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Quincy Harker, Demon Hunter Omnibus Vol. 1 (Quincy Harker #1-3) by John G. Hartness Book Review

Write on: Thu, 01 Apr 2021 by  in Charles' Reviews Read 1038

4/5

QUINCY HARKER, DEMON HUNTER OMNIBUS ONE is a collection of the first three Quincy Harker collections, which already sounds like an oxymoron or at least redundant. In fact, the series is based around a series of novellas that were collected into novels that have since been collected into this huge 1369 page omnibus. If that sounds like a lot of bang for your buck then you are correct.

I actually feel guilty for getting it in Kindle Unlimited form because its such a fantastic amount of urban fantasy goodness.  The full purchase price is about 10 dollars and compared to the much-much smaller books available from traditional publishers for more (I bought Wild Sign by Patricia Briggs recently for 12 dollars), it's an excellent value. I don't normally bring up the issue of price but I feel like it needs to be underscored in these penny saving pandemic times.

The premise is that Quincy Harker, son of Mina and Jonathan, is now an exorcist and demon hunter in the Modern Era. Traveling around Charlotte, South Carolina, he deals with possessed teenagers,  Reinfelds, evil angels, and demonic bar keeps. He's assisted by his "Uncle Luc" who is actually the still-surviving Vlad the Impaler a.k.a Dracula and an angel named Glory. He lives a pretty lonely life at the start, getting routinely harassed by the police for always being around horrible crime scenes, but this rapidly changes when he makes friends with the DOHS' Paranormal Division.

The books are incredibly funny and entertaining, feeling a bit like the Dresden Files but with an even more frantic and entertaining pace. Quincy is a deadpan snarker who takes absolutely nothing seriously but he has the benefit of being genuinely funny, unlike many similarly sarcastic irreverent protagonists. I also like his relationship with Detective Flynn, a woman somewhat similar to Karen Murphy but having a much faster paced relationship.

The mythology of the world is simple but efficient with demons being eccentric but menacing while angels are distant but ultimately good (unless they aren't). We also get a bunch of Victorian novel descendants and folk mythology characters. This starts with the characters of Dracula being real is only the beginning as we soon meet descendants of John Watson and John Henry too. I'm especially fond of Gabby Van Helsing, who is a psychotic Buffy the Vampire-slayer analog that I wanted to see more of.

The Quincy Harker series benefits from being primarily novella based. Oddly, I'm going to make a comparison to the Witcher. As much as I love the novels, I think it's a commonly held belief that the short story collections are the best of Sapkowski's series. Similarly, these stories are at their best when they're short entertaining works of our sarcastic hero versus his demonic foes. Like a somewhat goofier Hellblazer.

Generally, I prefer the more grounded Quincy Harker adventures with him versus smaller scale threats than his attempts to prevent the apocalypse or a peculiar quest to find missing archangels. I call this the "Supernatural Paradox" which is based around the premise that the best episodes of the series were season 1-5 with everything afterward being best when they're doing standalone mission against vampires or monsters of the week. The mythology grew too much and loses some of its power when events are too global.

In conclusion, I strongly recommend getting the Omnibus that contains the first three "years" of writing about Quincy's adventures. They're well-worth the price and while I don't much care for the larger metaplot at the end, I absolutely love the characters as well as their interactions. There are a lot worse ways of spending your afternoon than dealing with a guy who figures the best way to defeat a warlock he can't beat is to summon an even bigger demon than the one his foe has.

Available here

Last modified on Thursday, 08 April 2021 13:59
C.T. Phipps

C.T Phipps is a lifelong student of horror, science fiction, and fantasy. An avid tabletop gamer, he discovered this passion led him to write and turned him into a lifelong geek. He is a regular blogger on "The United Federation of Charles".

He's written Agent G, Cthulhu Armageddon, Lucifer's Star, and The Supervillainy Saga.

Website: https://ctphipps.wordpress.com/