The Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge eARC is available now at Baen.com

The Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge eARC is available now at Baen.com
http://www.baen.com/monster-hunter-memoirs-grunge-earc.html
For those of you unfamiliar with Baen’s Electronic Advanced Reader Copies, basically this is the early version that would normally be sent out to reviewers. So you can get the book several months early, but because it is an early version not all of the editing is finished. In this case, I believe the only things that will be changing to the final version is the line copy edits for typos and such. eARCs cost more than the regular eBook, but you are basically paying to get it several months early for the readers who don’t want to wait.
Now, if you’re not familiar with these Monster Hunter books, the short version is this is a prequel to my regular MHI series set in the 1980s. John Ringo wrote these set in my MH universe, and then I edited them for continuity and such.
The longer version is that Ringo read the MHI series, was inspired, got on a feverish writing kick as he is known to do, and cranked out these stories. I didn’t know about these until the first two were done. But when one of the most successful sci-fi authors alive wants to play in your universe, you say yes. I went through the first one, enjoyed it, but sent it back with a couple hundred comments, mostly related to the world building, the history, and stuff that I had planned (none of which Ringo could have known about). So at that point they turned into a collaboration. 🙂
I know there has been some concern, and I keep getting worried blog and FB comments, thinking that the regular MH series is over for some reason. No. Not at all. There are several more solo novels planned. Yes, I am still writing the regular Monster Hunter series. Book six of the regular series should be out next year, and is back to Owen’s perspective, written by me. The Ringo novels are a spin off series that take place years before the main timeline. Yes, there are other collaborations in the works, notably with Sarah Hoyt doing a Julie book, and the anthology with twenty different authors in it. No, these are not replacing the regular series, which I will continue to write until it is finished. And that finish is still several books away.

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94 thoughts on “The Monster Hunter Memoirs: Grunge eARC is available now at Baen.com”

  1. Take my MONEY!
    I have to ask, could John Ringo be a Cog? Suddenly inspired, fevered work of mastery, project peters out as the Power gets burned thru? The parallels are there I think.

          1. I don’t know about that: if he can write something in one of your universes, maybe you could write something in one of his?

          2. Cog magic is all your’s Larry. I just pointed out how Ringo seems to be the personification of life imitating (your) art. In the forward, Ringo said he wrote TWO books in a month! Where / When is #2? Although I just increased the size of your money nest, I’m sure you have even more room in your mountain fortress for it to grow even larger (**insert maniacal laugh here**)!

          3. Hey, if David Weber could get Hell Froze Over out at long last, anything is possible. *G*

        1. About a year ago my sons and I listened to Live Free or Die on audio book while we were driving cross country. Ever since then they’ve been asking for dragon tears on their waffles and pancakes.

    1. If the eARC had come out at the beginning of this month I would have bought it. But coming out within a day of when the 1st half is available with the Monthly Webscription?

      No.

      I’m paying $15 for time. That’s just not enough time to be worth the $$$.
      Sigh

  2. Quoting Lord John Whorfin: Damn you Buckaroo Banzai, Damn you to Hell. Now I have to buy this thing.

  3. Hmmm… That decision cycle took all of about half a second.

    Shut up and take my money!

  4. Purchased. Worth every penny.

    If you are looking for literature with a message, this ain’t it.

    If you want to turn your brain off and enjoy a good story, this ones for you.

  5. Money well spent. Ahhhhh… I had been going through a Correia withdrawal, and a Ringo withdrawal. That hit the spot. A few cigars, a Fuller AK by my side, and a Zombie Tools machete handy just in case. The ILoH should look into The Big Bad Wolf – it might be a large enough edged weapon even for him.

    1. Luckily OFF! has a wikipedia article that can answer that question. OFF! was the first aerosol bug repellent and was introduced in 1957 by the Johnson Wax Company.

      1. Okay, cool. I was a short youngster back then, so I didn’t know better. The SO confirmed it, too. (Does it not work good now?)

