The first book in the InCryptid series is also my first introduction to Seanan McGuire, and it’s certainly not going to be the last book of hers I read. In fact, I can guarantee I’ll be reading the entire InCryptid series.
Our protagonist (and sassy narrator) is Verity Price, a young woman living in a small apartment in Manhattan. She shares her living space with a sect of religious, overly excitable mice (trust me, you’ll love them). Verity is a cryptobiologist and self-professed defender and protector of the city’s mostly-hidden cryptid population. It’s a family business, and they’ve been in this line of work for a very long time.
She’s a busy girl. Along with her protector adventures, she holds down a day job as a waitress in a tacky titty bar, and pursues her passion for competitive ballroom dancing. These disparate activities may seem wildly unrelated, but Verity’s woven them all together into a crazy lifestyle that works for her.
This first adventure eventually settles down and presents a challenge. It seems that there’s something living under Manhattan. Something huge. Something very old. Something that may be waking up. This huge old something has brought Dominic, a member of the Covenant, to the city. The Covenant is the opposite of everything Verity stands for, and now ‘her’ local cryptids are in danger of being killed.
Verity needs to find and hopefully protect this unknown critter, while dealing with Dominic and his agenda. It doesn’t help her situation that he’s quite good looking, and far too kissable.
The snappy pacing and clever wordplay had me reading at such a brisk pace that I didn’t realize the entire afternoon had whizzed by. I finished the story in a surprisingly short time. In addition to the interesting, mostly-likeable characters I find the author’s careful attention to worldbuilding and creature creation to be highly satisfying.