Jack Messenger | Feed the Monkey

Reading | Reviewing | LET’S GO THERE | Writing | Publishing

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Good reviews of one’s own work are so encouraging. I just discovered these wonderful reviews of Four American Tales on Goodreads, after eighteen months or so during which I have avoided social media etc. for the sake of my health. Thank you to all my reviewers, whether you have liked what I do or not. See the Goodreads reviews here.

Farewell Olympus

Farewell OlympusWriting Over, Designing Begins

 

I am tremendously excited to have finished my new novel, Farewell Olympus, which was an entirely new writing experience for me. Now it’s time to think about cover copy and book descriptions. I find it difficult to describe my own work, partly because I dislike blowing my own trumpet, partly because I can never decide what it is exactly. Farewell Olympus is no exception: I think it’s funny, but in a dry, seldom laugh-out-loud way. I also think it’s clever and entertaining, but then I would say that, wouldn’t I? It has elements of mystery and thriller, but it’s definitely not either of those. About all I can say with any confidence is that it’s fiction. Here’s what I have come up with so far.

Continue reading

After a lengthy pause due to writing commitments and ill-health, I hope gradually to get back to book reviewing. Please read my review policy page before sending me anything, as I receive an awful lot of books that do not fit my criteria.

You Will Grow Into Them | Malcolm Devlin

You Will Grow Into Them, Malcolm DevlinPublished by Unsung Stories

ISBN 9781907389436 pbk

ISBN 9781907389443 ePub

Metamorphoses sudden and brutal characterize many of the stories in Malcolm Devlin’s excellent collection of – what? Speculative fiction? Horror? Gothic? Supernatural? Dystopian? I am happy to say I don’t know what it is precisely, for, like a lot of good writing, Devlin’s eludes definite classification and description, and to pigeon-hole it as one thing or another would be to diminish and distort its achievement. It evokes genre without being bound by it; its ideas and metaphors speak of larger things beyond genre expectations; its departure point is ordinary life made extraordinary by the seepages and eruptions of the inexplicable, the unknown and half-suspected, the fearful and the beguiling. Continue reading

An Accidental Profession | Daniel S. Jones

An Accidental Profession Daniel S. JonesPublished by Waxing Press

ISBN 0998562009 (print)

ISBN 0998562017 (digital)

Why can novels about people at work be so pleasurably captivating? Undoubtedly, it’s rather nice to think that others are toiling away while we read about them, and the similarities and differences with our own working lives emerge with unusual clarity: occupations do not have to be exotic or abstruse for us to find them fascinating. An Accidental Profession is all about work: its organization and administration, what it does to people, the power of the corporation, our ambivalent relationships with our co-workers. Continue reading

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