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InCryptid #4

Pocket Apocalypse

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Endangered, adjective: Threatened with extinction or immediate harm.
Australia, noun: A good place to become endangered.

Alexander Price has survived gorgons, basilisks, and his own family—no small feat, considering that his family includes two telepaths, a reanimated corpse, and a colony of talking, pantheistic mice. Still, he’s starting to feel like he’s got the hang of things…at least until his girlfriend, Shelby Tanner, shows up asking pointed questions about werewolves and the state of his passport. From there, it’s just a hop, skip, and a jump to Australia, a continent filled with new challenges, new dangers, and yes, rival cryptozoologists who don’t like their “visiting expert” very much.

Australia is a cryptozoologist’s dream, filled with unique species and unique challenges. Unfortunately, it’s also filled with Shelby’s family, who aren’t delighted by the length of her stay in America. And then there are the werewolves to consider: infected killing machines who would like nothing more than to claim the continent as their own. The continent which currently includes Alex.

Survival is hard enough when you’re on familiar ground. Alex Price is very far from home, but there’s one thing he knows for sure: he’s not going down without a fight.

368 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published March 3, 2015

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About the author

Seanan McGuire

469 books15.5k followers
Hi! I'm Seanan McGuire, author of the Toby Daye series (Rosemary and Rue, A Local Habitation, An Artificial Night, Late Eclipses), as well as a lot of other things. I'm also Mira Grant (www.miragrant.com), author of Feed and Deadline.

Born and raised in Northern California, I fear weather and am remarkably laid-back about rattlesnakes. I watch too many horror movies, read too many comic books, and share my house with two monsters in feline form, Lilly and Alice (Siamese and Maine Coon).

I do not check this inbox. Please don't send me messages through Goodreads; they won't be answered. I don't want to have to delete this account. :(

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 567 reviews
Profile Image for carol..
1,572 reviews8,223 followers
December 29, 2016
It's an apocalypse, all right--a three-hundred page written disaster.

I'll be blunt. I don't read this series for the gorgeous writing; I read for the fun menagerie of fantastical animals. Pocket Apocalypse feels even more tossed off than is usual for McGuire, the majority of the writing a workmanship 'telling.' It's a style that works when one is going through unusual locations, as in Discount Armageddon (New York City sewers), introducing non-human sapients in Midnight Blue-Light Special (math-loving cuckoos), or unusual creatures in Half-Off Ragnarok (frickens, gorgons and their sub-species). But Pocket brings nothing new to the storytelling table and leaves out all that was good. Instead, Alex Price is taking leave from the zoo to venture to his girlfriend's Australian home to deal with an outbreak of werewolves.

The book feels like a novella with a couple of short stories tacked on. It begins with a flashback where Alex froze in a confrontation with a werehorse. Never mind that we've heard all about the drills Alex's parents put their kids through, or the almost-lethal games the siblings would play. Sigh. It's followed by a short episode in which Alex's assistant Dee follows him on a research trip to look at some migrating screaming yams. Although Dee is a gorgon, with actual snakes for hair, she completely disbelieves the plants exist. Then, instead of the purported migration, we find a circle of plants that moves a few feet when they are disturbed. It's the first hint that neither character (why a Gorgon who works with unusual species such as basilisks would disbelieve Alex) nor world-building are particularly consistent (the plants move in response to disturbance and hibernate in the winter. By definition, that isn't migration). So much for descriptive precision in our lead scientist character. We're off to Australia. Sort of. First we have to argue with the grandparents and get the Aeslin mice through security.

The writing is tedious. Potentially cute anecdotes such as mice on the plane are marred by eye-rolling PSAs about deep vein thrombosis and snooze-worthy explanations of things that really don't need explanation: "Again, I chose not to argue. If it meant the mice were happy and under control for the duration of flight, they could raid the minibar as much as they wanted... The mice could find their own way. They'd managed to wander off without my assistance, after all." Too. Many. Meaningless. Words. Oh, and Alex's main reaction to other people talking? Blinking. A lot.

Hope that things would improve when Alex reached Australia were doomed. The Australian dynamics were less about werewolves and more about Alex' interactions with his girlfriend Shelby's family. Her dad somehow characterizes Alex as 'Covenant,' which hasn't been true for generations and makes no sense given the completely opposite philosophies. He's also provincial enough that he resents an 'outsider' despite needing information about weres. Honestly, if I was Australian, I might be a little bit offended, as the locals come off like nothing so much as insular, gun-toting reactionaries that tend to race for their guns and can't ask an analytical question to save their lives. I suppose it is supposed to come off as Alex and Shelby vs Australia, but instead it just feels like a couple of people in the middle of stupid, illogical infighting in the middle of a stupid, illogical group (their solution to body storage? A locked unrefrigerated shed).

Plotting goes off the rails here. Although Alex is supposed to be 'expert' he really doesn't have much to offer--all they do at home is kill weres asap. When challenged that the Australians could just rely on 'lore,' Alex claims he knows something new: a 'cure' that may kill as much as it saves. Interestingly, once he makes a single attempt to create the 'cure,' it isn't mentioned again. There's also a lot of confusing bits about how loupism is a virus that effects anything over 70 pounds or so. We know this from Alex' history with the werehorses with herbivore teeth and suspiciously hoof-like appendages, but later in the book we're told that the original species of animal is indistinguishable after transformation. It's like information Alex supplies becomes whatever is needed at the time; there's no laid-out explanation for the stupid Australians. When Alex takes an initial opportunity to share information with the group, he tells them it could be a nation-wide disaster, followed with the obvious advice of monitoring bitten people for 28 days and to try and track down the source patient.

It's just a mess for me, missing the humor, the fun and the creativity of the other books in the series and replacing it with a low-grade description of the worst visit-the-girlfriend's-parents saga ever. Since the plotting relies on an unbelievable amount of stupidity and closemindedness followed by convenient discoveries that have almost nothing to do with actions of the leads, it isn't even enjoyable on a mystery level. I missed the creative new creatures. Though there's a 'Field Guide' at the end of the book, it is an unnecessary device as everything centered on the werewolves. Honestly, I'd only recommended it if you love everything McGuire does.

One and a half stars because... well, I didn't throw it across the room.
Profile Image for Choko.
1,221 reviews2,594 followers
February 10, 2018
*** 4.25 ***

A buddy read with my UF cohorts at BB&B! We love our Aeslin Mice!!!

"..."“Adversity doesn't exist to make us stronger. Adversity exists because this world is a damn hard place to live. Prove that you're better than the things it throws at you. Live.”..."