        1. Like many other promising and useful chemicals, bug repellents have been regulated practically into uselessness. While I don’t believe DEET products are specifically regulated in the US, it has been much more difficult to find repellents with high concentrations of DEET in this country over-the-counter since Canada freaked out in 2002 and outlawed anything higher than 30%. You should still be able to get 95%+ DEET repellents at specialty camping/outdoors stores or online. Of course, DDT was way better, but we all know how that business turned out. Millions of malaria victims and their families in the tropics can thank insane politics at the EPA for their early deaths.

          I work in East Coast public schools, and they won’t let us spray anything even a little bit effective at controlling pests for going on 10 or 12 years now, for fear some precious snowflake might have an asthma attack or get cancer 50 years later. Or perhaps for fear that we might actually interfere with an important ecosystem of varmints cohabiting the schools with us. We just live with the bugs and mice as best we can, now.

  6. I stayed up ENTIRELY too late, reading it all last night. . .

    (holds out his Kindle)

    Please, can I have some more ??? (grin)

    1. Thanks for that. I’d guess the E-arc would be out late September, early October….at a guess. Saving meh pennies til then!

  7. Read the sample chapters and tried to buy it. No luck. I could of swore they took credit cards when I bought my copy of ‘Seer’ from them about three weeks ago. So, either the website is buggy, or Baen no longer takes credit cards.

    Oh well.

    1. They took my credit card well enough. Even the on the fly generated credit card number.

    2. Well, you can either tell me about your technical difficulties in my blog comments, where I have absolutely no control over the process, and nobody who does have any control is likely to see it, and I can either do nothing, or take time away from writing in order to contact the people who do have control over the process on your behalf, but I can’t give them any actual pertinent information that would fix anything anyway.

      OR

      You could contact them and tell them you are having a problem.

      So just cut out the middle man. I just write the damned things. I don’t know why the fuck your credit card doesn’t work. Sheesh.

      1. What do you mean, either/or? Why can’t I do both? I’m pretty sure I can, since I did.

        And why wouldn’t I do both?

        Might it be possible that you know something about Baen that I don’t know?

        Might someone else who reads your blog post, also tried to buy Grunge, and also noticed that buying with a credit card was not listed as an option?

        Might I possibly get a helpful response as a result of posting here, before I get a response from Baen?

        Admittedly, your reply wasn’t helpful in any way, but I am an optimist.

        1. “What do you mean, either/or? Why can’t I do both? I’m pretty sure I can, since I did.”

          Well, you sure wasted your time with one of them.

          “And why wouldn’t I do both?”

          Because the internet exists for complaining?

          “Might it be possible that you know something about Baen that I don’t know?”

          Yes. I know tons about Baen that you don’t. I’m one of their top selling authors, mostly because I spend my time writing rather than being their tech support. So you can take a wild ass guess how much of my insider knowledge relates to how their website processes credit card transactions.

          “Might someone else who reads your blog post, also tried to buy Grunge, and also noticed that buying with a credit card was not listed as an option?”

          You could post about your home remedy for herpes, and somebody else who reads this blog post might also have a home remedy for herpes, but again, I don’t really need to hear about it.

          “Might I possibly get a helpful response as a result of posting here, before I get a response from Baen?”

          Probably not. At best you will get a sarcastic response from an author who just loves when people bitch to him about things he has absolutely no control over.

          “Admittedly, your reply wasn’t helpful in any way, but I am an optimist.”

          And I am a realist. Of course my reply wasn’t helpful. That was sort of the point of I CAN’T HELP YOU WITH THAT.

          I also can’t help you about the cost of eBooks, or about how Amazon shipped a package to you but the mailman squished the box, or how the glue in your paperback got unstuck, or any of the other things people like to bitch to authors about which we have absolutely no control over. Plus, it really helps if you are passive aggressive and snide about it, like I’m the bad guy because your browser’s privacy setting is clashing some someone else’s Point of Sale system, but if I don’t somehow fix it I’m going to lose a sale and hurt your feelings forever. Well shucks. Looks like I’m stuck. So I might as well have fun with it. I’m sure you will consider this response extremely rude. Great. Put yourself in my shoes and respond to people bitching about things I have nothing to do with for eight years and I bet you’d be all sorts of helpful.

