Monster Hunter Nemesis SPOILER THREAD talk about your SPOILERs here!

So my poor volunteer mods on the Facebook fan page have been trying to keep people from dropping spoilers. So that is what the comments of this post are for. Spoil away. Questions? Want to gloat because you guessed right? Just happy somebody kicked a gnome? Post here freely.

I am on tour but I’ll check in whenever I can.

I am at Convergence today and signing at Uncle Hugo’s tonight. The MHN release is looking to be my biggest yet. It hit #1 on Audible to be the best selling audiobook in the world (briefly! Back at 3 right now). It was the #1 fantasy ebook on Amazon. On the Amazon authors list I’ve been in the top 10 of my genre before, but this is the first time I showed up on ALL authors and ALL books there. I got as high as #48 overall, and considering how many authors there are on there I’ll take it. I won’t know how the hard copies did until next week though, and sadly I don’t think ebooks count toward the NYT list. (And it is really too bad audio doesn’t or I’d be high up on that thing every time)

Not too shabby for some “little known author”. If I keep “irreparably damaging” my career like this, who knows what will happen? 🙂

So spoiler away! Those of you who haven’t read it yet have been warned!

265 Responses

  1. Ok, the one thing I did not see coming is Franks having kids. That’s got all kinds of potential.

    • Yeah, and the hint dropped at the end…. ‘hey, wait a minute…. he said descendantS’…..

      /ominous music

      • And so many directions for Larry to take this one. I mean, one was ultimately a hero…but what about the others?

      • Can a succubus conceive? Because just in this book he might have … hopefully it’s only human women. And it seems Franks didn’t think he could get someone pregnant until now so there could be Franks 2.0’s all over the place. O_O

      • True that. Also….. we haven’t heard anything yet about Strayhorn’s personal life and any possible kids.

        /moreominousmusic

      • If a succubus could conceive… I don’t think that particularly matters. First, I have a hard time believing that little miss hedonist would carry it to term if she did conceive. Franks is convinced that she’s incapable of looking beyond her immediate self-gratification, and carrying a child to term (and then raising it) would put a big crimp in her lifestyle. Second, if she did conceive, it would still probably take years for the child to mature. If a child was conceived in this book, then it wouldn’t matter for well over a decade (unless she tried to guilt-trip Franks with it, and I don’t think she’d expect that to work with *Franks*). And if the child was conceived with Franks over a decade ago, then she probably would have mentioned it to him.

      • There’s always the possibility that Larry is pulling a Skywalker on us and Strayhorn had a twin.

        “There is…… another…..”

      • I think it’s possible that we’ve already met another of Franks descendents in the MHI series. And he or she is a current member of MHI.

      • I made some oblique hints on Facebook about people potentially drinking the elixir of life and surviving. I have a feeling someone’s going to be able to play the guitar again. Looking at the dynamic between Franks and Owen, I saw certain similarities to the relationship between Owen and his father.

      • One thing y’all missed: “Descendants”. NOT “Sons”. Now maybe that was just a style of speech and I’m reading too much into it, but…
        Daughter of Frankenstein, anyone?

      • Here’s something I wonder. What if Franks is “Grandpa Franks” to a certain couple of brothers and that’s how they both got yanked into this destiny thing. Just thinking of possibilities for descendents we’ve already met. 😉

      • Hm. And now that I’m rolling on this theory, maybe the elixir is how Papa Pitt aka the Destroyer came back from being shot in the head. And did Myers know about it (if my suspicion is true) and that’s how he knew Strayhorn would be sucked into STFU business if they found out about him — because Auhangamea Pitt was?

    • Not only kid(s) but…. FEELINGS!

  2. Larry, my hope is that I can screw up my career like you have with yours.

    And, as for spoilers…

    …FRANKS HAS A KID? WTF!

  3. Franks had a son?!?! Myers adopted him?!?! And now you have me *really* curious just what side Mrs. Shackleford and Stricken are really on…. Nicely done sir!

    • And don’t forget the Fairy Queen! That appears to be who Stricken was talking with on the phone at the end.

      • Wait – Fairy Queen? Has she appeared previously?
        Sorry, I don’t like the idea that I missed something that big – Larry *does* set his plots up well in advance.

      • The Trailer Trash Elven Queen? First book.

      • I don’t think Queen Rondelia is the same as the Fairy Queen. I suppose Queen Trailer Trash *could* be a very impressive disguise, but my gut tells me we’re talking two different groups.

      • I don’t think Queen Rondelia is the same as the Fairy Queen. I suppose Queen Trailer Trash *could* be a very impressive disguise, but my gut tells me we’re talking two different groups.

        Correct. If you’ve ready Tayna’s short story before she signed up with MHI, you can get a full measure of what Tanya’s mother feel about Fey. This Fey queen seem to took a commission from Stricken to curse Renfor with something useful to MCB and STFU.

    • It’s not hard to figure out which side Susan and Stricken are on: Their own. The end of reality by a sanity-eating horror kind of puts a crimp in any plans to amass wealth and power, so it must be opposed.

  4. Oh, and the Franks vs. Werewolf fights were definitely worth the wait.

    I especially like the fact that they called it a “draw” after all was done.

    • I second that! Been waiting for it since MHL, when Owen first mentioned the idea! I like that it was a ‘draw’ but Earl’s the one standing while Franks in laid up in bed. 😀 Definitely epic fight scene!

      • And don’t forget that without Owen crashing in at the end and stopping it, they’d have both died.

      • That has more to do with the nature of each one’s durability. Take Earl to the brink of death, and all he needs is a 30,000 calorie meal and maybe a day to recover. Franks needs surgery. Different means to the same end, though.

    • Um, wasn’t Franks in Pieces after the fight. True Earl got his ass handed to him, but Franks was left “combat ineffective”. I gotta give that one to Earl.

      • Well, Owen & Julie did end the fight by hitting them both with a truck, so that did obscure the results a little. Heh.

  5. On behalf of your poor volunteer mods… God bless you… 🙂

    • Even the one that speaks with the voice of Management? *grin*

      You folks do a great job keeping the crazies (self included) more or less in line ; )

      • Talking about the Voice of Management, which actor / voice actor would be a good one to voice him? (I heard him with Rowan Atkinson in my head.)

      • Vin Diesel. He’s done The Iron Giant and Groot, so he’d do a good dragon IMO.

      • Yeah, he would except that Management sounded like a fussy guy in his late fifties in my head… and for some reason that equated to Rowan Atkinson when he was doing the voice of Zazu (the majordomo bird from the Lion King.)

        On the other hand, Benedict Cumberbatch doing a more hilarious variation of the Voice of Smaug (per the recent Hobbit movie) would have a good impact imo.

      • Yeah, I agree, Rowan Atkinson would be perfect for Management. I think Vin Diesel would be excellent for something else, something big and powerful. Riddick Voice is pretty menacing.

  6. Favorite moment: Tie between the gnome getting punted and the MHI tattoo.

    Best bit of authoring: Hands down the revelation of the nature of Franks being interrogated.

    Honorable mention to Franks involvement in American History. Good stuff.

