“Well look at us. The necromancer and the vampire against the forces of elemental evil. The Brothers Cabal ride again!”
“Yeehaw,” said Cabal evenly.
It is no surprise to anyone that I love the Johannes Cabal series. Johannes Cabal: The Detective is one of my favourite books of all time, so when Howard announced the fourth book would be coming out at the end of September I was excited. I couldn’t wait to read about Johannes Cabal, my favourite necromancer of little infamy.
But to my shock, our dear Johannes was not the focus of this novel. Instead for the first time ever, we were getting someone else’s perspective and it was his vampiric older brother Horst.
Where Johannes is all storm clouds and brooding, Horst is rainbows and sunshine. He’s the charismatic of the two, he’s a womanizer, but generally loves everyone and sees the good in people. You would think that the differences between the two brothers would make them despise each other but that is not the case. They love one another and from a narrative standpoint work well togethers as foils.
Brothers Cabal follows Horst from the moment of his resurrection to being reunited with his brother, to the two of them taking on a secret society that wishes to destroy them. The majority of the novel is Horst explaining everything to Johannes, broken up by the necromancer’s interjections.
The book takes you on a wild ride filled with secret societies secretly working against one another, zombies, shape changers, unspeakably horrible creates from other dimensions, werewolves, lady necromancers and carnivals. Howard draws on Lovecraft, and classic horror novels to expand on his world.
What I loved the most about the book was how it managed to tie every other book and short story in this series together showing that they all have quietly been leading up to something. During my first read through of the novel I began picking up on a lot of the hints that Howard was dropping, I blame this on the ungodly amount of re-reads that I’ve done of Detective. All that being said this book set the stage for one of my worst fears: the end of the Cabal series. With the way this book ends…. I’m a little worried for my favourite necromancer and his brother.
If you’ve enjoyed the Johannes Cabal books so far, then this book will give you everything you could want. The witty dialogue, tongue in cheek humour and great characters shine as usual. So if you haven’t read The Brothers Cabal or any of the Johannes Cabal books, seriously. Go pick them up. They’re amazing.
Brothers left me with two questions:
1. When are we getting the next book
2. What has Leonie Barrow been up too? I miss her.
“Apparently the Ministerium Tenebrae had decided to conquer the region using the unusual twin-pronged attack of zombies and avant-garde artwork.”
“Inside the mansion of his mind, he was putting snakes back into boxes.”
“Horst…’ He lowered his voice, ashamed. ‘I’ve done things since then. Things you don’t know about.’ The confession almost choked him, but somehow he forced the words out. ‘I’ve done good things.”