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Showing posts from May, 2015

Shadow Revolution: Crown and Key # 1 by Clay & Susan Griffith

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Having read the Vampire Empire stories by Clay and Susan Griffith and immensely enjoyed them, this new series, Crown and Key was something I was eagerly waiting to get started on. Set in a steampunk-ish early Victorian London and featuring some mind-bending magic mixed with alchemy taking on fearsome monsters, the first instalment in this series kicks some serious ass and then some. The story plays out non-stop - like a full-throated nitro-fuelled jet ride straight into an action-junkie’s nightmare even as we fall in love with the new lead pair of characters the author-duo paint up effortlessly. For those pining for Adele and Gareth from their earlier books, now you got the dashing Simon and beautiful Kate to cheer for!


The realm’s last defence are an unlikely pair of magicians – a roguish womanizer who’s actually the last of the “scribes” left in England matched up against a self-possessed earnest alchemist.  Samuel Archer apprentices to the enigmatic and reluctant Nick – and is actua…

Interview with Ishbelle Bee, author of The Singular and Extraordinary tale of Mirror and Goliath

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So a few weeks back, I had decided to try my hands at reading a debut novel - from Angry Robot - The singular and extraordinary tale of Mirror and Goliath - a book that simply blew me away with its twisted dark fairy-tale cum horror story narrative set in a Victorian England and featuring some of the most enigmatic and unforgettable characters.



So the folks at Angry Robot were kind enough to connect me to Ishbelle Bee for a Q&A on her novel, her writing and lots more! Let's give a rousing welcome to Izzy!

1. First of all, for those who are not familiar with your work, tell us a bit about your new book, The Singular and Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath. HELLO SMORGASBORD FANTASIA!  Mirror & Goliath is a fairy tale set in the Victorian period.  A little girl is locked inside a grandfather clock and she is rescued by a policeman who becomes her supernatural guardian. The Lord of the Underworld orders his assassin/son Mr Loveheart to hunt her down because he wants to…

TV Trailer: Supergirl

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It's a great time to be a Superhero fan, right? After the brilliant Avengers-2: Age of Ultron and all the good stuff on TV around Arrow, Dr. Who - Now comes another super-hero franchise that introduces us to the cousin of the most famous flying hero on Earth ( albeit from Krypton!): Yup. Supergirl, cousin to Kal-El.


My opinion: The first look trailer seems a bit ....too..like they're trying too hard. And the action-sequences are...clumsy..( and am being generous here) Not sure if these guys can pull off an entire season of Kara Zor-El playing mousy assistant and then playing the gleeful girl who discovers super-powers and then squeals in delight..sigh..I hope..I really hope things will perk up a bit!


Mad Max: Fury Road - The Best Epic Action Movie of the Year.

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I watched Mad Max: Fury Road yesterday – one among the very few who ran to catch it on an early show Friday release, the coveted first day. The theatre was empty except for a few couples in corners and probably a few die-hards in the last row. With Mel Gibson’s iconic character still grinning gleefully in my head, I settled down as the lights doused and the movie started.


The Dust-bowl nightmarish version of a post-apocalyptic world with scarce resources and men turned into animals unfolded magnificently across the screen with the voice of Tom Hardy playing Max Rockatansky – savagely grabbing and biting off the head of a long-tailed two-headed lizard in the opening scene while reminiscing about the fact that he is the one who runs from both the living and the dead. It sets the tone for the rest of the movie. Weird and demented as only George Miller’s vision can be, unapologetically brutal - all brakes taken out, no punches pulled and gloriously riotous in terms of the non-stop actio…

Red Country by Joe Abercrombie

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COVER REVEAL: The Last Mortal Bond by Brian Staveley ( Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne # 3)

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Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne series is shaping up to be one of the finest works in epic fantasy - with book two ( Read my review here) having raised the expectations to beyond the Kent-kissing stars, I have seriously been smitten by Brian's writing.  Yeah. He knows how to stick a knife in your gut and then wrench it hard - imagine that pain. The wait for the third book is perhaps akin to that. Only a thousand times worse. But hey good news!!

Tor revealed the fantastic cover for the third book, called The Last Mortal Bond. Along with a very insightful story behind-the-scenes of how this came about. You don't want to miss up reading this one.


The Fire Sermon by Francesca Haig

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A book pitched as The Hunger Games meets The Road, the marketing blurbs raise such ludicrous hopes, don't they? While Katniss Everdeen hasn't been my favorite hero/heroine, Cormac McCarthy's powerful and evocative exploration of the human drama set in a post-apocalyptic setting really rocked it for me when I read it years back.



So, the question that plagued me before even I started with The Fire Sermon, Francesca Haig's debut novel that saw a bloodbath between major production houses to acquire the movie rights and is now commissioned to be a movie soon from Dreamworks, is it really that good?

The story is a suspense chase-thriller set in a post-apocalyptic world - where timelines are split into the Before and the After ( when the world was destroyed by fire - "Before the blast, they say there'd been sermons about fire, about the end of the world. The fire itself gave the last sermon; after that there were no more" ) and the society split into the Alphas…

Unseemly Science ( Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire # 2) by Rod Duncan

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Elizabeth Barnabus continues to plot the downfall of the Gas-Lit Empire, being a pivotal cog in that wheel of Revolution and Unseemly Science, book two in the series by Rod Duncan transports us back to the wonderful Victorian-era England split into the Kingdom and the Republic.



The first book, Bullet-Catcher's Daughter was a pretty fascinating and solid read - giving us Elizabeth a spunky heroine leading a double life back in the Republic having escaped the clutches of the  notorious Duke of Northampton ( Still to make an appearance, guessing Rod's going to bring him in the finale!) back in the Kingdom who's had an arrest warrant out for her. Now Elizabeth ( and her false identity twin brother, Edwin) poses as an intelligence gatherer - with quiet some reputation in closed circles. However the events of the first book forces her into days of seclusion, leading a quiet life on Betsy, her houseboat moored in the Canal.

The second book opens with her witnessing the hanging of…