The Damned Busters, by Matthew Hughes

I've said many a time before that I highly value originality. This little gem of a fantasy book really fits that bill, and I'm delighted by Hughes' unique ideas. The unlikely protagonist of this novel is Chesney, an actuary who probably suffers from Aspergur's syndrome and an incredibly overbearing, Christian mother. He accidentally summons a demon whilst building a pool table, and his refusal to sell his soul to the Devil causes the denizens of Hell to go on strike. Throw in a couple of pretty, snarky women, some old white men who want to rule the world, and a demon who talks like Al Capone, and you get a genuinely fun, interesting, unique book. The editing is a little off; I noticed several instances of misplaced or missing quotation marks. But aside from that, I really enjoyed this little-known fantasy book, and would happily read more of Hughes' work.


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