Dance of the Goblins by Jaq D. Hawkins
May I have the pleasure of this goblin dance with you?
A chance encounter between humans searching for a missing man, and the goblins who dwell in the abandoned tunnels near the surface, stir long-seated distrust between the two races and threatens war. During the fracas, the humans unwittingly capture Talla, a glamour-ridden female goblin, mistaking her for a human damsel in distress. It is also the story of the long-time friendship between the elder goblin Haghuf and the human Count Anton, who cemented their long-time friendship with The Dance, which is the deep earth-magic binding these races.
This story examines the consequences of the human tendency to pollute their world, and the Earth’s periodic cleansing that drives humans into the deepest caves to escape the cataclysmic changes at the surface. The cave-dweller humans have become goblins, and the few surviving humans at the surface recover and repopulate. The story also has much to say of the consequences caused by closed-minded fanaticism.
But most importantly, I could not put the story down until I learned if the succubus Talla wooed and won the charming werewolf Anton.
Dance of the Goblins embodied all the delightful elements I adore in stories written by indie authors. It had a fresh magical world, it scolds us about the negative aspects of the human condition but doesn’t preach, and the characters piqué my curiosity. The clever story entwines goblin mythology with the events befalling Haghuf, Anton, and Talla. As I read it, my feet tapped to the unheard, but still felt, heartbeat of The Dance.