Award Winning Fantasy with a Twist!

Reading Down Under

Travel isn’t in my plans for summer, but I’ve visited some wonderful experiences down under recently anyway!

First I caught a hilarious, tongue-in-cheek look at Norse Gods from New Zealand in The Almighty Johnsons. This 3-season series is streaming on Tubi and Peacock and tells what happens when the powers of the ancient Norse Gods show up in 4 brothers from Auckland. They range from:

  • Mike – the God of Games who always manages to lose at life
  • Ty – the God of Cold who repairs refrigerators and freezes out every woman he dates (“I have 20 women friends! 20!”)
  • Anders – the God of Poetry who runs a PR agency with the sole objective of meeting models

These three are supposed to help Axl, the youngest brother and only student to fail the builders’ program from non-attendance, become the all-father Odin and find the Goddess Frigg to restore everyone’s full powers. Except that the other Goddesses are modern women who do not want to return to the good ole days in Asgard and start their resistance campaign with strategic use of crossbow. Then things get really silly! Well worth binging repeatedly!

Then I came across the Ruby Bay Mysteries by Samantha Silver where American skeleton athlete Miki King retreats to Australia after an accidental doping incident. Going from ice to beach bum may not be as challenging as driving on the right, but Miki finds plenty of new adventures in running her aunt’s cafe and discovering dead bodies. I got Death Down Under for free, but went back for the rest of the series.

To round off travels in former British colonies, I recommend the Unlikeable Demon Hunter Collection by Deborah Wilde. Set in Canada, this series is also set in Judaic tradition and features Nava Katz who accidentally usurps her brother’s destiny as one of the select demon hunters first founded by King Solomon of the Old Testament. Okay, she was hung over. Now she’s determined to get him reinstated, prove herself as good as the men, and not get killed in the process. A rowdy good time and take-no-prisoners heroine!

And since the whole reason I’m not traveling is that it’s 105 degrees in Texas (!), I recommend the Vegan Vamp Mysteries by Cate Lawley for staycation. Austin native Mallory’s life actually improves after she’s turned into a vampire, except that her turning was an accident, she wasn’t expected to survive, and if she succumbs to blood lust, she’ll be executed. Good thing she can’t drink the stuff! But now this not-exactly-a-vampire has to figure out how to survive on carrot juice, solve her murder, and oh yeah, maybe help the archaic world of the supernatural embrace something more appropriate for Austin’s progressive vibe!

Bon voyage to you all! Where are your book travels taking you this summer?

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