Hot Lead, Cold Iron by Ari Marmell
Hot Lead, Cold Iron introduces us to a new hero named Mick Oberon, a Harry Dresden, and Marlow-esque Fae private investigator living in 1930 prohibition Chicago (now if that has piqued your interest you’d best keep reading). It has all the Mafia, gangsters and noir you would expect from the era, portrayed nicely alongside magic, Faeries and all the enchanted creatures you’ll ever need.
Mick Oberon is a gumshoe who, after 'Stepping Sideways' back to the human realm sets himself up in Chicago, solving crimes for oddities, items of power and occasionally cash - a guy's gotta pay for the milk and cream somehow.
The book opens fast and hits hard, Mick is on a job that heats up quickly, cue his Luck magic and ability to take a beating and we are given a very nice introduction to the character, his internal monologue and the way he handles himself in a pinch.
However, after this little foray things settles down until much later in the story, the guts of which see Mick being hired to find the child of a high level mobster, who has been switched at birth for a Fae changeling.
There is a nice measure to the story and how it’s outlined and we get a good education to the different elements of both 1930's Chicago and the Fae world in which the Seelie and Unseelie courts reside. This is a situation that Mick is non-too happy with, having left that world and its politics long ago.
This is actually one of my favourite elements as Marmell outlines how the Fae are mimics, the product being a Fae Chicago being built in Elphame, the Land of the Faerie, with their own versions of trains, cars, elevators and cameras (minus the iron, that stuff is a no-no to them). These elements are a great addition, which add depth to the story and the world.
However, one of the elements which I did find a little confusing was while in Elphame Mick continues to speak in the 1930's vernacular, previously explained as required only in the human world in order to fit in and keep his mind right. It wasn’t a big thing, but it did niggle.
Marmell has outdone himself in his attention to detail, his authenticity and use of the vocabulary breaking down the era making for a well planned and executed story. At a nice easy read of approximately six hours, Hot Lead, Cold Iron is what I like to call popcorn read. A book you sit down with and finish in one sitting. It has a good steady pace and once you get by the initial burst and pause it picks up speed and moves along nicely.
Overall, this is a fun read in the ilk of Jim Butchers Dresden for the gumshoe elements, Chris F. Holm's Collector series for the noir feel but with its own shine and personality.
The motto of any good PI: Load your bean-shooters; keep your hocks moving and your peepers open.
Translated version "Load your guns (in this case a wand), keep your feet moving and your eyes open."
This Hot Lead, Cold Iron book review was written by Fergus McCartan
All reviews for: Mike Oberon
Hot Lead, Cold Iron
Mike Oberon #1
From the underworld to the Otherworld... Mick Oberon may look like just another 1930s private detective, but beneath the fedora and the overcoat, he's got pointy ears a...
Mike Oberon #2
The Spear of Lugh is in Chicago. And everyone, everyone wants it, for it is said that he who carries the spear into battle cannot be defeated. Those chasing it include an a...
Have you read Hot Lead, Cold Iron?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Hot Lead, Cold Iron reader reviews
7/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Aden awakens naked in a bath tub, knowing only that he is dead. His new world is Nightfall, a place filled with characters bizarre, grotesque and magical: Julius the duke, ...
The Dark Tower series
Roland of Gilead, the Last Gunslinger. He is a haunting figure, a loner, on a spellbinding journey into good and evil, in a desolate world which frighteningly echoes our ow...
Chronicles of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever
He called himself Thomas Covenant, the Unbeliever, because he dared not believe in the strange alternative world on which he suddenly found himself - the Land. But the Land...
City of Stairs
Robert Jackson Bennett
You've got to be careful when you're chasing a murderer through Bulikov, for the world is not as it should be in that city. When the gods were destroyed and all wor...
WHAT IF you could go back in time and change the course of history? WHAT IF the watershed moment you could change was the JFK assassination? 11/22/63, the date that Kennedy...
Take a trip in a stranger's head. Travel rain-shot streets with a gang of hip malcontents, hooked on the most powerful drug you can imagine. Yet Vurt feathers are not f...
Babylon Steel, ex-sword-for-hire, ex-other things, runs the best brothel in Scalentine; city of many portals, two moons, and a wide variety of races, were-creatures, and re...
The Four Realms
Half-vampire Darwin stumbles across a corpse on the streets of London, and in a pocket discovers a notebook in a mysterious language. Divided between human ethics and vampi...
Weaveworld is an epic adventure of the imagination. It begins with a carpet in which a world of rapture and enchantment is hiding; a world which comes to life, alerting the...
The Portable Door
Starting a new job is always stressful, but when Paul Carpenter arrives at the office of J.W. Wells he has no idea what trouble lies in store. Because he is about to discov...
The Silent Land
A young couple are caught in an avalanche during a ski-ing holiday in the French Alps. They struggle back to the village and find it deserted. As the days go by they wait f...
The Lazarus Gate
Mark A Latham
London, 1890. Captain John Hardwick, an embittered army veteran and opium addict, is released from captivity in Burma and returns home, only to be recruited by a mysterious...
Between Two Thorns
Something is wrong in Aquae Sulis, Bath's secret mirror city. The new season is starting and the Master of Ceremonies is missing. Max, an Arbiter of the Split Worlds Treaty, i...
A serial killer is on the loose in Ostend, Belgium. Nicknamed The Stuffer, the mysterious killer fills his victims full of sand and poses them as public art installations -...
The Chronicles of Amber
Amber is one real world, casting infinite reflections of itself - shadow worlds, which can be manipulated by those of royal Amberite blood. But the royal family is torn apa...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages:
- Recommended contemporary / urban fantasy books/series
- Recommended parallel universe / Alternate reality books
Best of 2016
A small group of commuters and tube workers witness a fiery apocalypse overtaking London. They make their escape through a service tunnel. Reaching a door they step through......
It is for the entities known as Sleepwalkers to cross the doors between dreams, and hunt the nightmares that haunt sleeping minds. Theirs is a world of impossible vistas, wher...
Books of the Month
A selection of books - old and new alike - that were a joy to read.
The precarious equilibrium among the four Londons has reached its breaking point. Once brimming with the red vivacity of magic, darkness casts a shadow over the Maresh Empire, leaving a space for another London to rise. Kell - once assumed to be the last surviving Antari -begins to waver under the pressure of competing loyalties. Lila Bard, once...
Sebastien de Castell
Falcio val Mond, First Cantor of the Greatcoats, is on the brink of fulfilling his dead King's dream: Aline is about to take the throne and restore the rule of law once...
The Boy with the Cuckoo-Clock Heart
Edinburgh, 1874. On the coldest night the world has ever seen, Little Jack is born with a frozen heart and immediately undergoes a life-saving operation. But Dr Madeleine i...
The republic faces annihilation, despite the vigilance of Galharrow's Blackwings. When a raven tattoo rips itself from his arm to deliver a desperate message, Galharrow...
A Tale of Time City
Diana Wynne Jones
When Vivian is evacuated from London in 1939, she expects to be staying in the countryside. Instead, she is whisked away to Time City – a place that exists outside ti...
The Guns of Empire
As the roar of the guns subsides and the smoke of battle clears, the country of Vordan is offered a fragile peace... After their shattering defeats at the hands of brillian...
At the Convent of Sweet Mercy young girls are raised to be killers. In a few the old bloods show, gifting talents rarely seen since the tribes beached their ships on Abeth....