Our little buddy reading group have all decided that we need our own, designated colony of Aeslin Mice, since it turns out they have stolen all of our hearts. And how can anyone resist their charm and stature, no matter how diminutive it is:) In this forth book in the series, a splinter colony of six mice accompany Alex and his girlfriend to Australia, where an epidemic of lycanthropy virus is turning the citizens of this very ecologically different continent into werewolfs. Danger and death seem to lurk around every corner in this place and those who are supposed to be the Price family natural allies are turning out to be less than reliable... And the Tanner family is at the least hostile, openly wishing they could dump Alexes' lifeless body in a bog somewhere, never to be seen again... I guess it is a good thing that Shelly loves him fiercely, or that could have been his faith soon after stepping on the Australian soil...

"..."“I would greatly prefer it if you didn’t put a bullet into my brain; it would complicate my plans for life, most of which involve not being dead.”..."

We found that the Aeslin Mice travel well, can raid places for snacks, and can sniff out certain diseases once in the human body. This splinter colony left us with many memorable moments and as always, they were my favorite part of the book. We also met some cryptides specific for the local flora and fauna, and as a whole, we were mightily forewarned about the dangers of going among them in this magical and very scary continent of Australia!!!

"..."“Australia basically holds the copyright on “weird ecosystem.” The only place where you’re going to find weirder things is at the bottom of the ocean, and no one suggests that you go there for a fun family vacation.”..."

I love this series! I love Alex, a bit more than I love Verity, and I love Verity quite a lot! And I love the way Seanan McGuire can tell a story in the most entertaining but touching way possible!!! With every passing book my respect for her grows and grows and I feel privileged to have been gifted with the joy her work provides. I am of the lucky ones who have discovered the magic of her storytelling and the enchantment of the worlds she creates. This is why I feel I have to invite you all to do the same - this author is absolutely worth the time!!!! I personally can not wait to jump he next book:):):)

"..."“A life that is lived carefully, calmly, with thorough preparation and sufficient resources, is likely to be healthy, long, and incredibly boring. Fortunately, I have never been in danger of living that particular life.”..."

I wish you all Happy Reading and Happy Holidays!!!!
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,643 reviews1,511 followers
January 10, 2017
Pocket Appocolyse as remembered by the Aesin Mice and recited by honorary acolyte Robin of the Bridge Four.

And Lo, it was declared by the God of Scales and Silences that he would travel to the dangerous Island of Australia to help the Unpredictable Priestess find the wolves that walk as men and cleanse her land. And the Older Heartless one did not want him to go but the Younger Heartless one declared
“Besides, if Alex goes to help Shelby with the werewolves in Australia, he can meet her family, and maybe they’ll approve of him.”

But alas the meeting of family did not go smoothly for the God of Scales and Silences as The Unpredictable Priestess’s family was not ready for the glory of our god.

We travelled by a bus that sweeps across the sky to the new land and it was a glorious crossing indeed filled with great blessings of Cheese. The God of Scales and Silence proclaimed
Stay Quiet and Stay Still until we were in blessed transit. And truly did we heed your words, which echoed the ancient teachings of the God of Unexpected Situations, husband to the Violent Priestess. But once we came to blessed transit, we turned instead to the words of the Noisy Priestess, who did tell us, lo, You May Leave the Bag, Just Don’t Get Caught. And we have left the bag, and we have not been caught!”

The Unpredictable Preistess’s family had many members and a large compound full of great trinkets and feathers to gather to add to our clan. We hunted the mighty snakes of the land and watched as the God of Scales and Silence searched to the Wolves who walk as men. He was hurt in his hunt and lo did the Unpredictable Priestess say
How have you even lived this long?”… “There’s a cockatrice, you look at it. There’s a werewolf, you get bitten by it. Did you ever meet a monster you didn’t want to turn into? It’s hard on the heart, Alex. It’s just . . . it’s so damn hard on the heart.”

The dangers were horrible not just the ones from the infections beasts but those from The Unpredictable Priestess’s family. They are not like our gods. They protect those Cryptids that cannot talk and scuttle on four legs but they did not help those who lived among them and thought them lesser. Spending time among or gods the Unpredictable Priestess knew this was not the way.

The challenges to the God of Scales and Silence were many. Find the one who walk as wolves, cleanse the ones who were infected and win the favor of the Priestess’s family. But lo, we were not afraid for we knew our God would persevere even if everyone did not make it out alive.

We now take this moment of silence to mourn those who were lost in our holy mission may they have cheese and cake and dance forever among the soft feathers of our past. Please join us later for the retelling of the Arboreal Priestess and the Snake Cult.

The short of it.

So basically this is Alex goes to Australia to win the girl and defeat the Werewolves. This is a fun story as we have now read various ways that Alex grew up and the how he was trained to be a Price. Well I thought that Shelby’s family would be the Australian version of the Prices. And they are to a certain extent but they are a whole different shade of crazy. So Alex has to find the Werewolves, convince Shelby’s parents that he is good enough for her and possibly change the mentality of the 36ers. Easy Peasy Right.

At least we find out how Sarah’s recovery is going. SHE IS DOING CALCULUS! YAY!!!

Another fantastically fun book in this series and I can’t wait to get back to Verity and Dominic to see what they are up to now.
Profile Image for Ferdy.
944 reviews1,124 followers
March 13, 2015
2.5 stars - Spoilers

It was okay, the first half was quite slow and boring, the latter half was better though, the pace was faster, there was more action and there were a few fairly decent twists and turns. It still wasn't as fun as the first two books in the series though.

-It took ages for the story to fully kick in, I was bored with the parts where Alex/Shelby travelled to Australia, met Shelby's family/the thirsty six society, and then banged on about werewolves and antidotes and whatnot. I only properly got into things once Shelby's dad was attacked and Alex started to piece things together. It would have been so much more entertaining if all the info-dumps and Alex's overly long monologuing had been cut down.

-Really liked the world with all the different cryptids/creatures. I wasn't that impressed with this book focusing on werewolves though since they've been done to death. Even though the werewolves in this weren't described in the usual UF way I still would have preferred the focus to be on creatures that were less generic.

-I wasn't a fan of Alex or Shelby in the last book, they were mostly boring, they were still kind of dull in this as well but not as much. I didn't find Alex interesting at all when he was monologuing about all things werewolf or about some geeky, nonsensical science nonsense. He was much better when he was actually interacting with other characters, instead of monologuing.
Shelby was kind of blah at times as well, especially when she was being a doormat for her overbearing family. Also, I hated her calling her dad 'daddy', it was really off putting. I did like Shelby though when she was standing up to her family. I was glad she left them at the end and decided to go back with Alex, her family were so oppressive and irritating, she was much better off with Alex.

