“The Quest for the Holy Hummus” by James Allinson

There is a particularly British form of humour that society does better than anyone else, involving equal parts creativity, wit, and just plain silliness. Terry Pratchett and Rowan Atkinson come to mind as the bookends for the spectrum, with Monty Python filling all the gaps. This Quest falls somewhere in the middle, with great creativity, flashes of wit, and a bit too much silliness for this reader.

The story involves a victimized vegan dragon trying to make his way in a violent, abusive dragon society, and a corresponding human loser who is the owner of, conveniently, an organic food store. As with all satire, there is a certain amount of bitter truth to the experiences of these beings that applies to all of us.

The main characters are well-portrayed, just this side of stereotype, but so creatively sculpted that they supersede the term. The supporting cast is likewise fantasy takeoffs of real types from our society.

The one weakness I find in this novel is an error many humorous writers make; the heroes are not quite likeable enough. The “lovable loser” is a standard hero, but the accent has to be on the “lovable” part, or we just don’t connect.

This is a short, introductory episode in what promises to be an entertaining series of tales perfectly suited to the new Kindle Vela format, which was apparently created for this sort of work.

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

 

 

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