Wednesday, June 15, 2016

More consonants than Wheel of Fortune

So, as we begin Kelly McCullough's MythOS, our favorite trickster Ravirn is busy trying to break into the central mainframe of Necessity again, trying to fix the universe's mainframe. When he ends up stuck in a room full of abacuses, along  with his sort of girlfriend Tisiphone (who's still quite irked with him), something happens, landing Ravirn, Melchior, and Tisiphone in Prince Edward Island. Well, PEI, but not in a universe ruled by the Greek Pantheon. On the other hand, we also find out where Allhan wound up when Shara's clone in Necessity moved her someplace safe.

Mainly because she manages to save Melchior and Ravirn from a rather tense encounter with a guy named Loki. (Tisiphone gets really mad after arrival, flies off, and gets attacked by a large wolf chasing the moon.) Loki is walking a large poodle who spits up a hand. Said hand becomes Laginn, sort of a Norse Thing. Said hand is also remarkably annoyed with its previous owner, Tyr.

Through the course of the book, we meet Odin, but before we get that far, we meet Odin's birds, Huginn and Muginn (Thought and Memory). These two summon Ravirn to Odin in Valhalla, whereupon Ravirn gets named "Intuition/Impulse". Through heavy use of the Skuld (who also does a bit of foreshadowing for the last book), we learn about the Norse MythOS, forever trapped in one march toward Ragnarok. Seems the entire OS's main processor is the Head of Mimir, and Odin's eye in Mimir's Well lets him know everything. Except for what is up with Ravirn. Ravirn can't be seen by Odin's other eye, the one sacrificed for knowledge.

There's a rather large amount of things going on throughout this, including some wonderful asides on every character's part. We have Fenrir, who seems to be the only honest character; Hati, who appears as a rather absentminded fox at one point; Loki, trying to save his family from Odin's tyranny; and Odin, who's trying to find a way to stop Ragnarok. Oh yes, and at one point, we even meet Jormungand, who spends most of his time reading at the bottom of the sea.

Add to this Allhan dying due to the difference in the quality of Primal chaos in the Norse realms and Tisiphone getting might annoyed to find bits of a Fury that didn't exist coming through from teh Greek MythOS, and you have quite a tale.

While I love the Iron Druid Chronicles, Kevin Hearne's depictions of some of the Norse pantheon don't quite jibe with how they're normally presented. To his credit, McCullough does stick closer to the Eddas, and even gives a better idea of WHY the gods act the way they do. (On the other hand, Thor comes across as semi-nice in this book, which generally isn't normal.) Still not quite as much fun as Neil Gaimen's veersion of the Norse, but hey...

Even if I'm not a huge fan of Norse mythology, that didn't particularly affect my love of this particular volume. That, and now, on re-reading, can see how much this sets up the fifth and final volume, I remain in love.