-Even though I wasn't crazy about Alex or Shelby's character, I did enjoy their relationship, they were pretty much perfect together. It was great how supportive and loyal they were with each other, without it being over the top and cheesy. I loved the part where Shelby told her family Alex was her fiancé, it was rather cute.

-I hated most of Shelby's family, Raina was pretty fun though. Shelby's parents on the other hand were infuriating, at first it was kind of fun when they were giving Alex a hard time but then it got really annoying.. Especially when they refused to listen to Alex's advice about the killer werewolves and kept blaming him for any bad thing that happened, it made them seem so ignorant.

-I didn't like that all the quotes at the beginning of the chapters were only from male members of the Price family, didn't the females in the family have any wisdom/advice to pass on in this one?

-I rolled my eyes at there being yet another UF novel where the American characters were oh so enlightened and progressive whilst pretty much all the non-American characters were ignorant, backwards, wrong, and needed the American characters to show them the light. Ugh, it was such arrogant writing.

-The Australian characters came across as caricatures for the most part. Shelby and Raina were the only ones who were given any depth, the rest were one dimensional.

-I'm glad the next book in the series will focus on Verity again, she's a far more entertaining protagonist then Alex.
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 5 books4,100 followers
February 4, 2023
Re-Read 2/4/23:

It's really nice revisiting the Price family by way of snakeboy in the land of murderous freaking snakes. Of course, it's really all about the werewolves and in-laws, but that's okay. It's still just as murderous.


Original Review:

Maybe I'm really getting used to the series or I'm really loving Alex and Shelby's dynamics or I think I'm falling for Australia or maybe the writing is just getting that much better, but I love this instalment of the series much more than all the rest.

It's not just the talking mice, mind you. It's Helen the Wadjet, Basil the yowie, and the entire freakin clan of the Thirty-Sixers.

The novel is kinda a "meet the family" with a truly horrible infestation of werewolves. It worked really, really well. :) I'm stoked and thrilled. :)

I'm not just having fun any more. This fourth book commemorates my official and formal status of FANBOY. :)

Alex has rapidly and far-outstripped my previous enjoyment of his little sister's adventures. :)
Profile Image for Denisa.
1,227 reviews297 followers
May 12, 2020
3.5 Oh yes, I like Alex.

This is the best book in this series so far.

I imagine it's incredibly hard to switch main characters in the same series, and the main impediment is managing to switch the 'personalities'. Unfortunately, in this case, Seanan McGuire didn't manage to do it completely. There were a lot of moments when Alex and Verity were exactly the same person. Same inner dialog, same types of monologues.

Still, I enjoyed Alex more. Maybe it's the nerdy side vs the dancer, maybe it's their career choices, maybe it's the side-characters.
I don't know (and don't really care, actually), but the most important part is that this read was FUN!

This one is definitely worth reading.
Profile Image for Emma.
2,508 reviews853 followers
May 28, 2018
I didn’t enjoy this one as much, largely because of Shelby’s family. I enjoyed the first Alex story but will be happy to move on to the other Price main characters.
Profile Image for Trish.
2,017 reviews3,436 followers
February 6, 2023
Ah yes, Australia. The land of bigot racists that outsiders don't usually think of as such because we're too busy running for our lives from snakes, drop bears, crocs, spiders ... or werewolves in this case.

Alex's girlfriend Shelby gets a message from home about there being a werewolf outbreak in Aussieland. Since the 36ers don't have any experience with this kind of crytpid (virus), she asks Alex to come with her and help. Well, he tried.
The problem is that Shelby's family is not only in a secret society but that while they are very hateful about The Covenant (another secret society), they consider their own perfectly wonderful and right about everything. Riiiight.
It doesn't help that Shelby's brother was killed by a cuckoo so the family isn't too much in love with cryptids in general and her being the eldest but having plans for staying on another continent and being with a Price isn't helping at all.
Naturally, the shit is hitting the fan pretty much as soon as they land in Brisbane. There is death, there are bites and OF COURSE nothing is as it originally seemed, even to Alex.

Really, I was pretty disappointed that this was less about the shapeshifting lupines themselves, but more about the utter ASSHOLES that are Shelby's relatives and "co-workers". Self-righteous but ignorant idiots, the lot of them! And I'm not just saying that because they got killed. But that is part of the reason.
The other part is that they are REALLY bad at communicating, even amongst themselves. And that they endanger others but have the cheek to call these same others unprofessional. Utterly stupid but sooo full of themselves. URGH!

Thankfully, there were some really funny bits here, too. Australia as a whole is very entertaining so long as one only reads about it. *snickers* In context of this novel, it worked even better, of course. The usual shenanigans the Aeslin Mice were up to therefore were, surprisingly, the least. I mean, there were werewolf sheep here! *cackles*

Wonderful installment.
Profile Image for Steven.
1,089 reviews393 followers
December 22, 2016
What a rollercoaster! I couldn't put this one down. I really love Shelby, and I think Alex and her make a great team.

This one had a great take on lycanthropy/werewolfs, lots of action, a good mystery, and some serious family drama. Oddly enough, the family drama this time wasn't Price family drama, but involved the intensely paranoid, rude, and obnoxious Tanner family. Don't get me wrong, I liked some members of "Shelly's" family (aka Raina, whose sarcasm and Pokemon obsession cracked me up), but for the most part, no matter how much Alex proved that he was there to help them, they treated him like crap at every turn. They got a little better by the end, but there is still a lot of growth left for them (and the Society) before they're going to gain MY trust.

The Aeslin mice were also the typical treat. I love them so much!!! I want my own splinter colony, and I want it now!!! *Veruca Salt scream*

There was one thing in this book that seriously broke my heart. I actually cried - UGLY cried. I knew after this many books and short stories that it was bound to happen eventually... but I wasn't ready for it, not even a little bit. :(

Anyways, thanks Seanan McGuire, for another excellent book. I am actually kinda sad we're going back to Verity and Dominic in the next one -- I really like Alex and Shelby -- but it'll be nice to check back in on them.
Profile Image for Christine PNW.
712 reviews195 followers
May 31, 2017
Somewhere between it was ok & liked it. I still love the Aeslin mice, but Alex isn't my favorite main character, and Shelby's family is ugh.
Profile Image for Maria Dimitrova.
745 reviews142 followers
December 24, 2016
Buddy read with the Wednesday UF freaks at BB&B.

What happens when you combine a slightly nerdy cryptozoologist with the scariest continent in the world? An extremely entertaining adventure! When I first read the blurb and saw that this book takes place in Australia I knew that this will be epic! Alexander Price has definitely stolen the number one place from his sister Verity. I liked her but Alex is much easier to relate to. His love interest is also easier to like. Shelby Tanner is adorable and only slightly crazy. But the latter is a must when you're a) a cryptozoologist and b)a cryptozoologist from Australia. Apparently that place has the weirdest cryptids ever. So when a call for help comes from Shelby's family that they have a situation with werewolves Alex agrees to go with his girlfriend and help.