          1. In related news, I had a problem with the transmission of my Ford truck, so I went to Mike Rowe’s blog and complained about it, in the hope that someone would make it better.

            Then when I went to the movie theater to watch Captain America, they wouldn’t accept my credit card at the Cineplex in Ogden Utah, so I sent Chris Evans a message on Twitter to let him know that I wouldn’t be watching his movie. I’m sure he’ll be able to do something about it.

          2. Wow. You obviously seem to have had issues with other people about other things.

            Lets see if I can do this properly…

            “Well, you sure wasted your time with one of them.”

            I’m pretty sure you don’t mean emailing Baen was a waste, and I actually got some helpful replies from the post here. The most helpful was were other people said they were still seeing an option for buying with a credit card since that meant Baen hadn’t gone to a ‘PayPal only’ system.

            “Because the internet exists for complaining? ”

            See above. I wasn’t complaining, I was hoping for a reply about other people’s experiences. I figured there was also a chance you might possibly of picked something up hanging around Baen people. (and, I don’t mean “You need to go in ‘Options’ and select…”)

            “ I spend my time writing rather than being their tech support”

            See above. I wasn’t asking you to be their tech support. I thought if you had heard Baen was only going going to work through Paypal going forward, your “Grunge is available for purchase!” post might be a good place for people to see that information.

            I know there are places that have done that. Fictionwise might of been one.

            “…you can take a wild ass guess how much of my insider knowledge relates to how their website processes credit card transactions”

            Based on that response, I guess you haven’t heard one way or the other, or tried to purchase a Baen ebook between the time I purchased Seer and tried to purchase Grunge. How’s that for a guess?

            “You could post about your home remedy for herpes, and somebody else who reads this blog post might also have a home remedy for herpes, but again, I don’t really need to hear about it.”

            But I didn’t. I posted a comment in a “Grunge is available for purchase!” thread, about my experience in trying to purchase Grunge.

            “Probably not. At best you will get a sarcastic response from…”

            There actually were some people tring to be helpful.

            “Of course my reply wasn’t helpful. That was sort of the point of I CAN’T HELP YOU WITH THAT. ”

            And not being omnipotent, I could only guess about your knowledge relating to the purchase of baen ebooks. One way to find out is to ask. I didn’t ask of course, I merely posted about what happened. I figured if you had any useful knowledge, you’d reply, and if you didn’t, you wouldn’t.

            “I also can’t help you about the cost of eBooks, or about how Amazon shipped a package to you but the mailman squished the box, or how the glue in your paperback got unstuck, or any of the other things people like to bitch to authors about which we have absolutely no control over.”

            I think when you read my post you were bringing some previous baggage into it. I’ve never posted about that stuff.

            “Plus, it really helps if you are passive aggressive and snide about it, like I’m the bad guy because your browser’s privacy setting is clashing some someone else’s Point of Sale system, but if I don’t somehow fix it I’m going to lose a sale and hurt your feelings forever”

            Wow. Again, I think you are obviously not responding here to anything I actually wrote. I had multiple reasons for my post, but what you wrote is way out in left field.

            “Put yourself in my shoes and respond to people bitching about things I have nothing to do with for eight years and I bet you’d be all sorts of helpful.”

            See, that’s where you went wrong. I was complaining. However, apparently after eight years of other people doing it, you, wrongly, thought I was.

          3. Like I said above, ‘I posted a comment in a “Grunge is available for purchase!” thread, about my experience in trying to purchase Grunge.’

            That seems appropriate to me. Could someone disagree? Of course.

    3. The site worked just fine for me two days ago, using the bare browser that came with the OS. My privacy-protected mozilla-flavored browser failed.

      I suggest using a different browser, without any privacy or ad-blocking add-ons. Many commercial sites require full java-script and cookie setting.

      Just be sure to exit the unsecure browser when the purchase is completed.

