Dear Agent, (snarl)
Wedge Vildesang hates witches - he lost his family to magic - but his boss, "The Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz," needs a witch killerc aught. Wedge would rather let the assassin escape, but he's a loyal cop.
Helped along by Reg - a mixed-race Guard with a hidden connection to "Dubya's" and Oz's past - and a woman who may or may not be the dead witch's sister, Wedge will track the killer and a conspiracy that can change the precarious balance of power in Oz. He will find life in the Em even darker than he thought, his respected boss dirtier than any witch. Oz Noir is a
98,000-word fantasy-mystery of murder, intrigue, and dreams of empire coming
to a dark end.
Wedge and Reg survive to return in a sequel in progress.
First page included; hope it makes you want to represent me.
Ok, cross genre is hot so I'm ready to read. Of course setting this is Oz is derivative but I can probably get past that if it's good writing.
Somebody'd bagged a witch, so I spent the day chasing the yellow line.
This Taller dame started it. Ain't that always the way? Nothing against 'em personal, but they're so damn big they can't help but cause more'n their fair share of trouble. Fiern, I even maybe got some Taller blood in me - Dad wasn't too sure. But Gram on the other side was pure
Munch, so I was only a little bigger than average.
The dead woman was a slumlord, kept the local Munch under her thumb. They supplied certain agricultural raw materials to the Em, and all problems got solved yesterday, or the W handed some troubleshooter his head. I was the new chief TS, and Dubya wanted me on the job, personally. So, he sent one of the new Guards down to find me in the castle's back garden.
Not too many folks went down there since that dead wyvernthe started to smell, and that was nine years ago. They pulled all the corpses out pretty fast, if there was a corpse. Some of 'em just disappeared. But the critter itself measured half the length of the curtain wall it crushed when it fell. Took 'em three weeks to clear the carcass. Had to cut it down to haulable pieces. City lost thirteen butchers, including old Therngild, who started in Bluetown with my old Dad, then made it up to Emperor's Victualler.
The blue maids society chattered for a week about it, how the man became a vegetarian, overnight. Got knifed by a little onion-girl down on the south side of town three weeks ago. For the record, it was pure self-defense - he was drunk and tried to slice a chunk off her to put on his supper. Kind of makes me glad Nerea's body was one of those that disappeared. She always liked Therngild.
The new Guard found me cleaning leaves and other trash from around Mathilda. She's off in a corner now, and the gardeners don't always get back there. Dubya marked the spot where we found her, then put symbols on all the walls, too. He just traced on the stone and it melted away, smoke hissing out of the trail his finger left. He said working with stone that way didn't
give him any expertise to help Mathilda, though. He studied her for most of Cold. Near as he could figure, Nerea shielded her from whatever magic that wyvernthe gave off as it died. So, Nerea disappeared, and Mathilda was solid stone. Dubya called her "marble," but I didn't understand why. She wasn't little and round, even if she was only three. Her Mama was a Taller, so the baby was big. She'd be 12 now.
"Hey runty, Dubya sent me to find the head troubleshooter," the messenger said. "He was supposed to be here. Where'd he go?"
I ignored him while I pulled the last small bits of leaves and weeds from around my daughter's feet.
"Yo, short stuff, I was talking to you. Get away from the ugly statue and look at me."
"Sorry Darlin'," I told Mattie. Then I grabbed my jacket off the bench and hung it over her face. Kids that age are impressionable - shouldn't see things like what I was about to do - might give 'em ideas.
He stood near to the top of the doorway - all Taller and no brain. Dubya didn't like it when I abused the new ones too much, so maybe only a few bruises where nobody would see. Then he tried to grab me. I put the first dagger through his right foot.
oh ya, this is damn good.
I'd read it all and ask for more.
I like the energy and the pacing.
I don't like the derivative world stuff, but if I loved this novel, I'd get past that.