Category: Speculative Fiction Review

A review of Shadow Of Night By Deborah Harkness

Shadow of Night is densely packed—with characters, including some directly from history, like Sir Walter Raleigh, Christopher Marlowe, and Queen Elizabeth I (who is as demanding, straightforward, and liberal as she is portrayed in history books), as well as an ample cast of mystical and mythical creatures, and action sequences, all of which work together to create a complicated, multi-layered plot. At times it does become difficult to keep track of the various characters, but a helpful “Dramatis Personae” in the back of the book makes it a bit easier (as long as you don’t mind flipping back and forth).

A review of A Miracle of Rare Design: A Tragedy of Transcendence by Mike Resnick

Despite the above quibbles, I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending A Miracle of Rare Design because it really is an imaginative adventure that demonstrates beautifully how gods are made. It’s a story that highlights all that it means to be human. It’s a story of hunger, and need and hope—and it’s a story of one man’s obsessive quest to have it all.

A review of Cog by K Ceres Wright

We are all simply cogs in a global machine, and nowhere is this more apparent than in Cog. At first glimpse it is a somewhat ordinary story of revenge, greed and power set against a futuristic backdrop. And yes, at its core, Cog is a classic story of family dysfunction with some James Bond-esque thrills and rather groovy technology thrown in.

A review of Demon Inhibitions by Gary Starta

Underlying the whole tale is a question about the rights of individuals and the prejudice people may have about certain groups. It also shows how prejudice is often a result of our preconceived ideas about how people within a certain group behave without really going out and finding out the truth.

A review of Emergence by Gary Fry

When a retired teacher looks after his young grandson, he discovers more than mysterious cones on the beach. The two of them find their deficiencies counterbalance each other making their loving relationship able to combat menacing phenomenon.

A review of ARIA: Left Luggage by Geoff Nelder

The balance between character development and plot progression is managed smoothly, along with the thematics, which take the reader through a series of all-too-believable scenarios, chillingly showing how easy it would be for an advanced group of aliens to undermine the human race and have us destroy one another, without the need for any additional weapons or warfare.

A review of Blue Friday by Mike French

Mike French’s Blue Friday is a science fiction that draws on George Orwell’s 1984 to show a society gone mad. Though written in a light-hearted farcical way, the novel takes a hard look at state sanctioned control and the way in which it perverts even the most humanistic of subjects (such as work-life balance and “family values”).