Book Review: Clovenhoof by Heide Goody and Iain Grant

Posted September 1, 2021 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Book Review: Clovenhoof by Heide Goody and Iain Grant

I received this book for free from my own shelves in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Clovenhoof by Heide Goody, Iain Grant
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Pigeon Park Press on July 28, 2012
Pages: 374
Format: eBook
Source: my own shelves

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First in the Clovenhoof humorous urban fantasy series and revolving around a deposed Lucifer exiled to earth.

My Take

This is way too funny and takes the mickey out of Satan, several archangels, Saints Peter and Francis, and more. It seems no one is truly good . . .

There is definitely a weird relationship between Heaven and Hell . . . and you’ll find out later why it’s evolved into this, lol. The problem is the inefficient processing of the increasing numbers of incoming to Hell. Well, Heaven is having its overcrowding issues too.

Mulciber is complaining that “it seems more acceptable than ever now to be religious and to treat people badly. You have crazy fundamentalists in every religion. They hate gays, foreigners, women. You name it, they’ll find you a reason in the bible or whatever to hate it”.

Michael gets accused of bigotry *grin*, which is not very Christian. LOLOL, one entrant waiting to get into Hell complains about the queues.

The three primary characters have a range of soulsearching to do. My two favorites have to be Clovenhoof trying to assimilate, hmmm, and . . . yet not, and Nerys with her quest to hook the perfect boyfriend. Who will, of course, turn into the perfect husband. Ben finally finds himself in prison, popular for his interests.

The authors use a third person global subjective point-of-view, primarily from the perspectives of Clovenhoof, Ben, and Nerys and also encompasses a number of other characters, allowing us to get into anyone’s minds.

This guy, Clovenhoof, is so true to life, well, okay, what we think of how he would act and the authors do a great job of twisting hellish expectations to be disgusting in normal human life. When Michael suggests a number of ways in which Satan can fit in with the humans, and Goody/Grant make some “intriguing” interpretations of this advice, lol. One of my favs is that poor dishwasher.

I do wish that Goody/Grant would have worked the primary conflict more. Yes, there’s more involved than Clovenhoof’s issues on earth, as fun as they are. Part of the scenario for each “adventure” Clovenhoof has explores the difference between the devil and normal human life with rockbands — those song titles! — to credit cards, bank robbery to fraud, and how one treats one’s friends.

Some of Clovenhoof’s insights into the world are scary and too, too accurate. Then of course, there’s finance. Did you know that you can borrow all sorts of money, but then they expect you to pay it back. Imagine?!! Plus they want extra money from you. They call it interest??!

Tina is competition for Nerys. I guess Nerys is hoping those sequined knickers will give her a leg up.

That meal Clovenhoof cooks up!??? It is a fun example of how Goody/Grant share the adventures with Satan’s neighbors. Such as Nery’s plan to find a man through charity collection. Then there’s Ben’s, ahem, cohabitation with his new “companion”. And the trouble Clovenhoof gets into with her, roflmao.

Oh lordy, that vision statement and mission statement of the board, lolololol. Yep, sounds just like a typical business.

I do get confused when the authors have Satan touring Hell and its improvements?? I thought he was supposed to be out of Hell? Were these supposed to be flashbacks? Nor do I know who the gambling man was when Clovenhoof goes charity collecting.

That Satan, he certainly takes advantage of earth. He is himself to the ult, honest to everyone about who he is, and no one takes him seriously.

Alcohol’s not a place . . . but a destination.

The Story

A roll of thunder results in a naked man outside Books ‘n’ Bobs. At least he leaves, allowing Ben to go back to his musing.

Until the naked man shows up in the apartment across from Ben and forces him to step out of his cave.

The Characters

On Earth in Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham, England
The selfish and self-absorbed Jeremy Clovenhoof, a.k.a. Satan, Lucifer, is retired with a modest pension. It’s an idea Satan simply doesn’t grasp, lol. Devil Preacher is the name of his rock band. Mark and Graham, two dwarfs, are a temporary entourage.

Clovenhoof’s neighbors
The shy Ben Kitchen owns a secondhand bookshop, Books ‘n’ Bobs, and prefers his military miniatures to people. Darren Pottersmore, a.k.a. Pitspawn, is a gaming friend of Ben’s with an interest in the occult. Phyllis is Darren’s mother.

