Chris's Reviews > Goblin Tales

Goblin Tales by Jim C. Hines
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May 03, 11

bookshelves: kindle, jrrt, short-stories, jimchines, fantasy-humor, witches-and-warlocks
Recommended for: Luke, I am your father
Read on May 02, 2011 — I own a copy

(Note, I actually wasn't happy with my first review of this book, and then Elizabeth went and liked it. So I'm adding a new review and keeping the old.)

New Review

I started reading this on my Kindle (thanks Dad!) during my break. Ernie, one of my co-workers and the room's Munkins supplier, asked me what I was reading. I told him. Then he gets that look. You know, that look, like you're strange for reading fantasy because you're over age 12. That look they give as if you have horns or something, like they have to humor you or else you will smite them. I hate that look, especially when it comes from people who read Tom Clancy. (But Ernie gets a pass because he is Ernie and he gives everyone that look. That is what makes Ernie the Man).

However,

Fantasy is not what people who neglect to read it think it is. It's more than that. Hines is a perfect example of that fact.

With his Jig the Goblin series, Hines examined, spoofed, lanbasted fansty trophes, themes, and cliches. He did this using gobins, or in other terms any D&Der's cannon fodder. In many ways, the series is about a quest for peace that goes hand and hand with the quest for survial. Goblin Tales continues in this tradition, collecting Hines' goblin short stories in one volume.

Jig, everyone's favorite erstwhile Dragon-Slayer, is back in two of the stories, and has a strong supporting role in the first story. The first story presents a pre-Jig series adventure of everyone's favorite Goblin chief (Grell for president) with a baby Jig. Depsite what some people claim, not all babies are cute. Watch out for the nappy humor.

The next two stories feature Jig, pre-series. Here the reader lines how Jig and Smudge met.

The best story, however, is the one featuring Veka as she struggles to keep her place at a mage school. Ever feel like the social outcast? This is the story for you, especially if you ever considering eating your classmates. Though all the stories contain Hines' trademake humor and pathos, this story is the most nuanced.

The collection is finshed with a non-goblin story that seems to be inspired, in part, by the Thursday Next series. Don't worry, Hines puts his own unique twist on it. It just is one good author influencing another good author. More importantly, the world's most awesome Spider, Smudge, gets co-billing in this story. Go Smudge! (and there is funny thing about a Smurf) Not only that, but every Star Wars fan is treated to the great desire (No, not Leia in her slave girl outfit; the other one that doesn't depend upon sexuality).




Old Review
So if you haven't been reading Hines, what is wrong with you? Do you want me to slap you upside the head?


This is a collection of mostly goblin based tales. Jig, the most famous goblin ever, appears as a main character in two of the stories, with a guest role in the first story. The reader learns how Jig and Smudge, who deserves his own fan club met.

The other two goblin stories focus on everyone's favorite goblin chief and with Veka, who I was extremely happy to see again. Her story is perhaps the most nuanced.

Also included is a story that feature Smudge but not Jig. This last story is a lead in for Hines new series after his princesses novels. Honestly, in this story, Hines taps into every sf's fan not so secret wish.
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