Seeking to protect the world from the Fae, Scottish sigil agent Aloysius MacBharrais is eccentric, and as a sexagenarian he is a welcome change from the tormented teenage protagonists that dominate fantasy genres.
However, Hearne admits in the author’s note that he struggled with Glaswegians’ accent in real life.
The characters’ Scottish accents feel laboured and overdone, and Americanised spellings in the narrative weaken its authenticity.
That said, the plot – where Al plays detective after his seventh apprentice in a row dies – was intriguing.
Ink & Sigil, by Kevin Hearne, published by Orbit, £8.99.