Book Review – Aloha from Hell by Richard Kadrey

Aloha from Hell by Richard Kadrey

Aloha from Hell by Richard Kadrey


All hail Sandman Slim, author Richard Kadrey’s ultra-extreme anti-hero and recent escapee from Lucifer’s overheated Underworld playground. Legendary author William Gibson (Neuromancer) called Kadrey’s first deliciously twisted Slim adventure “an addictively satisfying, deeply amusing, dirty-ass masterpiece,” and in number three, Aloha from Hell, the ruthless avenger, a.k.a. Stark, finds himself trapped in the middle of a war between Heaven and Hell. With God on vacation, the Devil nosing around in Paradise, and an insane serial killer doing serious damage on Earth, Stark/Slim is ready to unleash some more adrenaline-surging, edgy and violent supernatural mayhem—and even pay another visit to Hell if necessary—which is great news for fans of Jim Butcher, Warren Ellis, Charlaine Harris, Kim Harrison, and Simon R. Green.

Since this is the third book in a series, you really should have read the first two before this one.  Unlike a lot of the series I’ve read recently, this book doesn’t require too much continuity with the previous books, so if you have jumped into the middle of the series you won’t be too lost.  On the other hand if you’ve read the first two books then you’ll like this one – it has all the same virtues.

The mythology isn’t exactly Sunday School, but it’s interesting and internally consistent.  The author’s version of Hell felt like a cop out to me, but his version of God is interesting.

With series of books that I enjoy, I tend to rate all of the books the same based on my impression of the series as a whole, so unless one of the books in a series is shockingly bad I usually rate them well rather than on their own merits.  Although this is a series of books that I’m really enjoying, there are things about is that are less than perfect (for example the first person narrative and Mary Sue main character makes it feel like the author’s talking to himself) but I’m willing to overlook them.