Short Take: “Nobody’s Fool,” Michael Todd, Michael Anderle

Pros: Very intriguing setting
Rating: 4 out of 5


Michael Todd and Michael Anderle’s Nobody‚Äôs Fool: Soldiers of Fame and Fortune, Book 1 is the first book in the series Soldiers of Fame and Fortune Full Series Omnibus: 12 Book series. It Focuses on the Zoo, a wild area populated with man-eating plants, vicious vines, and mutated animals. It’s spreading, and no one can keep it in check. However, the unique flora and fauna of the area are ripe for use by corporations. An entire industry has popped up around harvesting the life found within the area. The problem is, the place is deadly. Holly is debating taking a mission from the Firm (she’s a chemist) to spend some time in the Zoo. First she wants to make sure it’s worth going in, so she heads to the staging area and settles in to hear some stories. Bar owner J.B. is willing to share a few, and we get to hear about the adventures of Gabrielle, founder of the Death Dogs mercenary company.

I’m hoping we’ll find out more about the Zoo in later books. There’s some hint that it might be alien? I want to know more of the history of that and how it all got out of control. (And why they haven’t napalmed the whole thing if it’s that invasive–or what happened when they tried.)

Holly is potentially an interesting character, but we don’t see a whole lot of her in here. The stories, told in the framework of J.B.’s tales, are focused on Gabrielle, her lovers (of both sexes), and several particular missions she went on. There isn’t a lot of depth to the characters, but this is a comparatively brief novella; hopefully we’ll see more in later volumes of the series. There’s plenty of hair-raising action in this, some blood and guts, a bawdy sense of humor, and a few pulse-pounding moments. I look forward to seeing more of how the Zoo operates.

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