Floods, things coming out of the water, beautiful women, great social commentary – set in Manchester, England, what more could you ask for?
Tide of Souls is a wonderful creation by writer Simon Bestwick, he has managed to tie both end of days storyline with interesting characters, fast plotlines and excellent dialogue.
The world is disappearing beneath the melting icecaps, and our beautiful protagonist Katja is finding the imminent apocalypse nothing compared to her people trafficked forced into prostitution, former year in England. Katja is told with great skill, so many male writers tend to overly feminise women in their novels, but not here, Katja is not only kickass but vulnerable and questioning of her own abilities, especially as she has just been thrown into the middle of a maelstrom of life changing situations.
But it’s not just her story, there is the army soldier and the scientist, both told with a clarity and believability that will have you cantering through the pages. The apocalypse cannot be more tangible and real than this novel; life is bleak, the rain is wet and the things that rise out of the water (whilst not quite zombies), will leave you pondering for days after (especially if it rains).
My only quibble, I need to know more! – sequel or prequel Mr Bestwick please.
Reviewed by Clare Allington
I’ve read great comparisons of this book to World War Z, by Max Brooks. Let me tell you this, children of the apocalypse; I know what book I want by my side when the end is coming….
Sean Page’s highly original, detailed and honest handbook will help you through the first 90 days following the dead taking over, that’s not an if by the way, that’s a when this happens type book, as valuable as those extra rations you have stored away (just in case), or the baseball bat you hide under your bed (with that perfected backhand swing).
This book will tell you how to survive, what to expect, and the more you read the more you realise that “perhaps” just perhaps you may one day NEED this book, as your life may depend on it, by the time you have finished you will be convinced.
Not only does Mr Page tell us what to call “zombies” – “living dead” “mortally challenged”, but even goes into detail about the particular philosophical views; both scientific and sociological, the history of the potential for outbreak (or has one happened before?
This handbook will teach you how to survive, foraging for food, water, where to locate yourself and your family, how to lead a team – forget the films – this is the real thing – YOU and YOUR loved ones in that situation, the real deal and the clever thing Mr Page does is gets you really thinking about how you would deal with the outbreak. Remember the running you were going to take up? Time to start (could you outrun a zombie?)….do you know what foods keep for the longest and are the most nutritional?, some of us even think we know most of this, I know I did, with my survival pack under my bed and “safe place” picked out, even I had many other things to think about.
One of the most endearing qualities of a good book or film is its ability to transform you to another place; this handbook literally takes you by the hand and places you bang slap in the middle of an outbreak and asks you – what would you do? and most importantly leaves you with the information you need “if” (ok I won’t scare you too much), something like this takes place, perhaps one day when the world is empty and the zombies are banging at your door you can thank Sean Page and the Ministry of Zombies for helping you survive long enough to tell the tale.
Reviewed by Clare Allington
Please Don’t Go is a fusion of Dickens, King with a fresh streak of pure Dimbleby running down the middle; his character Zephyr is one of the most annoying and lovable characters I’ve read for a long time and you will find yourself equally angry and saddened for him all the way through.
This tale is also a cautionary one, living as we doing in the ‘something for nothing’ culture, perhaps we should all be mindful of Zephyr’s ‘journey’, as we make our way in the world. Dimbleby’s tale is so believable and enthralling that you will find yourself looking very closely at your fellow men for many a long time afterwards.
This novel drags you in from the start, no kicking and screaming, it yanks you in and it is extremely difficult to put down, you will experience pain, pleasure and horror, amazement at what Mr Dimbleby’s mind can conjure (look out for the bookcase!!) and saddened when its over….
Please Don’t Go is high on my list of top novels of 2011, buy it for yourself, your loved one or your neighbor, but keep the lights on after and never trust a stranger!!
(Follow Clare on Twitter: @clarescrypt)
If you like your tales spooky, corrupt and with a side order of lunacy, then you have picked the best novel this year……Please Don’t Go, is all of this and then some, coupling dark gothic horror with social commentary and twists and turns that you just don’t see anymore in contemporary horror; Mr Dimbleby has surpassed himself.
This beautifully crafted novel will appeal to the nerds (or should I say intelligent? in all of us), with his careful use of social commentary and character dialogue, Darst has strayed into areas that most novels just ignore, and leave us more “astute” readers thinking “why and how” ?, Darst answers these questions. Dead Things has clearly been researched in great depth and it is refreshingly original to read a novel that the author has clearly spent so much time crafting.
The post apocalypse world Darst has created is entirely new in this genre and about time too, I was growing bored of endless testosterone fuelled shoot outs involving flat characters with unbelievable personality traits. Darst has crafted his characters both male and female with an attention to detail and believability I have only ever read in Dickens and King.
The only fault I can see is that he needs to write a prequel or two, the world he has crafted post apocalypse is so refreshingly “new” to this genre; that it would be fitting that us readers get to the read the journey that led to it, further, his characters are so extraordinary that this novel was not enough time to really get to know them.
If you are looking for an intellectual read, challenging but never dull containing horror, drama, and social commentary, then this is the book for you. Darst as a first time writer has raised the standard within the genre; and I look forward to reading more of his work.
(Follow Clare on Twitter: @clarescrypt)
This first novel by writer Matt Darst ranks highly in my top ten list of 2011. I won’t go into too much detail suffice to say you ought to go out and buy this right now !!!