Seanan McGuire's take on werewolves was interesting and while not unique well enough executed with a few twists that make it purely her own. I loved this version though when it comes to werewolves my heart belongs to those that inhabit Mercy Thompson's universe.

At first I had high hopes for Shelby's family and the Thirty-six Society. Boy was I wrong! Stuck up, narrow minded fools! The Tanners act like a bunch of red necks when it comes to Alex. God forbid that he is dating their daughter/sister. He is completely unacceptable! Why, you might ask? Because he has a penis apparently. Everything else is just excuses! And because he is dating Shelby they completely disregard his expertise. I was so mad at them the whole time that I wouldn't have minded if one or more of them ended up dead! Honestly Alex is a saint! He only used sarcasm to deal with them. I would have punched some of them in the stupid faces, got my splinter colony of Aeslin mice (yep a few of them when with Alex to observe his holiness at this mission and preserve his adventures and words of wisdom for the generations!) and got on the first plane back, leaving those fools to die. And the 36-ters are you average racist snobs. They're only a little bit better the Covenant. They're only saving grace is that they don't kill the cryptids. Otherwise they are just the same as the mass murdering fanatics of the Covenant.

The book was fast paced and once I started I could hardly put it down. There was action, humour (I love the banter) and tragedy. One packed an incredible amount of emotional punch and I cried like a baby. I still can't believe that Ms. McGuire can be so cruel! *sob sob* Still it was a great book and I recommend it to UF fans.
Profile Image for Christal.
936 reviews70 followers
March 18, 2015
3.5 stars

See this review and others like it at Badass Book Reviews!

Pocket Apocalypse is the second book in the InCryptid series narrated by Alex Price. I've always preferred Verity as narrator over Alex, but I did find much more to love about him in this book than its predecessor, Half-Off Ragnarok. I thought the story was exciting overall, but moving the setting to Australia just didn't work for me. I've enjoyed the time with Alex and his girlfriend Shelby, but I will be happy to have Verity back as the narrator for the next book and am looking forward to Antimony's two books after that.

Pocket Apocalypse sees Alex and Shelby traveling to her native Australia to help her family and the Thirty Six Society with an unexpected werewolf problem. Australia has never had werewolves before so they aren't quite prepared to deal with the outbreak. Alex had a rather traumatic experience with werewolves when he was younger, but he packs his PTSD away to help Shelby as much as he can. Seanan McGuire has a very interesting and unique take on werewolves, as she does all the cryptids, but I do admit to being a little disappointed with this story focusing on them. I was hoping for something new and exciting, something that hadn't already been featured in hundreds of stories, especially with the setting being Australia - the land where everything can kill you.

As a long-time Seanan McGuire fan girl, it pains me to give this book 3.5 stars. I just disliked Shelby's family and the way they treated Alex and Shelby so much that it brought down my overall rating. At first, the way they gave Alex a hard time was funny; it seemed to be somewhat good-natured ribbing. It quickly became tiresome though, the mother and father especially becoming caricatures of themselves with just how hardheaded they were -- refusing to listen to Alex when he had firsthand knowledge about werewolves and even blaming him for things that there was no way he could be responsible for. They didn't even have a true reason to dislike him; they didn't even know him. They behaved strictly on principle because Alex is American and his family is ex-Covenant. I came to like Shelby's sisters by the end of the book, but I just never liked her parents.

Speaking of Shelby, it's a wonder she came out as well-adjusted as she is with a family like hers. They gave her a lot of passive-aggressive guilt, but Shelby shown by standing up for herself and Alex. She knew that their relationship was the real deal and she didn't let her family discourage her. She was smart and quick thinking and really made me like her in Pocket Apocalypse.

Alex was also pretty great in Pocket Apocalypse. He did have a habit of monologuing a little too much but, other than that, he really showed himself to be a Price. He was decisive, thoughtful, brave, and not afraid to change his way of thinking when presented with new information.

I was excited to see this book was set in Australia, at first any ways. By the end of Pocket Apocalypse, the exotic setting wasn't enough to balance the cost of not having my favorite characters around -- Crow, Dee, Sarah, and the rest of the Price/Baker clan -- especially when there weren't many new likeable characters to replace them with. The one new character that I did really like was Basil. He was the perfect mix of creepy, misunderstood, and awesome that Seanan is so great at creating in her cryptids. Aside from him and Shelby's family, most of the characters were either one-dimensional (most of the Thirty Sixers) or bad guys.

Possibly my favorite thing about Pocket Apocalypse was getting to know so much more about the Aeslin mice! It was terrific; I just love those little guys. They really proved their worth here and showed everyone that though they may be but small, they are fierce. I really hope we continue to see them heavily involved in the future books.

If the family dynamics had been toned down, Pocket Apocalypse would have been another four star read for me. Unfortunately, the "nasty in-laws" stereotype dragged the whole story down. I did enjoy it, just not as much as previous installments. I am still excited for more books in this series though!

Thank you to DAW for providing a print ARC copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Wanda Pedersen.
1,922 reviews386 followers
April 25, 2016
The Aeslin Mice get to go Down Under! A second book following Alex Price, brother to Verity and boyfriend to Shelby, as he and Shelby go to Australia to assist her family and the Thirty Six Society deal with a unexpected breakout of lycanthropy. The question becomes, which is more dangerous to Alex, the werewolves or Shelby’s father?

As usual, the mice made the book for me. I really enjoyed the six acolytes packed in the carry-on luggage. They stealthily raid the plane’s pantry, set up headquarters in Australia, and go snake hunting. Not only that, we learn that they have special abilities that help with more than just Alex’s relationship with his potential in-laws.

Nerdy Alex is in the right place, using science to deal with both the outbreak and his fear. Just for the record, the cover once again depicts Shelby as Barbie in Bindi Irwin’s clothes (i.e. rather stereotypically) and Alex is not shown wearing glasses, which is plain from the text that he needs in order to see.

Another enjoyable romp with the Price family.
Profile Image for Angela.
3,199 reviews371 followers
December 27, 2016
This book continues with Alex as the main narrator again. And I couldn't have been happier about that! When I found out we'd be going to Australia - the land where regular nature wants to kill you, never mind adding cryptids to the mix, and doubly never mind there being a lycanthropy outbreak in process - I was ecstatic. And scared.

