Book Review: Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

So finally I get around to reading the second book in this fantastic series. London copper Peter Grant is the country’s only apprentice wizard – apprenticed as he is to Inspector Nightingale and still trying to master some of the basics such as creating light without burning a hole in the table. It’s the aftermath of book 1 (Rivers of London and Lesley’s horrific injury has her confined to the house with no hope of ever seeing it corrected – not even with magic, much to Peter’s frustration. Continue reading

Book Review: Redeemer’s Oath by John Burkhart

This next indieview commission is (I think) the first fantasy I have been approached to read. Having given up on a couple before this I was really hoping to like this one. So what is the verdict? Well… Typhin is distraught. Having lost his wife to a nasty plague, it seems that his only child too is at death’s door. What is he to do? Enter a mysterious priest known as The Blessed. In his desperation, Typhin turns to The Blessed to save his daughter. All is well you might think. Unfortunately not. Continue reading

Book Review: Blind Sight (through the eyes of Leocardo Reyes) by Ermisenda Alvarez

I am proud once again to be able to promote more self-published work. This, an interesting co-written novel that tells a story from one half of two main characters. The other half is written by Eliabeth Hawthorne and you can see the girls joint blog here.

The premise features on Odette Reyes, a girl blind from birth who suddenly and inexplicably begins to draw. Not just simple drawings but as good as any skilled artist. Yet, she cannot see the images that she is creating, shocking her brother Leocardo who wants to understand how she is able to do this. The two now live on an island known for having magical properties and even the experts are at a loss to explain what is going on here. Continue reading

Book Review: Wixon’s Day by Phil Williams

So this is my second commission as a freelance book reviewer, the first being The End: Visions of Apocalypse that I reviewed for blog buddy Nila E. White. The author, Phil Williams, emailed me asking if I would be kind enough to review his book and I gladly accepted. I’m always happy to assist new writers. If you want me to review your book, contact details are on the “book review” page.

So, on with the book review. At the start of the book, you’re not quite sure whether this is science fiction or fantasy. I’m generally pretty fussy about fantasy. I much prefer urban fantasy along the lines of Rivers of London and American Gods than the more traditional fare of Lord of the Rings. There are a few exceptions. Harry Potter, for starters. The Prospero’s Children trilogy for another and K. J. Parker’s Scavenger Trilogy are all modern works that I have thoroughly enjoyed so I went into this one with an open mind. Continue reading

American Gods coming to our TV screens?

Neil Gaiman fans sit down before you start hyperventilating because it seems that a TV version is in the works for his megaselling classic American Gods. According to Starburst magazine, Gaiman started penning a script for the pilot and announced it on Twitter in November. The idea is that it will be a six season long story, perhaps taking some inspiration from the epic nature of The Walking Dead which was adapted from a series of graphic novels.
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300 words of… A New Age Exodus

This is a favourite of mine and for those of us who have a lust to see and do new things, we would feel deeply for Kirsten’s predicament. The only life she knows is the valley. She cares for her crippled father and young sister. All she wants is to get out of the valley and see the rest of the world – but the rest of the world is a parched wasteland. No matter, Kirsten wants to see it anyway. She believes that there is more beyond than destruction and she intends to find it… but what she finds horrifies her.

I’ve altered the character of Kirsten slightly. In the original version I felt she had come across as a little bit of a stroppy madam. Here, I have toned her down a bit and made her far more sympathetic.
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Why the 2012 World Fantasy awards are a triumph

So, David slew Goliath at this year’s World Fantasy awards, gushes The Guardian when the small-published, genre boundary challenging novel Osama by Lavie Tidhar went up against and defeated a whole host of big names.

Congratulations. I understand it is a well-received book that is seen as quite the work of art; not everybody’s cup of tea but a book that seems to be widely appreciated. Continue reading

Nerd overdrive – Baxter and Pratchett talk “The Long Earth”

I rarely take interest in The Guardian podcastsbut this one caught my eye. It is an interview between Stephen Baxter and Terry Pratchett on their collaboration The Long Earth

Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter talk to Alison Flood about their new collaborative science fiction work, The Long Earth. Prachett and Baxter hold court on the writing process, the nature of collaboration, the beauty of hard science-fiction literature and creating the start of a trilogy

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Book Review: On Stranger Tides by Tim Powers

This is is the more famous of Powers’ work; the only other book of his I have read to date is The Anubis Gates. It isn’t difficult to see why this book inspired the Pirates of the Caribbean films (and of course the fourth film was based directly on this book) and the long-running Monkey Island series of video games. There are elements of both franchises here. Though the main character is not Guybrush Threepwood, I feel that there are similarities between the two characters so I had a lot of fun imagining him saying “I’m Jack Shandy, mighty pirate!” Continue reading

Power to the geeks!

Hey you there, yes you. The fan boy/girl stopping by this blog. No, don’t run away, this won’t hurt I promise. I just need to tell you something.

I guess you feel a little out of place being a geek, no? Well yes, granted since David Tennant became The Doctor it has become cool to be a geek but that doesn’t mean that the stigma has completely gone away. You still have the reputation of having no social skills, somebody who could put a computer back together with your eyes closed but at the same time you apparently don’t know how to boil an egg. But I want to explain something to you: be proud of your inner fandom. I’ve never been a Trekkie though I enjoyed the recent film. You might be though and that is okay, honest, because you are special. Continue reading