  7. Favorite line: Demon: “An intruder! Seize him! Oh shit, it’s Franks! Run!”

    I giggled uncontrollably like a little girl high on Pixie Stix watching My Little Pony. I admit it. 🙂

  8. Owen Pitt, in Milo’s Workshop, with Abomination.

    Now, go get a Clue. . . . (evil grin)

  9. Bia and Kratos… Yeah, I didn’t quite see them coming 😉

  10. Franks has kids is one thing… but he’s having FEELINGS!

  11. How can everything be so plausible and so mind-blowing at the same time? Fallen angels, Franks with kids, everything connected with no nasty little loose ends flying around. LOVE these origin stories. Makes Franks seem a bit more…not human, but understandable.

  12. “Combat exorcists”? Tell me more, dagnabbit!

  13. Ok, let’s get to the elephant in the room. Frank’s vs Earl. EPIC! Larry, thank you for ending it in typical guy fashion, “Ok, your done. Want a beer?”

    Read it now going to listen to it on audible.

  14. Franks kills Dumbledore.

  15. His ex girlfriend: The succubus. Hilarity!

  16. “…I killed your girlfriend again…”

    I guess Grant isn’t completely useless, after all. My personal opinion has been slightly revised.

    • He was fairly beat up in this book, with no magic healing. He might not be as pretty in the future. Which would probably be a help, since he actually is effective despite the ego. Him and Franks as partners, though. I want another book focusing just on that relationship. lol

    • Loved the line: “Why does everybody keep underestimating me?”

    • Yeah, he really got rounded as a character in this one. Grant has come a long way from the first book.

      • I’ve actually liked Grant right from the start. It might just be because LC tried so hard to make us NOT like him and I’m a contrary jerk.

    • Thought it was appropriately mysterious how he took down one Nemesis soldier solo without really remembering how he did it. Hmmm… off-camera mystery kill? Makes me want to re-read all the other books to figure out what’s the real story there…

    • Does anyone else think that Grant might not actually be fully human. I mean actually killing a Oni/Nemesis solder by himself…. I don’t think so

    • Grant could be one of franks kids or maybe grant is dead and what we think is grant is actually Bia

  17. Franks having kids was a biggie. I loved his driving the truck through the flying aircraft.

  18. Two things:

    First, Franks may never be human, but he’s becoming less inhuman by the day…which will put him into some interesting ethical and tactical situations.

    Second, Julie will be FURIOUS about the house.

    • I’m sure Earl’s going to get an earful about the house…

      ^^;;

      • Honestly, during the whole Harbinger vs. Franks scene, the thought running through my head was that if either of them lived, Julie would kill them for destroying the house.

        OK, maybe not KILL them, but certainly threaten to.

      • Yeah, throughout the entire fight I kept picturing Owen and Julie standing outside, just listening to all the insane destruction going on:
        “OH, COME ON! NOT AGAIN!”

    • The interesting development with regard to Franks is that now, technically, he _is_ human. He’s regained his divine heritage as a child of the Creator.

      And I figured that had to be Heaven’s plan from the moment the angel spoke to him. You know, the classic “. . . and he that loses his life for my sake shall find it.” Note that the angel didn’t show up when Franks became animate. It waited until Franks saw the setting sun and experienced a moment of genuine penitence, ie, when he had a broken heart and a contrite spirit.

      Hmm . . . I wonder if there’s an LDS Bishop that he’s ever had to intimidate to silence. I mean, who do you talk to when you _are_ the fallen angel in the rising ape?

      -Albert

      • Also of importance is the fact that Franks wasn’t offered a pardon until *after* he’d already died for what he thought would be the final time. Up until that moment, the deal was essentially that he’d be able to stay on Earth so long as he fought monsters. But when he died, he was still going back to Hell.

  19. For myself, I liked the dust up between Earl and Franks, and I do have to wonder if that will ever have a continuation.

    • Consider that Earl is going to feel very embarrassed about getting played so hard by Stricken. Franks was in Julie’s house under a flag of truce, and Earl knowingly violated the laws of hospitality. Wrongly.

      Earl is a very, very old southern gentleman, and his knowing and willful violation of formally granted sanctuary by his descendant to Franks is *huge*.

      Earl now owes Franks big time, and when he realizes it, he’s going to be extremely pissed.

      Mostly because the first thing he has to do is apologize to Franks.

      Then he owes a huge favor to Franks to expatiate the sin. Something along the lines of “raise my hell-raising daughter-by-succubus to be a lady”.

    • It would have to be considered a rematch, because Earl won. Franks died and went Heavenward, Earl didn’t die at all.

  20. Franks vs. Harbinger, with Owen locked out. The MHI tattoo (revenge for not letting him watch?). The slow reveal on the interview. The foreshadowing on Julie’s guardian marks. Lots of good stuff.

    • Franks didn’t lock Owen out, Earl did.

      The MHI tattoo was just an opportunistic boyish prank. It was the Pitt brothers rebelling against authority again, nothing more.

  21. I need to kibitz more often. One careless comment about Franks making a great main character and look what happens …

  22. not a spoiler but. . .
    We need a Frank’s baby mama’s contest for the ladies!

    • 300 years ago, Franks arrived on the scene. A huge, incredibly muscled man unafraid of anything, and the ultimate bad boy. He also believed himself sterile, so he’d have pretty much never used the pull out method of birth control.

      Franks most likely is ancestor to most of Europe, and a good bit of America. And, and, and…

      It’s not like Franks would be afraid of her daddy’s club/sword/shotgun.

      Franks is the ultimate bad boy. As his DNA mixture changed, his offspring’s appearance would vary too.

      • Which strikes me as an odd oversight. I mean everything else about him is working at beyond normal human capacity thanks to the juice.

        Figure he would have known that his swimmers were good to go as well /shrug.

      • “Franks most likely is ancestor to most of Europe, and a good bit of America. And, and, and…”
        Not necessarily. Franks may be capable, but doesn’t appear to have much in the way of a human sex drive. Or for that matter free time. Granted, the size of his extended family would hinge on WHEN he had the kids rather than how often.

    • Dorcas

  23. Great job on this book, Larry! The reveal that Franks has fathered at least one offspring, his fallen roots, the horrible “lesson” he had to learn. The Franks vs Earl battle. So great. I can’t wait to read your epic fantasy when it comes out. It’s going to be exhausting! 🙂

  24. Wait, he was blind the whole time?!?!??!?!!!?!?

  25. One of Howard Taylor’s favorite antagonist is General Xinchub. Although physically unlike the general (Xinchub is a balding fat man) Stricken (tall thin albino, artificially induced) bears a very strong character resemblance in their character composition. Both are very good at their job. Both are utterly ruthless and amoral. Both do have their points.

    Congratulation Larry, you’ve written a better antagonist than Chairman Tokugawa from Hard Magic.

    • I actually wouldn’t mind a book from Stricken’s point of view. That might be asking too much from Larry.

      • I don’t think so. After starting the series looking like a petty bureaucrat despised by almost everybody, Myers ended his career as a Big Damn Hero. Stricken thinks he’s doing the right thing for the sake of humanity. I’d say Larry understands how he thinks very well.

      • I’d say it’s much more likely that ‘Stricken’ is another demon name like ‘Cursed/Kurst’.

        My guess is that human Alexander Stricken allowed demon Stricken to possess him, and “you’re saving the world” is simply one of the lies that the demon continually whispers to Human Stricken to keep him cooperating.

  26. Let’s talk about how Stricken and Susan know the name of the Adversary, now shall we?

  27. Things you NEVER want to be in range to hear: Franks yelling “F*cking Kill everything.”

  28. It’s a minor note but I liked the redemption of Grant Jefferson. Why does everybody underestimate him?

    • Because he looks and acts like the type of person who believes “an ounce of image is worth a pound of performance.” The fact that he can actually perform gets lost in the shuffle. But I’ll take him at my back with a Barrett any day.

