Title: Target Practice
Author: Seanan McGuire
Series: InCryptid #0.22
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal fantasy, Strong women, Urban fantasy
Dates read: 5th October 2020
Format: Free online short story
Publisher: Seanan McGuire
5th sentence, 74th page: It was a rare moment of absolute calm – at least until the blonde blur broke through the blueberry bushes, running hell-bent for the border.
Buckley Township is starting to grow on Thomas Price, rather like a particularly aggressive strain of moss. He still has a lot to learn about his new environs, and about the people they bring him into contact with. People like Alice Healy, whose talent for getting herself into trouble is only exceeded by her inexplicable ability to get out of it again. Luck is not a dependable survival mechanism. And hers is running out.
When Alice stumbles over something that even the ecologically unusual Buckley woods shouldn’t be able to sustain, it’s anyone’s guess whether she’ll be able to handle it on her own–and if she can’t, whether she’ll be able to find the help she needs to stop an invasive species from damaging the town and people she cares about. Thomas, meanwhile, just wants to avoid being shot by her father.
Tensions are high and stakes are higher as Alice and Thomas both begin taking aim on what they want, and where they want to be when they get it.
The first dot point that I wrote in my notes on this short story sums it up perfectly:
- Naw. Alice finally broke Jonathan!
That’s pretty much it. There was something that became steadily more irritating about Jonathan as these short stories unfolded. Don’t get me wrong, it’s understandable. But it was still dang annoying. So when Alice finally manages to “break” him… it left me feeling happy. Nothing like a rebellious teen having a point to make me love a story.
As with the other short stories so far in this collection, now all I want is to get the next books in this series and stick my nose into them! But I’m trying so hard not to buy anymore until I finish some from my teetering TBR… I may actually get buried under an avalanche soon.
But I digress… this was a fun story and showed how well Alice’s grandmother knows her, and how the scars of the past and worries for the future can have the exact opposite effect to what you desire. Luckily, things will steadily get more interesting (I’m sure) as the rest of the series about Alice’s children unfolds…
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