Scared because no matter how much I love shapeshifters in a lot of my fiction, and how much werewolves in fiction have run the gamut from scary to friendly, these werewolves TERRIFIED me. And they just kept getting scarier. Werewolves in this world are infected. It's a disease. No matter what we know or don't know about it, it's a contaminant to the body, and by that nature alone it's not a good thing.

And it turns out there's a lot we don't know. I really appreciated how much we, and Alex (and thus the rest of the Prices) learn throughout this book. The fact that Alex continues to expand his, and his family's, knowledge is one of the things that I love most about him. He continues to be one of my favorite characters - it's hard to choose which Price to love more, so I'll just say I love them the same.

Shelby continues to be a bright spot here, too. I appreciated how she continues to learn and recognize her own prejudices, and apologize for them. She isn't afraid to acknowledge that she made a mistake, might have been wrong, or treated someone poorly. It's not always comfortable to admit to those failings, and I love that Shelby does it - as soon as she realizes that it's a failing she's had.

Unfortunately, I'm left fumbling between bewilderment, frustration, and outright hatred for the majority of the rest of her family now. And the Thirty-Sixers are right there with them. Their obstinance, ignorance, lack of respect, and outright efforts to block any help Alex may be able to give - endangering many beloved characters and alienating other sapient cryptids - and I'm left with no respect. The entire book they fought against common sense and reason, and that they wouldn't give an ounce of respect to Alex, who was nothing but respectful and professional with them. He went above and beyond. And they were obstinate assholes the entire freaking time. I hate them. All of them can rot.

Even more unfortunately, they're a big part of the story as we're in Australia to help them with the werewolf problem. *sigh* But that doesn't negatively affect the story - it just makes me hate the Thirty-Sixers more. The story is pretty awesome and intriguing. I like how things that are known can always be expanded on. I like how the Prices are always willing to expand their knowledge and are eager to, in fact.

My frustration and anger comes through fairly strong here, and with good reason, trust me, but there's also moments of humor that cut through the tension at times, making things a little bit lighter. At least for a few moments. I appreciated those more than I can say, especially now, looking back.

I love this series. It's one of the best binge series I've picked up in quite a long while and I'm incredibly happy that I'm reading it. But I'll be quite happy to not see Australia, or more accurately: its resident cryptozoologists, for a  very long time.

Review also available at The Book Eaters
Profile Image for All Things Urban Fantasy.
1,921 reviews617 followers
April 10, 2015
All Things Urban Fantasy

With a series about cryptids who can kill you in very weird ways it was inevitable that a visit to Australia, a land of ten thousand things that can kill you if you look at them wrong; was in store for the Incryptid series. POCKET APOCALYPSE introduces werewolves into this world which from the perspective of someone who has read a ton of werewolf related books, seemed kind of mundane for this series. Luckily, the werewolves in this book were something unique and treated as an invasive disease of a sort which increased the threat level of werewolves and made a seemingly 'boring' cryptid into something dangerously strange and fitting within this world.

With this werewolf apocalypse occurring in Australia we get to visit Alex's girlfriend's family and see the how the human-cryptid culture in Australia works. It was fun to see the different approach in the treatment of cryptids which is vastly different to how the Price family runs things in the U.S. Shelby's family introduces a new dynamic for Alex to interact with and it was kind of fun to see him try to figure out how to get on the good side of these people who are already suspicious of his intentions with Shelby and his capabilities in dealing with this werewolf apocalypse. I liked having Alex as a kind of unconventional hero. He's a science geek, who happens to know his way around a gun. Much of the way he figures the werewolf issue out is through scientific analysis and reasoning. Also shooting things. While there is a lot of thinking and analyzing there are some fantastic and teeth-clenching action scenes in this story.

POCKET APOCALYPSE is a fun cryptid mystery with a good balance of snark, tension, and tons of twists that I honestly didn't see coming. The only complaint I had was the fact that no one had a drop bear as a pet because I wanted to see one in this story. The pet Church Griffin was an acceptable and awesome replacement. While I had fun with Alex, Shelby, and Shelby's kind of frightening family, I am looking forward to seeing what Alex's sister Verity has been up to in CHAOS CHOREOGRAPHY coming out in 2016.
Profile Image for Holly (The GrimDragon).
1,050 reviews233 followers
March 21, 2020
Well, speaking of apocalypses..

By trying to do our part in the fight against COVID-19 with social distancing/isolation/quarantining, many are flying through books. Because hello, escapism! Unfortunately, I've found myself on the opposite end of the spectrum. I've been absolutely struggling to read, which is so unlike me. I just cannot seem to focus. Oof.

Prior to shit fully hitting the fan and splattering all over the shit sandwich that was already in process (remember when we thought 2019 was a dumpster fire? HA! Hahahahahaha aahhhh oh god), I had a few reviews to get caught up on and so here they sit. In an attempt to get back to some semblance of normalcy, I'm going to do a few mini reviews. Again, quite unlike me. Your girl enjoys the word vomit, amirite?

"Adversity doesn't exist to make us stronger. Adversity exists because this world is a damn hard place to live. Prove that you're better than the things it throws at you. Live."

By live, I'm pretty sure Seanan McGuire meant STAY HOME IF YOU ARE ABLE TO AND WASH YER DAMN HANDS!

Any noodles.

Pocket Apocalypse is the fourth book in the InCryptid series. It's the second to feature Alex Price as the main POV and takes place roughly a year after the events of Half-Off Ragnarok.

Alex, the God of Scales and Silence, moved to Ohio three years prior to work at the West Columbus Zoo overseeing the basilisk breeding program. He's a cryptozoologist, working with things that science says don't exist. Like the rest of his family, he helps to serve the cryptid community. Each family member brings something different to the table. For Alex, his qualifications are those of a life scientist. Sometimes medical, often scientific.

Shelby Tanner, his girlfriend, also works at the zoo. She asks Alex to travel to Australia with her to deal with a werewolf outbreak. Alex has experienced his fair share of dangerous adventures and has history with lycanthropy. Although he went through something highly traumatic, he sets that aside and goes to Australia with Shelby. 

Of course, the werewolves aren't typical. This is a Seanan McGuire novel, after all! They are purely her own, focusing on the virus which began as a form of rabies that affected shapeshifters. However, it has mutated and taken over in ways no one ever expected. Any mammal large enough can be affected, including cryptids. 

Australia may be used to bizarre animals, but they are incredibly unprepared for the killing machines that are werewolves, as they have never had to deal with the virus before.

There's also the small matter of Shelby's family. Despite studying cryptids themselves, their approach is insanely different from the Price's back in the United States. As much as I adore the Price family, the same cannot be said for Shelby's family. What a bunch of fucking knobheads! I couldn't stand them. Also, and this is a personal preference, but the "overprotective father when it comes to his daughter" trope makes me cringe. Ugh.