      • There were complaint about the deus ex machina in this book. But the whole point of the backstory of Franks is THE PLAN. THE PLAN is if nothing more than the will and the PLAN of the creator. Franks already figure out that Owen Pitt, one of the Chosen Ones is part of THE PLAN and Jefferson’s 2 take down of Bia demonstrated he still have his own part of THE PLAN to play out.

  29. Here’s the big thing I’m wondering about: Kurst tweaked *all* of the regen coffins with that shapeshifter sludge, right? What, exactly, did they rebuild Franks with…? I’m thinking it’s unlikely that that sludge is NOT part of his new version 2.0 body, since all that was left was a bit of his brain and spine after the plane crash. He’d probably have shapeshifting powers, but I’d find it incredibly unlikely that the sludge doesn’t come with some kind of hidden drawback / control / kill switch which can be manipulated by the demon side…

    • More likely, the Elixir of Life will burn the impurity away, just like it does bites of *everything*, including vampires. Obviously the vampire bite conveys something that causes some sort of possession.

      Something (not the original owner) inhabits the body of the vampire that suppresses the original spirit completely. Whatever is possessing the body and brain, giving it vampire powers, also uses the brain, and thinks it’s the original owner.

      Franks is immune to this, due to EoL. It’s almost certain that it would also stop the “gift” a.k.a. the voluntary mutation agent.

      • But Nemesis was based off of Franks, so the EoL is certainly an integral part of the process, and the combat healing shown by Kurst and the others is consistent with having EoL in their systems. It didn’t burn off the shape-shifting agent with them.

      • …yeah, gonna have to go with the other guy’s point. EoL is part of the basic blueprint of all Nemesis assets, and the others wouldn’t have been able to use it if EoL burns it out.

    • I’m not sure how frequently Nemesis were injected with Elixir of Life, since that solution is antithesis to EVERYTHING from the other side. The point of the Elixir is purification, and the GIFT is if nothing but straight from evil.

      • Hmmm… hard to say, since the STFU scientists really didn’t know that the Nems had demons in them. They just thought they were all flesh golems.

  30. Something like that would have probably been removed by the big guy before / when Franks was sent back. Might still have the shape change abilities, and is definitely an upgrade over the usual collection of parts. Take everything that the Nemesis supersoldiers could do and add the Elixir of Life and the ultimate badass just got that much badder.

    • Do bear in mind, there are LOTS of Nemesis spare parts lying about. Franks would undoubtedly store them all, and upgrade himself with them as much as he could.

      Franks shape changing would, I think, ruin the story, since it would render the dramatic device of Franks running on spare parts obsolete if he could just grow new stuff on a whim.

      With his 300 years of combat experience, whatever he mutated into during combat would be super effective, and already very well practiced.

      • Yeah. I don’t think Franks would do any shape-shifting. The shape-shifting thing was strictly for Kurst and his ilk to get on his demonic form. OTOH, if one or more of the Nemesis soldiers escaped, s/he could hide via shape-shifting. This would create an opportunity for a short-story to show-case a Vatican combat-exorcist.

        Unless Mr. Correia has plans for a Vatican hunter stand-alone novel, a short would probably be the best vehicle to explore the idea of a combat-exorcist.

      • I could only see Franks using it for stealth, to be honest, or possibly assuming unusual shapes (“huh, what’s with this not exactly human shaped cube here…?”). As Franks pointed out numerous times in Nemesis, had the other guys NOT tried to go all horror show with their new shapeshifting abilities, they’d have been better at using their bodies and he probably woudln’t have stood a chance against the team. But noooo, they all had to mutate their bodies in ways that “looked cool”… 🙂

      • I think there’s the base for a really nice scene here, with some MCB science types approaching Franks for ‘guidance’ and ‘commentary’ about re-using the Nemesis tech. Custom grown body parts is something Franks might be interested in and be a great guinea pig for. Safely bringing that parts growing tech out of the ‘black’ world, that would of course be the real challenge.

      • Franks’ contract stipulates that the U.S. *government* may not try to replicate his tech. I don’t think (don’t have the book in front of me) that anything in the Contract mentioned private-sector experimentation, and with all the research into printing organs and genetic engineering and cloning…how long before some basement genetic engineer re-opens that particular door? The bodies may not be Nemesis quality, but they’d be *bodies*…

      • Franks’ contract stipulates that the U.S. *government* may not try to replicate his tech. I don’t think (don’t have the book in front of me) that anything in the Contract mentioned private-sector experimentation, and with all the research into printing organs and genetic engineering and cloning…how long before some basement genetic engineer re-opens that particular door? The bodies may not be Nemesis quality, but they’d be *bodies*…

        The only other entity other than Franks, MCB, STFU to have Elixir of Life formula is MHI. None of them have any desire to spread this information further than necessary. I doubt if the other side have this formula as it’s almost antithesis to their very nature (it purify and purge ALL impurity). The other side have necromancer and ability to stitches bodies together. But what they made are ALWAYS undead in nature.

        Without Elixir, I doubt any successful re-engineering of Franks will work.

      • The Elixir is probably necessary for Nemesis bodies, but here in the real world we’re already on the verge of printing up darn near any body part we want, including full clones if desired. These would all be bodies that hadn’t been born, and would thus meet the criteria for possession (I doubt the body of the Imp that Franks fed to Cthulu had and EoL running through it either).

      • The Elixir is probably necessary for Nemesis bodies, but here in the real world we’re already on the verge of printing up darn near any body part we want, including full clones if desired. These would all be bodies that hadn’t been born, and would thus meet the criteria for possession (I doubt the body of the Imp that Franks fed to Cthulu had and EoL running through it either).

        The otherside with necromancer could probably stitch together their version of Nemesis, with transformation ability, but with the deadly deficient of allergy to Sunlight.

      • I suspect they didn’t use the EoL as originally formulated. STFU had scientific and magical resources that wouldn’t have been available to Dipple. It’s possible that they just put the Nemesis bodies on modern day life support after properly assembled, then performed some useless mojo/science, and after that they had super-soldiers. All the while STFU was unaware that the motive power of life for the bodies had moved from the support systems to fallen.

        The Nemesis process probably doesn’t work, beyond a lump of cybernetics sustained by life support machines, without fallen influence.

  31. Just finished my signed Uncle Hugo copy last night. I’ve been reading MHI since the ink was still wet on its first ever printing a few years ago.

    What to say? The MH series started out being awesome with MHI and just keeps getting better with every story. So much great stuff in this one. The first chapter alone made me re-read it a second time.

    Gnomes in da’ Hood literally made me laugh for a good five minutes. I had to stop and read it to my 19 year old son who was waiting impatiently for me to finish the book so he could have it. 🙂 I’m more curious than ever about just WTH Stricken’s backstory is and the Susan cameo was a big surprise. Grant’s hero line before passing out was hilarious.

    Franks vs Harbinger = Superb action writing. I felt like I was reading Chapter One of MHI all over again and loving it.

    The really huge round of applause goes for taking the issue(s) raised over the years by Shelley’s Frankenstein off the table, reconciling it with Christian themes and a really nice bit of historical twining. Larry, if you’re looking for ideas for another MH book, I can say that if you decide to write one with Franks and the Hessians, I’ll buy it pre-order now. 🙂 MH in the 18th century would rock so hard.

