Full Disclosure – I was provided a copy of the book by the author as a member of his “A-Team”, however, have voluntarily chosen to write a review. All opinions are my own.
Urban fantasy with a twist
Necrosoph is your average 340 something Necro. Living quietly in the country with his wife, 7-year-old daughter, spastic dog, dumb unicorn, and a cat with an attitude Soph strives for a sense of normalcy. With the entire country in almost total lockdown and the world’s natural resources growing more endangered by the day, travel has been reduced to bicycles or foot traffic. The populace is monitored daily by drones in all their activities; to the point where recycling is mandatory down to the exact quantities. For the Necros, however, this is nothing compared to the added burden of the Necronotes. From their 21st birthday on for as long as they live the notes start to arrive, and they do not bear good wishes. Each year, the Necros are tasked with the name of a person who must be eliminated. The reasons are never known, and neither is the origin of the directives, but participation is mandatory, or death will be swift. When Soph’s latest victim indicates that they know the origin of the notes, the situation goes from bad to worse. With the arrival of a not unheard of but rare second note, it seems to be a message to stay in his lane, but the assigned target raises even more questions that this Necro does not want to know the answers to. What was supposed to have been a routine trip to dispatch a marked Necro, has turned into an ordeal that threatens to take away all Soph holds dear. When the dust settles, will Soph be able to survive and retire to his quiet home for another year until he is tapped to kill again, or will this be the end of the line?
Necronote is the first installment in the Notes of Necrosoph series by author Al K. Line. Set in a dystopian alternative universe that scarily resembles a worst-case scenario of a post-pandemic Earth, Line takes us into the dark world of the Necro. While magical in nature, they are not “wizards” as each Necro manifests different unique abilities that they use during their daily lives and when executing the yearly notes. Necros attempt to live as normal a life as possible, but sometimes it’s difficult. With drones monitoring the population but with a sharper more critical eye on the Necros I was reminded of “big brother”, but who is behind the notes, drones and other events are a mystery yet to be revealed. As a longtime fan of this author, I was eager to start this new series, and while it is not like anything Line has imagined previously it is still very familiar in the writing style. While slower in pace than his prior stories, I feel that this really suited the story as we are introduced not only to an entirely new cast of characters but also circumstances. For most of us who have never experienced a life without the luxuries of mass transportation and other items, Soph’s world is as familiar as it is foreign. Despite, or maybe because of the slower pace, Line has created a world that immerses the reader and makes them want a pet dragon. (Or is that just me?) If you are already a fan of Al K. Line or a lover of Urban fantasy Necronote will not disappoint. After this initial introduction, I am diving directly into Dog Days, the soon-to-be-released second book in this series.