Yes, you’re going to have to get past the title and the cover, but I promise you, it’s worth it.
Plot: Trystan, the gryphon we met in the Kingpin of Camelot, has been tasked with a mission – find Guinevere’s irritating best friend, who was banished some years ago for betraying King Uther (Arthur’s dad). Galahad is described as perfect in every way. He is kind and generous and brilliant and the best at literally everything he’s ever made any effort at, so it’s perhaps a little confusing why when they cross paths, he’s in the process of being burnt at the stake by angry pigs. Still, he’s Gwen’s best friend, so a rescue is required, only it turns out Galahad hasn’t just been roaming the world aimlessly. He’s on a quest, and it happens to line up rather well with a life long goal of Trystan’s, so they decide to take a bit of a detour on their way back to Camelot. Shenanigans ensue.
As I have now come to expect from Gannon, those shenanigans are endless, hilarious, and unexpected. You might think that a character literally described as perfect would be, as is belaboured in some length in Kingpin of Camelot, boring. Beige. Flawed people are interesting, perfect people are not. And yet, Gannon leans into Galahad’s irritating perfection in this book and it still works. In fact, both Trystan and Galahad are both deus ex machina’s that logically can only be with one another because who else do you pair with someone that is god-like? Galahad has invented the most popular recipe for chips and book vegan cooking so successful it had to get it’s own list so other books could crack the top 10. He’s been working on decoding the language of dolphins, saves orphans and kittens from fires, published a calendar with his watercolour art (still being used 5 years later, even though the dates are wrong), donates the proceeds of all his business ventures to charity, and has still has managed to develop a nearly inexhaustible list of enemies. He’s so perfect it stops being annoying and starts being intensely funny.
These books are fun. I can’t find another proper descriptor for them. Read them. Do it for the one 1 star review this book has about a reader who felt tricked by a series that had 3 straight romances only to be “insulted” by this book that maintains the exact same tenor, style and pacing of the previous novels with a same sex romance in the centre. Do it for the 1 star reviewer who felt offended by the “borderline atheist” writing, whatever that’s supposed to mean (surprisingly, this review was taken down, which is a shame, because it sold me on the original book and I am grateful).
These books are excellent vacation reading. Not too heavy, not too light. Like a Japanese cheesecake.