Happy Hour in Hell By Tad Williams

Aug 23, 2014 | 2014 Articles, Fantasy & Fangs, Terrance V. Mc Arthur

by Terrance Mc Arthur

Details on how to win a copy of Happy Hour in Hell at the end of this review.

Bobby Dollar is foul-mouthed, a pathological liar, violent…and an angel. Bobby has heard people tell him to go to Hell so many times he’s decided to go there.

Bobby Dollar is the street name of an angel named Doloriel. He fell in love (and had one glorious night) with Caz, a demon owned by one of the big overlords of the Underworld. He wants to stage a breakout to get her, so he has to go There to bring her Here. That’s the basics of Tad Williams’ Happy Hour in Hell.tad williams

It’s not like this angel’s life is Heavenly. He’s being targeted by a nasty killer who’s supposed to be dead…several times. He let a renegade angel get away, and lied to several levels of his superiors, and he’s under suspension. He has time on his hands, and idle hands are….Why not go to the depths of the land where Suffering is an art form? Clad in a demon body, Bobby heads Down Under (and we’re not talking about Australia), with little thought to the nasty things in store for him if he can’t get out.

Two-thirds of the book takes place in Hell, from the middle region where he enters to the Red City at its top (with a nasty side trip to lower levels where the pressure and heat are more than a disguised angel can take). Bobby encounters all sorts of hellacious misery and infernal punishment, ranging from Dante-esque torments of the damned to really bad sex. From time to time, Williams gives up on explaining things, dismissing descriptions in mid-salacious-detail with a “you don’t want to know” or an “I don’t want to tell you.” There even comes a section where Williams stops peppering Bobby’s narration of his adventures with profanity, obscenity, and potty-words; maybe he got tired of them, too.

The litany of the horrific could become stultifying, but there are touches of light in the darkness. An evangelical ogre preaches of hope, a Hell-born urchin-thief has an inner innocence, and there is mercy shown in unlikely places.

Williams questions the purpose and justice of Hell, wondering why one bad deed should be punished for eternity. He also paints an image of politics in the Realms Above that makes Watergate look like a burglary. This series started with The Dirty Streets of Heaven, and Sleeping Late on Judgement Day is due out this fall. This vision of Hell is not for the casual visitor, but the tour guide is interesting.

To enter to win a copy of Happy Hour in Hell, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Happy,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen August 30, 2014. U.S. residents only.

Check out more fantasy book reviews in our fantasy and fangs section.

Use this link to purchase the book & a portion goes to help support KRL:

Terrance V. Mc Arthur is a California-born, Valley-raised librarian/entertainer/writer. He lives in Sanger, four blocks from the library, with his wife, his daughter, and a spinster cat.

1 Comment

  1. We have a winner
    Lorie Ham, KRL Publisher


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