White Trash Warlock
by David R. Slayton
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Pub Date 13 Oct 2020 | Archive Date 15 Nov 2022
Read book 1 before DEADBEAT DRUID, book 3 in the Adam Binder series launches on October 13, 2022!
Not all magicians go to schools of magic.
Adam Binder has the Sight. It’s a power that runs in his bloodline: the ability to see beyond this world and into another, a realm of magic populated by elves, gnomes, and spirits of every kind. But for much of Adam’s life, that power has been a curse, hindering friendships, worrying his backwoods family, and fueling his abusive father’s rage.
Years after his brother, Bobby, had him committed to a psych ward, Adam is ready to come to grips with who he is, to live his life on his terms, to find love, and maybe even use his magic to do some good. Hoping to track down his missing father, Adam follows a trail of cursed artifacts to Denver, only to discover that an ancient and horrifying spirit has taken possession of Bobby’s wife.
It isn’t long before Adam becomes the spirit’s next target. To survive the confrontation, save his sister-in-law, and learn the truth about his father, Adam will have to risk bargaining with very dangerous beings … including his first love.
A Note From the Publisher
“This contemporary fantasy is a smashing debut for David R. Slayton and, happily, the first in a planned series.”
“Slayton’s book gathers up pretty much every modern fantasy trope, turns them upside down, and shakes them…The elves who show up would have Tolkien rolling in his grave, which is my highest endorsement, and the LGBTQIA+ rep is all around outstanding.”
“White Trash Warlock is one helluva ride! Adam Binder is a compelling, deeply relatable protagonist, and the journey he leads us on is dazzling and wonderfully original. What David R. Slayton does with class, sexuality, race, and magic creates an immersive world I didn’t want to leave. Kudos!”
-Lynn Flewelling, author of the Nightrunner series and the Tamír Triad
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Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 77 members
What. A. Book.
Adam Binder is forced to face his family after years of separation when his brother calls him begging for help with dangerous supernatural occurrences plaguing his wife. Duty bound to help where others couldn't, Adam returns to the brother and mother who had him committed as a teen for the magical powers he couldn't control. Now they need his help to save his sister-in-law from a strange possession. But it's not just her that's posessed. In fact, something strange seems to be taking over much of Denver. And with the help of some elves and a police officer Adam saves from the brink of death--and may or may not be falling for--it's up to him to get to the bottom of what's going on and put a stop to it before it's too late.
So many complicated characters--which I love--not to mention one wholly good one with a heart of gold who I may or may not ship hard with Adam. I may be biased since my friend wrote it, but no, it's just that good. A spectacular work of character-driven fantasy. Go ahead and add this to your TBR now and get ready for an incredible ride of a trilogy. I for one can't wait to see where it takes us.
I really enjoyed 'White Trash Warlock," both for the twists it offered on Urban Fantasy tropes and for the really excellent LGBTQIA+ rep it offered, ESPECIALLY in having a bi, Latinx, male love interest end up with the protagonist - we need more bi/pan men to enter into relationships with men in all genres and for it to happen so naturally in this book was delightful.
I also loved that Adam, the voice character, doesn't end up even flirting with a Chosen One narrative. We have plenty of those in fantasy lit. He's a human doing his best in the world, like the rest of us, he just happens to have some magical abilities to assist him in his attempts to leave the world a little better than he found it. Readers will connect with him on a fundamental level that isn't always possibly in more epic quest narratives, which is one of the joys of the urban fantasy sub-genre writers don't take advantage of nearly often enough.
First, I should mention that I'm a HUGE fan of urban fantasy, so this book was totally up my alley. When I read the description of David R. Slayton's <i>White Trash Warlock</i>, I knew it was something I would find interesting. I was not disappointed. As a quick disclaimer, I was given the opportunity to review this book prior to publication by the publisher. Although I am thankful to the publisher for this opportunity, the review is completely mine and not influenced by the publisher.
OK, so the story centers on Adam Binder, a low-grade magician who lives in a trailer park with his aunt and is seriously distanced from his older brother (Robert) and mother. To say that this family is a bit dysfunctional is an understatement. The basic plot centers on Robert's wife who had been caught up in a supernatural body-snatching. When Robert sees something supernatural (despite his years of trying to convince himself that world doesn't exist), he knows his only option is to reach out to his estranged brother.
As a whole, I found this book really fun to read. I read a lot of urban fantasy (as already mentioned), so it was awesome to see an urban fantasy novel with a gay character at the center who is not a sex-crazed maniac. In fact, it was nice to read a novel with a gay character that didn't end up in an overly descriptive erotic scene at one point or another. One of my biggest complaints about a lot of novels with gay characters is that so much of the plot ends up centering on the sexuality aspect. Sure, Adam has an ex and a new love interest, but these relationships are more organic and natural feeling and not hormonally driven. Erotica has its place, but I like my urban fantasy PG-13.
I can't wait to see where the next book in the series takes us. This will definitely be a new urban fantasy series that I look forward to reading.