Zi71bFS9nQHnivtvUJquhejTHIQ The Story Factory Reading Zone: February 2016

Friday, 19 February 2016

Review: The Chosen by William Hatchett


One man. One planet. One destiny. Frederick Frater leads a hum-drum existence working in a Victorian bookshop. But one day an apparition walks into the shop – a beautiful young woman. Her father's extraordinary invention changes Frederick's life. The adventure that follows takes us back to Roman-occupied Britain and into the future, in which magic has become science. It is a future that Frederick can influence through his interventions – for he is one of the Chosen, a select and privileged group with the fate of the world in their hands.

Author: William Hatchett was born in 1958. He is the editor of a professional magazine Environmental Health News. He lives in London and has a daughter and two delightful grandsons. He has been named housing journalist of the year, in 1998, and editor of the year, in 2012. His main hobbies are messing around with canoes and guitars. He is the author of the Dragon Rising trilogy and has also published books of non-fiction and poetry. The Chosen is his fourth novel. He is available for interview.

My review

An intriguing and interesting start set the scene for this unusual story. The initial character of Frederick caught my attention, as did his early relationships. At times I was also memorised by the novel worlds and historical settings. 

However, overall this long novel read more like a selection of shorter stories strung together than a coherent plot. I was left puzzled by the conclusion and feeling like I had missed something important.

3 out of 5 stars

disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Review: An African Diary by Bill Bryson

Was a quick and easy read. I enjoyed this book, although I would have liked more detail about what he saw.


Monday, 1 February 2016

Review: The Long Mars by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter

The Long Mars is the third in a series of fantasies based around the idea that alternate dimensions rally do exist. 
My favourite thing about this book was the exploration taken by the character Sally Linsey about what it means to be a daughter, juxtaposed with the continuing question of what it means to be human. These almost seemed to take a greater part in the book than the fantasy/ sci-if aspect.
Having said that, it was interesting to consider how very different ours (and other worlds) could be. I particularly enjoyed the humorous exploration of what range of lifeforms might exist out there somewhere.
A good standalone read, made even better if read as part of the series.

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