668: The Neighbor of the Beast is a Kent Montana Novel.

I discovered the wonders of Lionel Fenn via novels by Craig Shaw Gardener, who was Fenn/Grant's college roommate.

I own all of the above novels, and read most of them over ever couple of years. I've heard there's another one out there that's not on the list above, but I've yet to see it...it's probably out of print somewhere.

I always wanted to get on the newsletter offered in the rear of the one of the K.M. books, but could never afford it at the time, and don't particularly know if it still exists.

I love Fenn novels because they're all about subtle humor and puns. Real puns. Not the crap that Piers Anthony puts out, but real puns, stuff that takes you a second to catch, and then makes you extremely sorry that you did.

Fenn's novels are marked by a number of elements:

  • Fenn has a tendency to throw in side characters who are there for 3/4ths of the book for no particular reason, and then play a part in a particularly horrific pun. I always look forward to those. *grin*

  • I also love the way many of his characters communicate through looks and glances. I'll have to come back and quote a passage when I have a computer somewhere near my books...

  • Unlike many other fiction characters who suffer from New Hero's Syndrome, protagonists in Lionel Fenn's novels always know what they're about, even when they have absolutely no idea what they're doing. They're confident, even in their cowardice. And that's wonderfully reassuring.

  • Fenn's sentence structure tends to be run-on... many of his paragraphs are entire sentences:

    "Kent Montana, who's real last name was known only to his mother, his sister, and a few dozen family retainers who didn't give a damn one way or the other as long as their pensions were intact if not secure, decided after much deliberation that if he was going to abandon his acting career, and thus engage in the wanton destruction of a lifelong dream, he ought to do it in such a way that he could change his mind without too much embarassment and humiliation in case things suddenly looked up. (See? One entire sentence) - From "Kent Montana and the Really Ugly Thing From Mars", Lionel Fenn, Ace Books, 1990

  • All of the character's in Fenn's novels, except, perhaps, for the lead, tend to be over the top and melodramatic, or at least amusingly unrealistic.

  • Fenn's Kent Montanta novels tend to have a list of credits in the rear.