At Midwest FurFest we met Stacy Bender. She’s a science fiction and fantasy author based in Cincinnati, Ohio. As you can see from her Amazon page, many of her works have a degree of anthropomorphism to them… But what she’s especially known for is the Poached Parody series of furry noir novels (written under the name P.C. Hatter), featuring hard-boiled detectives Lucius Anoraq (wolf), Kaiser Wrench (tiger), and Lizard Fifth (guess!). Most of her works are available in paperback, kindle, and even audio book form, from Byrnas Books.
The style is heavily influenced by noir detective stories, with a dash of science-fiction. Set in a dystopian Vancouver, British Columbia, all the characters are anthropomorphic mammals. You play as Howard Lotor, a raccoon private investigator, trying to find evidence of an affair. To say things do not go as planned would be a vast understatement.
The game is surprisingly short, you can finish it in around four to five hours. After playing it, it felt like it had so much potential, but didn't deliver as much as it could have.
Backbone is a Kickstarter for an anthropomorphic computer adventure game featuring a raccoon detective, using pixel art and set in a dystopian retro-futuristic/Blade Runner-esque Vancouver. It's the first game by EggNut, a Canadian studio.
Crowdfunding started in April, aiming for $63,000 CAD (~ $50,000 USD) with a deadline of May 27th, 2018. As of May 4, with 23 days to go, they're at 46% of that goal.
A demo is planned for Summer 2018, and they hope to have the game released by mid-2019. It should be available for PC, Mac and Linux, with possible additional platforms depending on stretch goals.
Along with detective work, there will also be stealth sequences that use smell-based mechanics, for when you're trying to hide from (or follow) a suspect. Combat will be another game element, with "The Artifact", which looks like a giant metal claw. A dark jazz soundtrack will provide additional atmosphere.
I have been occasionally checking to see whether any more of the German murder mysteries featuring animal private detectives have been translated into English. Sadly, all we’ve gotten is three of Akif Pirinçci’s eight hard-boiled cat murder mysteries (Felidae and two of its sequels featuring Francis – you’ve probably seen the German “Felidae” animated feature), and the first of Leonie Swann’s Agatha Christie-like sheep murder mysteries (“Three Bags Full” featuring Miss Maple, the cleverest sheep in Glenkill, maybe in all Ireland, maybe in the world). There have not been any translations of the murder mysteries investigated by dog detectives, pig detectives, goose detectives, parrot detectives, and more. Now it looks like the series by Moritz Matthies starring Ray and Rufus, the meerkat detectives from the Berlin Zoo, has reached its final volume with “Letzte Runde” (“Last Round”) from Fischer Verlag (March 2017, 304 pages).
What if Sherlock Holmes was reincarnated as a dog? Well, it’s an idea, anyway. Sherlock Bones is a new black & white manga series created by Yuma Ando and illustrated by Yuki Sato. The digest-sized trade paperback is available at Barnes & Noble. This is from the publisher, Kodansha International: “When Takeru adopts his new pet, he’s in for a surprise—the dog is none other than the reincarnation of Sherlock Holmes, the famous detective. What’s more, this “Sherdog” has decided that Takeru is the reincarnation of his long-time assistant, Dr. Watson. Takeru may think Sherdog (or he himself) is crazy, but with no one else able to communicate with Holmes, he’s roped into becoming the canine’s assistant all the same. Using his exceptional sleuthing skills, Holmes uncovers clues to solve the trickiest crimes.”
Following the trail of several corpses seemingly killed by wild animals, Holmes and Watson stumble upon the experiments of Doctor Moreau.
Moreau, through vivisection and crude genetic engineering is creating animal hybrids, determined to prove the evolutionary theories of Charles Darwin. In his laboratory, hidden among the opium dens of Rotherhithe, Moreau is building an army of 'beast men'. Tired of having his work ignored -- or reviled -- by the British scientific community, Moreau is willing to make the world pay attention using his creatures as a force to gain control of the government.
A brand-new adventure for Conan Doyle's intrepid sleuth! (blurb)
Is Planet Chanbeena in Galaxy #28 a planet of Christian anthro cats? Check out 0:58 to 1:31 minutes of this first episode of Tokusou Sentai DekaRanger. Watch further into it to see Doggy Krugger, the DekaRangers’ bright blue anthro wolf commander.
Look, we know that we very recently did a report on Chew: Secret Agent Poyo from Image Comics. Well even more recently they lobbed a curve-ball right at us, and we thought we’d better respond. So first off, what is Chew? Here’s the description from Wikipedia: “Chew is an Eisner Award-winning American comic book series written by John Layman with art by Rob Guillory and published by Image Comics. It is a story about an FDA Agent who solves crimes by getting psychic impressions by eating things, including people.” Got that? Okay. Well now comes the announcement for issue #28 of the regular Chew series. Check out the cover below, and check out this description from Image: “‘Space Cakes’, Part Three. Remember last story arc when Tony Chu got kidnapped? This issue he gets kidnapped again! How lame is that? Meanwhile, we shamelessly pander to comics’ coveted ‘furry’ demographic.” Got that? Okay. We don’t know anything more about it, but we figure if they’re going to pander to us, we’ll pander right back at them. So there!
Werewolf fiction is borderline-anthropomorphic, and Corpus Lupus is especially so. At least these werewolves are sentient, not feral dumb beasts. But the narrator, homicide detective Lieut. Larry Highridge, and his Pack spend most of their time in this novel in human form. It is a good murder mystery/horror novel, if a rather repulsive one; just not a very anthropomorphic one.
Corpus Lupus, first written between 1998 and 2000, has the reputation of being Phil Geusz’s “darkest and most disturbing work” (WikiFur), and it is easy to see why. The setting is a world where magic is real, but necromantic magic – involving death – is the only controllable kind.
Highridge is a narcotics detective who was bitten by a werewolf, becoming one himself. He refuses to let his condition affect him any more than possible, and is transferred to the homicide department as a specialist in investigating murders committed for necromantic purposes, to give the killer magical powers. Since the most powerful killings involve the torture and mutilation of victims, he becomes hardened to being given the police’s “sloppiest” murders, often those of young children.
Ridgecrest, CA, The Raccoon’s Bookshelf, March 2006, trade paperback * (i + 236 pages).
Birmingham, AL, Legion Printing, October 2010, hardcover $18.99, trade paperback $9.99 * (both i + 236 pages), Kindle $8.99.