Drop bears, werewolves, garrinna, basilisk, Lindworms, yowies and AESLIN MICE!! Although this installment wasn't as action-packed as the others, it was still an entertaining read. I just wasn't a fan of Shelby's family, which took away some of the fun of what this series usually contains, unfortunately.

With that said, I'm thrilled that the next book is focusing on Verity and Dominic again. It will be so good to see what they are up to!

PS. If you knew I wouldn't be able to write a short review, give yourself a fucking cookie.
Profile Image for Meels.
902 reviews23 followers
April 30, 2023
I liked this one, but not as well. I think it was because the Price family is weird and crazy, but cool and hilarious at the same time. Shelby’s family were just a bunch of giant a-holes the whole time. Literally, until the last few pages. It got…wearing. I won’t look forward to anymore books that take us back to Australia…
Profile Image for Ina.
229 reviews50 followers
December 31, 2017
4 stars

I think this book deserves more than 4 stars, because it was very well written and interesting, but I was so angry throughout the most of the book I can't give it 5 stars with clear conscience.

When Shelby tells Alex werewolves are causing problems in her home town in Australia, they travel to the other side of the world to save the day. Unfortunately, it turns out that werewolves are not the worst thing in Australia. Shelby's family is.

I was so goddamn mad throughout the most of this book. Alex went to Australia with Shelby to her her family and her whole society with werewolf problem and how did her family treat him? Like a trash. Even when he was bleeding to near death after he was bitten by werewolf (which only bit him because he offered to help them!), Shelby’s father was such a dick. Alex was bleeding on the floor and Shelby's father accused him of murder and he didn’t even care whether Alex lives or dies. I don’t care if Covenant hurt them and I don’t care if cuckoos killed their son, the whole Shelby’s family was acting like a bunch of assholes. I have to be honest, if I was in Alex’s place, I would pack Shelby, go back to America and let the whole Australia die in pain. I don’t think I’ve ever been this mad at fictional characters before. Imagine risking your life because you are trying to help someone while the people you are helping are constantly belittling you and trying to kill you. HELL. NO.

All in all, the plot of the book was good, but I had hard time focusing on it, since I was upset. And don't even let me start on the fact that . My heart broke in that moment and I'm still upset they didn't have proper funeral in the end or that they didn't acknowledge it in some other way. Poor little guy deserved so much better.

The final verdict: good book with a huge number of assholes. I hope Alex and Shelby will never go back to Australia and when Shelby's family has another disaster on their hands in the future, Alex will let them deal with it by themselves.
Profile Image for Katie.
2,712 reviews142 followers
July 22, 2020
This is one of those books where I feel like I learned a lot about myself and my reading preferences! I wouldn't have listed "family disapproves of romantic partner" as a trope I dislike, but it appears that it is! It was just so extreme in this case and so not fun to read it.

I don't think this one is a new observation, but I'm also kind of tired of new takes on common paranormal creatures--in this case, werewolves. I LIKE werewolf books and I've read a lot of them and at this point if you throw a brand new take at me, I am just not that interested.

ANYWAY. I guess you're fine, Alex, but excited to get back to Verity. (I have already started the next book even though I really should've . . . not started a new book last night.))
Profile Image for Lexxi Kitty.
2,013 reviews436 followers
December 21, 2021
The Alex Price lead part of the InCryptid series continues from book three. The solo POV book finds Alex being asked by his girlfriend to confront one of the few things his family considers a true monster. Something he wants nothing to do with, though has "interacted with" in the past (as seen in the prologue. What's the issue? Werewolves have invaded Australia, and Shelby Tanner's family is in danger.

What's the deal with werewolves? Why are they the monsters to fear? Well, simple-ish enough: they are not a true species but a disease. Originally infecting a nonhuman sapient/intelligent species, one with the ability to shape-shift, the disease has spread to any and all other mammals (or, to put that more accurately, it can spread to any mammal over a certain weight level). And, based on Price, and most Cryptozoologist’s knowledge - once a mammal over a certain size transforms/shifts for the first time after 28 days from being bitten . . . what emerges is a monster. One bent on spreading the disease as much and as quickly as possible. Not exactly something that can be reasoned with. Which is why it is one of the few critters out there the Prices think of as being true monsters: they are not a "true natural species", and they lack intelligence.

So: Shelby has been asked by her family to return to Australia because of a werewolf outbreak. Australia had never before dealt with a werewolf outbreak so doesn't have much knowledge, none outside of books. And so Shelby asks Alex to come with her to Australia, Alex having first hand knowledge of werewolves. Naturally, despite his own internal battles over having anything to do with werewolves, Alex agrees to go to Australia.

And, naturally . . . once he arrives, he finds everyone and everything there apparently hates him. Mostly referring to Shelby's family. Who spend a good deal of time muttering angrily about how they didn't ask Alex to come. Though also referring the wildlife. Which attacks Alex basically the first moments he wanders outside with one of the locals.

Fun interesting book. Less of a mystery to solve than in the prior book (though one does develop, once the true nature of werewolves is discovered). Next book returns to prior main character Verity, which someone . . . concerns me since I gave both of her books 2 stars each. Next book after that follows Alex's other sister for the first time, so I might get myself to read the next book just to get to the one after that (which, based on the book description I read, somewhat requires reading that inbetween book).

Rating: 4.33

December 21 2021
Profile Image for Vivian.
2,847 reviews399 followers
March 12, 2022
“Like rabies, but sweeter, the way a spider’s bite smells when it is fresh and hard to see.”

I love the Aeslin mice. They’re probably the most interesting part of this series. In this episode of the adventurist cryptozoologist, Alex heads Down Under. Like Australia isn’t already scary enough, let’s add a werewolf outbreak.

Alex’s Aussi girlfriend, Shelby, convinces him to help her family and the Thirty Six deal with a virulent problem taking members, werewolves.

There’s the fun assortment of new cryptids and the action moves quickly. The whole macho male “you’re not good enough” for my daughter is a bit overplayed, but I like Alex; he’s the scientist in the family.

Overall, good second book featuring Alex.
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,343 reviews1,016 followers
March 6, 2017
In Pocket Apocalypse we continue to follow Alex's journey but this time we get to see him travel to Australia with Shelby to help her family deal with a Lycanthropy outbreak. I've come across a lot of different werewolves over the years, from scary monsters to ones who have complete control over their transformations and I have to say that Seanan McGuire's are some of the creepiest I've read about. In this world Lycanthropy is a disease and it if you're infected it changes your body in all kinds of horrible ways. What makes it even worse is that it's not only humans who can be infected and the disease can pretty much be spread to any mammal. The smaller ones don't tend to survive their first transformation but larger animals end up becoming pretty terrifying when they're also werewolves. The prologue showing Alex's first encounter with werewolves was scary but there was a scene later on in the book that was enough to give me nightmares!

