The Awesome introduces us to Maggie Cunningham, a typical teenage girl with unusual career aspirations. Like many young women, Maggie has concerns about finding a boyfriend, qualifying for the exams she wants to do and isn’t sure if she can make friends easily. The twist is that she wants to go into the ‘family business’; monster hunting.
If you believe the blurb on the back of the book, The Awesome is about a girl who needs to lose her cherry in order to go vampire hunting. You see, bloodsuckers go nuts for virgin blood, so in order to get her journeyman’s license, she needs to do the nasty. Though this is indeed an element of the story, it simply isn’t that tawdry. Maggie is a clever and savvy young girl who has had a tough (if very exciting) life so far, and The Awesome is more a coming of age novel about someone going through multiple rites of passage in order to become the person they want to be.
Darrows writes in an easy, free-flowing sort of style. It’s all told from Maggie’s point of view and the main character is very likeable. Maggie’s mom is also a lot of fun and the plot hinges on this mother/daughter relationship. As you might imagine, monster hunting is not a role for the more stable sort of person, so the dialogue between these two is very entertaining. The author has also drawn heavily on the whole range of Urban Fantasy fiction out there. We can see more than a hint of the TV series Supernatural running throughout the book and the World of Darkness series is also clearly an inspiration.
With any luck, The Awesome will be the start of a great new series. Certainly they are enough plot threads left dangling to make for a sequel, and it would be nice to follow Maggie’s career (and her love life) a bit more closely. The Awesome does what it sets out to, and if you like Urban Fantasy, then you should give it a look.
INFO: THE AWESOME / AUTHOR: EVA DARROWS / PUBLISHER: RAVENSTONE / RELEASE DATE: MAY 7TH