Book Review – Lovegun by Gavin Jefferson

So, where to start with this one?

The electric pink cover?. The tub of sperm on the back?. The crudely drawn penis?. The fact that the authors name isn’t on the front cover?

How about the tagline ‘A dark comedy from a nobody writer’. Which by the way has to be one of the best taglines I’ve ever come across. This of course could only apply to an author completely unshackled from expectation. Stephen King or Gavin’s beloved Neil Gaiman this is not.

If you’ve read ‘Almost Surely’ you’ll know what a great writer Jefferson is. Lovegun confirms he can do it in a completely different genre. Lovegun made me feel sick, made me laugh out loud and got me some pretty strange looks on the commute. This is NSFW fun and in parts pure filth. I say parts, it’s pretty much filth from start to finish. And all the better for it.

A man wanking to release bullets and murder people is an equally bizarre and genius concept for a story. For lesser writers, this could fall flat. It has to be funny, it is. It has to be over the top, it is. It has to be brilliant, it is.

Read it now. Preferably in paperback on public transport. Trust me, that pot of cum on the back really gets a reaction. Top stuff.

LOVEGUN (Gavin Jefferson’s ‘Lit’ Grindhouse) https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1794524614/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_4-5PCbRFZW8MP

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Book Review – The Ethereal Squadron by Shami Stovall

I must admit, I was a little dubious of the use of magic in a WW1 setting. This is cleverly explained in chapter one and by the brutal end of chapter two I knew this book was something special.

Geist is a fantastic female lead character and is convincingly drawn by Stovall. The other characters are just as memorable especially antagonist Prince Leopold who is particularly evil and unhinged and adds a genuine sense of threat to the story. No one feels safe. It had to be this way, being set in The Great War, but it’s done very well here.

The battles that the characters encounter are historically spot on and it’s clear that Stovall has done her homework. The world that she has created here feels real and foreboding. I got completely lost reading this story. For me that’s the highest praise possible. This is an interesting, exciting and addictive story that I would highly recommend to lovers of magic, war stories or fantasy.

The Ethereal Squadron: A Wartime Fantasy (The Sorcerers of Verdun) https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07KWT5BHK/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_luImCbKET163H

Book Review – The Last Titan by Craig Wainwright

Do not be fooled by the front cover of ‘The Last Titan’. This is no child friendly superhero story. What it is, is an intense and enthralling page turner of a book.

Daniel White thinks he’s a normal man. His world gets turned upside down when a mysterious woman tells him of his true heritage. Cue intrigue, different worlds and the introduction of an evil that will really put him in harms way al oing with a man struggling to control the powers he never knew he had.

The realistic way the characters are crafted was my favourite thing about the book along with the world building. Everything feels real. When the subject matter is as sci-fi as this story, making things feel so convincingly real and believable is a true credit to Wainwright.

The door is clearly left open for a follow up and I challenge anyone to not dive straight into book two after you’ve experienced this one. Fans 9f fantasy, sci-fi and superheroes are well catered for with this excellent story. Check it out now.

The Last Titan https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07G6PS6G6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_JbImCbEA8T2Q2

Goodbye Lucy…

The Doctor stood, alone. Once again minutes away from oblivion. He hated new years eve.

No, hate was too strong an emotion. He disliked new years eve. The fact that his last memory of NYE was stepping out of the TARDIS and being gunned down and thus beginning his most recent regeneration didn’t help of course.

The wind blew through his hair. Memories of the early days of this stage of his life flooded his mind. Grace, then Charley. Of course Lucy. A smile crossed his lips briefly at the thought of where his old friends might be in some alternative timeline. A timeline where they didn’t meet him. This time of year on planet earth always made him think of them. His human friends. His brief reconnection with Susan had filled him with joy for a short period of time too. But now, even that was at an end.

Lucy was gone. It was his fault. His hearts ached. The years of his vast life suddenly seemed so heavy on his shoulders. Did any of his friends ever have a happy ending?

As Big Ben chimed in the new year he turned and strode back into the TARDIS. He had nothing else to do, after all. Onwards to oblivion he half whispered to himself as he pushed forward on the controls. It was all he knew…

Parallel Worlds and Possible Futures – Chapter 1 – The First Son by David McAllister

My son stares at me through three inch plexi-glass with a dead-eyed expression. His features are distorted by the liquid that fills the tube. The tank is about 6ft tall and 2ft in diameter. He looks pale and pasty, and, let’s be honest, like he’s been dead for weeks.

