by Travis Baldree
It’s okay to love the fantasy action thriller, and need a break from the violence at the same time. There’s only so much Grimdark that a healthy mind can take before you start needing an escape from the escapism. The Author of this book, Travis Baldree, obviously loves the genre. Magic wielding elves, half-psychotic assassin halflings, artificer gnomes, and of course an orc barbarian . . . who has retired from adventuring life to open a coffee shop – the first coffee shop in the city of Thune.
Viv, the aforementioned orc adventurist, gathers around herself a troop of singularly talented employees and friends – a succubus barista, a hobgoblin carpenter, a ratling pastry chef – who rapidly establish themselves as the next big thing, all the while challenging social expectations, prejudices, and Viv’s own ingrained habits. How easy it would be, case in point, for Viv to make bloody ribbons of the underworld enforcers who show up at her door to demand protection money? . . . But what would that mean for her fresh start?
Probably the best fantasy-flavored addition to the Hopepunk subgenre out to date.