Review: Obsidian Son

Obsidian Son (The Temple Chronicles, #1)Obsidian Son by Shayne Silvers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Obsidian Son is like a love child between Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files and Kevin Hearn’s Iron Druid. A fun, fast-paced urban fantasy with high stakes and humor.

Silvers does a good job with descriptions, often using the mood of a setting to show character aspects. That said, the initial description of Nate’s store/home was a bit confusing and hard to picture. There was also a point later in the story where I lost all sense of time and became ungrounded from the story.

The characters are entertaining, sharing an irreverant humor I love. The dialogue between them, however, sometime blends together as all the characters have a nearly identical voice. Men, women, ancient beings, cops, kids, they all speak the same. This probably would have bothered me more if I didn’t enjoy that type of flippant voice so much. There were also a few sections that felt a little verbose and heavy-handed on the explanations.

The main character is a billionaire playboy named Nate Temple who’s often a misogynistic asshole. He has a classic upper class disregard for authority, a severe aversion to responsibility, and a devil may care attitude toward pretty much everything. He also has an eidetic memory and enjoys spouting quotes from classic literature. With his parents dead, Nate is forced to take on some responsibility for their work, inheriting more than just a company. There is also a romantic arc that tries to show Nate growing as a person and learning the value of deeper connections, but that felt a little forced to me, not really a natural progression. There are a couple sidekick characters that accompany Nate on his adventure and, while not as fully developed, they were a good match for Nate and a fun group to spend 300+ pages with.

The one thing that consistently annoyed me was the author’s habit of withholding information. He would flat out tell us Nate came to some conclusion, made some important discovery, etc., but would keep the actual information a secret despite us having full access to Nate’s thoughts and feelings otherwise. This sudden shut out felt jarring and left me frustrated as I had no way then of speculating alongside the character and forming my own opinions.

Overall, it was a fun, light read, though definitely targeted to men.

Random side note: How does an ancient tome fit in the back pocket of a pair of jeans?

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