    What I like even more is the way Larry is building the world of MHI and explaining the rules of how things work. By that, I mean a world where God, Lucifer, Heaven. Hell, angels, demons, and all of the other aspects of a Christian based world exist but there’s also the plausibility (if one can use that here) of the various Lovecraft-ish Elders and others from outside the sphere. It has certainly given me some new ideas for the MHI RPG game going forward.

    Full-auto 10mm G20 That is all. 🙂

  32. This book was so awesome on so many different levels that I don’t know how Larry sleeps at night. I read the book a while back (as soon as Baen released their ARC), and now have listened to the audio book version — I got goosebumps both times.

    This is going to be a hard book to top, but I have faith.

    (Also, it’s going to be fun watching the PFMs trying to badmouth this book, considering it’s sales and reviews.)

  33. For those listening to the Audible version of MHN, I like the ad-lib by Oliver Wyman at the 1:43:15 mark….that was hilariously epic…need to make that into a ringtone…

  34. I’m trying to figure out what Stricken really is. I need to re-read it with that in mind. Given Larry’s past performance, the clues are all there; we just need to put them together properly.

    Also: the four factions. Divine, Infernal, Old Ones, Fey?

    Favorite parts: The motorcycle in the face, the interview reveal (and down payment on a comeback), and ‘always had a soft spot for German mercenaries’.

    • We don’t know enough about the Fey right now to figure out how powerful they are. And the Fairy Queen’s support of Stricken was strictly covert (arranging for her “gifts” to make people into usable recruits for STFU).

    • My guesses on what Stricken really is:

      * Some sort of Hitler-leprechaun whose secret plan is to eradicate Gnomekind

      * Some kind of android, like Lore from ST:TNG

      * A giant spider who lives deep under a nondescript town in Maine

    • There are also the Guardians. I’d thought there was only one, and him a minion of the Old Ones, but it seems that that may have been an incorrect read by yours truly. We know that *something* is in the works for Julie though, and it’s unlikely to be nice:-(.

  35. Logically, Strayhorn’s mother was a Unicorn, who are known to take the form of a beautiful maiden. But, everybody knows there ain’t no such thing as unicorns.

    • The book states what happened. She was a witness that Franks was supposed to intimidate. But he discovered that seduction would work better – and possibly fell in love with her.

      • I can see this going a couple different ways.

        1) Pitt’s father knows something about monsters or STFU he won’t talk about from when he was special forces. He hates whatever he saw then. Maybe Franks cuckolded Pitt’s father to sire Owen.

        2) Pitt’s father is a hard man, a lot like Franks. Pitt’s father has died once and come back. Maybe Franks is Pitt’s grandfather. The term “descendants” implies multiple generations. This enables Pitt’s father, Owen, and Mosh to drink the elixir of life. Perhaps Pitt’s father has already quaffed this brew. You’ll note that MHI corporate now has the recipe. And when the War Leader drinks it, his fingers work well enough to play the guitar again and also fulfill prophesies we now expect Owen to fulfill.

  36. It seems to me that Franks now has a personal secondary mission to undertake. To locate his descendents. He probably won’t want to use gov. resources to help him. If the gov. knew that he had descendents they would use them as a resource or destroy them as a potential threat.

  37. Larry, as a not-yet-successful writer, I loved the Franks-Harbinger fight, not only because it was well done, but because I could feel the awesomeness, but because I could tell how much fun you must have had writing it. Hey, if you/re going to borrow from an Abbott and Costello movie, you have to have slapstick, right?

    Also, as a side point that hasn’t really been commented on here – I’m not a Mormon, so it was interesting to see you using Mormon cosmology as directly as you did. Apart from Orson Scott Card’s Alvin Maker stuff I can’t think of any (relatively) mainstream work that uses such a background. “Interesting” isn’t a euphemism, by the way – it was interesting.

    • It was the same thing Terry Pratchett did. Here was this perfectly good creation myth lying around, with nobody paying it any attention. So he swiped it, and Discworld was born.

      • You do realize that you just compared the Uber-author Terry Pratchett to the lowly Larry Correia, who isn’t even a real author, right?

        🙂

  38. Rather enjoyed the minor shout-out to the RC combat exorcists and Vatican guards.

  39. The next book will be about Julie and be subtitled Guardian.

    • No, Larry said Monster Hunter: Guardian will be the book after the next book. He hasn’t decided on the title for the next MHI novel (or at least, he hadn’t on Thursday, 2014-07-03.

  40. One thing that’s still bugging me. Kurst said he stood at the left hand of Lucifer. Who stood at Old Scratch’s right hand? That’s the place of honor for a trusted lieutenant. I wonder if it was anybody we know.

    • My private theory, (with lots of retconning) is that Franks saw the interminable politicking (before the actual war started) in the pre-creation and wanted no part of it.

      The build up to the war would have been an endless litany of bragging, wheedling, cajoling, begging, recruiting, threatening and commanding. All of which gives Franks the hives.

      He would have been a hermit, and, reasoning that he couldn’t be sucked in if there wasn’t a name for him, he brutally attacked any spirit that talked about him or talked *to* him. Probably also refused a name, and threatened anyone who hung one on him.

      When the war started, it was against ‘all those who wouldn’t stand with the creator’. Which would include Franks the Hermit, who just wanted to be left alone.

      So he fought when the loyalist angels showed up to draft him, and was banished.

      During his recruitment to the Hessians, he realized he had to accept a name, so he accepted the one they gave him, “Franks”.

      Meanwhile, all of hell (which obsessively watches humanity) collectively says “About Time we get a name for the jerk that swiped the body” and he’s instantly and permanently named “Franks” on Earth and in Hell at the same time.

      They’d all waited thousands – millions of years to give him a name, and they wouldn’t let go of this one, no matter how stupid.

      That’s why demons who remember him from before still use his modern name: it’s the only one he’s ever had.

      • The whole scene where the DEAL was offered and accepted stated that Franks openly rebelled and felt remorse for doing so. Don’t cheapen that by making him some sort of ‘innocent loner’.

      • Yeah, Franks mentions on at least one occasion that he feels like he got swindled by listening to Kurst and his ilk during the War in Heaven. Franks was definitely an active participant.

      • IIRC in Part 3 the conversation between him and the interviewer (Archangel Michael?) it was mentioned that they have battled before.

      • “Franks Shot First!”

        Don’t pull a Lucas and have Franks be less bad at the Beginning.

    • I don’t know. The whole right hand thing is a symbol of power and riotousness. It seems fitting that evil, being perfectly opposed to good, would see a certain logic and symmetry to using the left hand for his first lieutenant.

      A side effect of this would be that in a direct face-off, the first lieutenants would be directly across from each other.

    • Right hand refers to “those worthy” of God and will go to heaven and the left hand of God refers to “those unworthy” and will go to hell. Lucifer was thrown out of heaven and on the left hand of God.

  41. Larry!! I was just getting to where I kinda liked Myers and you kill him? Geez. It’s okay. I forgive you because you did finally give us the Frankenstein’s monster vs the Wolfman fight. Of course, Julie is probably going to have them both in work belts doing repairs for months. I don’t think either one of them wants to mess with HER 😉

  42. Still waiting on the redemption of Mosh and CPKM. The Love Tattoo!!! That hand must be found somwhere showing that the truck driver isn’t dead. Better yet, fingerprints! Fingerprints everywhere!

