It seems like it has been forever since I read the first book in Mark Cain’s Circles in Hell series, Hell’s Super. (January 2014, so…yes, it’s been a while). And although part two of this series which follows Hell’s handyman, A Cold Day in Hell, has been out since July 2015 and I’ve had it on my Kindle since December of the same year, it somehow took me until now to actually get it to the top of my reading pile.
I guess that just goes to show A. How slow of a reader I am and B. How big my reading pile must actually be…(There’s also a C. which includes constant rearranging of my pile due to folks asking me to read their books, which causes me to not get to read the books I want to read quite as quickly).
Anyways, that was more than enough introduction to say that “Hey, if you remember this concept from the blog, that’s because I talked about the first book in this series ages ago.” Now let’s get to the review.
A Cold Day in Hell takes of from where Hell’s Super pretty well. Things seem to have calmed down a bit from the uproar that occurred in the pages of the first book and Steve has gotten back to his regular own personalized hell of being the handyman for Hell itself.
Until, of course, the HVAC starts having trouble and Hell itself is facing a dire issue: What happens if Hell actually does freeze over?
I loved Hell’s Super, it was a fun idea which I believe was implemented almost perfectly. A Cold Day in Hell takes that book and kicks its butt. This is a far superior novel to the first part in the series, both from maturity of writing, but also from the comedic perspective (at least in my view). And most importantly, we see Cain bring a lot of depth to Hell and Steve and all the minions of Hell themselves through the usage of folklore, mythology, and Christianity itself. He delves deeper into how this is actually Hell instead of some warm place where you have to work crappy jobs all the time…you know…Florida.
And there seems to be a whole lot more on the line than the original had. The entire fabric of reality hangs in the balance as we wait to see if Steve can actually manage to fix Hell’s HVAC and restore heat to Hell.
I loved this book. Even if you haven’t read the first one, you should read this one. Although, you might want to read the first one first. Not that you would be too lost if you started with this one, but, you know, because it’s good as well.