion of Resnick as a writer, to tell that wonderful story in less a day or even half a day.

A writer who can tell a whole story in so little time passing impresses me. The best part of the story is the dialog. Resnick is a master with it and this time is no different. But you will just have to read it for yourself. I give this Five out of Five stars because it is a masterpiece. I get nothing for my review. I bought this book with my own money and I own it with pride; go forth and do the same.

Apr 19, Alazzar rated it really liked it. Stalking the Unicorn is a detective story and, as such, contains a lot of what you'd expect from a detective novel: a smart-talking protagonist, a high dialogue-to-action ratio, and lots of shady characters. Oh, and detecting. There's plenty of detecting. What Resnick brings to the genre is the fantasy-setting of an alternate Manhattan inhabited by leprechauns, trolls and the like. Personally, I think adding this type of stuff to the noir world of a P. Also, I can't imagine why you'd read a book about normal people when you could read one that has goblins and demons and crap.

That's just common sense. The other thing that sets Stalking the Unicorn apart from others in the genre is the decidedly light-hearted tone of the book. Resnick injects a lot of humor into his story, even if there are times when I think he extends jokes beyond their necessary conclusion. More than once I felt like we hit the punchline and should have continued with the story, but the author had other ideas: he'd let the protagonist fire out a few more unnecessary questions, just to set up more gags.

At the end of the day, Stalking the Unicorn isn't my favorite fantasy-detective story of all time that title probably goes to Roger Zelazny's Amber series, which I didn't even realize starts out as a detective story until someone brought that idea to my attention , but it was certainly good enough for me to willingly seek out more of Resnick's work in the future. Jul 31, DeAnna Knippling rated it really liked it. Detective work and depression: in fiction, at least, they seem to go hand in hand.

Having done freelance for a while now, I have to wonder if it's an occupational rather than personal hazard caused by waiting for work to come in Anyway, I started out kind of frustrated with this book. A detective goes to the fairy version of NYC, trying to find a unicorn. More of an insiders thing, maybe?

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I just didn't need to take a fantasy tour of a city I'm not familiar with in the first place. Or maybe I did. I just relaxed and enjoyed it after a while. Yes, a lot of was peripheral, but by the time the book was finished, a good bit of it had been integrated back into the plot, and you were left with a real feel for where you were. Decent twists, characters eh, enjoyable setting.

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What ended up pushing this from three to four was the sense of inspiration, those intuitive jumps that happen every so often and that, in your chosen field, are the best. I think he captured those particularly well. Jan 19, Kati rated it really liked it Shelves: in-english , urban-fantasy , work-reviews , straight , Very similar to Simon R.

Green's "Nightside". This quirky adventure is based on funny dialogs rather than on real action or suspense. Thanks to a little green elf who hires him to find a stolen unicorn, PI John Justin Mallory finds himself in an alternate New York where there are yellow elephants instead of taxis, horses talk and stuffed animals don't actually realize they are already dead, where hawkers sell suntan lotion in the middle of a blizzard and there's a Department of a Redundancy Depa Very similar to Simon R. Thanks to a little green elf who hires him to find a stolen unicorn, PI John Justin Mallory finds himself in an alternate New York where there are yellow elephants instead of taxis, horses talk and stuffed animals don't actually realize they are already dead, where hawkers sell suntan lotion in the middle of a blizzard and there's a Department of a Redundancy Department, among other things.

Hilarity ensues, of course. But what I love most is, that amidst all the crazy stuff, Mallory is still a rather ruthless man, punishing and getting rid of anybody who betrays him or hurts his friends and without remorse too. Thanks to Mallory's personality, the book feels grounded, not just The humor and wit in this book is wonderful and kept me going back and forth between chuckling to outright laughing as the story flowed onward with a non-stop pace.

Also I really apreciated the appendixes at the end of the book that fill you in on some of the events that happen after the story is done. All in all I highly recomend this wonderful book. Apr 24, Craig rated it really liked it. This is the first of John Justin Mallory's published adventures, and introduces the fun fantasy world he inhabits as a hard-boiled private eye with a heart of gold.

It's a fine, entertaining read, much lighter than the similar Nightside works of Simon Green. Lots of entertaining characters and funny situations; perfect for when you need a good laugh. Dec 03, Ellie rated it really liked it Shelves: detectives-stories , giveaways-and-thrift-store-findings. This book was intended to be a parody of your dectective story set in an urban fantasy setting full of nonsense and satire.

But the author managed to make it work after a while and I found the book very enjoyable on the whole. The "other Manat 3,5 stars.

Stalking the Dragon

The "other Manathan" is joyously chaotic, unpredictable and full of winks. Never a dull moment. This one started a little slow for me and I almost put it down around 40 - 50 pages in. I decided to stay with it and by the end I was enjoying myself. My initial problem was that I just didn't really care about any of the characters. By the end I was still so-so about the main character Mallory but I did like three members of his merry band. The ending was decent and it set things up for the sequel. At this point I'll probably pick up the next in the series but I'm not in a huge rush.

May 05, James rated it liked it. While I ended up liking the book, it does come off a bit like what would happen is Dashiell Hammett had written The Phantom Tollbooth. Sep 11, Emily McIntyre rated it it was ok Shelves: fantasy-sf. Forgettable, or worse. First sentence got me off on the wrong foot; second confirmed. Nov 25, Sensitivemuse rated it liked it. Unlike the Dresden Files, Stalking the Unicorn is much lighter and the element of a dark comedy is much more prevalent throughout the story.

