Friday Face Off : Daddy Dearest – a book with a strong father role


Here we are again with the Friday Face Off meme created by Books by Proxy .  This is a great opportunity to feature some of your favourite book covers.  The rules are fairly simple each week, following a predetermined theme (list below) choose a book (this doesn’t have to be a book that you’ve read), compare a couple of the different covers available for that particular book and choose your favourite.   Future’s themes are listed below – if you have a cover in mind that you’re really wanting to share then feel free to leave a comment about a future suggested theme.  I’ve also listed events that take place during the year, that I’m aware of, so you can link up your covers – if you’re aware of any events that you think I should include then give me a shout.

I’ve added themes in below. For information, I’m trying out some new ideas so along with coming up with particular items for book covers I thought we could also look for certain elements contained within the book or that play a large part in the story – this really broadens things out because I have plenty of more ideas with this – I’ve gone for a few of the Tough Travel Themes (so a book with that theme – just choose any book – the theme isn’t necessarily on the cover, then compare covers), also, I’ve thrown in some genres and some colours.  Hopefully this will open things out a little and give us some more freedom to come up with new books.

This week’s theme:

Daddy Dearest – a book with a strong father role

Well, I struggled with this one – I just couldn’t find a lot of books with a strong father role – no doubt lots will spring to mind as soon as this post goes live.  I had a couple of ideas that I eventually picked up but then a scroll back through my shelves eventually pulled out a book, in fact a series, that I really enjoyed and is perfect for this week’s theme.  The Mancer series by Ferrett Steinmetz.  Flex, The Flux and Fix.  In this series a desperate father goes to extreme measures to help his injured daughter.  There aren’t a range of covers for this one so I’m going to compare the three book covers in the series instead.

Here are the covers:


1st Genre – epic – any book that fits into the genre
8th Hazy and hot – a cover that is predominantly orange
15th Tough Travel Tropes – Snarky sidekick
22nd Off the TBR
29th Gigantic – monsters, giants, buildings,insects – anything at all
5th Tough Travel Tropes – out for summer – school or academic setting
12th Dark/sky/navy  – a cover that is blue
19th Scantily Dressed
26th Tough Travel Tropes – Vacation time – the quest
September RIP
2nd Fallen leaves – covers that are brown
9th Armour/Protection
16th Rage against the machine – anything, cogs, clockwork, AI
23rd Tough Travel Tropes – Coming of Age
30th Genre – horror
October – Horror/Dark
7th Guess who’s back?  – Vampires – popular again?
14th Witches vs warlocks
21st Tough Travel Tropes – Good vs evil
28th  Covers that are black
November – Scifi Month
4th Red skies at night – Covers that are red
11th Tough Travel Tropes – The gang
18th Genre – Swords and Sorcery
25th Genre – And they all lived happily ever after – fairy tales retold
2nd Tough Travel Tropes – Assassins
9th Tough Travel Tropes – Darklord
16th Genre – Grimdark (most recent/favourite, etc)
23rd Decadent and rich – a cover that is purple
30th Completions – a satisfying conclusion to a book or serie

Fix by Ferrett Steinmetz (#3 Mancers)

Posted On 1 September 2016

Filed under Book Reviews
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fixFix is the final instalment of Ferrett Steinmetz’s Mancer series and brings to a conclusion a story that I’ve found totally absorbing and unique.

I think for this particular review I’m not really going to delve too much into the story.  I don’t want to give anything away and I’m going to make the assumption that you’ve read the previous two books in the series.  If not, well then, I strongly suggest, nay implore, you to do so.   I also recommend not reading further in case there are spoilers for the first two books lurking below.

This is a very entertaining series that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed.  If you love gaming and movies and all sorts of culture references, huge splashes of fun and a world that brings to you a new form of magic with oodles of action then I think you’re going to love this series.

At the end of the last book I remember wondering how this family unit, that I’d come to enjoy reading about so much, would actually get on or even survive.  Let me say from the outset that this book puts you through the wringer a little bit in that respect and in fact has something of a different feel to the first two.  The first story totally blew me away and was really good fun.  The second is considerably more serious and leaves you wondering what’s going to happen next.  The third, starts in a totally innocuous way with the characters that we already love trying to fit into a relatively normal, everyday, lifestyle.  Of course they’re anything but ‘relatively normal’ being incredibly strong ‘mancers’  and things pretty quickly go to hell in a handcart whether they wanted it to or not.  Something about the road to hell being paved with good intentions should be inserted here I think!

Yes, I started reading Fix with a sense of dread and that was basically something that was set to develop quite strongly as the story progressed.  We have a set of people who, whether you like them or not, are on  the run, outlaws.  You have a young girl with such strong magical abilities that it’s really quite scary to think of what’s going to happen to the world if she suffers from teenage angst!  And basically you have this whole wannabe family situation just waiting to go wrong – with of course the massive implications and potential casualties along the way if that really happens.  This is a family that you might love to read about – but they’re dangerous – okay, I still love them.

For me Fix had a very different feel to the first two books.  This is a book that looks more at consequences and examines actions.  It’s a more difficult read in that respect because rather than everything being about kickass fun and badass goodies in capes we actually get to see some of the implications of what really happens when people wield magic.  Now, there are always two sides to every story and this is the same here and in that respect I think that the author pulls a wonderful twist out of the bag which I really didn’t see coming.

In a way this is a coming of age story with a difference.  We feel Aliyah’s longing for acceptance and rebellion against her own family unit.  It’s kind of inevitable, she’s growing up and wants her own space – in fact, she wants to blend in and be accepted more than anything else.  We witness Paul as he goes through the emotions of trying to protect his daughter and wreaking total havoc as a result and then having to face the consequences and guilt of his own actions.  We also have the wonderful Valentine who is also suffering a little bit of an identity crisis.

On top of this we finally get to visit Europe, broached and highly dangerous but nonetheless intriguing.  And we learn a good deal more about ‘mancy’ and the Unimancers and discover that things are not always as clear cut as they seem.

Put in a nutshell, yes, this is a more difficult read.  It has the feeling of a series that is growing up, in much the same way that Lord of the Rings started with birthday parties and fireworks but then led to war, this series started out with fun and references but then took us down the road of consequences.  Magic always has payback and we experience this quite fully in Fix.  So, yes, this is a less easy read, but then in another respect very satisfying.  The author doesn’t make this easy, there isn’t any wand waving to conjure away the badness – we finally begin to understand the real implications of everyone’s actions and it isn’t always pretty.  There are usually two sides to every argument and its not always easy to decide who’s right or wrong and this is something that becomes very evident in Fix.

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed this series and have no hesitation in recommending it.  I don’t think that Fix had the high octane, sometimes laugh out loud feel, of the previous two books but I think it was the perfect ending to the Tsabo story.

I received a copy of Fix through Netgalley courtesy of the publisher for which my thanks.  The above is my own opinion.