An Underrated Genre Novel

Hellboy: The Bones of GiantsToday’s question required me to think about a genre novel I read that I feel is underrated. While there are many original stories that haven’t gotten as much acclaim as others, I feel that many tie-in novels get overlooked simply because they are tie-in novels.

So, my vote for an underrated genre novel is one penned by Christopher Golden. It’s called Hellboy: The Bones of Giants and it’s a tale after my own heart. This book stars Hellboy and the hammer lovingly known as “Mjolnir.” Norse mythology crossed with my favorite comic book character? Awesome stuff.

The thing is, this type of a story is extremely hard to pull off for a few reasons. First, there’s the issue of designing the story within the Hellboy universe. Second, Golden had to also blend in Norse mythology without breaking the setting and providing something new to the reader, something we haven’t seen. In Hellboy: The Bones of Giants, Golden accomplishes this by making Moljnir sentient. The legendary hammer has memories that affect Hellboy. Yes, we’ve seen this before in Hellboy: Sword of Storms, but that’s part of the reason why this makes the novel so good. There are a lot of technical aspects that needed to be accomplished in this novel, but the work is seamless. As a reader, I didn’t notice the stitches, I was completely immersed in the novel.

For these reasons, Hellboy: The Bones of Giants is an underrated genre novel and one that I feel readers shouldn’t overlook.

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Monica Valentinelli is a writer, editor, and game developer. Her portfolio includes stories, games, comics, essays, and pop culture books.

In addition to her own worlds, she has worked on a number of different properties including Firefly, Vampire: the Masquerade, Shadowrun, Hunter: the Vigil, Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn, and Robert E. Howard’s Conan.

Looking for Monica’s books and games that are still in print? Visit Monica Valentinelli on Amazon’s Author Central or a bookstore and game store near you.

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