    4. Oh, and you need to log in first to Baen to make a purchase. The site doesn’t redirect you to the log in page when you hit the buy button.

  8. I’m rereading it, and loving it (Larry preserved John’s voice wonderfully, and John’s sense of humor shines through).

    That said: the inventor of Val Speak? Oh, John Ringo, no!

  9. Do the eARC sales count towards the first weeks sales numbers like preorders do or or do they go down some black hole somewhere?

  10. You know, you could guarantee yourself literary acceptance and approval if you collaborated with Rachel Swirsky…

    1. You know, it says something that as widely read and mocked as “If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love” was, I don’t think I’d ever heard the name of the author until I read your post, said, “Who?” and went off Googling. I’m not sure exactly what it says, but it definitely says something.

      As to the proposed collaboration, I think we’d get much the same effect and have more fun if we used Dr. Seuss:

      Would you like zombies and ham?
      Would you like them in Mexico?
      Would you like them if your chopper wouldn’t go?

      I would not like them in Mexico
      I would not like them if my chopper wouldn’t go
      I do not like zombies and ham
      I do not like them, Owen-I-am.

      1. “I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees.”

        “Julie, what’s the PUFF on a Lorax these days?”

      2. I’ve mentioned Swirsky several times when reiterating my literary theory that ‘Dinosaur’ is both science fiction and an endorsement of racism as a positive force in society.

  11. I will – with difficulty – exercise self-control and wait for the finished product.

    Maybe.

    Still thinking about it, actually.

    [Ponders wallet, which has somehow made its way from back pocket to desk.]

  12. John Ringo’s stink is all over the first few pages of this. I mean don’t get me wrong, Larry. You and I agree on almost everything but the absolute cheesy delivery of the main character’s “backstory” is so poorly executed and hokey. At least Larry can attack a position with some nuance. This is just pathetic. And the main character who is just the best thing that ever graced the Marine corps, or a high school soccer team, but is humble enough to maintain his straight C’s. This doesnt read like a Monster Hunter Novel. It is a cheesified masturbatory fantasy. I read Under a Graveyard Sky and I called it “cringe fiction” this is almost as bad.

    1. No, I’m with him on this. I love the MHI series, and I’ve read and enjoyed a lot of Ringo’s other work, but the levels of Mary Sue-dom evinced in Chad are off the charts.

      He’s perfect at everything he does. He’s the Perfect Marine, He’s a genius, He’s a virtuoso, AND a polyglot. Oh, and he does more monster field research than apparently anyone in the last 50 years. His only flaw (dude’s a man-slut) is played for laughs and really more “Cursed with Awesome.”

      The action’s good, the story’s entertaining and after that first chapter you can skim past a lot of the “I’m so perfect” bits with Chad. But seriously, by the end of the book every time the main character started talking about how perfect he was all I wanted to do was to smash in his perfect teeth.

      1. He is not perfect. In fact he is evil. He unleashed the horro of Valley-girl speak upon Seattle. Now I understand why I felt I had to leave the PNW for Cheyenne in Wyberia.

      2. Do you complain that Caesar is a Marius Suius Superbus in his hagiographic ‘biography’? Chad’s got to die at some point, it is probably going to be an extension of his current decision making process, and some of the foreshadowing for that may get past his self promoting ad copy in the later books.

        1. This is about the only decent argument in defense of his Mary-suedom. In a personal diary, someone can be as unreliable a narrator as they want.

          The problem is that at least for me, it doesn’t read that way. It doesn’t read like the grandiously inflated diary of a narcissistic egomaniac, it reads like a first person perspective novel where the protagonist’s greatness is objectively confirmed by all the other actors in the story (which is what Grunge is.)

          So we have a pretty good action fantasy novel hobbled by the teeth-gratingly annoying POV. And the thing is I seem to remember that Ringo is a better writer than this, or can be.

