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A New World: Chaos: Volume 1
A New World: Chaos: Volume 1
by John O'Brien
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.41

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love Kindle zombie novels!!!,, 13 Sept. 2012
For years I've been looking for great Zombie books to read, World War Z (...it's gonna be a film!!!) was the game changer, then the MorningStar Strain.

Now!! we've got Kindle and a whole seam of Z books are being published. Now lets be honest, some are just plain bad. But some are great. This book is one of them. It starts out slow but builds to a gut wrenching crescendo. You can see from all these books where the author gets their inspiration for the zombies from. In this case it's "I am Legend", technically not really zoms more like rabid. The author switches from first person to third during the story, this could annoy some language purists but not me, hey what do you expect Shakespeare!

Basically this novel is about an ex Special Forces pilot, who, during a zombie/rabies outbreak, gathers his teenage kids together, heads of to a deserted military airport, comandeers a transport plane and heads of to Kuwait to rescue his girlfriend. Sounds implausable!, but the author manages to make it believable enough (to me anyway), so much so that I will read the rest of the books.


No Easy Hope (Surviving the Dead Book 1)
No Easy Hope (Surviving the Dead Book 1)
Price: £2.58

5.0 out of 5 stars Zombie bromance!!!,, 13 Sept. 2012
OK, flippant title sorry!! The story starts, quite definately as a bromance, but develops into a great zombie novel. The bulk of the book is more a back story to the initial bromantic prologue, with our hero's travel through a zombie infested land, and the various escapades he encounters, which comprises of him mainly helping a fortified community and the relationships he builds there. The prose stars of a bit clunky but as the author develops the story it starts to read much more fluidly. All in all a great book, I'm looking forward to the sequels.

At the end of the day all these novels are written by amateurs honing their craft, they have a story to tell. In the past most of these texts would never see the light of day, but Kindle has changed all this. Surely it's better for guys like James Cook to publish online so people like me can read and enjoy the stories rather than get endless rejections from publishing companies......


Soldier On (Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse Book 2)
Soldier On (Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse Book 2)
Price: £2.28

5.0 out of 5 stars Great follow up, keep going Shawn.., 13 Sept. 2012
OK, based on my review of his first book, this is a great sequel, and it introduces a lot more sub plots and parallell stories, including an ominous conspiracy plot. Can't wait to read the third book.


Trudge (Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse Book 1)
Trudge (Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse Book 1)
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Another great zombie book, 13 Sept. 2012
Once again Kindle has a uncovered another great zombie book. As I've said before these kind of books ain't gonna win the pulitzer, but that is not what they were written for. Most of these are written by and for zombie apocaplyse fans so there is a level of expectation about them. The prose may be a bit clunky and the description of guns gets a bit enthusiastic at times but, hey we want to be entertained. This book is pretty much the same as other zombie books, there is a set formula they all have to adhere to.

1) Main hero is special forces
2) hero's family is stuck far away
3) hero on a quest to find family
4) hero encounters many challenges on the quest
5) hero eventually meets family.....but its not over yet!!

But formulas are part of any kind of entertainment, movies, TV, literature see this book Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories

Anyhoo, this book, well its great, its a quest through z hell, and there is a series of sequels, happy days!!!


The Rising Horde: Volume Two
The Rising Horde: Volume Two
by Research Professor in English Literature Stephen Knight
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.56

5.0 out of 5 stars Great climax to a great series, 13 Sept. 2012
What can I say! I was waiting with bated breath for this sequel and I wasn't disappointed. We team up with our heroes from the previous books. This time they are not in a running battle with the Zeds in a ruined city, but under siege from literally millions at a military camp in the Texas desert. I won't spoil the story, but buy, read, enjoy!!


City of the Damned
City of the Damned
by Research Professor in English Literature Stephen Knight
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.56

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great techno/horror novel, 13 Sept. 2012
This review is from: City of the Damned (Paperback)
This is another great rollercoaster ride from Stephen Knight.

This time Knight's focus is on Vampires. It deals with a secret special forces unit that are dedicated to hunting down and destroying vampires. These vampires are not pasty faced teenage goths or confused, mixed up and lovelorn as we've seen on TV and Cinema over the last few years, but full on nasty, evil and very dangerous.

The book deals with the psychological and sexual relationships between the different members of this undercover team and how the "master" vampires exploit this for their ultimate supernatural aims. There are some great action sequences, as with Knight's Zombie novels he goes into great detail with special forces field tactics, weapons and communications. It's real cross genre novel covering techno, military, horror, supernatural and espionage. There are some good "scientific" explanations for vampirism (a bit like The Fall trilogy by del Torro/Hogan)as well.

Overal this book hooked me from page one until the end....I want more!

I'm sure it would make a great three part TV series (as in Salem's Lot) and a counterpoint to the wimpy rubbish on TV at the moment. I hope Stephen has a sequel up his sleeve (I'm sure he has....)


