August 2, 2012

Review: The Foul Mouth and the Cat Killing Coyotes, by Richard Raley

Author: Richard Raley
Title: The Foul Mouth and the Cat Killing Coyotes
Series: King Henry Tapes #2
Publisher: Richard Raley (March 13th 2012)
Disclaimer: Copy received for review

Buy your copy: Kindle

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

King Henry Price, honored and learned graduate of the Institution of Elements, has settled back into his normal life, running his Artificer shop, creating new designs, selling old ones, and ignoring the occasional explosion when testing goes haywire. He's been minding his own business...only when he happens across a bunch of bullies picking on a woman, he can't resist the opportunity to smash faces, can he?

King Henry never expected the bullies would be part of the Coyote Nation, he never expected that he could be starting a war, and he surely never expected one of his lost sisters would be on the other side.

Jordan Josephine Price...found you at last.” GoodReads’ blurb

Oh how I love the King Henry Tapes series. Reading the second volume was like coming back home, I promise... And it featured all the great stuff that made me fall for our foul mouthed hero back in book one. If you’ve not read about it, go here and check my review.

So, The Foul Mouth and the Cat Killing Coyotes picks up right after The Foul Mouth and the Fanged Lady let off. I’ll be completely honest: it took me a few pages to get back into the dynamics for these books and to remember exactly what had happened, but once I did? I devoured the story!

King Henry thought he was done telling us about his messed-up teen age years. He thought he had spilled his feelings, he had matured, and that was it. Boy, was he wrong: he didn’t have to talk a little about himself... He had to tell everything! So he does. He tells us about another episode that also changed him: no in the shattering, emotional way the even in book one did (not sharing in case you haven’t read) but in fundamental ways nonetheless. We’ll get to see his priorities, and we’ll get to see what it means to be an Artificer (and how exactly he discovered that one).

That’s for young King Henry. But, do you remember how there are two sets of tapes? The ones about the beginning of it all, spoken while he was still a brash, scarred young man; and the ones where he remembers about being brash and brazen after he becomes infamous.

The second set doesn’t tell special anecdotes that might enlighten us about being a Mancer or about growing up. It’s telling how King Henry became as well-known as he is... step by step. In book one we had Annie B., a stolen artifact and a lot of vampire politicians handled with the King Henry special care package: punch first, ask later. It showed us that in spite of his choice of words, King Henry could be trustworthy, had a heart in the right place and was capable of compassion.

We’ll see another growth spurt in his character in this newest adventure. We’ll start with him not being the hero: he doesn’t help ladies because he’s a hero, but because he hates bullies. Except, those bullies are not what they seem. They come with strings attached, enough of them that King Henry could weave a whole tapestry. And while the consequences might or might not seem that big and important in the big scheme of things, this installments gives us action, fun, character development... and a lot of pieces set for upcoming titles, if I'm not solely mistaken.

His reaction to the situation was so genuinely his that it warmed me in spite of the swearing. No matter how many times he drops the f-bomb, or calls witches with capital b, or makes gross and coarse comments... this dude has a soft spot in my heart. Because, you know? He might be delinquent kid he is, but he calls a pot a pot and a kettle a kettle. And when he acts, there’s logic to his actions. You can agree or not, and you can follow his lead or cringe at the mess he’s going to make of things, but he’s consequential with his actions and that’s something that makes him real.

Should you read this series? Yes. Immediately. As in, drop your TBR and grab it. There’s bad language and coarse jokes on racial stereotypes and on sexism, there’s a spoken quality to the narration that sometimes butchers grammar (just like a man with King Henry’s background would butcher grammar, no more and no less) and there might be a real typo here or there in between the characterization, but I’d like to ask you to actually embrace that because it makes the character and the series unique.

Recommended hands down!


  1. How is it that you always dig out books I've never even heard of and make them sound so interesting. I would probably walk right by this book in a bookstore - neither the cover nor the title would make me stop and see what it's about, but now I have no choice. I wasn't sure until you mentioned the language. As a linguist, I love authors who explore conversational language in their books, we can learn so much from it.
    Also, I just realized that you totally need to read The Reapers are the Angels by Alden Bell. I love that book so much that I sent a copy to Ann Aguirre a while back. I just know she'll love it.

    1. I think that's because sometimes I get too many review request and I accept a random one... and it turns out to be gold!

      No, seriously, I wouldn't have picked this series up by myself. I think the main reason I got started was because the blog was still young, and because I try to accept as many indies as my schedule can afford. It was one of those times when I could have kissed myself, though, because I honestly think that King Henry is perfect... He'd take the world by storm if only people gave him the chance! Perhaps I'd put a new cover, and market more aggressively, because it has the potential.

      The language aspect is great. Specially because we get to see two completely different sets of King Henrys (three, if you count the beginning of book one...) and each time you can see how the bow has grown and changed and matured just reading how he speaks.

      Honestly, and while I know your TBR towers, I think you'd enjoy this one. As a linguist, as a UF lover, as a reader who wants solid and real characters... Yep. I'd recomment it!

  2. I agree w/Maja. Totally! I would NEVER give this a second glance and you made it into my line of sight.
    Heres the link to my FanFriday :)

    1. I had the same issue... Really, I'd not have picked it up either if the first (or second, or third) thing I had seen had been the cover! Luckily, it was a pitch line from the author and the summary, so my interest got piqued (plus, the stars might have been aligned because having found this jewel feels like a miracle!)

  3. What the heck? I haven't heard of this series, but it sounds GREAT!

    1. It IS great. It needs some serious PR work, because somehow no one is talking about it even though it seriously ROCKS, but I think you need to grab a copy. You won't regret it!