    But… it may not happen. *Poutyface* Hey, waitaminit. What’s the poutyface success rate today?

    • Easily fixed. The elixir of life erases fingerprints. Or changes them to the Franks pattern. OR he federales keep his fingerprints on file and tweak the databases to make sure they don’t match any search.

      • I’m pretty sure the Elixir explicitly also screws with fingerprints.

  43. I’m getting really old, and I want to read the next one before I die. So write fast Larry.

  44. Just 2 quick notes about the series:
    1. I can’t look at LOR elves without cracking up.
    2. After I lent my sister the books, she’s started cracking up over Garden Gnomes. (The Gnomes deserve a T-shirt.)

    Very well done, Larry!

  45. Franks, Myers, Jefferson, Archer, and much of MCB find redemption in our eyes.
    While they’re never going to be friends with the free-wheeling mercenaries of MHI, they firmly established themselves as moral forces for good in this book.

    I do want to note that there are 2 Nemesis monsters unaccounted for in the narration, and another 2 that are likely dead, but unconfirmed.
    Of course, that doesn’t mean anything. The Swiss Guard and combat exorcists could have taken them down. Or they could have survived and escaped.

    Larry, you’re an evil #$%& for that last postscript. We know he’s lying. He wouldn’t have tried so very hard to get Franks killed if his glib explanation was true. But portions of what he said could be true. Or could be technically true, but stated in such a way as to deliberately lead to false conclusions.

    Oh, and Mr. Trash Bags cameo! (Albeit offscreen.)

    • Yeah, I love Mr. Trash Bags, even if he was a trope I saw coming from half a book away.

      Sometimes it’s satisfying when what you expect, happens exactly like you knew it would.

      • It was really too bad Mr. Trash Bags got killed off. I thought it would have been a lot of fun with him skulking around outside the MHI compound, with Julie occasionally sneaking out to give him doggie treats (real doggies?).

      • I wish Mr. Trash Bags hadn’t gotten killed =( I’d have liked to see what would have happened if he started being the overprotective shoggoth of the MHI base…

    • I’m telling you, the escaped Nemesis soldier(s) versus Combat Exorcist hunt is a PERFECT short.

      • Why restrict it to a short? It’s easily good for a couple of novels. The combat exorcists are going to have a histories and backstories of their own.

  46. I’m still wondering what Stricken is. There are hints but nothing concrete.

    Also, I love that Franks is a Fallen Angel and the whole mythology behind all that. The Plan and everything.

    • There are lots of factions available, and they seem to be powerful enough to take on God. Heaven has certainly said so.

      So there’s literally no limit as to what could be possessing Stricken.

      • But I very much doubt it’s the Archangel Gabriel.

      • Yeah, Stricken is not an Angel. I do believe Franks would have known that. Stricken was human once…now….who knows.

        He made a deal with something or has some kind of power.

      • In the book Kursed described Stricken and ‘smelling’ like a human that had been changed by dark magic.

      • At the end of Legion, Stricken makes a comment to Owen that indicates Stricken believes that humans don’t need any help from the various factions. He thinks humanity is more than capable of dealing with the impending armageddon on its own.

  47. I’m guessing that Stricken might be under some kind of curse himself. Kurst did say that he has a touch of black magic about him. Maybe he was cursed in exchange for some measue of power.

  48. I was really glad to see more of Heather (though not as much as Harbinger was, I’m sure). Presumably she’s going to be free to ruturn to MHI now, and I’m looking forward to seeing Harbinger and Heather double-teaming some bad guys in the future. THAT should be fun!

    • Heather’s still got about six months left on her STFU sentence, iirc. So while she can cut and run right now, she’s going to need to go back if she wants her exemption.

      • STFU is currently under new management, and MCB owes Harbinger a big favor for helping out with Nemesis. What I’m curious about is where Renfroe is going to end up. He’ll probably be offer immunity by MCB for testimony against Stricken and moved over to MCB. I doubt if STFU or MCB can allow this talent to go to waste. MCB can really use his help sanitizing recordings.

      • I think at this point, Heather’s exempt because Earl f-ing says so. And, let’s face it, any hunter dumb enough to risk Earl’s wrath by going after her is probably too stupid to take her down anyway.

      • Bob Tanaka: Yeah, at this point I don’t think Heather would be much easier to take down than Earl himself. I’d actually like to see her get another shot at Franks in a situation where she didn’t have to worry about civilians, now that she’s got an idea of his capabilities — just for fun, of course! I think she’d come off a lot better in the rematch.

      • Yaknow, except for the age thing, the Alpha werewolf may be Heather–not Earl. The Red Werewolf doesn’t act like other werewolves. Won’t the SJWs and GHHs die if Mr. Correia makes the ultimate warrior in the final showdown a girl!

  49. I thought I’d drop this here, instead of on FB or something, since I just read mention of it in Nemesis, even though it was mainly in a different book:

    Arbmunep, Larry? Really? With the shadow man, and you call the giant tree thing Arbmunep? Much as I enjoy these stories, that really was a groaner.

  50. After reading all the way through the comments, not a single one has addressed the one thing that has had me puzzled since reading about Franks kid. So if Franks is built out of spare human parts, then how can anyone say that he is the father? I mean who’s “equipment” did he use to knock up the mother?

    Gives a whole new meaning to “I would do her with some one else’s *%^$. I’m guessing that is exactly what Franks did. So who is the donor of the reproductive equipment and how does that make the kid Franks’ child?

    • Remember the elixir of life?

      It adjusts DNA. So a construct made out of persons A, B, C, D, and E takes the elixir a certain number of times, and no longer has issues of tissue rejection. Because the DNA and biomarkers have been adjusted to a common template, which is a result of melding A, B, C, D, and E’s features into a common whole.

      In hindsight, this sort of thing is necessary for a more plausible treatment of ‘we stitched together a bunch of spare parts and made it work’.

      Effectively, this makes Franks biologically something like a descendent of everyone he is made out of. So, Franks is the father, the part donors are effectively an older layer of ancestry.

      • Ok, works for me. That was almost as good as Tylenol for the headache I was getting trying to resolve this thing. hehehe I’m sure that was covered in the series somewhere but I tend to forget “small” details like that when the action starts. And as for the Werewolf/Franks fight- I was laughing my butt off through the entire thing.

      • Correia writes a pretty good book. I was having some troubles, and I was able to enjoy it anyway.

        Most of the mention of the Elixir prior to this, IIRC, mentions the healing, the building up of tolerance, and the strength increasing aspects of the bodily alteration.

        The info dump that the DNA and fingerprints came from was in Nemesis, IIRC, shortly after the web sample ends.

        Given my recent troubles, I remembered it only because a) I’m a bit detail oriented b) I have a trick memory c) one of my hobbies leads me to look for abusable things in different works of fiction. Even then, I wouldn’t have put it together without you asking. Then I wouldn’t have realized that this detail shows how awesome an author Larry is. Thanks.

      • In other words, his offspring will be a hodgepodge of whatever genes went into making him up.

        Kinda like the Pitt’s ancestry. (Dunh-dun DUNH!!!!)

  51. The Elixir binds everything together into a single functional whole. Once he has had enough of it to function correctly, the parts are all Franks, regardless of the original source.

  52. Fantastic! I am binge listening to the audiobook, by the way, Oliver Wyman is a perfect match for the MHI series. A great addition to the MHI universe.