The Gathering Dead
The Gathering Dead
by Stephen Knight
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant roller coaster of a read, 13 Sept. 2012
This review is from: The Gathering Dead (Paperback)
OK, this book ain't gonna win the Pulitzer, but there is phrase where I come from, "it does exactly what it says on the tin", and my, my, this story does just that....and some. It's the best Z book I've read in a long time, what a frickin' brilliant movie it would make. In fact as I read the book, the movie was playing in my head, who needs hollywood (well maybe Stephen would....lol)

Anyhoo, the plot...a group of special forces soldiers holed up in zombie infested New York (poor old NY always gets trashed in TEOTWAWKI scenarios)try to battle their way to safety with a load of civvies and a grumpy scientist who holds the key to survival, with the emphasis on "try", this story rocks and rolls along with gusto. At one point I was reading along and realised my heart was pounding, its that good!!

After I finished this book I read the novella, wasn't disappointed there either, so looking forward to the sequel, which I understand Stephen is working on now, er...hurry up dude!!


Shadowmarch: Shadowmarch Trilogy Book One (Shadowmarch Quartet)
Shadowmarch: Shadowmarch Trilogy Book One (Shadowmarch Quartet)
by Tad Williams
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable fantasy, 10 Sept. 2012
As other reviewers have mentioned this is quite a derivative fantasy series. There are several parallels with another more famous series:

-Focus on a "northern noble family".
-Threat by non human's from beyond a northern barrier.
-Sub plot about a girl from a hot "southern" continent.
-Murderous political intrigue amongst the northern nobles.

Why this doesn't really matter is that Tad Williams can write well and construct a tight, well plotted story.

One criticism I would have of the more famous fantasy rival is that it drags on and on, getting more and more bogged down in plot minutiae rather than relay the big issues as well, like the non human threat. The difference with Tad William's series is that he not only focuses on point of view characters and their stories but also the big picture.....plus it's shorter.

Overall this is a very enjoyable, exciting fantasy series that I would have no problems recommending. It's on my top ten list.


Shake Hands With The Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda
Shake Hands With The Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda
by Romeo Dallaire
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.38

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a journalistic portrayal of the genocide..., 31 Aug. 2012
It's difficult to criticise a book like this. The subject matter is so important and Dallaire's testimony as a witness to the genocide is a vital document.

The point to make is that this book is not a journalistic analysis of the genocide Dallaire is documenting his own experience of UN and Rwandan political and military chicanery and his desperate negotiations with Rwandan politicians, soldiers and thugs as the country slides into hell. So there are quite a lot of fairly tedious passages describing military and diplomatic wrangling. He also uses a lot of acronyms so you find yourself flicking to the glossary to remind yourself of who is what.

My overall summary of the book is a desperate sense of sorrow for Dallaire and his almost (in hindsight of course) naive faith in continual negotiations with two faced homicidal maniacs.


A History of the English-Speaking Peoples since 1900
A History of the English-Speaking Peoples since 1900
by Andrew Roberts
Edition: Hardcover

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Important revisionist history, 21 Aug. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It shows how far we have gone down the road of guilt when histories of this type are called "revisionist", surely they should be mainstream!! Anyhow, this book is a fantastic encyclopaedia of potted examples showing how the English speaking world preserved, protected and expanded liberal democracy, free market capitalism, scientific enquiry, technology and military prowess since 1900. The evidence is overwhelming that English speakers have been Civilisation's last, great hope and in the main have succeeded when matched against the totalitarian onslaught and their apologists.

As Niall Ferguson's latest book Civilisation shows, in the main, English speaking peoples created and protected this civilisation, not due to any racial superiority, but the coalescence of several factors such as competition, science, democracy, medicine, consumerism and the work ethic. Roberts adds that in the realpolitik of international relations, for English speaking nations to survive they need to demonstrate their prestige on the world stage; otherwise rival nations fill the vacuum. Thus we have had D day, and the Iraq war to name but a few.

Coming from a Left wing background I found Roberts's book a political revelation, having slowly become aware that much of the left/liberal world view is ideologically bankrupt and in some cases nihilistic.

Some reviewers have vented about Robert's views concerning Ireland. He puts forward the idea that Irish anti British republicanism and the actions of the Irish Republic has negated their being included as part of the English speaking peoples. Having read the book (which I doubt a lot of reviewers have) Roberts certainly hasn't expressed any prejudiced views against the Irish as a people, but he certainly has a negative view of the Irish republican establishment which has dominated political discourse in Ireland before and since independence. There are plenty of Irish political observers who would generally agree with Roberts assertions, such as Roy Foster, Kevin Myers and Conor Cruise O'Brien that there is a malign anti English, anti Protestant feeling that has distorted Irish political decision making over the years. Indeed I would put forward the theory that Irish republicanism has been bad for Ireland, bad for its economy, bad for its politics and bad for its culture. Don't misunderstand, there is a place for Irish patriotism, Irish republicanism is different.

I fear that there are siren songs against the ideas of the English speaking world. There is a creeping cynicism in popular culture that laughs at everything, but offers nothing in replacement. A relativism which takes into account all views, but makes no conclusions or value judgements. A culture of ignorance in which those of no talent rise to the top, and the clueless are asked for their views. Scientific analysis and research seems to go through a media lens which distorts, trivialises and sensationalises serious issues. These trends are pushed and promoted by an elite looking for cheap popularity, whilst undermining self confidence, initiative and clarity.

We need to read this book to reacquaint ourselves with what makes a successful society, what is worth defending and who are enemies are. Does Roberts get it all right?, no of course he doesn't coming from the right there are some things he mentions that I might not agree with, but overall this was a great "revisionist" read.


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