“Our business is monsters. And business is booming.”
Owen Zastava Pitt was just trying to be normal. He used to be a bouncer who spent his evenings participating in illegal pit fights, but he managed to earn a CPA and became a boring accountant for a big corporation — pension and dental benefits included. Being tall and weighing in at 300 lbs, he didn’t quite look like an accountant — and he still spent his weekends as a gun hobbyist — but he was making progress…. until his boss turned into a werewolf and Owen managed to defeat him and push him out a window on the 14th story of their office building.
That caught the attention of a covert freelance organization called Monster Hunters International. In contrast to the secret government organization that hunts monsters, MHI is a family business. The Shackleford family has selectively recruited and trained a group of highly skilled men and women who work in teams to rid the world of all sorts of dangerous supernatural creatures. Then they collect large bounties from a special government fund. It’s extremely lucrative, but extremely dangerous, too.
Owen’s stature, militant upbringing, gun expertise, quick wits, and tenacity are exactly what MHI is looking for. When they send Julie Shackleford to interview Owen, he can’t resist her good looks and her guns. So Owen signs up for the craziest job in the world and is soon dealing with vampires, gargoyles, ghouls, zombies, werewolves, meddling government bureaucrats, and the insects of the Deep South. He gets some help from his diverse set of MHI colleagues and the good supernaturals — head-banging orcs, trailer park elves, and the ghost of a dead Jewish man that lives in his head.
In the past the monster incidents that MHI has dealt with have seemed like random infestations, but now it’s becoming clear that there’s a coordinated attack going on. Agents of the Old Ones are searching for an ancient artifact that can stop time and open a portal to a source of infinite power. They’ve tried it before — back when the Nazis were in power — and now they’re back to try again. Fortunately, MHI is standing in their way…
Monster Hunter International, the first inLarry Correia’s MONSTER HUNTER INTERNATIONAL series is high-octane non-stop action-packed fun. Blazing assault weapons, monsters of all sorts, and plenty of blood, guts and brains. OK, honestly, this is not typically my thing — it’s really violent and gory — but after enjoying Correia’s GRIMNOIR CHRONICLES, I decided to give MONSTER HUNTER INTERNATIONAL a try, especially since I found them on sale at Audible a while back.
I felt like I was hooked up to a testosterone drip, but I cringingly admired Monster Hunter International. The plot is tight, exciting, and unpredictable. The writing — especially the dialog — is excellent. Correia’s characters are complex and engaging and the women are just as competent as the men. Best of all is Larry Correia’s dry irreverent sense of humor. I wouldn’t call Monster Hunter International a comedy, but I chuckled all the way through. It was this comic relief that made the violence tolerable for me.
MONSTER HUNTER INTERNATIONAL is a series that is even better in audio than print. Audible Frontiers produces the audio version and it’s narrated by Oliver Wyman. Keep in mind that I listen to about 150 audiobooks each year when I say that Wyman’s performance is one of the best I’ve ever heard. He handles both the male and female voices with ease and effortlessly shifts through several accents including a Southern drawl and some Eastern European dialects. His pacing and inflection is perfect. If you’re planning to try MONSTER HUNTER INTERNATIONAL please consider the audio version. You will not be disappointed.
Monster Hunter International is a little too violent and gory for me to count it as a true favorite, but it excels at what it does. It’s highly entertaining dude-lit that is well-written and humorous enough to appeal to a much wider audience.