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David Plank (West Sussex, UK)

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A Head Full Of Knives - A Supernatural Mystery
A Head Full Of Knives - A Supernatural Mystery
by Luke Smitherd
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.70

5.0 out of 5 stars Better and better!, 21 May 2014
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My new favourite. Absolutely bloody brilliant! I have no idea how Luke does it - I'm just glad I can coexist in a reality in which he does. From inexplicable beginning to mostly-all-wrapped-up ending, it had me gripped and enthralled. It's well conceptualised, excellently written and fantastically concluded. The characters are very real and identifiable (one of Luke's strong points), and the events they are thrust into are, as usual, messed up beyond all belief. I'm glad I don't live in one of Luke's books, but I'm exceedingly glad that I can read them!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 26, 2014 4:30 PM BST


New-mankind: Act 1: Time to Leave
New-mankind: Act 1: Time to Leave
Price: £0.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A unusual and inspiring combination!, 11 May 2014
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A very interesting take on the colonisation of a new world - told using the medium of poetry! I was a bit terrified going in, not really knowing what to expect - a science-fiction story in prose? It didn't seem to be a workable union. But Andy is very clever at slowly revealing what is actually going on, and all told from the point of view of one man - the nameless protagonist. It is surprising and poignant that the whole thing is written in poetry - it gives the story more depth and makes you try to understand the hero that bit more. Which highlights his humanity and hubris to the point of being very sad for him...
There are a few twists to the tale, but nothing massively shocking or surprising. But it makes me wonder what the next instalment will be. I will definitely look forward to reading what the future of humanity holds, and how it will all be told!


Digital Dudz Frantically Moving Eyeball Shirt Xlarge
Digital Dudz Frantically Moving Eyeball Shirt Xlarge
Price: £22.02

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great costume, 2 April 2014
Such a simple and effective idea. It was a real talking point, with people trying to figure it out - or just getting freaked out by it! It takes a few seconds of preparation to get your phone in the right place, and set up correctly, then slip it on, and away you go! I found the t-shirt quality to be adequate and sturdy enough for the phone to stay in place for the entire evening. I was getting a few stretch marks around the squuare of velcro by the end of the evening, but nothing much to speak of. And a small price to pay for such an impressive look. Thoroughly recommended.


The Man On Table Ten - A Mysterious Science Fiction Tale
The Man On Table Ten - A Mysterious Science Fiction Tale
Price: £2.32

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More of the same, please!, 4 Feb. 2014
I have no idea how this man manages to come up with so many weird and wonderful plots and stories, but I really hope that he continues to do so. I am now up to date with Luke's back catalogue, and have enjoyed them all.Luke makes his characters very real and believable, and writes in a very down-to-earth way that is easy to read, but also has depth. This story is a short one, but packs a lot of punch. I had kind of twigged what was going on fairly early on in the story (which may mean, worryingly, that I am on the same wavelength as Luke!), but the execution of the plot and the way that Luke keeps explanations to a minimum (leaving the reader to fill in the blanks and try to fit what is happening with their own experiences) keeps me coming back for more (if only there WAS more!). I will definitely keep an eye on Luke's writing, and hope that he keeps raising his bar and bringing us the very best of Weird Fiction (if that isn't a category, it bloody well should be!). Looking forward to the next one!
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 5, 2014 1:43 PM GMT


The Physics Of The Dead - A Supernatural Mystery Novel
The Physics Of The Dead - A Supernatural Mystery Novel
Price: £2.32

4.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable journey through the afterlife, 31 Jan. 2014
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I enjoyed this book a lot, and really like the style of writing that engages the reader. The character are all very well-realised as well, and Smitherd's character voices are always distinctive and feel right. He is an author to watch, most definitely, and having read nearly everything (so far) that he has to offer, I can say that he is keeping my interest piqued for what he will come up with next. No pressure, Luke!

I have this one four stars (all of his other books have received five stars from me so far), because I found myself struggling at times to figure out what the heck was going on. Luke does a very good job at trying to ease the reader into the rather unusual situation to protagonists find themselves in, but it is so bizarre that maybe it defies description on some level. And maybe that's the point? Whatever the case, I was confused at various moments throughout, which marred my enjoyment slightly.