Anyway, Australia is a closed ecosystem and they've never had to deal with werewolves before so when Shelby finds out what is going on back home she asks Alex to go with her to help her family. Alex is pretty terrified of werewolves but there is no way he can let Shelby deal with the situation alone so, along with a splinter colony of six Aeslin mice, they set out to help. I think at this point I have to say again how much I adore those mice, I wish I could have a colony of my own and they are always a highlight of these books! I love how devoted they are to the Price family and it always makes me smile when they mention Alex's ancestors, especially when they follow rules that were set by previous members of the family.

I enjoyed getting to see Alex out of his element, Australia is a very different environment to what he is used to and we meet some interesting local Cryptids but the thing that really bothered me was the way Shelby's family and the rest of the Thirty-Sixers treated him. I could kind of understand that her family don't want Shelby to fall in love with an American and end up moving away permanently but considering Alex has put his life at risk to come and help them I was annoyed by the way they acted. Even if you ignored her father's posturing and threatening the new boyfriend attitude there was no excuse for the way the society treated a visiting expert - the ONLY person they had around with any previous werewolf experience. Their utter ignorance and refusal to listen to reason ended up causing some pretty devastating consequences and I've not forgiven them for that yet.

I did love the way Shelby stood up for Alex though, she told her family in no uncertain terms that Alex was going to be a permanent part of their lives and they just had to deal with it. I've really grown to respect Shelby in this book, I liked her before but now I'm totally rooting for them as a couple. Shelby has learnt a lot about Cryptids from Alex and his family and she wants to share that information with the Thirty-Sixers, she realises that they've made mistakes with how they've dealt with certain creatures in the past and she's willing to apologise and make things right in the future. Unfortunately the Thirty-Sixers are much less willing to see where they've been going wrong and I'm not convinced they'll change their ways any time soon. Alex also goes on a sharp learning curve in this book, his family have only had limited dealings with werewolves in the past and he makes a lot of new discoveries here that he's going to be able to share with everyone else when he returns.

I'm having so much fun reading this series and I've really enjoyed getting to know Alex and Shelby but I'm equally excited that we're getting to revisit Verity and Dominic in the next book before moving on to Antimony's story. I hope that we've not seen the last of Alex though, I'd like to see this series continue for a long time and keep switching up the narrators so we get to carry on spending time with everyone.
Profile Image for Roberta R. (Offbeat YA).
389 reviews36 followers
April 2, 2023
Mini blurb: Cryptozoologist Alex Price gets recruited by his Australian girlfriend Shelby to help with the continent's new lycanthropy outbreak, but her family's hostility complicates the matter, and both them and Alex may have underestimated the threat they're about to face...


Rated 3.5 really.

I've been dancing between 3.5 and 4 stars for a bit about this one, because while the second half picked up and featured both actual cryptids (finally!) and lots of twists and turns (one of them heartbreaking), the first was basically one neverending everyone-vs.-Alex match, with Shelby's parents and sisters at the forefront - and that got old and annoying fast, no matter their reasons for giving him a hard time (a couple of which were at least understandable). Also, though McGuire's take on werewolves brought some novelty to the table, they are NOT cryptid - only infected and mutated mammals - and I felt a bit cheated by her introducing them in a series about "natural" so-called monsters. My last qualm is that Pocket Apocalypse replicates the Half-Off Ragnarok formula, in what a) Alex gets into paranormal trouble mid-book and b) the final showdown features a helpless Shelby...
Then again - much like Discount Armageddon - the story is captivating, the mythology is great fun, those twists and turns keep coming (though they're mostly stacked near the ending), the protagonist is likeable, and the sex is limited to one, pretty tame scene (for the record, there's been one in every installment so far...). Also, moral dilemmas and grey areas are always interesting, and McGuire has the guts to be cruel when it's time to up the ante. So I was going for 4 stars...but ultimately, the neverending everyone-vs.-Alex match won 🙄 😂. So, 3.5 stars it is. Still entertaining, but Half-Off Ragnarok belongs to a different league, if by an inch.

Note: As a rule, I review every book that I rate 3.5 stars and above in full, unless it's a novella or an anthology. But this series has been around for years now, and it doesn't sound like McGuire's going to stop writing it anytime soon, so I decided to only write mini reviews for its installments, or it would be too hard for me to catch up. I'll write mini reviews for the new ones as well, out of consistency.
Profile Image for Marjolein (UrlPhantomhive).
2,389 reviews51 followers
May 1, 2017
3.5 Stars

Read all my reviews on http://urlphantomhive.booklikes.com

I'll let you in on a little secret: I mostly read these books for the mice. The Aeslin are awesome!

I find this series such a relaxing read, that I'm always looking forward to reading it and enjoy it, even though I think this was not the best in the series. One of the main attractions is the world filled with all the fantastic beasts so I was a little bit disappointed that it's mainly werewolves here. I mean, been there, done that. (Instead give me some more Aeslin please) Also I think Australia would have been perfect to create new species of cryptids that were not yet introduced to us before.

Either way, it was still an enjoyable adventure, although not that special. I'm still looking forward to more Alex in a later book, as I like his scientific approach.

Profile Image for Laura Martinelli.
Author 16 books27 followers
March 16, 2015
New InCryptid novel! New creatures for the Price family to encounter and occasionally piss off! More of Seanan McGuire ripping out my heart and stomping on it.

(The fact that this was her reply when I mentioned that I was going to be emotionally destroyed by the end of the month due to ALL OF THE BOOKS should have tipped me off. Hell, the fact that it’s Seanan prepared me for it, and that only made me more worried)

Picking up with Alex again, we finally get to see the wider world of cryptozoology in the main books (I haven’t gotten to the Ryan and Istas short stories yet), as he and Shelby pack up for Australia. Which means not only a whole new continent of creatures (on a continent where it’s canon that the Covenant nearly wiped out every species because they’re all weird), but we also get see the cryptozoology community outside of the extended and honorary Price family. Also, screaming yams.

What I really like about getting to see the Thirty-Six society is that even though Alex is put in the unfortunate position of being the Strapping All-American Hero who’s Come to Save Them (cue the Prices laughing their asses off) and detailing how the Tanners are completely and utterly wrong in how they’ve been doing things up until now, it’s not presented as Alex Is Right. Up until the Johrlac infiltration, the current Thirty-Six society hadn’t had a reason to be absolutely paranoid and suspicious of outsiders. It’s not surprising that they wouldn’t think that one of their own had turned traitor, because of they think they’ve eradicated any new invaders.

