Narrator: Emily Bauer
Series: Incryptid #8
Published by Audible on March 5, 2019
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Length: 12 hours, 23 minutes
Amazon, Audible, Audiobook, Barnes & Noble
Antimony Price has never done well without a support system. As the youngest of her generation, she has always been able to depend on her parents, siblings, and cousins to help her out when she’s in a pinch—until now. After fleeing from the Covenant of St. George, she’s found herself in debt to the crossroads and running for her life. No family. No mice. No way out.
Lucky for her, she’s always been resourceful, and she’s been gathering allies as she travels: Sam, fūri trapeze artist turned boyfriend; Cylia, jink roller derby captain and designated driver; Fern, sylph friend, confidant, and maker of breakfasts; even Mary, ghost babysitter to the Price family. Annie’s actually starting to feel like they might be able to figure things out—which is probably why things start going wrong again.
New Gravesend, Maine is a nice place to raise a family…or make a binding contract with the crossroads. For James Smith, whose best friend disappeared when she tried to do precisely that, it’s also an excellent place to plot revenge. Now the crossroads want him dead and they want Annie to do the dirty deed. She owes them, after all.
And that’s before Leonard Cunningham, aka, “the next leader of the Covenant,” shows up…
It’s going to take everything Annie has and a little bit more to get out of this one. If she succeeds, she gets to go home. If she fails, she becomes one more cautionary tale about the dangers of bargaining with the crossroads.
But no pressure.
The thing I really like about the Incryptid series is it follows a uniquely charming/crazy family of Cryptozoologists as they interact with a variety of creatures thought to be mythical. This ranges from things which are super small, like worms and plant life (be careful it might eat you) to loch ness monsters to Gorgons to mice that can speak. Let’s just say the range of creatures is staggering and then there are also the ghosts, did I mention there were ghosts? In That Ain’t Witchcraft, we follow Antimony, the youngest of the Price children, currently on the run and in hiding going up against none other than the entity that is the Crossroad, the thing people make bargains with and essentially end up selling their soul in the process. Sounds cool right, because it totally was.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the last book in this series. The mice were missing and I didn’t really enjoy being stuck at Loweryland (wannabe Disney theme park). But, That Ain’t Witchcraft was fantastic, Antimony and her band of misfit Cryptid’s currently in hiding with her were wonderful and I loved going to a creepy little town out of a Stephan King novel in Maine to battle the Crossroads. It made for a delightful plot I was totally invested in.
A few of the best things about the InCryptid series:
1 – All the family history. Each chapter starts with a quote given by someone in the Price family tree. They are so much fun and useful advice. Things like “Don’t look back. You’ll never see anything but what you’re doing your best to leave behind, and you’re a lot more likely to trip and fall down, which gives it another chance to eat you.”
2 – All the creatures. Seriously they aren’t your run of the mill things like Vampires and Werestuff. No, Seanan McGuire is great at giving you unique, sentient creatures like Fern, who is a Sylph that can change her body density from light enough to float away like a balloon, to heavy enough that she can knock you over and sit on you until you calm down and want to behave. Even the stuff you have heard of before gets a great twist to it. Like Unicorns which are really more like a “horrifying creature, bearing less resemblance to a My Little Pony than to a horse that had been sent to the glue factory, murdered everyone it found there, and come looking for revenge.”
3 – The Covenant of Saint George. So you might be wondering why is Antimony in hiding. Well, no story of a family of Cryptozoologists would be complete without a global organization of monster – hunting asshats looking to either kill them or bring them back into the fold since Antimony’s great-great-great grandparents used to belong to the Covenant of Saint George and defected, thinking it was better to save the monsters than kill them without discretion.
4 – The grouping of Stories around one of the Siblings also includes their love story. There is a tradition in the Price family of sending your children out into the world for a little while to “Do Research” this could actually be doing research or more aptly protecting the good, we’re not killing humans cryptids and killing or relocating the eat all the humans Cryptids. Antimony’s two older siblings have already done just that and Verity came home with an ex-Covenant of Saint George operative, while Alex found a lovely Australian equivalent to the Price family. Now it is Antimony’s turn and she is in love with a Fury, he is a little on the Monkeyish side of things but I’m fine with it since Sam is adorable.
5 – Hail The Aeslin Mice. I love the mice; they worship the Price family and each member has their own colony that remembers everything they do for posterity. Think of them as a black box or a sort. They have religious rituals to celebrate just about everything the Prices do and they are fantastic. The mice are missing in this book since Antimony needed to send them back to her family in a prior book BUT they are mentioned and their histories play a vital role on a section of this book. I missed them but also, I was glad to see how big a part they play in the lives of the characters.
Unfortunately I don’t think you can start with That Ain’t Witchcraft. There is a summary of stuff that happened in the prior books but I really think the story won’t read well if you haven’t read all the other main books of the series. Good news is that all of the other books are a lot of fun and you won’t want to miss out on the mice or any of the other creatures so I’d start with Discount Armageddon.
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