Mad Shadows: The Weird Tales of Dorgo the Dowser
Valdar is a city of swordslingers and necromancers, witch cults and half-human races. It's a city in a world of darkness, black magic and creatures of the night . . . a city where demonic entities serve the needs of any witch or magicman who can open a doorway into their domain. This is my city. This is my world . . . a world of magic, mystery, murder, mayhem and monsters. I hunt anyone and anything that poses a threat to the people of my city.
My name’s Dorgo. Folks call me the Dowser.
Mad Shadows: The Weird Tales of Dorgo the Dowser, by Joe Bonadonna. Winner of the 2017 Golden Book Readers’ Choice Award for Fantasy.
A SHORT EXCERPT:
The mumbling man wasn’t much more than fifty or so years old, though he looked much older. He was bald, with a ring of white hair like a laurel wreath wrapped around three sides of his head. Tall and broad-shouldered, he had a pot belly and a double chin to match. His face was pale, which was only natural considering what he’d recently been through. But his eyes looked clear as he nodded hello to Praxus and me.
I smiled and tried to be very polite. “Feeling better, Mister Zakova?”
“Call me Kribble,” he said. “After all, we’ve been through quite a patch together, haven’t we? You, me, and your friend there with the broken horn.”
“As I recall,” Praxus said, “you tried to kill us.”
“But we saved your life,” I told Kribble. “And we want to help you.”
“So I did. So you do.” He eyed us with an odd mixture of shrewdness, innocence, and hope. “Things like that do happen, I suppose.”
“Are you willing to talk to us now?” I asked him.
“And what would you like me to say?”
I pointed to the body of the man lying in the bed next to him. It was neatly wrapped in bed linen. The man was already dead when Praxus and I brought him to the club’s infirmary.
“We know his story,” I said. “But before he died, he told us that he saw you take something from the witch. He thought it was some kind of key. What did he mean by that?”
Kribble gave me a sly grin. “It’s a secret.”
I was a knife’s edge away from losing my patience, but I knew that wouldn’t do us any good. “Look, Kribble. Children’s lives are at stake here. We’ll keep your secret safe. We promise. But we don’t have much time, do you understand that? Please, help us — tell us about this key.”
He stared at me, then he stared at Praxus, then he stared at his lap. “My hands,” he moaned.
“What about your hands, Kribble?”
“If I tell you what I know, will you promise to help me?” he asked.
“Help you? How can I help you?”
Kribble held up the stumps of his bandaged wrists. “Find my hands, please.”
I gave him the best smile I could muster. “I’ll do whatever I can.”
“I promise. And so does Praxus. Right, Praxus?”
My satyr friend gave Kribble a friendly wink. “Aye, that I’ll be doing.”
So Kribble Zakova, a lost soul staring into the abyss of madness, told us how he lost his hands — not once, but twice.
— Mad Shadows: The Weird Tales of Dorgo the Dowser is available worldwide in hardcover, paperback, Kindle, and Nook editions.
#heroicfantasy #swordandsorcery #occult #paranormal #mystery #supernatural