He’s actually been dead for twenty years.

The last time he saw me he had turned back to see why I’d yelled at him and was knocked down by one of our neighbours who was three times over the limit. I’ll never forget the look on his face. Its haunted my dreams for twenty years.

The science of cryogenics was still in its relative infancy when he died. My wife and my own mother pleaded with me to just let him be at peace. Maybe they were right. But through a father’s earth shattering grief, I just clung to any small chance I may had had to see my son again.

So I ploughed all my savings into having my son cryogenically frozen in the hope that technology would advance to the threshold whereby he could be returned to me.

Now as the ‘awakening’ process begins I wonder what he will think when he is revived. I worry he may not recognise me, as it’s been so long. I’ve lost most of my hair and I’m at least five stone heavier than when we lost him. And of course the hardest part will be telling him about his mother, who has been dead for ten years. She just kind of withered away after losing her only son. I genuinely believe she died of a broken heart.

The vital signs indicate a heartbeat. This is incredible. He’s actually waking up. To be the first cryogenically frozen person to be successfully brought back to life is quite an honour. He’s going to be on the front of every newspaper, at the top of the news schedule for weeks to come.

But first, I can’t wait to put my arms around my boy and tell him how much I love him, how much I’ve missed him.

The liquid drains to below his chin and he takes a big deep breath before gagging and hacking in loud phlegmy coughs. Colour returns to his face and the stark reality of the situation hits me.

My son has risen from the dead.

A look of confusion spreads across his face as he looks around the inside of the tube erratically. His eyes eventually settle on mine and I see a spark of recognition. The way he looks at me is as if I’ve just shouted his name. For him he’s still crossing the road, it’s still 2030 and he’s confused and irritated that his dad is shouting him.

Tears fall from my eyes as I realise that the look on his face is the exact thing that has haunted me all these years. The confusion on his face soon clears and he opens his mouth to utter his first word in 20 years….

“Mummy”

Book Review – Almost Surely by Gavin Jefferson

I love books that make me think. I love books that cross genres. I love interesting characters and twists. Almost Surely has all of these things.

Here is a book that cannot be pigeon holed. Elements of sci-fi, time travel and myths and legends all help make this fantastic story.

From the first few pages I was hooked in by the mystery. I really enjoyed the initial story set up which was told with verve and intrigue by Jefferson. Anthony was a very realistically drawn character who was easy to relate to and to root for.

The book manages to deal in themes of destiny and the afterlife and doesn’t feel like the work of a new author but rather an accomplished and very talented one.

The allusions to It’s a Wonderful Life (The greatest film of all time) just sealed the deal. A fantastic story that will keep you guessing until the last page. Not one to be missed.

Almost Surely https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07G2LH4W1/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_xKddCb967GEJN

Audio Review – Shilling and Sixpence Investigate by Nigel Fairs

Every now and then something really special comes along from Big Finish. After two listens in as many weeks I can safely say that Shilling and Sixpence Investigate is one of the best things they’ve ever done.

Set at Morlington Hall in Cornwall at the beginning of WW2 this is a classic whodunnit style murder mystery. The origins of the characters and story are stage shows which Nigel Fairs has produced for many years, albeit with the comedy leanings turned down a notch.

It’s cleverly plotted and pulled of with aplomb. There are some genuinely shocking twists and turns that I didn’t see coming. The end of the last story just screams second series. It can’t be left like this, it just can’t!

The set takes the form of eight thirty minute episodes with a real classic feel and is definitely a production that rewards repeated listens, especially after the HUGE twist at the end.

The cast are absolutely incredible throughout. Celia Imrie and David Warner are on fine form as Lavinia Sixpence and Desmund Shilling. Louise Jameson is predictably on form. Special mention must go to Abi Harris who convincingly pulls off eight distinct characters. It’s a wonder to behold. Likewise Rebecca Crinnion plays multiple roles with skill. Appearances by Matthew Waterhouse, Lisa Bowerman, Samuel Clemens, Max Day, Radley Mason and Suzanne Proctor, along with Nigel Fairs himself must make this one of the best ensemble casts in any format. I deliberately mention everyone because of the fabulous and convincing job they do on bringing this story to life. Incredible stuff. buy it now from Big Finish. And join me in waiting with bated breath for series two.