Book Review – The Black Ice

The Black Ice (Harry Bosch, #2)The Black Ice by Michael Connelly

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Black Ice is the second Harry Bosch book and in my opinion shows a marked improvement over the first in terms of style and substance. Starting with the apparent suicide of a cop the narrative quickly becomes convoluted and engrossing, eventually leading to a twist that isn’t exactly telegraphed but which I have to admit I did see coming quite early.

Continue reading Book Review – The Black Ice

Author Solutions and Friends: The Inside Story

David Gaughran has some scary points to make over on his blog with regards to Author Solutions and their many facets. If, like me, you’re considering making a move into self-publishing then I would strongly recommend reading the full article.

Originally posted on David Gaughran:

ASandfriendsweboptAuthor Solutions has forged partnerships with a long list of famous names in publishing – from Simon & Schuster and Hay House to Barnes & Noble and Reader’s Digest.

Recent disclosures in various lawsuits, along with information sent to me by a Penguin Random House source, detail for the very first time exactly how these partnerships work and the damage they are causing.

Since a second suit was filed at the end of March, Author Solutions is now facing two class actions, with the new complaint alleging unjust enrichment and exploitation of seniors on top of the usual claims of fraud and deceptive practices. It also has a wonderfully precise summary of Author Solutions’ operations:

Author Solutions operates more like a telemarketing company whose customer base is the Authors themselves. In other words, unlike a traditional publisher, Author Solutions makes money from its Authors, not for them. It does so…

View Original 2,915 more words

Book Review – The War Of The Worlds

The War of the WorldsThe War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

First published in 1898, H. G. Wells’ The War Of The Worlds is undoubtedly one of the first great sci-fi novels. Following the template of invasion literature that was common in the later third of the nineteenth century it presents us with a hypothetical war waged by an intelligent Martian invader, and in doing so foreshadows much of the horror of the two world wars that were to follow it’s publication during the next fifty years.

Continue reading Book Review – The War Of The Worlds

Book Review – Call For The Dead

Call for the DeadCall for the Dead by John le Carré

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

John le Carré is probably best known for his cold war spy novels, particularly Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and The Spy Who Came In from the Cold, but his career started with Call For The Dead. This is the book that introduces us to George Smiley, le Carré’s protagonist for many of his earlier novels, and unlike later novels such as the aforementioned The Spy Who Came In From The Cold this book is less of a spy novel and more of a mystery thriller.

Continue reading Book Review – Call For The Dead

Hugo And I

This week there’s been a lot of discussion and controversy on the old interwebs about the nominees for this year’s Hugo Awards. Long story short, a bunch of people have gotten together and created enough influence amongst the voters that many of the nominees can be found on one or both of the slates put forward by those people. This in turn has upset a bunch of other people because apparently that’s not how it’s supposed to work. Cue much bad language and online dickery.

Continue reading Hugo And I