Having said that, reading the simple everyday (albeit in a very unusual situation) interactions between Hart and Bowler was a simple joy, and Luke's writing is always fresh and imaginative. Please keep writing, Luke. I am so looking forward to the next one!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 31, 2014 5:31 PM GMT


The Stone Man - A Science Fiction Thriller
The Stone Man - A Science Fiction Thriller
Price: £2.32

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not your typical sci-fi., 16 Jan. 2014
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I'm a 'crunchy' sci-fi lover, and I love my aliens to be inscrutable. I think that not many authors do this well, and Luke is, thankfully, one of this guys...

Fantastic book. I love the sense of mystery coupled with the impending doom. The two main characters were likeable (mainly) and real. They behaved how you might imagine reacting in situations like the ones they find themselves in. And the scope of the story is huge! What it must have been like to consider the implications of this actually happening. Very very well-realised and very 'textual' - it felt good! I loved it!
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 20, 2014 11:50 PM GMT


The End - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 4)
The End - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 4)
Price: £1.79

5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected and disturbing, 2 Jan. 2014
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It was a hell of a journey, but I have to say that Luke pulled it out of the bag for me. I was puzzled and excited in equal measure to see what he would present in this final part of this great story, and I was not disappointed. I won't tell you anything about the story, but I will say that all my fears of a good story ruined by a rubbish or lacklustre ending were unfounded. Luke obviously has a very fertile imagination, and has thrown me a loop several times during this book. The final instalment was something that I enjoyed as much as the other parts (it helped that this part was the same length as the first three parts put together - I think the story ran away with him!). A very good book when taken as a whole, and I look forward to reading his other novels and stories as they come out.


The Other Places - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 3)
The Other Places - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 3)
Price: £1.79

5.0 out of 5 stars Oh, Luke, you tease you!, 2 Jan. 2014
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I am so glad I read this book once all of the parts had been published. This instalment has a hell of a cliffhanger to it, and I don't think I would have been able to wait for Smitherd to write the next one. I would have burst! Just when you think you're getting a handle on Minnie and Charlie's new world ... well, I shouldn't say any more than that. I have enjoyed this series immensely, and this is my favourite part of them all. Go and read it - become a Luke Smitherd fan (we are known as Smithereens). You deserve it.


The Woman In The Night - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 2)
The Woman In The Night - A Paranormal Mystery (The Black Room Book 2)
Price: £1.79

5.0 out of 5 stars The plot thickens, but I remain cautious, 2 Jan. 2014
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I realise that there is a rather big spoiler in my star rating, but when reading this book in three parts as I did, I was very wary huge whole way through. It is very very well written, and drew me in very quickly and easily. The characters are just amazingly realised and REAL. The story was the issue. It seemed like an interesting premise with some intriguing quirks. But my issue was with the resolution in part four. If the exposition of the whole set-up was a complete let-down (something like "and then he woke up and found out it was all a dream!"), then the whole series could be a bust. I have finished all four parts now, but I won't give away anything (although my star rating is a slight hint). Do yourself a favour and become a Smithereen. This guy is one to follow!


In The Black Room - A Paranormal Romance
In The Black Room - A Paranormal Romance
Price: £0.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Puzzling, strange, concerning, and ultimately incredibly satisfying!, 1 Jan. 2014
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I love it when an author has an idea that is so totally out there, and runs with it in that "what would happen if...?" kind of way. I was initially reserved about the Black Room. I have often come across a really well-written piece of work that fails at the last hurdle because of a bad ending. But thankfully Luke Smitherd dodges the bullet and provides us with a really good story with an incredible conclusion. I was on the edge of my seat reading the last part, and loved every minute of this paranormal love story. I just wish I could let potential readers know what to expect, but that is my journey that you will have to make for yourself. But suffice it to say that although I sometimes worry about the kind of person who can dream this stuff up, I am very glad that he can! I cannot wait to read his other books.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 3, 2014 8:14 PM GMT


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