Review: Grunts!

Grunts! by Mary Gentle

Bloody Good Fun

If you are a fan of fantasy, you may have found yourself at times feeling less than satisfied with the standard fare. A great evil rises, darkness falls over the land, and brave heroes ride valiantly into combat against a mindless horde that seems almost complicit in ensuring that good always triumphs over evil, yeah? Author Mary Gentle says, “I’m sorry, I’m just not having it.”

Grunts! paints the picture from the other end of the canvas, in a world reeling in the aftermath of the Final Battle, and just as in every Final Battle before it the Dark Lord has once again been vanquished by the Light. However, as the armies of justice rejoice and prepare for the great purge of “sympathizers” the loyal minions of evil busy themselves with currying favour, preparing for the return of the Dark Lord and the next Final Battle. Of course, all goes to the wind as mysterious circumstances bring a technological advantage to the orc horde.

This book has morally ambivalent halflings, Cockney orcs, a necromancer with a perpetual hangover, and one very angry barbarian, all forced to battle the forces of Light and a new, far more dangerous enemy with the help of an ancient curse and combat boots. If you’ve ever found yourself piecing together what might happen if you had a squad of undead orc commandos trying to storm a repository for magical artifacts with machine pistols, this might be the book for you. Grunts! is altogether a rousing–if bloody, gruesome, vulgar, and occasionally stomach-churning–adventure.


Grunts! cover art

JC Augustus Lai Andurin

J.C. Augustus Lai Andurin is an Irish-American author and philosopher. Having spent much of his life traveling the U.S., Europe, and Asia, he has a fierce wanderlust and thirst for knowledge. Despite his adventurous spirit, he is a husband and father, first and foremost, with three wonderful children.

Latest posts by JC Augustus Lai Andurin (see all)