As the only sceptic in Cravenly’s new and not-very-psychic circle, how many haunted toasters, possessed worry dolls, and sabotaged book signings can one man cope with? Jay Taylor’s patience may already be stretched to breaking point, but the odious presence of ego-ridden psychic star, Fenwick Arcana could just push him over the edge.
Having taken the nervous wreck who started this whole mess, Freddy, under his wing, and with gossip-monger Lysander and irrepressible believer Marnie to cope with, the circle’s most reluctant member is about to have his sanity severely tested.
Gathered together, their diaries chronicle the circle’s first year, as they fight through a minefield of paranormal detritus, smug wizardry, toxic baking, revenge plots, and the filming of disastrously amateur paranormal TV show, Spirit Squad. But through all that, perhaps the biggest battle any of them will face is one another. And the loneliness.
For anyone who ever wondered if it is possible to catch a ghost using marmalade*.
The Septic Circle is a humorous diary-style book, told from the viewpoints of five members of a ‘not-very-psychic’ circle, with each person’s diary helping to build up a humorous (or poignant) picture of events.
The book charts the circle members’ first year, taking in haunted appliances, sabotaged book signings, iffy occult trinkets, and chaotic ghost-hunting TV shows, among other things. While, on the surface, it may seem like humour, the core of the book is the growing relationships and dynamics between the characters. Ultimately, it is a book about loneliness, as much as anything else.
It's a delicious slice of British humour and scepticism served on a paranormal plate, which will make you laugh, cry, and wonder about the ghost-catching properties of marmalade.
Lorna Reid is an ex-daydreamer, geek, and writer, who currently lives in the sunny climes of Scotland, having escaped from Kent many years ago. She is editor and writer for UK videogame site GamingLives, where she talks about and reviews games. Videogames and an incurable Columbo habit tend to dominate much of her free time, but she manages to maintain a blog in a dark corner of the internet, where she talks about writing, publishing, games, and TV. Although her love for the Xbox 360 has waned, she has and always will be a PC gamer. The Septic Circle is her first published work.
Lorna Reid is an ex-daydreamer, geek, and writer, who currently lives in the sunny climes of Scotland, having escaped from Kent many years ago. She is editor and writer for UK videogame site GamingLives, where she talks about and reviews games.
Videogames and an incurable Columbo habit tend to dominate much of her free time, but she manages to maintain a blog in a dark corner of the internet, where she talks about writing, publishing, games, and TV. Although her love for the Xbox 360 has waned, she has and always will be a PC gamer.
The Septic Circle is her first published work.
Find her online at on Twitter @SketchStone or Just One More Writer - LornaReid.net where you can sign up for the newsletter and get updates on her other projects, special offers, bonus content for The Septic Circle, and more.
I was lucky enough to read a preview version of this book shortly before it was available for release, and it's hands down the funniest novel I've had my hands on since I was first given The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy 12 years ago. It's absolutely hilarious from start to finish, and I found myself almost going sleepless one night just to get to the end, because it's so engrossing. Barely a page goes by when you've not laughed twice, but it also knows exactly when to be poignant and when to keep the reader thinking. It's an amazing debut novel, and one that should be read by everyone.
I received this book via Firstreads (Goodreads) in exchange for an honest review and I certainly wasn't disappointed...
Firstly, I must state that this book had a lot of different parts that attributed to the overall concept and storyline - the combination of which could have ended in disaster (or should that be in ectoplasm?!) but actually resulted in a hilarious tale of friendship, betrayal and psychic hijinks. I snickered my way through the journey of each character, learning to love their quirks and accept their awkwardness.
It was a lovely book in the respect of the physical journey each character took and what they achieved in the end, but I also felt that, in a way, it personified some of the issues with today's society. Each character, to some extent, had a flaw, but they developed and I grew to appreciate them.
The comical aspect of the book was exceptional. As well as the irony, sarcasm and general trickery. Very entertaining and unusual! A definite recommendation to all! I may have only just stopped smirking at the sheer genius of some of the lines from this book!
Also, I could really do with a Freddy in my life. I need a personal cleaner that I can pay in fine china and soap magazines. :)
*I must also state that when I refer to "each character", I am clearly excluding Fenwick! :
The Septic Circle is such a great book. At first the format seemed a little odd as it's a story being told by five people using diary extracts but the characters are all so well-defined that before long you don't even need to see the sub-headings telling you who is writing. The strong cast of characters and the relentless peppering of jokes gives the book the same feel as a really good UK sitcom and never stops entertaining.