The Ferryman Institute is the debut novel by Colin Gigl. And a fine debut it is. Very much in the vein of Jasper Fford and Christopher Moore, containing dry wit, tongue in cheek humor, and a liberal splash of sarcasm.
Ferryman Charles Dawson is very good at his job of helping the souls of the recently departed go to what is beyond. About 250 years good at his job. He’s never lost a soul, he’s jumped into emergency intervention, and is sick of it. He’s immortal, and as such, all he can do is continue to do his job.
Until the night when he gets a sealed envelope from the president of the Institute. It’s a short directive, but one that changes the course of Charlie’s career irreparably. He is then sent to the bedroom of Alice Spiegel, who is planning on shooting herself momentarily. And at that moment Charlie knows this is the chance he’s been waiting for.
Saving Alice, on the run from the Inspector General of the Institute, and coming to terms with what he’s going to do with the rest of his “life” keeps Charlie busy. The story is filled with snappy remarks between Charlie and Alice, enough to keep them going through situations that get more and more improbable. There are some predictable plot twists, but the tone of the story makes up for it.
For fans especially of Jasper Fforde, you’ll really enjoy the book. It’s got a similar fantastic world layered on top of the world we know exists, and slipping between those worlds can bring some serious satisfaction. I highly recommend the book, and fans of snarky humor, semi-supernatural stories, medium fantasy, and both YA and adult readers will find it at home on their bookshelves.
The Ferryman Institute
Publisher: Gallery Books (September 27, 2016)