          1. Have only read the sample, so maybe I would find the sum total grating.

            1. First real introduction of the character calls out his early male role model for being a womanizing POS, who major skill is justifying said womanizing.
            2. We soon see that Chad is also a womanizer.
            3. First womanizing from Chad we see has him justifying his womanizing. Note that he claims it is okay if you leave the other feeling good, or something like that. Notice that he arguably does not do so.
            4. Notice that Milo feels the sexual behavior so outrageous that he has to mention it.
            5. Charm is partly skill. Chad is unnaturally good at picking up skill. Chad needs the charm to be as effective a womanizer. Charm can also be used to make male friends, and help them overlook one’s flaws.
            6. I’m not convinced that Chad isn’t turning a divine gift to wicked or evil ends.
            7. Maybe it’ll work better in the final version of the book.
            8. Maybe it’ll work better in the series.
            9. Tastes differ.
            10. Notice his claim to have beaten more Demons than /Franks/? I am skeptical that he knows what Franks is and has done.
            11. I’d buy that he thinks slightly too much of himself, slightly inflates that to pick up women, and takes risks that will sooner or later catch up with him. OOC, we know he has a maximum career of around a dozen years, maybe a lot less.
            12. I dunno.

          2. Depending on your point of view, his comments regarding womanizing can be considered unreliable narrator. He *says* that it’s because he figures he’s going to die young, and doesn’t want to leave behind a wife and kids. But at the end of the free sample, he admits that it *might* be because he’s taking after his dad in that respect.

            The bit about the wife and kids is what he tells himself to justify it. But he knows that there’s a possibility that he’s lying to himself about that.

          3. See, the problem with this being Mary Sue-dom is that according to Ringo’s biography of his mother he was probably traveling through Iran or Greece pr the Amalfi Coast and such with her back then… don’t think he regrets missing the invention of Hacky-Sack.

    2. Idjit. It was specifically stated that the maintenance of straight C’s was a difficult task undertaken to infuriate his commie mother. Nothing “humble” about it. Quite the opposite.
      I’m retired military and have seen a couple of folks just about like Chad, driven to be the perfect Soldier/Sailor/Airman/Marine. They weren’t quite as accomplished as Chad, but to me it is believable.
      Have you ever checked out Travis S. Taylor’s real life accomplishments? There are folks that who, if melded into a story, would have the “Mary Sue” crowd howling even though it’s based on a real person.
      It’s a book for entertainment.
      It’s about MONSTERS.
      Some suspension of disbelief? You can do it!

    3. He doesn’t maintain straight ‘C’s due to humility. He does it because he wants to piss off his mother. That’s pride, not humility.

      As for his amazing intellectual gifts –

      The conversation on the dock makes it pretty clear that a lot of his intellectual gifts (his ability to speak a lot of languages is explicitly stated, and it can be implied that a lot of the rest of it is as well) are his reward – paid in advance – for accepting the task that’s being offered.

      In short, the point of the conversation is essentially, “My boss has a job for you. It’s going to be painful and difficult, and if you take it, there will be times that you’ll wish you’d said no. And you were fully paid in advance.”

      1. It isn’t just the intellectual. I understood that the physical gifts also counted.

  13. OK, “Ringo Isbad” isn’t bothered by a world with zombies, werewolves and vampires, but finds the protagonist unrealistic. Got it.

    1. Oh shock and horror! #NeverTrump Moe Lane describes Darrows teen PNR(?) The Awesome as partly similar to Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter books.

      http://moelane.com/2016/05/19/book-of-the-week-the-awesome/

      How can Larry Correia hope to for his career to recover from endorsement by such a despicable denier of The Next One?

      Insert here bizarre demands that demonstrate major entitlement and great ignorance.

  14. I have a question for those who’ve read this book already. I haven’t read Ringo (tried one of his books once, couldn’t get into it, but I’ve got one or two others in my TBR pile). How is it on characterization? My favorite part of MHI is the great characters (particularly Trip, Milo, and Earl). How is this author with creating complex, likable characters?

    1. I like him fine. He does base characters on friends.

      He does a great job of making deaths hit hard, which I suppose is evidence that those characters are likeable. (It has been a while since I’ve read Ringo, other than the zombie books.)

