Note: Be sure to check out GeekDad.com on 5/1 for “Another Interview by an Immortal.” [I'll update with a link at that time.]
Last April, I hosted an excerpt to Gene Doucette’s Immortal to help out his blog tour. As I indicated, it is one of my favorites from recent memory. Naturally, when I heard that Doucette was coming out with its sequel, I jumped all over it. I wasn’t sure if Hellenic Immortal would be better than the original, but I knew it would have to really blow me away for that to happen. Well, let’s just say it happened.
Once again, Doucette gives the reader a fantastic voice to “listen” to in Adam. Oh, but I might mention that Adam isn’t always referred to as Adam. I mean, let’s face it … Wouldn’t you be bored if you had to retain the same name for 60,000 years? Plus, there’s the whole blending into society thing. How far would Adam get if he were to still introduce himself with a grunt or some other guttural sound?
Sorry, I got off track for a moment. What was I saying?
Ah yes …
While Adam is narrating the story, I constantly forget I am holding a book. I feel like I’m beside him in some vineyard or on some college campus or other. I feel like he’s sitting right across from me and telling me a series of intertwining tall tales that, as it happens, wind up being true.
Putting aside the satirical humor and interesting characters, I guarantee it’s one of the best times I’ve ever had reading about history. I had a teacher in high school who gave it a great effort, but she definitely didn’t grip me the way the Immortal series does. To be fair, however, I don’t believe she ever included satyrs, werewolves, or nymphs. Oh, and don’t forget the mystery cult.
As with the original novel, Hellenic Immortal alternates between the present and the past. Doucette stages these transitions in a way that doesn’t leave the reader staggered and confused. It has a very natural feel. He also incorporates a series of excerpts from various plays, for which Adam was an inspiration. Of course, he didn’t go by Adam back then. His name was … Ah, but that would spoil it, right? Anyway, it is through these glimpses of the past that we, along with the protagonist, get to unravel the mystery of book two.
All in all, it’s great fun and a highly enjoyable read. I cannot recommend it enough. Hopefully Adam still has enough for another volume or two. Surely, there’s more to tell from a man who has experienced it all. Hey, he was even sober for some of it!
Thanks to Gene for writing an awesome sequel. Also, my thanks go to The Writer’s Coffee Shop for supplying me with an advance reader’s copy of both Hellenic Immortal and the revised Immortal, which has now switched hands to their publishing house. Can’t wait to reread it.