Doing this all in the wrong order. I read K. T. Davies’ Breed before I read Steph Swainston’s The Castle Omnibus, and definitely before I did my annual Reading … thing. As usual, no idea where I heard about her or it, presuming the usual sources (author blogs, author Twitters, Charlie-Jane Anders’ monthly ‘Read the Shit Outta This’ list on io9). Have not read her before, but 10/10 Would Read Again!
It’s basically Oglaf! Breed (that’s his name) is a character in a fantasy book, which means the author gets to do shit to him for Teh Lulz. (Ours and hers. His? Not so much.) After the first few pages it becomes a running gag that something bad is about to happen. In the end, the joke’s on us/the world he lives in (either/or/both) because it turns out Breed is The Chosen One (rather, a descendant of magically bred brawlers used to kill demons, subsequently erased from history), who when asked to “Pretty please save us!” is all “LOL, no! Also Fuck off!”
If you’ve read Harry Potter—wait! Of course you have. You’ve read Harry Potter. You know who Dobbie is. Imagine Dobbie the size of Hagrid with a penchant for drinking and fighting, who gets treated like shit one end of Wizardland to the other. Yeah, the more I think about it, Breed is Hagrid. If Hagrid was Conan the Destroyer. And Oglaf. Good? Yup! Read while drinking.