So I picked up this book Free Agent by J.C. Nelson because it said it was book 1 of the Grimm Agency series. I thought that the idea of a Grimm (as in the brothers) Agency sounded interesting. And it was an interesting read.
We get introduced to Marissa Locks (as in Goldi) who is an agent for fairy godfather Grimm (no first name). She’s chasing down someone who has stolen a pair of glass slippers. Apparently if a godfather or godmother grants you a magical item, such as glass slippers, the magic will work perfectly for you until midnight (natch). But if you steal said item, it will turn you into a slavering monster at midnight (…natch).
Marissa’s job is to retrieve objects like this, to set up princesses with princes and pretty much do anything else Grimm asks of her since her parents sold her to him for a miracle cure for their youngest (and only biological) daughter. The interesting thing about this world is that there is a Kingdom (where all the high society lives) and it is sort of an overlay (or maybe underlay) to the mortal world. I don’t recall them naming the city it overlays, but I’m assuming its New York because it’s always New York. So there are actual princes and princesses in this place not just princely people.
After retrieving the slippers, Marissa has to play the “wrong woman” again. This means she has to go out, find the appointed prince, break his heart and set him up to find his one, true, princessly love. I had issue with this bit because why does a princess need a prince? Or vice versa.
But people pay good Glitter (the currency of the Kingdom) to get their happily ever after so Marissa makes that happen. Unfortunately for her, this time she screws up though we find out in time that it isn’t really her fault. A fairy godmother is trying to move in on Grimm’s territory, which is usually a no-no. And since fairy magic cancels each other out, neither fairy can go up against each other directly. Meaning its Marissa to the rescue.
I found a few of the things in this book just “ugh, why?”, mainly the whole setting up princesses for marriage thing. Now, I am happily married but I also believe that a woman doesn’t need to be married to have a fulfilling life. Or a man for that matter. But since we’re dealing with fairy tales here, obviously happily ever afters involve marriage or one true loves so I guess I’ll give it a pass.
I like the concept of Glitter being currency and the idea that fairy tale creatures are among us, if only just slightly off, like you need to turn sideways to see them. Its interesting and I’m tempted to get the follow up book but I’m afraid that Marissa is going to go damsel in distress as so many women do in fairy tale based stories. Nothing bugs me more than a strong woman suddenly needing a man to do everything for her when a romantic interest comes into her life.
All in all, it was an entertaining read. Rating: B+.