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Damned Busters (Angry Robot) Paperback – 5 May 2011


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Damned Busters (Angry Robot) + Costume Not Included (Angry Robot) + Hell to Pay (To Hell & Back 3)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Angry Robot (5 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857661027
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857661029
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 438,148 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

-Praise for Matthew Hughes"If you're an admirer of the science fantasies of Jack Vance, it's hard not to feel affection for the Archonate stories of Matthew Hughes... Hughes has strengths of his own to draw upon: his own considerable wit, and a flair for reified metaphysics surpassing anything conceived by Vance."- Nick Gevers, Locus"A bit Arthur Conan Doyle, a bit Jack Vance.... Henghis's escapades [have] the lasting appeal of one of PG Wodehouse's Bertie Wooster books."- Seattle Times"Hughes's successful blend of magic, the supernatural and high-tech with Sherlockian deductions (and cryptic observations straight out of Doyle's canon) suggests a long life for Hapthorn."- Publishers Weekly

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Ginger Nuts of Horror on 10 May 2011
Format: Paperback
After accidentally summoning a demon while playing poker, the normally mild-mannered Chesney Anstruther refuses to sell his soul... which leads through various confusions to, well, Hell going on strike. Which means that nothing bad ever happens in the world - and that actually turns out to be a really bad thing.

There's only one thing for it. Satan offers Chesney the ultimate deal - sign the damned contract, and he can have his heart's desire. And thus the strangest superhero duo ever seen - in Hell or on Earth - is born!

Before I make my thoughts on this know, I have a confession to make. I used to be a big fan of authors like Terry Prattchet, Robert Robert Rankin and Tom Holt. So much so that there was a time when I rarely read anything else. In the hay day of comic fantasy there was a period where there were more books to read than I had time for. It has been about 16 years since I last read Terry Pratchett and Tom Holt and about 8 years since I last read Robert Rankin. I just slowly but surely got burnt out on them.

So I was a bit hesitant to crack open this book. There's still a lot of books I really want to read so taking a chance with this book had me a bit worried. I decided to give it hour and see how it went. A good six hours later I realised I still had all the house work to do, and I really should go and pick up the boy child from school. Yes the book is that good. You maybe wondering why I even wanted to take such a punt on a book, to be honest it was two things, the synopsis of the book sounded like fun, and I really really liked the cover.

Matthew Hughes has entered the the all ready crowded comic fantasy market, with his own unique voice and style of humour, he will soon elbow his way right to centre of the genre.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Simonsays on 2 Oct. 2011
Format: Paperback
I purchased this book because of the Indie comic style cover and the gripping description in the back.
The beginning was awesome, went straight into the action of summoning a lesser demon by accident and refusing to give his soul thus making the worlds sin to stop which should be good but it actually makes the world go around. Making a deal with the devil to become a superhero 2 hours a day to save him selling his soul sounds like a good story but halfway through it just drags on, I feel the author done his big idea in the beginning but had trouble keeping it up (The author behind the keyboard thinking what the hell do I do now).

Had to stop I was so bored, I cant believe its gonna be a series, the author has got the skill of making a great plot but not keeping the quirky slick story going.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 19 May 2011
Format: Paperback
On reading the book blurb for this title I really wasn't sure what I was going to get. Yes I knew that there was going to be superhero antics, yes I knew that heaven and hell were involved and yes I was aware that humour was to take all these concepts and blend them together in one unholy amalgam.

The trouble with humour though is that its subjective to the reader, especially when you think that the whole Heaven and Hell angle has only really been tackled in two humour titles previously in recent years, Lamb by Christopher Moore and of course the now lauded Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. Why just these two? Well it's a tricky blend to achieve and to be honest very few do it well enough to get away.

What Matt achieves in this title is not only chock full of humour but a title that has an unlikely hero, a devilishly intriguing sidekick and above all else a plot that moves along at its own pace keeping the humour very much in the fore. It makes no bones about what it is, it has some novel solutions and it was a title that gave me a lot of fun with my reading time, so much so that I really couldn't wait to get back to it. All in the prose is decent, the characters outstanding and the overall arc very pleasing to the reader. Great stuff.
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Format: Paperback
Mild-mannered actuary Chesney Anstruther lives a quiet life consisting of work, a weekly poker game with some work colleagues and reading graphic novels featuring his favourite superhero, The Driver. But while making a poker table one night, he inadvertently summons a demon who offers him the standard contract of signing his soul away in return for his heart’s desire. The only problem is that Chesney refuses to sign and that causes a crisis in Hell that results in all the workers going on strike, which in turn causes chaos on Earth as people are no longer tempted by sin.

With the help of a televangelist called Billy Lee Hardacre and his evangelical mother, Chesney works out a deal with Satan that sees him forming a superhero duo with a weasel headed demon called Xaphan ...

The first in Matthew Hughes’s comedy fantasy trilogy is an amusing read with an interesting twist on superhero origin stories. Chesney is an interesting enough foil – a fundamentally decent guy who’s possibly on the autism spectrum – his stubborn refusal to sign a contract with Satan is the driving force for the book’s events. I enjoyed the relationship he has with sidekick Xaphan (whose conversation and attitudes comes straight from the 1920s) and the way he explores the limits and twists in the accommodation that he reaches with Satan. However, the trilogy came from a short story idea and that shows in the pacing, with a lot of time spent on the set-up rather than in the main story-arc that relates to the plans certain interests have for the city and the main conflict in the story is confined to the final quarter and summarily dismissed in an unsatisfying way.
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