Pros: Interesting larger scope
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Goblin War is book three in Jim C. Hines’s “Goblin Series”, after Goblin Quest and Goblin Hero. Jig is facing a whole new collection of dangers. The goblin tunnels are open to the world again, only to find that there’s a monster army (led by “Billa the Bloody”) attacking human forces. Book one comes back to bite Jig on the ass as he finds himself dealing with Princess Genevieve, sister to the adventurer who captured Jig in book one (and who died). But it isn’t long before Jig finds himself working together with Genevieve in order to protect a little town called Avery from the monster army. Jig also learns that Tymalous Shadowstar, the god he serves, has a history with Billa’s patron goddess.
Jig is past the honeymoon period with his god, Shadowstar. But it turns out that Tymalous has been making plans that involve Jig and the goblins since well before Jig was born. Despite the disagreements they’re having, they need each other’s help to keep the world from going to hell.
The pacing in Goblin War felt a bit slower toward the beginning (compared to the other two books), but it picked up nicely as time went on. Hines puts his characters through wonderful trials and tribulations, often taking things a step or two further than I’d expect from most authors. I particularly like watching Jig and Genevieve interacting; it’s an improvement over the adventurers from the first novel (it started out a little awkward and the adventurers were a little flat). Jig has to get really clever if he wants to keep both Billa and Genevieve’s father and other brother from squishing the goblins between them. Because no matter which side wins, the goblins are the foot soldiers who’ll get killed in the first few rounds of battle.
I’ve really enjoyed Jig’s trilogy. It’s fantastic watching him evolve from a scared runt of a goblin into a hero. It’s also great, however, seeing that he is still a goblin: he hasn’t become a human-like hero wrapped in a goblin’s seeming.