Night Terrors: Women Who Kick Ass and the Clowns Who Help Them

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(ARC copy given by NetGalley)
Author: Tim Waggoner
Publishing House: Angry Robot
350 pages
Publication:  27th May 2014
Book 1 of the Shadow Watch Series
Review by Lady Entropy

It’s Men In Black meets The Sandman.
Meet the fine men and women of the NightWatch: a supernatural agency dedicated to hunting down rogue nightmares that escape from other realms when people dream about them, while ensuring that other dream-folk are allowed to live among the regular, human population… as long as they play by the rules.

This book surprised me in so many ways: the setting was absolutely new, fresh and amazing (and finally someone came up with a setting for Urban Fantasy that isn’t yet another tired take on the typical Vampire\Werewolf Mafia rules over the city. I’ve been waiting for this since I discovered Charles Stross’s The Laundry Files, and now, finally, I have it!

Then, I discovered that the protagonist was female, even thought it was a man writing it. And honestly? He did it with respect and in no moment I felt she was a stereotype — she read as a normal (within limit), tired person with a hard job and suddenly dragged into a situation that was way above her paygrade.

It does take a page of the typical Urban Fantasy where the protagonist (and her co-star, the terrifying combat clown, who was a cross of the Dark Knight and the Animated Series Joker) are low-paid, hard-worked agents for the local supernatural law enforcement agency (in a twist of originality, they spend more time out of the human world, than in it, and humans and fully unaware of the strange things). But it’s spun in a creative, terrifying and original ways, as these agents have, quite literally, their “worst nightmare” as their trusty parters\weapons of mass destruction. I particularly enjoyed the many creative and different Nightmares that populated the dream world and the companion ones.

The plot was solid, frightening, and funny, and I definitely will check further instalments of this series. Recommended to anyone who likes Charles Stross, Urban Fantasy and is terrified of clowns.

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