Omens by Kelley Armstrong
The 1st in the ‘Cainsville’ saga is very good, much better than the author’s insipid ‘Women of the Otherworld’ books. Olivia Taylor-Jones is rich and privileged and soon to be married. Her perfect life is shattered when a press mob descend on her revealing she is adopted and her biological parents are two notorious serial killers.
Her adoptive mother and fiancée don’t want to know her, the press hound her and she is a hate figure. Olivia takes refuge in the remote town of Cainsville to try and figure out what to do. A sleazy lawyer shows up and reveals her parents may have been wrongfully convicted. As Olivia looks into the past, it is clear there is more to the case and to Cainsville than first seems. This is a very good thriller that has more than a sprinkling of the supernatural. I look forward to book 2.
“I know who they are. Everyone knows.”
“Tight jeans. Tank tops without bras. Evening makeup at noon. Jersey hair. The general vibe varied from “wouldn’t look out of place on a corner of 47th” to “could work at a really nice strip club””
“It’s a big gun.”
“You’ll wish you had made a very different choice today.”
Star Trek #10: The Final Reflection by John M. Ford
This 1988 novel is allegedly a classic but I beg to disagree. I prefer the author’s comic ‘How Much For Just The Planet?’ to this dull mess. This novel tells of how a Klingon nobody named Vrenn becomes a captain and a ruthless war strategist. He foils a plan to destabilise the UFP and a young Spock makes a cameo. The Klingon ‘culture’ described therein is brutal and obsessed with game theory but bears no resemblance whatsoever to the Klingons depicted on any TV show, movie or reboot movie. This is dull; it’s not Trek and would probably have worked better as an original novel. Instead it reads like bad AU fanfic you’d find on AOOO.
“I note in passing that I do not intend to disappear from public view in the immediate future”
“The translator is a traitor. And this is nowhere more true than when translating between races from different stars.”
“There was a mildly unpleasant look on Margon’s face, but there usually was.”
The Best Horror Of The Year Volume Five edited by Ellen Datlow, part 1
A man survives a shipwreck and faces worse. Obvious.
A man and a boy cross a ruined America. Okay but reminds me of ‘Stakeland’.
A Natural History of Autumn
This is an awful tale of ghosts or something.
Tender As Teeth
A former zombie is hated by everyone, this is a very good story originally published in ‘21st Century Dead’.
This is a bad and utterly bizarre tale about evil old biddies playing bingo.
Two Poems For Hill House
Silly poems inspired by the book.
A ride on a carousel changes three lives forever. Okay.
A cheap scrote picks up a rich woman in a nightclub toilet so he can rob her. He regrets it, a lot. This was good.
“We in turn swear to eventually pay for that long and faithful service.”
“Crowds screamed and pelted them with garbage.”
The Magician’s Apprentice
A girl is taught magic and eventually learns the price. Good.
“There are dead joggers in every alleyway.”
The Stuff of Nightmares by James Lovegrove
Bombs and a nutter terrorise London, it’s Holmes and Watson to the rescue in this nigh unreadable, anachronism riddled piece of steam punk crud. Moriarty features, there is a Victorian Ironman, death, an utterly stupid ending and this was one of the worst books ever written.
“Vive l’Entente Cordiale indeed.”
“Just the type to be hoarding dynamite in his basement and plotting the overthrow of the government.”
“If you’re going to sleep off a gin hangover, do it somewhere else - in the gutter preferably.”
Some Kind of Fairytale by Graham Joyce
Tara disappeared 20 years ago and now she’s back and telling an incredible and unbelievable tale of how she was off with the fairies. Her family resent her, Tara is smug and superior and this had promise but was just bad due to Tara being a vile beast.
“I’m seriously worried about the gene pool I married into.”
“His wife looks at me Like I’m a specimen of piss in a jar.”