  53. I have 2 questions that I felt were unresolved. Anyone care to weigh in?

    1) Putlack: Dead or alive? When Heather asks about it, the Flierls basically say they don’t know.

    2) Is Heather’s contract fulfilled or does she still have a year of STFU time to go? The Stricken that offered to commute her sentence was the spider-girl, not the real Stricken. Does that deal stick, or does it not?

    • 1) Unknown
      2) No, but the new head of STFU let her off the hook.

    • I agree with sirshades’ analysis from a practical standpoint, but I also think even technically she’s off the hook, because when Stricken comes to her door to talk to her, it certainly “sounds” like Stricken, even to talking about not being an actual albino. Then he walks away to get “some keys,” and then returns. I’m thinking it was actually Stricken who made the deal with her, but the duplicate who returned to serve as the distraction. Don’t know how you’d “prove’ it, but if it’s true, then the PUFF Exemption is legit all the way around.

  54. Given Stricken’s abuses and miss use of the STFU I think that Heather would be in the clear. After all she did try to stop Stricken’s insane project. And Franks would feel some obligation to make a recommendation to have her term of service commuted. If nothing else as a favor to Earl since he could have left him in several large pieces in a freezer a MHI.

    • That might work in the real world, but remember that we’re dealing with a government beauracracy here. 😛

      And Heather was quite possibly the STFU’s most powerful agent (she’s probably about as powerful as Harbinger, albeit without the combat smarts that his experience has given him over the years) *before* Legion and Nemesis killed off a good-sized chunk of STFU’s combat strength. They probably can’t afford to let her go until they recruit some new muscle for the organization.

      • From the way Heather sounded at the end of the book, I think it’s either let her out of her obligation or take her down, ’cause she sounded like she’d had enough. On the other hand…given the need, if the Flierls asked nicely (which they seem UN-bureaucratic enough to do), Heather might agree to keep working with the new STFU on a per mission basis, so long as she was allowed to go home to Earl between missions. She does have a strong desire to “do good,” and under the Flierls’ management, she might be willing to help them out.

    • Heck, if I were Franks, I’d tell STFU to give her a TDY posting at MCB for six months. She’s proved she’s good in a fight, she’s a cop, and he’ll attract the kind of trouble that will better use her skills than anything STFU can do while they’re rebuilding their organization. And if he can recruit her to MCB when she’s a free woman–away from MCI it’ll piss off Harbinger

      • Yeah, but I suspect the chances of Heather voluntarily taking a job away from Earl after the STFU time is less than zero.

  55. I am surprised to find no comments about the characters of Archer and Lana. Where are the characters named Cyril, Pam, and Mallory?

  56. So many great comments made by others, here’s a few of mine
    1st)The house, if I was Julie, I would want to “kill” my grandfather for having a knock-out-drag-out-fight in my newly remodeled house..he better be close to death…
    2nd) how about Holly as an offspring of Franks? I love Holly!
    3rd) this tale is as good as the first monster story! I just love how Larry writes, Too bad we have another year to wait for the next in the series!

    • Holly a kid of Frank’s? That’d be awesome! Speaking of which, am I the only one who wants Holly and Tripp to get together?? There’s definitely some chemistry between the two, and they’re such total opposites (in every way) that they’d either mutually annihilate on intimate contact, or fuse into something much greater than the sum of their parts. I’m betting on the latter.

      • Late thoughjt. If Holly were a Frank’s descendent, than she might be able to take the Elixer of Life to free herself from her eventual vampiric fate. THAT would be cool.

      • Now that I’ve engaged in theorizing this one, I’m dedicated to the idea it’s Auhangamea Pitt and the elixir is how he survived being shot in the head. Also how Owen and Mosh ended up getting yanked into supernatural abilities.

        I’m sure whoever it is Larry will make it an awesome reveal, though.

        I was totally on board with Holly/Trip, but I also liked her with Mosh in Legion. Trip deserves someone strong who would have his back, though, and Mosh generally has his pick, so I’m faithful to the original ship. 🙂

      • you aren’t the only one who wants Holly and Tripp to get married in a big wedding at the First Baptist Church

    • Does anybody else remember the reference of Bubba Shackleforth about Holly in Legion? Don’t have the book in front of me, but it’s when the ghosts are trying to talk to her. I could swear that it sounds like Holly is one of his kin. I can’t imagine Larry giving her both Shackleforth and Franks blood.

      • From my Kindle version:

        Holly raised her voice and spoke directly at Mosh’s forehead. “Listen up, ghosts, if you’re really in there, and you can do anything to help, I’d appreciate it.”
        Apparently Mosh was the only one that could hear the voices, because Holly showed no reaction when Bubba chimed in. “I really wish we could’ve contacted her instead of this bum.”
        “She is not blood of champion. Must work with what we have.”
        Great. I’m being insulted by the voices in my own head. Just do like she asked and send the cavalry.
        Bubba laughed. “Kid, you are the cavalry.”

  57. You know, I was somewhat surprised by the copious amounts of wereseal sex in the book, especially with Franks as a hermaphroditic amorphous angel.

    I might have misread a sentence or two. My prescription glasses are a bit overdue for an upgrade.

    More seriously, I liked Franks’ evolution throughout the story. He’s still an inhuman killing machine, but one who has developed some surprising human tendencies. And I’m looking forward to finding out who the other descendant(s) of Franks is(are). He’s been alive so long though that he could wind up in a “The Man Who Folded Himself” kind of situation. Now THAT would be interesting.

    • “You know, I was somewhat surprised by the copious amounts of wereseal sex in the book”

      Um hello? Wereseals?!? That is not ok. We prefer to be known as selkies, you insensitive cisprivileged brute! Don’t trigger me with your hate speech!

  58. Given how much Holly despises Franks it would add an interesting dynamic to their relationship.

    • Wow! Now there’s an understatement for ya. Although I can’t think of anything in the books which would actually seem to hint at this relationship, the more I think about it, the more fun and interesting it sounds. It seems unlikely, but now I’m really hoping it turns out that way.

      • While I’m not as eager for it as you guys are, it would help explain her having the determination and guts to kill a vampire and escape from the feeding pit.

      • I prefer to think of Holly as “just that much of a badass”.

  59. Listening to the audio book on the section on the abandoned shipyard, and I finally noticed a bit of foreshadow for the big ending at STFU base. Franks shot down a Blackhawk helicopter, killing Nemesis #5, pilot and severely injuring several other Nemesis (including Kurst). However, Stricken was not even remotely touche by this turn of event. The only explanation is he can teleport.

    At the end when Kurst execute his takeover plan, he thought he had Stricken cornered in his own office. Stricken left behind Spider to impersonate himself and was already far far away.

    • Yeah, I haven’t figured out exactly what Stricken is, but it seems pretty clear he can teleport. At least short distances.

    • Hmmmm…maybe he escaped from the Grimnoir Universe, and he’s a Traveler or a Fade. It could happen! Well, okay…probably not.

    • Yes, I think he can teleport. I think he got the ability from the same source that gave Kurst the shape shifting/regeneration goo. I’m wondering if Stricken might also be a descendent of Franks.

      • Just got to the part where Heather tried to take out Stricken in his office. He managed to port himself out of his chair when she striked.

    • Porting is not the only answer.

      Multiple dopplegangers.

