QUICK REVIEW: Prodigal – Josh Reynolds

The tenth story in Black Library’s 2016 Advent Calendar is Prodigal by Josh Reynolds, a Fabius Bile story which sees the apothecary musing on the nature of his work and what his legacy will be. When his pensive mood is shattered by a daemonic attack launched directly into his laboratorium, he’s surprised to find that not all of the daemons are trying to kill him, or at least not yet. Faced with the return of one of his earliest (and perhaps greatest) creations bearing riddle-like warnings, an unexpectedly paternal side of Fabius is revealed.

If further proof were still required that Reynolds’ Fabius is a much-changed character from previous depictions, this is it. Wistful and contemplative, having fatherly discussions with a creepy human/daemon hybrid and wondering if he should have encouraged more human bonds between himself and his creations…he’s utterly barmy, but fascinatingly so. Set before, and (very) loosely linking in with, the events of Primogenitor it’s a quiet, reflective story with very little in the way of action. Instead it’s a further exploration of what drives Fabius to keep going, and what sets him apart from most of the rest of his peers. He might be mad, but he’s got a job to do…

Click here for an overview of the Black Library Advent Calendar 2016.

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