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Hanging With My Gnomies in “No Country for Old Gnomes” by Delilah S. Dawson, Kevin Hearne

By April 18, 2019January 28th, 20237 Comments

“Never trust quotes placed at the beginning of chapters as if they were diamonds of the brain. They were probably written by a halfling expressly for the purpose of deceiving you.”

Gnomer the Gnomerian, In the Fourth Gnomeric Cycle


Go big or go gnome. The New York Times bestselling authors of Kill the Farm Boy return to the world of Pell, the irreverent fantasy universe that recalls Monty Python and Terry Pratchett.

The Skyr is a rich, verdant land claimed by both halflings and gnomes. For centuries, the halflings have worked to undermine gnomish power structures and seize total control–through legal means, certainly, but more insidiously through their extensive organized crime network. Now, threatened with being pushed out entirely, the gnomes are desperate and ready to fight back. Gustave the Goat King faces his first test as a leader: Can he bring peace to a fraught region or will a civil war consume the entire kingdom?


  • 4 out of 5 Stars
  • Hardcover
  • 352 pages
  • Published April 16th 2019 by Del Rey
  • ISBN1524797774

My Thoughts

“Red sky before night, no need for a fight. Red sky at dawn, don’t yawn. Halflings probably set your barn afire, so gather your war ponies, tie back their manes, and attack–then, my good gnomes, you burn them back.”

Gnute Yakkin, in The Compendium of Gnomeric Resistance Rhymes

First, let me say that I have a deep and intense love of humor, satire, and cheekiness. I am a smart ass in the most profound and deep sense of the word. This was much to my detriment growing up. I can say without hyperbole that this is one of the funniest books I have ever read. Maybe it is my particular brand of punny and silly humor, but this story speaks to me. It is hilarious. It isn’t perfect, the story trips over itself a few times and gets lost in the humor, but generally, this book is laughing out loud funny the whole way through.

The story is the second one thus far that takes place in the land of Pell; the first is the tale Kill the Farmboy. However, if you have read the first book in the series some of the characters are revisited, but this is very easy to keep up with as a stand alone book.

“Few gnomes appreciate how stonking big the culinary accouterments must be to feed the taller folk. More than one gnome has mistaken an oven for cozy guest quarters, only to discover that it’s a box of deadly fire.”

Sonni Smnambulist, in How I survived Twenty-One Terrible Places to Sleep

Pell is a land full of creatures of myth and fantasy tropes. In this edition of the series, the brothers Offi, Onni, and their family head to a town for refuges after their home has been attacked by a halfling gang known as Rogues Under Bigly-Wicke. There is a lot of fun cheeky naming going on. With a cast of characters brought from the four corners of fantasy, a rag tag group set off to fight the halfling horde and by God RESTORE THEIR LAND.

All I am going to say is goth cardigans…

Read this if you want some light and fun humor. I wouldn’t call the story engaging in a deep plot sort of way, but more like an excellent vehicle for funny jokes which are actually quite good, so give it a try.


I received a copy of this from Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for my open and honest review.

About the Authors

Delilah S. Dawson

Delilah S. Dawson writes whimsical and dark Fantasy for adults and teens. Her Blud series for Pocket includes Wicked as They Come, Wicked After Midnight, and Wicked as She Wants, winner of the RT Book Reviews Steampunk Book of the Year and May Seal of Excellence for 2013. Her YA debut, Servants of the Storm, is a Southern Gothic Horror set in Savannah, GA, and HIT is about teen assassins in a bank-owned America. Her Geekrotica series under pseudonym Ava Lovelace includes The Lumberfox and The Superfox with The Dapperfox on the way. Look for Wake of Vultures from Orbit Books in October 2015, written as Lila Bowen.

Delilah teaches writing classes at LitReactor and wrote the Island of Mesmer world for Storium.

Delilah lives with her husband, two small children, a horse, a dog, and two cats in Atlanta. Find out more at

Kevin Hearne

Kevin is the NYT bestselling author of the Iron Druid Chronicles, as well as The Seven Kennings, an epic fantasy trilogy, and the Tales of Pell, a humorous fantasy series co-authored with Delilah S. Dawson. INK & SIGIL, a new urban fantasy series set in the Iron Druid universe, will be out in 2020.


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