This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
(Description nicked from B&N.com.)
“Marissa is due for a little happily ever after. After all, she did kill the evil Fairy Godmother, end a war, and snag a sweet promotion within the Fairy Godfather’s magical-problem-solving Agency. But between maintaining a relationship with someone whose amorous advances can cause third-degree burns, dealing with a killer-poodle infestation, and helping her best friend, Princess Ari, learn to wield spells more powerful than curing a hangover, she’s not getting as much peace and quiet as she hoped.
When an enemy from her past appears to exact a terrible revenge, Marissa’s life goes from hectic to hell on earth. With Grimm inexplicably gone and Ari trapped by a sleeping spell, Marissa decides to fight fire with hellfire—and accidentally begins a countdown to the apocalypse.
With the end of days extremely nigh, Marissa will have to master royal politics, demonic law, and biblical plagues in a hurry—because even the end of the world can’t keep the Agency from opening for business…”
If you’re looking for a series to give you a giggle, this is a great one to choose. Although the Armageddon theme will likely produce flashbacks to Good Omens, this book stands up well to the comparison. Nelson’s own particular brand of humor runs to the quirky, and it fits in well with the fairy-tales-in-the-real-world theme.
What sets it apart from other humorous fantasy is the sheer cleverness of the main character. Marissa is forced to unleash three plagues onto the city because she’s the herald of the Apocalypse. She also must provide steeds for the Four Horsemen. Her creative way to fulfull her requirements and still hold the end of days at bay gave me some out-loud laughs. (Minor spoiler: Marissa’s interpretation of “rivers of blood” as every woman in the city getting her period at once is sheer genius.)
The author removes a lot of Marissa’s support system for this book, letting her stretch her wings and deal with problems by herself. And boy, are those problems weird! A new Piper who controls rats, a princess who fails her driving test, and a prince with OCD are the least of her worries–of more concern are the killer poodles set to infest the city.
All of this adds up to a fast-paced novel that never gets boring and delivers on the thrills and laughs of a great humorous fantasy story. I’m really looking forward to the next novel in August so that I can see what Nelson dreams up next.