The selfish, man-hunting Nerys Thomas lives with her elderly aunt Molly and her Yorkshire terrier, Twinkle. She works at the Helping Hand Job Agency. Dave and Tina are colleagues. Catherine is Nerys’ sister.

Herbert Dewsbury was a previous tenant. Mrs Astrakhan lives in 1a.

The Boldmere Oak is a favorite tavern for Clovenhook, Nerys, and Ben. Lennox is the knowledgeable barman.

PC Pearson keeps arresting Clovenhoof. Jason, a remand prisoner; Nero; and, Winston, a lifer from Nuneaton, are prisoners at Winson Green Prison. Mr Deveraux is Ben’s barrister. Judge Arbuthnot presides over the preliminary hearing.

The Reverend Evelyn Steed is the rector at St Michael’s. Doris and Betty are a couple of old biddies who live together and are always showing up. Dan and Quentin are a couple of helpful homeless guys. Daniel O’Donnell. The Bull Ring is a shopping mall. Ryan works at the Genius bar. Dr Singh is stuck dealing with Clovenhoof having a cold. Doug is a security guard at the grocery store. Roger is someone’s “brother”. Trey Daniels and Roger Cotton are renowned bank robbers. The Brothers Coddington are bailiffs. Sophie is virgin-hunting. Blenda is a beauty therapist who knows Gordon Buford. Manpreet works with Buford at the funeral home. Mr Dienermann contributed to dinner. Barbara is a grocery clerk. Shelly Greenaway, a.k.a. Mistress Verthandi, reads tarot. Denise is a person-centred therapist. Claire and Catherine had been friends in Nerys’ teens. Oopsie.

St Michael’s Church of England Primary School is where Clovenhoof found Mrs Carol Well-Dunn, a teacher of year twos. She desperately needs help with Spartacus Wilson. I do want to remember some of Sparatcus’ insults, lol. Other classmates include Pixie Kaur, Mercedes Jones, Kenzie Kelly, Herbie Gates, Araminta Dowling, Thor Lexworth-Hall, Peroni Picken, and Melanonychia Brown. Mrs Sokolowski, the year three teacher, used to be a Russian spy.

Mrs Hughes had been Nerys’ tutor at Greenhill secondary school. Owen Sellers had been with her in the art cupboard; then there was Adam Davies who failed his driving rest; Damon, Andrian, and Harjeet were part of university; and, Trevor and Stephen were more recent . . . after Mark and Graham.

In Heaven
Saint Peter, a.k.a. the Rock, is on the board of Heaven with all of his anti-woman comments. Herbert is his obsequious and oily assistant. Michael is an archangel who keeps checking in on Clovenhoof; he’s the chairman of the board. Also on the board are Gabriel, another archangel; Pope Pius XII, a.k.a. Eugene; Saint Francis of Assisi with his speech impediment carrying the Wolf of Gubbio‘s leash; the Blessed Mother Teresa; and, Joan of Arc, who is a bit of a rebel. Parvuil and Vretil are Recording Angels. Max Planck is the only scientist in Heaven. The KHH are the Keep Heaven Holy squads and includes Bekele, Ernest, Feruzial, Jian, Paulo, and Belaphron. Who’ve been naughty boys, then? The Empyrium is the seat of the Holy Throne where God lives. Roberta is a wabb-, I mean, rabbit.

In Hell
Mulciber is Satan’s chief architect. Petuniel. Azazel is the most level-headed of the chief demons; Raum is a cat demon; Baal is a bird demon; Leviathan is over 300 miles long; Ceto has too many children; Berith; Belphegor is the head of research and development; and, his dog, Bargest, is the Hound of Resurrection. Toadpipe is interviewing Gutterscum. Poor guy . . .

The Cover and Title

The cover is black in its background with a red glowing outline of a silhouette of the Devil in profile, sitting on a white stool at a white bar and holding a white-outlined wine glass. All the text is white from the title at the very top to the authors’ names to the right of Satan’s head..

The title is all about Satan, a.k.a. Clovenhoof.

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