      A lot of the people who would say that Ringo only writes simple characters would probably say the same of Correia. I couldn’t say now how complex he gets, but I’m the guy who insists that Kratman has strong literary qualities.

      1. Haha, that character death thing isn’t really a plus in my book. Maybe I’m just a total softie, but I hate when characters I like die. I don’t mind when ones I don’t care about so much die, as long as it’s not for a stupid reason, but killing characters I do like makes me seriously consider not reading any more of that series/author. Intellectually, I know it’s a mark of good writing when character deaths are used effectively (though very frequently they aren’t), but emotionally it just makes me pissed off at the author. Though I might be able to excuse it if A) it was a really great death scene, and B) there was a really good plot reason that character had to die, or even if the story had come to the point where the death was basically inevitable, like the story couldn’t possibly continue in a natural way if that character didn’t die. (You probably don’t want to hear how I reacted to the ending of Harry Potter. I’m still mad at JKR about it.)

        1. That might be a reason to stick to his Troy or Looking Glass books then. The Last Centurion*. Maybe also the Zombies**. Because it sounds like many of the others might have too high a bodycount for your taste.

          Posleen? Aliens eat a significant chunk of humanity. Know how killing Joe Buckley became a standard joke for Baen authors? Ringo did it first.

          March? Anabasis with very few of the initial cast surviving.

          Council Wars? High fatality collapse of civilization.

          Special Circumstances. Anthology of ‘kill monster before it kills again’ stories.

          Ghost? Probably isn’t the kinder gentler Ringo.

          *Military unit in the Mid East as superflu causes a civilizational decline.

          **Hard Sci Fi zombies, plague shuts things down hard, but I think it may be more psychology of survival once they get out to sea.

          1. Thanks for the rundown, Bob. The one I have is the first of the Posleen, I think, so I’ll probably try that one anyway, but it’s good to know.

    2. Eehh, not great, at least in this instance. You can see my comments above for my take on Chad the Protagonist in a nutshell, and the other characters aren’t any better.

      I’d say the Drs. Nelson get a little depth, at least in terms of fleshing out their history, ditto a couple other MHI support characters, but that’s it, and being generous at that.

      Honestly, Chad makes Captain Ace Flasheart look like a deep and nuanced study of the human condition.

      1. Hm… I see you say he’s a man-slut (or as I like to say, slut; slut is slut, regardless of gender). Which is not a quality I find likable in a character at all.

        I have the feeling I may listen to this one on audio, assuming it’s read by someone good.

        1. According to Oliver Wyman’s FB page, he’s reading MHM:Grunge, so same reader as the other MHI books. I think he does a great job with the series.

          1. I’ve been looking for that information for about a month now. Pretty much guarantees I’ll buy it. I am thinking the Grunge author made sort of a characterization of the 80s with Chad. It was a cheesey man slut decade after all.

            Any idea when the Audiobook will be released?

  15. Loving the Grunge! I know it’s EARC, but want to ensure this isn’t missed. When Chad explains logic to the dimwitted MCB agent he states at his summation “Cogito ergo sum, …”. (I think, therefore I am) Shouldn’t it be “Quod erat demonstrandum, …”? (which is what had to be proven)
    I’m not trying to pick any nits, but this just lept off the page at me. You or Ringo may have a reason that I”m unaware of. I’m sure not an unsuccessful writer who can’t even get a measly 500 folks to show for a signing!
    Love y’all’s work, the both of you. Thank you for letting John play in your sandbox. (Now, kick him in the pants to finish the Hedren War!)

    1. I haven’t read the book yet, so I don’t know the context, but is it possible the character was just being a smartass? (Always a possibility when it comes to people saying odd things in MHI.)

  16. Expect a lot of one-stars, Larry. The CHORF’s get double awards for crapping on you AND Ringo.

  17. Crap.

    Thought this was coming out next month. Would have been nicely timed to fill a hole in my reading schedule. But now I see it’s not due out until August.

    >.<

    Ah, well. Between this, the last Dead Six novel, and Sinners, I should be nicely set for August through the end of the year.

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