Sunday, 24 August 2014

A Review of Dead Hunger by Eric A. Shelman

Dead Hunger is book one in a series of books by Eric A Shelman - His author page on Amazon can be found here.

Dead Hunger is a zombie book, which I'm sure is pretty obvious from the cover image. We see the outbreak though the eyes of Flex Sheridan. The book starts with him rushing to see his sister, who is turning into a zombie while talking to him on the phone.

In my reviews I try to avoid spoilers where possible, so please forgive my talking around the plot without much specific detail.

Like all good zombie stories, this book has a core group of characters at the centre of it that I truly cared about. The story starts with the main character, Flex, introducing the group. Time is then rewound to the start of the outbreak, or at least Flex's first experience of it, before the group had formed. You see how the group came together. I thought this was an interesting way of telling the story and made the first appearance of each of the group members all the more powerful.

The first few chapters really pull you into the story, the behaviour of the zombies is human, yet alien at the same time. They're portrayed in a way that's truly unsettling.

Having read a lot of zombie fiction, the actual zombies don't usually affect me. However, in Dead Hunger I found myself suitably unsettled by how they acted. Especially Flex's sister. The horror is subtle in Eric Shelman's prose, it's layered and creeps up on you like a rising tide.

This is a well written book that sets up the series well. I look forward to reading book two.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

A review of The Fault in our Stars by John Green

Okay, so this book probably doesn't need any more press, but I've just finished it and I thought I'd add my thoughts on it.

Before I read this book, I wasn't sure if it would be for me. I like young adult, but it's not a genre I actively seek out.

Unless you've been living in a cave, you've probably heard about this book. It's the story of a teenage girl, Hazel, who is terminally ill with cancer. While at a support group for people suffering with cancer, she meets Augustus, who is in remission, and so the love affair begins.

Hazel isn't self-pitying about her disease. All she's trying to do is live her life, respond to her emotions, and make the most out of the time she has left. It's this attitude that makes her life so engaging.

Hazel's love interest, Augustus (Gus), is witty and eloquent. At points I found him a little too eloquent and borderline pretentious, but those moments were fleeting. On the whole I loved him and his role in the story.

Getting to know these characters and see their love grow was a pleasure. Green manages to negotiate teenage love without making it feel like an over-emotional mess. It was well handled and captivating to read. This made the sad scenes all the more heartbreaking.

While reading this book, I felt so close to the action I could smell cancer and everything associated with it. The treatments, the hospitals, the drugs...

To avoid spoilers I won't take my review any further.

John Green is an amazing author, with a wonderful prose style. Incredibly conscious writing makes for an easy read, but a well crafted one.

This is a great book and one I would recommend to anyone. It's funny, heart breaking, and incredibly well told.  

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Space Mullet, Chapter Two, by Daniel Warren Johnson

After reading chapter one last month, I've finally managed to find the time to return to chapter two, and I'm so glad I did. Following on from the first chapter, the plot reveals more about the space marines and Jonah's dark history with them. 

In a bid to avoid spoilers, all I'll say is the story gets darker and more complex, introducing new characters and depth to the narrative.

There are several twists and turns in the chapter, none of them contrived, and some of them made me giddy-the monsters so beautifully rendered. I wish I had some of these pages in my collection! 

The art is amazing. The story telling is such you can fly through the issue, transitioning from panel to panel smoothly. Although, each panel is so beautiful, it makes you stop and appreciate this amazing world. 

Fast paced, dark, imaginative, and beautiful, this is a must read, and is FREE to read. 

5 Stars.

Can we have a hardcover please Daniel?