It was a fun enjoyable read, and John Justin Mallory does make a good protagonist to follow. The worlds created in this book are interesting. John Justin Mallory gets sucked into the other Manhattan with a case that seems out of this world, and with an unlikely character behind it a little elf. He takes everything in stride, but his sense of humor is dark and he does have a comment here and there to get a chuckle out of the reader every once in a while.

He has an unlikely cast of friends who help him either out of just being nice or for their own entertainment Felina and Eohippus are in their own right, fun to read and provide extra laughs. The plot was good, but yet there is little character development mentioned. It would have been nice to see Mallory develop more - he does somewhat but not as much as I had thought. The ending makes way for the other books in this series and I have no doubt they will be as fun as this one at least, I hope so!

Stalking the Unicorn provides a perfect blend of mystery and fantasy, adding dark comedy into the mix and the result is a fun light read. Oct 28, Shedrick Pittman-Hassett rated it liked it. John Justin Mallory is the prototypical private investigator. This Manhattan is populated with leprechauns, cat-girls, wizards, chess-playing cops and criminals, and the Grundy…its demonic de facto ruler. Unicorn is a fluffy bit of fun that is really is a joy to read. The dialog is crisp and snappy and the plot is much more interesting than it has a right to be.

If you like your fantasy dark, brooding, and apocalyptic, this will not be the book for you. Sep 07, Mike Kazmierczak rated it really liked it. Lucifer Jones short stories they published. I loved all the adventures of Dr. Lucifer Jones that I could find. And I did. Lucifer Jones stories; Dr. Lucifer Jones becomes a bit repetitive on how stupid but fun he can be.

Anyway, John Justin Mallory is a private eye who is down on his luck; his wife left him, he's out of money and he has no clients. And then he sees a little green elf in his office. Instead of a fantasy though, the elf turns out to be real and he needs some help to find a unicorn that has been stolen. Mallory follows Murgenstrum to another Manhattan populated with demons, trolls, elves, leprechauns and other fun, fantastical creatures.

Once there, the search takes Mallory on a bunch of humorous adventures with entertaining characters. The wry humor is prevalent throughout the whole book and just plain fun to read. Mixed in with all the fun, Resnick provides some interesting perspectives on today's city life. The only negative I had with the book was that it seemed to bring some characters in solely to populate a scene for a single joke and that would be it.

We wouldn't see them again. Considering that you have a detective making his way through a city though and he has to hunt down some clues, he can't really find humorous situations with the same characters the entire time. In the big picture, a very minor point.

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I would encourage you to hunt down this book and give it a try. If you enjoy fantasy and pulp noir, you'll like it.


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  • Dec 11, Cameron rated it it was ok Shelves: urban-fantasy. Though it predates Simon Green's Nightside series by many years, Resnick's foray into a then-unformulated genre of urban fantasy could take some notes from a detour through the Nightside.

    John Justin Mallory is the crapped on detective who is hired by a little green elf to find his lost charge, a fairly common unicorn. Since Mallory is accustomed to the "normal" cases of cheating husbands, this is a bit of a stretch for him. He spends the first quarter of the novel insisting that the elf is a f Though it predates Simon Green's Nightside series by many years, Resnick's foray into a then-unformulated genre of urban fantasy could take some notes from a detour through the Nightside.

    He spends the first quarter of the novel insisting that the elf is a figment of his drunken imagination and that the sidestep into the other Manhattan replete with slightly skewed versions of everything in Mallory's Manhattan, such as Madison Circular Garden is an after affect of being dumped by his partner and wife for each other. Resnick makes use of a lot of the quirky and strange and bizarre as Green later does, but the effect is rather flat.

    He interjects rather random moments of absurdity that distract from the pacing of the plot, and his descriptions of places feel two dimensional. His characters lack a certain panache, and Mallory only briefly flirts with this at the end of the book. His big bad villain waxes philosophical near the end, and rather than make him a creepier or more lethal bad guy, it just makes him seem inane.

    There are definite moments of hilarity, oddly usually brought about by surly and lascivious leprechauns and treasure hordes consisting of balls of string and porn magazines. The budding partnership that Mallory forms with Colonel Winnifred Carruthers also holds potential to be fairly interesting, especially given her penchant for killing big game, but whether this will bring me back for the second novel is debatable.

    Nov 07, Amanda rated it really liked it Shelves: mystery , fantasy , funny. It was a nice change of pace and a quick read. Because his attention was drawn to an amorous tryst, the elf has lost a valuable unicorn entrusted to his watch, and he needs Mallory to help him find it before his guild finds out and kills him for his irresponsibility. This was a really fun book written in a detective noir style. The characters are funny and Mallory is perfect has the stoic detective who has rare but effective bursts of emotion. Dialogue played a key role in the story and I love dialogue, especially when the story can set the tone just through what the characters are saying.

    Be warned, it does read like a young adult novel but does have some adult themes and language. Oct 10, Mike rated it liked it Shelves: needs-editing , kindle. When I was deciding whether to get this or not, I hesitated because of one or two reviews which suggested that it tends to be whimsical for no good reason. That is, there are whimsical scenes which don't end up having anything to do with the resolution of the story.

    I should really have listened. Whimsical for no good reason works all right in a children's book, but this is definitely not one. Mallory lives in an alternate-reality Manhattan. For the most part, the story is dialogue-driven with puns and gags in just about every other line. Humor is the word of the day, and the word of the day is humor. The beginning is especially heavy, but eventually it evens out into something approaching regular.

    The pacing of the story for the most part was good. There were spots with pun after pun after pun that slowed things down, and then there were those others surprisingly devoid of humor that made we wonder where it had gone to. The characters, besides Mallory, are all one-trick ponies. Interaction between any of them and Mallory was consistent. The cell phone is always hitting on him.