Ozzy Turner is a small town man who turned away from a life of hurting others and now is a ‘cunning man’, someone who uses minor charms and spells to help people. In his small town of Lost Falls, nestled in the middle of nowhere, he, along with some others in town know about the world of ‘Strangers’ that exists alongside our own. Goblins, hags, vampires and more are all out there, and he helps make sure the general public doesn’t find out about them. The rumors and town lore keeps the tourists coming to town, but the real ‘Strangers’ are kept hidden as much as possible.
Ozzy’s called to his sister’s house to figure out what’s scrambling around in her basement, and from there the action never stops. The unidentifiable beastie in Alice’s basement is a mean little bastard, but soon the creature starts growing on Ozzy and he doesn’t want to see it hurt, so he brings it to the local ‘Stranger’ collector, Alcaraz, with a side hope of running into her lovely assistant, Lilian. She wasn’t human, and Ozzy and her had a dinner riding on whether he could ever figure out exactly what she actually was. Before being able to drop off his newest find, though, he’s called away to an actual paying job.
Enter the creepy stranger, his immobile and sickly mother, and their old, moldy, funk filled house. Ozzy’s hopes of an actual payday are dashed, but what the stranger is looking for pulls at Ozzy’s heartstrings so hard, and renews a hidden rage so deep, he immediately decides to take the case.
The Cunning Man, Lost Falls Book 1 by Chris Underwood was an awesome find of a book. It’s well written with instantly relatable characters and a family feel right off the bat. Ozzy is a biggish, tattooed biker looking dude who just happens to know some magic, and he’s fiercely protective of his family and friends. With a great supporting cast of characters, this is a great start to a new series. I signed up for the author’s mailing list and am now excited to read the prequel novella. Enjoy!