      Time manipulation.(limited, not like Hiro in heros, more like he can stop it for just a few seconds, maybe a minute)

      Displacement, ala Displacer beast. (fuzzy outline)

      The Stricken you see is actually the mental project of a floating alien brain and as such since it has mastered telekinetic shielding, and levitation it simply stepped out of the helicopter when it knew the bird was going down
      .
      A legion of juiced up, jacked up little stricken clones with varying degrees of ability(not big on this one, but hey, it’s a theory)

      Although the helicopter bit definitely lends itself to teleporting. Of course that is assuming it was Stricken and not something impersonating him that was one there.

      This is a man, i feel, that Understands the shell game better than anyone else around.

      So he could just be messing with everyone’s minds (a la xavier from xmen) and is actually a giant spider under a sleepy town in Maine.

      • Your weaboo fu is weak; you failed to borrow senselessly and needlessly from certain sources.

        The first incident is clearly his stand.

        The second is a result of him secretly pretending to work for Remilia; her maid has been training under Wan Taaren.

        Third incident is a matter of Stricken really being Alucard; he really spent the time between Hellsing’s climax and epilogue living on MH world under that identity.

        Fourth is just a pointless Tatsuya Shiba cameo.

    • Stricken said (when he got out of Heather’s way):

      “Precautions, Kerkonen. I have access to every contraband magical artifact the government has ever confiscated. I was doing this sort of thing before you were born. I’m not stupid.”

      So it seems that teleportation is indeed what happened, but that it’s not something innate about Stricken, rather he’s using an artifact or has been enhanced by something.

      The following exchange happened outside Heather’s door:

      “Now that’s just hurtful. I’m not even genetically an albino. I have a medical condition I received while serving my country, so I find your hateful remarks about my appearance incredibly insensitive.”

      “Are you serious?”

      “Naw, I’m just messing with you, Kerkonen. I’ve come to offer you a deal. This is a limited time offer, so listen very carefully. You crossed some lines and poked around in classified Task Force business, which is all the justification I need to toss you in the incinerator, but I’m feeling merciful, and well, frankly, I’ve had a bit of a problem arise that requires your talents. If you help me out with this problem, your sins will be forgiven. I’m merciful like that.”

      (Which makes sense with the “Stricken” name — he was stricken by some malady or curse or something. Remember the gov’t is bad with nicknames like that — Mr. Wolf, etc.)

      Now, it’s not clear at what point “not-Stricken” takes over here. It seems to me that this was Stricken, but later when Heather notices he’s not being talkative, he’s bugged-out.

      • As I mentioned somewhere else, there’s a point at which Stricken walks away from Heather’s door, supposedly to get a “key.” I think it’s at that point that the switch occurs. The “Stricken” who comes back is the phony.

  60. Loved the evolution and back story of Franks – especially his initial encounters with the Founding Fathers. Franks as a Revolutionary War hero could be an incredible series in its own right! (Perfect timing on the release. Made a great 4th of July weekend read.)

  61. First, the book was awesome. I binge-read it in about 2 days.

    With that out of the way, one little thing bugged me. There was a considerable amount of build-up to the release of “biggest” in the book. We were being set up for a grand battle between Franks and “biggest.” Then “biggest” turned out to be an ogre. Really? An ogre? Kinda underwhelming in the grand scheme of things.

    The last time we had that much foreshadowing of a nasty monster with a nickname was Force and Violence. And the two oni absolutely lived up to the billing. But an ogre interloping on a fight between Franks and Heather was hopelessly outmatched.

    I was expecting something more like a Frost Giant or a 30 ft tall rock golem with a nickname like “biggest.” Given STFU’s history, I would think a nickname like “biggest” would be reserved from something far more awesome than an ogre.

    A nitpick, for sure. Book was still awesome.

    • I rather enjoy Biggest. An almost innocent monster eager to please its master like a puppy. Besides, the big fight is not between Biggest and Franks, nor Harbinger vs Franks, but Franks vs Kurst, part I, II and III.

    • i liked Biggest, but a Balrog would have been better

  62. I agree with those that liked the MHI tattoo and the gnome punting but one thing I also liked was Cueto’s orders to Archer about the congresscritter. ‘Countdown from ten. When you reach four, take out your Taser or your collapsible baton, whichever makes you smile . . . ‘

  63. One thing regarding the audio book I found refreshing is accent. Both Kurst and Franks are using the same template, which is appropriate. When Cuetos spoke for the first time, I kept no trying to place where that accent is from, but it’s distinct and different from every other characters. Since this novel have characters from different part of the country and world, having all characters different is very well done.

  64. I like the part where Franks enters the building and gives his serial number: “One.”

  65. I’ve got one question, though.

    Weapons like crucifixes and holy water rely on the Hunter’s faith. Most MHI operatives couldn’t give a vampire a nosebleed by displaying a crucifix. A combat exorcist from the Vatican…a totally different story.

    For Franks, reverence is NOT an act of faith. He KNOWS.

    Does this mean that faith-based weapons are especially effective in his hands, or totally useless?

    • I think for the prior 300 years faith-based weapons would not be in Frank’s arsenal.

      After the “Interview With An Angel”…. who knows? 🙂

    • i think that would depend on the manner of what “faith power” works on.

      If Having strong Faith allows you to be a channel of divine power (Think Ringo’s Special Circumstance Series) Then he should be eligible if the divine are willing to dump power through him. Hell he would have a leg up, since he would have a more intimate understanding of how that power works than just about anyone.

      If Faith power is actually just a way for you to channel your own inner power with divine overtones (more your traditional “mage” idea), then i gotta say most likely not. It’s not that Franks has no Inner power, it’s just that he already has focused any inner strength of will he may posses to punch evil in the face. Hard.

      Just my 2 cents.

      • I’m presupposing the Fallen were evading the Eye of the Divine. No proof for it, just my view.

        Trying to call upon the powers of the Divine, when you’d previously rebelled against Him, seems rather like standing in the middle of an open field, holding up a 10 foot pole, and screaming to the lighting storm, “HIT ME! I DARE YOU!”

        So, while he was working for redemption, in the guise of a man, as long as he limited his arsenal to human means and methods, the Watchers could let him strive and struggle. Once he used Faith-Based Weaponry, then they could no longer turn their eyes, and he’d be called up for Judgement.

        Thus, no Holy Handgrenades for Franks!

      • I’m presupposing the Fallen were evading the Eye of the Divine. No proof for it, just my view.

        We got better example in the end of MHV. Franks went into the realm of the Older God and brought a wardstone with him. He cannot rework the wardstone from a shield into a thermonuclear explosive as it is designed to be use by human. He doesn’t qualify.

      • Yet he had no problem using St. Hubert’s Key, despite its presumably Divine operation.

      • Look at what the Catholic Ninja Slayer said to the vampires:
        “It’s not what YOU believe… it’s what I believe.”
        Could you really say that Franks ‘believes’? Like a martyr believes? I think that most faith-based items and effects wouldn’t work for Franks. He simply doesn’t have faith the way a True Believer would.

      • Franks can’t have Faith. He knows the Big Guy exists and has a Pact with Him.

      • As I understand it, “faith” is “belief without certain knowledge,” which is why it’s argued Franks can’t have faith, because he has certain knowledge. And yet, after the first time a Catholic Warrior Priest called upon his Faith, and had it answered with obvious results, wouldn’t he then have “certain knowledge?” Hmmm…metaphysical warfare…tricky business, this.

      • As I understand it, “faith” is “belief without certain knowledge,” which is why it’s argued Franks can’t have faith, because he has certain knowledge. And yet, after the first time a Catholic Warrior Priest called upon his Faith, and had it answered with obvious results, wouldn’t he then have “certain knowledge?” Hmmm…metaphysical warfare…tricky business, this.

