Not John Daker recently posted some of his current fan theories about Cirsova’s ongoing Mongoose and Meerkat series.
He’s definitely right that there are a lot of hints that have been dropped from the very first story we ran back in 2017 and over the course of the dozen stories we’ve published so far, and he’s on the right track! [Unfortunately, Jim Breyfogle has confirmed that Deathwater does not take place in the same universe as Mongoose and Meerkat; it was included as a bonus for people who had already read all of the original magazine stories in Cirsova.]
Major clues about who Kat really is and what’s going on with her are dropped in Death and Renewal, which is out now in our latest issue. One major thing to remember is that despite being an adventuring duo akin to Fafhrd & The Gray Mouser, Mongoose and Meerkat’s adventures are principally from Mangos’s perspective: Kat is the mystery box of series. Mangos’s hesitance to puzzle it out for himself are likely as not from a fear that he might lose what he has in his reliable adventuring partner who has helped him earn a reputation as a reliable sell-sword. He could always just ask her: but what would that cost him? Would he lose her forever if he knew the truth?
Mongoose and Meerkat’s adventures are entering their final arc with the story in this issue, as well as the stories in our fall and winter issues, Fight of the Sandfishers and Thunder in the North, where most, if not all, secrets will be revealed!
There is a genre out there of kickass gun-toting Catholic Priests who fight both worldly and supernatural enemies of the Church. I’m honestly not that well-versed in the genre, but I’m aware of it because a number of our friends have either dipped their toes into the genre or made names for themselves with some of their series. Doug Ernst’s Soulfinder comic series aside, this is actually the first book in this subgenre of adventure fiction I’ve read, and I’ve got to say: it was a lot of fun!
An older hard-drinking Irish(?) priest, Fr. James Keenan, and his younger [and swole] protege, Fr. Akono Nwosu, have been having problems with break-ins recently. They come to find that a witch has put a bounty out on church paraphernalia, ranging from brochures and missals to the ultimate prize: the sanctified Body of Christ. Everyone from urchins and minor delinquents to hardcore gangbangers are going after churches all over the city for these items which will be used in unspeakable blasphemous rites.
The side of Good, however, has plenty of back-up, including a tough-as-nails outlaw biker gang and the Russian mob! Things turn into an all-out war as Keenan and Nwosu and their allies bring the fight to the witch and her acolytes who are planning a massive human sacrifice to unleash a demon into the world.
There’s a LOT going on in this book. It’s very action-driven, and a little dense; it crams of lot of stuff into a relatively short span of time within the novel itself. While this isn’t a bad thing, the amount of action is almost overwhelming, and I found myself wanting a bit more space for the characters to breathe. There are a lot of point of view characters on all sides of the conflict in this story, but they’re all very distinct and give a complete view of all the action without anyone ever blending together or feeling under-developed or seeming extraneous to the story. The only downside is that there are SO many characters in the short span of the books events that I would’ve liked to have spent more time with some of them and gotten to know them better. Also, there are a lot of good horror elements and potential for mystery, yet while the horror delivers, I think that the compressed events of the timeline necessitated sacrificing rising tension for the sake of pacing.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that this book is BRUTAL. A lot of gore, a lot of body horror, and a lot of good people dying pretty nasty deaths. So, I’d say it’s not for the faint of heart.
Another interesting element is the near-future cyberpunk dystopian setting. In some places, it’s almost blink-and-you’ll miss it. In other places, the sci-tech elements are critical to the story. For the most part, though, it’s a nice excuse for the Priests and their comrades to have some serious ordnance.
We’re accepting all ads except for back cover [which has already been sold]
We’re still hoping to do submissions during the first week of August, but I just got hit with about $4k in plumbing expenses. The good news: I’ve got the money. The better news: Cirsova is already front-loaded with 75K words of fiction for 2023 by special arrangement. The bad news: Unless we get a major cash injection soon, we’ll probably be just looking at around 100k words and 2 issues next year, or kick back Open Submissions/go invite-only.
The two fastest ways for us to get the cash we need in time to buy things in August:
Amazon STILL hasn’t dropped the price down to where we told them to, so hold off on buying it from them.
Instead, if you want a softcover, or even a hardcover, you can get it from Lulu [on nicer paper] right now and save 15% with promo code WELCOME15.
Vran, the Chaos-Warped (Book 1)
By D.M. RITZLIN
Vran the Chaos-Warped has sworn that the wizard Foad Misjak must die for his debaucheries! Vran’s strange nature due to a sorcerous accident, however, twists with unpredictable results all magic around him… and strands both on another world!
Orphan of the Shadowy Moons (Part 2)
By MICHAEL TIERNEY
The Black Assassins have slaughtered all the children of the Worldlord except Strazis, the strange golden child he adopted as his heir! Strazis’s escape strands him on a mysterious isle as the Worldlord goes to war to secure the fragile empire!
Death and Renewal
By JIM BREYFOGLE
The Prince of Alomar has won a slave from the Bursa… Kat and Mangos must ensure the slave’s silence at all cost, but on one condition: they cannot kill him!
What Price the Stars
By JEFF STONER
Jørgen Pangloss offers the promise of the unthinkable: faster-than-light travel! To what lengths will potential investors go to win Jørgen monopoly… and its fetters!?
Dead Planet Drifter
By J.D. COWAN
Galactic Enforcer Ronan Renfield finds himself prisoner of a death-worshiping cult! Can the whispers from his past aid him in his battle against the cannibals?!
The Last Khazar
By REV. JOE KELLY
Two men, one a Polish Jew, the other a Prussian Nazi, are bound by dreams and bound by destiny to confront one another, both in the present and in the past!
Melkart and the Crocodile God
By MARK MELLON
An evil and sorcerous monster plagues the land of Kush! Can Melkart stop the crocodile-headed man-beast Sosostris from enslaving the people of Meroë!?