by Smash Capps
Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.
Lifeless, by Graveyard Greg.
Dallas, TX, FurPlanet Productions, January 2014, trade paperback $9.95 (105 pages).
In the 2010 Deathless and this sequel novella Lifeless, the characters are all anthropomorphic animals, and species doesn’t matter. Ivan the Russian snow leopard (“‘You’re seven feet tall, weigh over three hundred pounds, and have a long, fluffy tail that I trip over too many times,’” complains his friend Tank the rabbit in a freezing Reno, Nevada winter) is an exchange student, living in a college apartment. He has a gay boyfriend, Tank the rabbit, who is a frequent visitor of his cousin Hopper and his roommate Darryl, a hyena. Tank lives with his nearby parents Nikki the rabbit, a martial-arts expert, and his father, a huge Greek bull of supernatural origins. Other friends are Scowl the cougar martial-arts trainer, Jolly the giant panda, and Brent and Brooks, the twin stallions. Everyone is easy with Ivan’s and Tank’s homosexual lifestyle.
Ivan has his own relationship with Russia’s mythology, and Deathless was about his pursuit to America by the Russian folkloric Koschei the Deathless with his undead monsters. All of Ivan’s new American friends rallied to save him. Now six months later in Lifeless, Ivan is again in supernatural danger after Tank and his parents have departed on an extended family vacation, and with the kidnapping of Brooks. Ivan is left to fight with the aid of Scowl, Brent, and new ‘morphs. New characters include … well, yarst! I can’t say much about Lifeless at all without giving away spoilers.
Let’s just say that Ivan and his friends now have a quest rather than a fight for their lives. New characters, good, neutral, and evil include anthro red foxes, a lion, and a monitor lizard. The hunt for an ancient mystic object leads them through Reno, Nevada’s glittery casinos. And what Ivan is holding on Donryu’s cover is not a cup of cappuccino.
Lifeless is complete in itself, but the booklet ends with a note that Ivan’s adventures will continue in Faithless, not yet published. Scowl, Tank, and the others will also have more adventures of their own in Graveyard Greg’s forthcoming Changes and Relationships.