Review: D.M. Cornish – Tales from the Half-Continent (Monster Blood Tattoo)

Tales from the Half-Continent (Monster Blood Tattoo)
D.M. Cornish
These are two original Tales that are set in the Monster Blood Tattoo universe. Please keep in mind that I have not read the originals in this series.
The Corsers’ Hinge’
Bunting Faukes has a debt and no way to repay it – times are tough for grave robbers. But a way out is presented in the person of Atticus Wells, a sleuth with strange eyes that see into everything.
I was frustrated from the very beginning about the references to different things and people that I was just expected to know. Jumping into these as a set of short stories, the background was just not grabbing enough.
This story started out with Bunting, then jumped back to the sleuth, then back to the present. I would suggest that this was jarring, except that the segue back into the present was flawless.
The ending of this seemed inevitable. A possible reward against an obvious one? I only wish there had been some escape, and that something bigger would come of it.
‘The Fuller and the Bogle’
Virtue Bland is alone in the world. Packed off to Brandenbrass to serve the household of her late father’s employer, she has only her old pa’s olfactologue to remember him by. But with it she can smell monsters.
This short story resonated more firmly with me. Having gotten a basic grasp of it in ‘The Corsers Hinge’, this one went a lot more smoothly. I liked Virtue, I enjoyed the back story, and I felt for her. Not a complete loss.
I would consider reading the other novels in the series – if only someone would give them to me to review! Personal reading is just so far down the list of things I have to do.
I received this novel from Scholastic in return for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
Book blurbs are taken from Goodreads.

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