A grandmotherly necromancer seeking resolution for her past with the help of her loyal entourage: an undead cat and a spectral knight.
A girl on the run from the Eternal Empire for the mysterious power she possesses.
When a chance encounter pulls them together, Gam Gam will do what it takes to protect Mina from the rogue sergeant hounding her–including raising the dead. As long as they’re dressed for the occasion.
When I heard this book featured a grandmotherly necromancer who bakes and knits, my first impression was that it was going to be a cozy fantasy. Cozy isn’t usually my thing, but I kept seeing positive things about Gam Gam, so I decided to give it a go. And I’m glad I did.
First impressions aside, A Necromancer Called Gam Gam isn’t a cozy read. Yes, Gam Gam knits scarves and hats for her undead minions and she bakes scones for Mina, but the themes in this story are anything but fluffy. It’s a tale of coping with grief and the pain that goes along with it. And it’s a lot darker than the synopsis implies, but also heartwarming too, particularly at the end.
Mina is the main character; a twelve-year-old on the run from someone who wants to use her power for themselves. Her pursuers are ruthless and relentless—until she meets Gam Gam.
Gam Gam is the quintessential grandmother on the surface; kind, generous, and homey. But she’s a necromancer with a number of loyal minions, like the ghostly knight, Sir Gibblet and her skeletal cat, Nugget. (The cat was a fun addition to Gam Gam’s crew, and was the stereotypical cat, even in death.) Gam Gam won’t stand for someone harming a child, and becomes Mina’s unexpected protector.
As I mentioned earlier, this is ultimately a story about coping with grief. But it’s also a story of found family and unexpected friendships, and turned out to be a really wonderful read.