Review copy was received from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Titanshade by Dan Stout
Series: Carter Archives #1
Published by Ace on March 12, 2019
Genres: Science Fiction Fantasy
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Carter's a homicide cop in Titanshade, an oil boomtown where 8-tracks are state of the art, disco rules the radio, and all the best sorcerers wear designer labels. It's also a metropolis teetering on the edge of disaster. As its oil reserves run dry, the city's future hangs on a possible investment from the reclusive amphibians known as Squibs.
But now negotiations have been derailed by the horrific murder of a Squib diplomat. The pressure's never been higher to make a quick arrest, even as Carter's investigation leads him into conflict with the city's elite. Undermined by corrupt coworkers and falsified evidence, and with a suspect list that includes power-hungry politicians, oil magnates, and mad scientists, Carter must find the killer before the investigation turns into a witch-hunt and those closest to him pay the ultimate price on the filthy streets of Titanshade.
Titanshade is science fiction fantasy with a lot of mystery and thriller woven through the story. Our main guy is Eric Carter, a homicide detective, a human. He’s a basically good guy but he has the “annoy everyone until the bad guys try to kill you” method of investigation mastered. There were even good guys who wanted to kill him.
The world-building and character development took a lot of thought for me. The town is set in the far north, on the ice plains. The world is dependent on oil which is becoming a depleted resource. There are humans, sorcerers, Mollenkampi, Squib and some yet to be introduced species. The species characteristics were not thoroughly defined.
The politics of the police department was odd. Whichever detective was on scene first got the case. They all seemed to go to every scene. While suspicious facts are uncovered, proof is in short supply and yet horrific things are happening. The style seems a bit more wild west on the frontier than law and order in the city.
I liked the relationship forged between Carter and his new partner, Jax. They even had a little snark going. Carter grew on me because he is so obviously honest and just goes right at the problem. He gets beat up an awful lot. But he does get to the truth.
There is much yet to learn and it looks like this is first in a new Carter Archives series. I couldn’t find that on Goodreads or the author’s site, but it is in an interview he did at Genre Minx Book Reviews. It also says the sequel will include more on the wider world which should help me. I want more of that definition, and I like the science type aspects of the world. Also, I want more Carter and Jax.
She already knew. I paused, uncertain how to proceed. My major conversational gambit involves annoying people into revealing more than they intended. It was a skill set that left me sorely unprepared for talks like this.
“I tried to get a hold of you, but you never responded.”
“I was a little busy with people trying to kill me.”
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2019 Releases