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The Express Diaries Hardcover – Illustrated, 24 Sep 2012

4.9 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Innsmouth House Press (24 Sept. 2012)
  • ISBN-10: 3063206180
  • ISBN-13: 978-3063206183
  • Product Dimensions: 23.8 x 16.6 x 3.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,176,529 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

I would recommend this book to anyone, if only to show how writing should be done... It s a really good story, too, full of complexities and twists and a great big dollop of horror. --http://www.thehorrorzine.com/ReviewFolder/ExpressDiaries/TheExpressDiaries.html

About the Author

AUTHOR Since his late teenage years, Nick Marsh has been proud to maintain his height at a constant five feet ten inches; if only everything in life were that simple. He currently works as a veterinary surgeon in Plymouth, and on his days off he spends his time being cruel to pot plants, drinking cups of tea, and, occasionally, writing. The Express Diaries is his fourth published novel. ARTIST Eric M. Smith's drawings and paintings have appeared in comics and gaming books, including publications from Innsmouth House and Chaosium.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was lucky to be an advance reader of this book, and enjoyed it immensely. It's a novelisation of a Call of Cthulhu roleplaying campaign, and a specific group of players playing through it. Thus it draws on their gaming experiences, and the decisions that they made. The book is different from the campaign recordings, in that it presents the adventure through the diaries and other writings of the characters. This works well, and allows their personalities to come through, as well as the plot, as the players race across Europe, on the Orient Express, to try to defeat the baddies. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes an action-packed adventure. You don't need to be a roleplayer to enjoy it, and you don't need to know the original campaign. It works very well on its own. If you like Indiana Jones, or The Mummy, or similar films or books, I think you'll enjoy this book a lot.

Note that the production quality on the print edition is particularly high. It's a lovely hardback edition, with beautifully illustrated dustcover, ribbon bookmark, and a series of full-colour illustrations half-way through the book of the characters and some of the scenes they see.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was lucky to be an advance reader of this book, and enjoyed it immensely. It's a novelisation of a Call of Cthulhu roleplaying campaign, and a specific group of players playing through it. Thus it draws on their gaming experiences, and the decisions that they made. The book is different from the campaign recordings, in that it presents the adventure through the diaries and other writings of the characters. This works well, and allows their personalities to come through, as well as the plot, as the players race across Europe, on the Orient Express, to try to defeat the baddies. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes an action-packed adventure. You don't need to be a roleplayer to enjoy it, and you don't need to know the original campaign. It works very well on its own. If you like Indiana Jones, or The Mummy, or similar films or books, I think you'll enjoy this book a lot.
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Format: Hardcover
Set in 1925, Nick Marsh tells the story of a group of investigators who undertake a journey across Europe (travelling via the elegant Orient Express) to collect the pieces of a long lost statue of occult significance, The Sedefkar Simulacrum, before a hideous cult can use it for their diabolical scheme. Along the way they face dangers of a truly horrifying nature as they learn that it is not only the cult that covets the Simulacrum and that the artefact itself attracts tragedy and chaos. Told through a series of diary entries of the various characters (alongside excellent use of footnotes, annotations and illustrations), this is a very well told tale of mystery and horror that builds a splendid atmosphere of impending doom, whilst presenting truly likeable characters through touching personal and light hearted moments.

The Book has a very unique origin, being an adaptation of the Bradford Players play through of the 'Call of Cthulhu' RPG campaign 'Horror on The Orient Express'. Absolutely no knowledge of the Cthulhu Mythos or any interest in role playing is needed to thoroughly enjoy this story, but if you do have an interest in these areas then it is even more highly recommended.

A note on the hardback version of this item: The book is lovingly presented and of very high quality, with a great selection of illustrations. A truly fantastic object to own.
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Format: Hardcover
This was a very good read and such a beautiful book in its layout and presentation. From the orient express map of Europe on the inlay through the pulpy narrative and the excellent period prop illustrations to the grisly horrifying macabre finish this tale is a delight.
Settle in for some quality winter reading. The plot hurtles along faster than any Christie novel or Indy movie. Hard to believe this was based on a roleplay game that was recorded for radio.
First class. I'll be reading this again. Fans of Dracula or period pieces will live this.

Captain Laycock.
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Format: Hardcover
The history of fiction based on role-playing games is not an especially happy one, with far too many examples being little more than embellished transcripts of the game as it was played, and little thought given to the needs of the reader as opposed to the needs of the players. Too often the cracks show at every turn as inappropriate actions, dialogue and events finally overwhelm any satisfying sense of a coherent plot, the end result being at best a fun romp and at worst a surreal shambles.

Not so here. Faced with the unusual challenge of crafting a book from the audio recordings of The Bradford Players' particular take on the published "Horror on the Orient Express" adventure campaign, recordings which have been released publicly through podcasts and disc versions, Nick Marsh has put the reader first. His epistolary novel makes fine use of the form to let the different characters speak, and thus maintain the familiar group dynamic of role-playing games, without seeming to shoehorn them all into the narrative. Indeed, there have been some very hard choices made, with many cuts and changes made to the original character list and scenes. No bad thing at all, that, and perhaps the reason that this project works so well is that the author has approached it as an editor first, prepared to let go of sentiment in order to produce a better read, and then put on his writer's hat and crafted the remaining elements into something that can stand entirely apart from its gaming origin.

For the general reader with no interest in games this is a gripping and deadly race against supernatural forces in the company of a varied and sparkling collection of characters.
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