Tuesday, 7 July 2015

The Hutt Recommends: Johannes Cabal the Necromancer

Johannes Cabal: the Necromancer by Jonathan L. Howard.

Oh Johannes, you despicable little thing, how I’ve come to love you.

Once upon a time Johannes Cabal, necromancer of some infamy, had reasons to sell his soul to none other than Satan himself in order to attain knowledge of necromancy. Years later he realised that he might need same said soul to deepen his research and consequently took a stroll right through the gates of Hell to pay Satan another little visit and renegotiate that deal they made a while back. Seeing as Satan enjoys a good joke on humanity once in a while, and knowing full well the futility in trying to get your soul back once you've given it up, he agrees to give Cabal a year in which to sign over a hundred willing souls to Hell with the help of a travelling carnival. If Cabal succeeds he'll get his soul back, if not he'll be damned for all eternity. With precious little time to waste Cabal raises a diverse crew of carnies from the dead and somehow persuades his own brother Horst to help him finish his task with bizarre results and many a twisted turn.

This is a steampunk adventure with a side of death, demons and wicked deceit.

Johannes Cabal: the Detective by Jonathan L. Howard.

The adventures of the necromancer of some infamy, Johannes Cabal , goes forever on!

By some mishap Cabal finds himself abroad and entirely in trouble after some not wholly legal activities including a book that wasn't his but should have been if his plan had only worked. Now, he's awaiting execution and to no enjoyment at all. Unexpectedly, he's offered a chance for escape and takes on the identity of a government official to escape aboard a luxurious aeroship on its way across the border and away from trouble. Or so Cabal thought. Instead Cabal finds himself trapped on an aeroship where passengers disappear mysteriously and an attempt is made on him own life.

Johannes Cabal: the Fear Institute by Jonathan L. Howard. 

Johannes Cabal, necromancer of some infamy, takes on the Dreamlands! Ghouls! Witches! Zebras!

One day Cabal is introduced to the opportunity to take on a strange task indeed. Employed by the mysterious Fear Institute he is to lead an expedition of a handpicked few into the Dreamlands; a land beyond the veil of sleep that is entirely formed by dreams and dreamers. In these Dreamlands he is to find and destroy the dreaded Phobic Animus which is supposedly the very embodiment of fear and the source of all terrors. Will the group find the Phobic Animus and is it possible to wipe out fear entirely? But the real question is about something completely else because what does a man like Cabal, who's unafraid of death, really fear?

The third part of the story about the sarcastic necromancer Cabal takes a very Lovecraftian turn and kept me enthralled until the very last page. I read most of it in a day and could hardly put the book down once I had started reading. The only thing I could have wished for is the inclusion of more non-male characters because as much as I love Johannes, it would be nice to see a non-male character of importance once in a while.
Big plus for unexpected ending!

Howard's fourth book about Johannes Cabal the Necromancer by the title The Brothers Cabal came out in late 2014 but has yet to show up in Swedish bookshops.
But you can find it on Amazon. *hint hint*

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