Agent Franks is the no-nonsense, by-the-book, super-patriotic, and imposing federal agent we’ve come to know and love throughout the previous books in Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter series, but even with all that exposure, we don’t really know much about him. Monster Hunter Nemesis changes all that because it is written from his point of view.
It’s no secret Franks has been around the block a few times. He is the inspiration for Mary Shelley’s classic Frankenstein story, though Franks is always quick to point out that Shelley embellished events more than just a little bit. We get inside his head, learn about his history, find out what made him the man he is today, and learn why Franks is so loyal to the United States.
Franks is framed for mass murder at MCB headquarters, then hunted as a fugitive while he tries to figure out how to destroy the illegal Nemesis assets deployed by Mr. Stricken (the head of Special Task Force Unicorn, or STFU…yes, STFU). Franks previously threatened to destroy anyone who helped restart Nemesis, and he’s taking no prisoners as he goes after Stricken.
Each chapter in Monster Hunter Nemesis begins with some backstory—and sometimes current story—which is happening outside the rest of the narrative. Correia gives the reader some excellent history on Franks, showing how he became the person he is today and exactly what his mission is. I found these asides to be extremely interesting.
The action is fast-paced and full of guns and other interesting, deadly weapons, as is to be expected in one of Correia’s stories. Monsters and hunters alike are taking sides for the upcoming conflict, and events are moving faster as things converge.
One of the most interesting things in this book is Correia’s heavy use of religious elements from LDS beliefs. Unless you know what to look for, you won’t notice they are there, and Correia is definitely not including them as a way of preaching. They really added an additional realism to the story because of how they were used. There have been many other religious elements scattered throughout the series, but this volume included far more than any of the previous books.
The good folks at MHI play only a small part in this volume, but it turns out to be pretty significant to the story. A conflict hinted at in the previous volumes plays out in these pages, and it is an edge-of-the-seat clash of the titans! No spoilers for you, though.
Monster Hunter Nemesis is excellent. It is rare to find a series of books where each volume is as good as or better than the previous books in the series, but that’s what we have here. I wouldn’t have minded a little thicker book, but Correia still got the story told and didn’t leave me thinking anything had been skimped on or skipped in the story. I highly recommend this series!
Release Date: July 1, 2014 (USA)
ISBNs: 1476736553 (9781476736556)
Publisher: Baen Books
Alcohol/Drugs: 2 (Elixir of Life, some smoking and drinking)
Language: 3 (fairly regular strong expletives)
Sexuality: 1 (brief scenes with a succubus, nothing explicit)
Violence: 5 (brutal violence, graphic descriptions, intense battles, a lot of death)