        Although Franks knows of the PLAN, he admitted to the interviewer that much of his memory prior to the FALL is incomplete, so there should be some room for interpretation.

      • If I may point out? Demons and Angels have more direct access to their forms of power than mortals. They don’t need the mortal type of faith to engage the other side in power to power (rather than physical) combat. Faith objects would just slow a restored Angel down. I don’t know how Mr. Correia intends to deal with that side of things, but based on what I know, a Master Vampire would ‘How quaint *squish*’ to a full Angel.

        As I said, I don’t know where Mr. Correia intends to go with this point or what limits the Almighty might place on such things to prevent catastrophic damage to the world, but I can’t see knowledge of God’s existence being a problem for an Angel or Demon accessing their respective powers. It seems rather axiomatic to those powers.

        Note this is Heather the geologist. We seem to have another Heather floating about so I switched usernames to avoid confusion.

  66. Is there a running count of Nemesis takedown?

    Franks killed:
    Nemesis (#5) on Blackhawk, Grim Berlin’s heavy machine gun.
    Crotos (#13) with Halberd in STFU hanger
    Thymos (#8) on C-17, military truck
    Kurst (#1) on C-17, on impact
    Assisted in killing 2 Nemesis on STFU HQ parameter tower

    Grant Jefferson killed:
    Bia (#12) Divine Intervention headshot and decapitation

    Earl kill the Nemesis on STFU escape tunnel flamethrower and grenade.

    That’s 8 I counted just off the top of my head.

    • Heather killed one before Earl got there, plus there was one more at the bottom of the ladder (or climbing up it behind the one that Earl killed) that probably got caught in the explosion of the flame thrower.

      That’s two more.

      • Ok I cannot count. My own count is 7, plus 2. That still leave 5 to be identified.

  67. In unrelated news, the computer version of Larry’s favorite miniatures game just went up for Early Access purchase on Steam.

    http://store.steampowered.com/app/253510/

    The four primary nations are all represented, and the Early Access version includes what appears to be a tutorial mission, and multi-player. It looks like the game is turn-based, which suggests to me that it’s probably a straight port of the table-top game.

  68. Sorry peeps, I was actually rooting for Franks to win against Earl. LOL

  69. Stricken = son of Franks with Daddy issues. That being the reason he wants to kill him so bad.

  70. Mr. Correia: fine work, sir!

    Please tell us: how does it feel to be J. K. Rowling, with people eagerly dissecting your every word and predicting the twists of your next novel???

    I’ll admit that there were some small bits that left me unsatisfied (in what was, overall, a WONDERFUL novel). I really was hoping for continuation of the Owen vs. Daddy saga… I guess that’ll have to wait for MH6. Likewise the out-of-character abandonment of Jason Lacoco in MH4 — and then you TEASED us with that in MH5, you mean old meanie, you!

    (Or was Lacoco’s abandonment just part of your rehabilitation of Grant Jefferson? I’ll admit that I don’t want it to be. I also want very much for Lacoco and VanSant to survive. They’ve got stuff to say and work to do.)

    On the flip side… the used book stores are full of the works of top-notch authors who Could Not Write Sequels To Save Their Lives. (Arthur Clarke comes to mind.) One of the remarkable things about J.K. Rowling was that, as a beginning writer, she wrote something great — and followed that up with SIX great sequels. You, sir, have done much the same thing, following up MHI with four great sequels. I very much hope that we’ll one day see MH6 — and that you won’t be as sick and tired of the whole thing by then as Rowling was reputed to be.

    For the record: I thought this one might be too bloody for my 14-year-old. I was wrong; she’s loving it. (And yes, she too thought the MHI tattoo was awesome.)

  71. Aw, someone beat me to the “Holly is one of Frank’s descendants” idea.

  72. So, is the Faerie (Fey?) queen the”scary lady” Renfroe mentions who pushed Stricken to restart Nemesis? How many factions are there in this coming war?

  73. Off topic: Tor.com is actually giving Larry’s “Warbound” – and the rest of the Grimnoir trilogy – some love in the Hugo balloting.

    http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/07/warbound-grimnoir-chronicles-larry-correia-appreciation-hugo-nominee

    No, I don’t see any flying pigs out there. Amazingly enough.

    • That’s an outstanding review. I had to read the comments and the ones who disagreed don’t seem to have read the book. The comment that the guns are given so much love … that’s from post-nom snark and is not reflected at all in the book. So that person clearly didn’t read it. The others seem not to have bothered to read from the beginning as the reviewer did. So, the usual suspects refuse to be moved.

      Thanks for linking to the review, it was refreshing coming from that website.

  74. I’m re-reading Vendetta. I now realize why Franks, right before he gacks Bia, says “You always did talk too much”, like he knows her. Because he does.

  75. Many funny lines but my favorite, “Damn, somebody should have warned me he was naked! I knew you were built out of spare parts but I didn’t know some of them came from farm animals!!” Then Franks acts like a sibling with, “Shut up!” Then he states he will erase the tattoo with a ‘belt sander’. Larry writes a really great story and Oliver Wyman has really made it all outstanding with his voices and presentation of all of the MHI books….and finally, as an older lady with a sense of adventure, I wouldn’t mind hearing more about Esmarelda Paxton….sounds like a tough lady…. on my 3rd listen of Nemesis….every few months, I go through the series and am thoroughly entertained….Thanks Larry!!!……..

  76. In chapter 2 of Monster Hunter International, it seemed Myers and Franks were just some goverment suits sent to intimidate Owen and off him if he had been bitten.

    Since then, we’ve learned a lot about them. By the end of Monster Hunter Nemesis, it’s very clear how special they are (or, in Myers’s case, were…hey, it IS the spoiler thread). And they can’t be everywhere there’s a monster attack. So I don’t think it was just a coincidence that they were there.

    So. What did they already know, or at least suspect, about Owen Pitt that caused the interim director and…well, Franks to show up?

    • If Owen had been bitten, and suddenly changed in the hospital room, then Franks might have very well been needed on hand to take him down. Think of it as a contingency.

      Also, the dialogue during the scene suggests that MCB was at least partly responsible for Owen’s boss getting bitten (MHI was going after the werewolf that bit Owen’s boss, but MHI interference led to it getting away). So Myers might be visiting so that he can personally investigate the dead werewolf and figure out what exactly went wrong during the previous incident.

  77. First of all, give credit where credit is due. Cueto outmaneuvered Stricken with his whole “Agent Franks is undercover” ruse. Beth Flierl is a straight shooter who took all her evidence straight to the top. They both earned their shot at the top spot in their respective organizations.

    Second, it would be a supreme jest if Agent Franks were given custody, by a family court, of his 15 year old trouble-making daughter. I can only imagine she’d be as stiff necked and unable to be intimidated as her father. Of course Franks couldn’t tell her what he does or why he lives such a spartan lifestyle. He’d HAVE to maintain cover. Which means he’d have to pretend to be human.

    I can’t help but think that Michael would be laughing himself sick at the sight.

  78. “It was WORSE than ponies.”

    • This makes me wonder, wouldn’t the Elixir of Life, with its purification properties, eliminate tattoos? The ink in a tat would constitute an impurity I’d think.

  79. Wouldn’t Billy Drago do a good Stricken. (Frank Nitti in The Untouchables)

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