I also really liked the angle that the Society is incredibly problematic when it comes to humanoid cryptids, and get called out on being speciesist. It’s a similar territory that McGuire covered in her Newsflesh universe with How Green This Land…, with putting animal conservation over human—well, sapient humanoid cryptid—life. I really like that even though technically the Thirty-Six Society are the “good” guys, they’re problematic as hell, and they do need a serious wake-up call in what they’ve been doing up until this point. It’s actually their treatment towards Helen Jalali that made me angrier at them.

I’m not a huge fan of Shelby’s parents. I understand why they don’t like Alex, much less trust him, and why they don’t want Shelby to run off to America with him. But by the climax of the book, it just felt so overdone by that point that I began to actively dislike them. In comparison, Shelby’s sisters, Raina and Gabby, read a lot better to me, even though they had similar reasons to dislike Alex. I get why Raina is pissed off about him—she just lost her brother, and now her big sister is going to leave the family behind. Raina’s anger and actions spoke to me a lot more than her parents. And Gabby was a lot of fun

So the main plot of the book:


I LOVE THIS SO MUCH. I love that lycanthropy-w is therianthropic rabies (yes, Seanan McGuire made lycanthropy into a virus. Be afraid), I love that any mammal is susceptible to the virus, and even the throwaway mention that WULVER exist in the InCryptid universe.

(Sidenote 1: The moment Alex mentioned wulver—which are a type of Scottish werewolf—my brain immediately crossing over ALL OF THE THINGS and I had to stop because no, it doesn’t work that way.

Sidenote 2: Considering that we see not only humans infected with the virus, but horses and sheep as well, did I miss Alex saying if “werewolf” was a catch-all colloquialism? Because etymologically, it shouldn’t be…?

Sidenote 3: Until I was writing this review the first time, I had not realized that McGuire had managed to make THE WORST POSSIBLE PUN EVER. I’m torn between yelling at it a lot and laughing because it’s beautiful.)

And what I also love about the inclusions of werewolves is that this is also the first time that we really see a cryptid species that needs to be taken out. (Not counting the Johrlac, but we haven’t seen how terrible the majority of the Johrlac really are.) Even with the eventual reveal in the book, the werewolves are still terrifying creatures who, although acting on pure instinct, are so destructive that putting them out of that misery is the right thing to do.

The InCryptid series keeps rocking along, and despite the inevitable soul-crushing, it’s just been so much fun to read. I love that the world keeps on expanding, and we’re continually discovering not only new species, but new things about those species alongside the Price family. And as I said, I love that we’re finally getting a glimpse outside the North American cryptozoology effort, and I hope that we see more in the future. Really loved this installment, and now I begin my teeth-gnashing until the next book comes out.
Profile Image for AndrewP.
1,434 reviews32 followers
November 7, 2021
I didn't really like the first book in this series but the author gets a lot of good recommendations. So I thought I would give her a second chance. Unfortunately I didn't find this book any better.

The location moves from the USA to Australia with a whole new organization of Cryptozoologists called the Thirty Sixers. The name was a bit puzzling, but to me it appeared to refer to their average IQ :) The story was such was pretty basic, werewolves are infecting people and the infiltrating the Cryptozoologist group, who for some reason seem clueless about werewolves.

Not sure if this was intended to be YA, but it read like it. Defiantly not an author for me so I doubt if I will read any more of her books, certainly not from this series.
Profile Image for ☕️Kimberly  (Caffeinated Reviewer).
3,095 reviews665 followers
April 27, 2018
Alex has a history with lycanthropy and he seriously hates werewolves.  However, he refuses not to honor Shelby's request to help her family and the Thirty-Six Society. When they arrive, Alex receives a downright hostile reception. From the beginning tensions were high. Alex has brought a small colony of Aeslin mice with him.  He finds himself blindfolded before being taken to Shelby's home. Snark, Price digs, and distrust kept things interesting as did the outbreak. Leave it to McGuire to bring the unexpected.

Fascinating creatures, loss, danger, and family kept me listening. The story developed into quite the mystery as it soon appears Shelby's family is a target. Can I say, the Thirty-six Society is almost as bad as the Covenant of St. George?

Alex's experience with a lycanthropy outbreak is similar to those you might have read in Mira Grant's Newsflesh series as it deals with a virus outbreak. Any mammal large enough can be affected, and this includes some species of cryptids. Once bitten the victim if infected usually experience their first change in about twenty-eight days. Once changed they have only one goal and that is to kill. However, Alex quickly discovers something is VERY different about this outbreak.

A thread involving the Aeslin mice was intriguing, and we learned something new about these worshiping cryptids.  Despite Shelby's warm and loving family (insert snark) we do see relationship development between Alex and Shelby. 

Poor Alex. Shelby's family openly call him names and cannot see past his families ties to the Covenant not to mention how he and his family act towards monsters. Snark, name-calling, and faceoffs are plentiful. It brought a human aspect to the story. Here they are facing possible death, and they are bickering. Gotta love family.

If you haven't yet started the InCryptid series, I recommend starting from the beginning or at least jumping in at the beginning of a POV change. The next book takes us back to Verity Price's POV and this time she is on the West Coast.  The series has an incredible amount of novellas, which I have not attempted. Personally, I am holding out for an audio collection or at the very least an ebook collection.

The series is perfect for listening on audio, and thus far the narrators have been fantastic. Their voices capture the characters, creatures and intense plotline. Ray Porter narrates Alex's POV, and I think he helped enhance our science geek's personality.
This review was originally posted at Caffeinated Reviewer
Profile Image for Stacy.
1,333 reviews63 followers
March 2, 2015
POCKET APOCALYPSE brings Alex and Shelby to Australia where they are willing and ready to help Shelby's family with their werewolf problem. You thought the Prices were difficult? Just wait until you meet the Tanners.

Alex and Shelby might not always seem like the most obvious couple, but watching them work together in POCKET APOCALYPSE made it clear they are meant to be. It was nice to see how other cryptozoologists live and work. It wasn't so great to see their prejudice towards those that are not human. I am glad that Alex and Shelby were able to go there and help and show them that not all 'monsters' are monsters. Alex did not have an easy time in Australia. Shelby's dad was not happy that his 'little girl' brought a man home, but even worse, he doesn't like that Alex's family is former covenant. He questions his actions at every turn and gives him a really hard time about everything.

On to other things. It's great to see Sarah getting better. She isn't herself yet, but she is closer than she was during the last book. I continue to love the Aeslin mice. They are a big hit in every book and as I learn more about them, I like them even more.

There have been two books for Verity and Dominic, two books for Alex and Shelby, will Antimony be next? Can't wait to find out and learn more about her.

* This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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