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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 7 June 2014
It makes a change to read a dystopian book set in the UK it was nice to know some of the places.I loved it, I thought the main characters were great and there were plenty of twists and turns very exciting.I want to read more.
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on 4 May 2014
Fantastic book which I didn't want to end. A real thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seats. I really want to find out what happens to the characters. Definitely worth reading Enjoy!
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on 27 October 2014
"FLARE" by Paul Grzegorzek - is far more than a Science Fiction novel. I would classify it more as a "Prophecy". I myself an an author with a 336 page SF Book published on amazon, and so I should know! Though one refrains from spoilers, in this outstanding and well researched thriller, there is some activity in the Corona of the Sun, which ejects a CME that is so powerful that it smashes through the Earths magnetic umbrella and hits the earth head on. Solar Flares are what cause the 'Northern Lights' which are beautiful to look at and considered harmless except to cause slight disruptions in radio emissions. But the narration of what happens to Malcolm a simple journalist when he receives repeated calls from an astronomer friend to meet him and finally goes, is really astounding and perhaps will one day have the entire population of the Earth preparing to go "Back to the Basics" when there was no electricity or radio. This is an amazing novel which is prophetic in every way, as mankind if warned of the consequences of playing with nature, the greed of powerful men who are ready to go to any length to exploit even planetary disasters to meet their own ends. The story is well developed, has very believable characters, tons of thrills and excitement, smoothly flows from one scene to another and deserves a 5 Star in every area. Highly recommended for everyone who knows how to read, and specially for the heads of all Governments across the globe!
Deepak Menon (Author)
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on 25 July 2014
I picked this up on one of my freebie hunts through the kindle section. Last night I decided that it would be a good novel to curl up with as I had no real investment in it and it seemed right for bed time reading. It turned out to be one of those books that was hard to put down.
Although I picked up a couple of spelling errors, they didn't detract from the fact that the story hooked me. One of the brilliant things was realising that it's set in Britain, there is something both wonderful and eerie about reading post apocalyptic settings woven around places you know.
The pace was just about right, the action may not have been constant but that only meant it didn't feel forced. The characters are believable and have their flaws, on the other hand, you can see them growing and realising that this version of the world requires new and strange skills.
I admit, the governmental frictions felt a little derivative but they work within the setting and the plot. I would definitely be interested to read more if this continues as a series.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 21 February 2014
Okay I have to start by being completely honest. When I read the synopsis I made a very hasty judgement. I decided that seeing as I didn’t really read this sort of thing, I wouldn’t enjoy it. I mean, yes, I have managed to sit through a couple of what I like to call Disaster Movies; and yes they were okay. That’s just it though, they were okay. So the thought of reading the equivalent didn’t fill me with joy. However, after reading the first few chapters I realised that the book was not only bloody good, I realised there wasn’t a hope in hell of me actually putting the damn thing down?

Malcolm King (known as Malc) is a journalist who in the first few chapters receives a phone call from his friend Jerry. Jerry is an astrophysicist and he is convinced that something bad is going to happen involving a solar flare. Malc refuses to believe it at first and within a matter of hours, he realises that he should have listened. Before he knows it, Malc is living ion a world where everything he knows is gone. The one problem he has is that he is currently living in the South of England and his young daughter is living in Manchester. He decided then and there that no matter what it takes, he will reach her.

Well in a nutshell as soon as Malc starts his travels the book ratchets up a gear and the reader gets to see just what might happen in the event of a catastrophic event? I know it sounds melodramatic, but at some point you must have wondered what would happen if everything electronic just stopped working; I know I have! The great thing about this book is that although the subject matter may seem extreme, there is always an element of what-ifs in it. The other characters that come into this book also made it that little bit more exciting.

Malc meets Emily and her family, and soon realises that if anyone can help him Emily is it. She is a tough nut soldier and her attitude is what makes their journey even more exciting. At literally every turn there is another threat that has to be dealt with differently. If I’m honest there is a part of this book that kind of gave me the creeps, because I can imagine this country and the people living here becoming everything this book describes (the recent riots proved that!). I raced through the book in one day and by the time I got to the end I was desperate to know what happened next. I was so shocked that I loved it so much, not because of the author (his previous Crime novels are great), but the synopsis just didn’t sound like my cup of tea. Thankfully, I didn’t think about it and ended up reading an absolutely brilliant book. I can only hope that Paul gets his arse in gear and hurries up with the sequel! Even if you don’t think you like the sound of it, give it a go; I think you’ll enjoy it (and for £2 on Kindle it’s a bargain too!!
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on 19 March 2014
I thought that this book was good, the story was refreshing for a post apocalypse flick, and the characters believable. I do however feel the plot was lacking in depth and detail in alot of places, time lapses and it ending up all working out, was a bit too cliche and fairy tale compared to the post apocalypse books I usually read. All in all I'd give the book three and a half stars, but cant so three will have to do. It is a good read to pass the time and definitely promised a very different and interesting premise to the fall of civilisation, I just think the story lacked in both depth and description throughout. Just my two cents
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on 28 July 2014
As dramatic solar flares destroy modern technology and civilisation crumbles, journalist Malcolm King living near Brighton desperately tries to reach his young daughter Melody in Manchester. The story follows his journey through a declining landscape of burning cities and savage people. But as Malcolm discovers if he’s going to survive he must become as brutal as the other survivors left behind. By focusing on the people remaining the novel remains grounded and plausible. This is not about Martians, Zombies or Terminators but more about human behaviour and reaction to a catastrophe. Flare is very readable and thought provoking with a slow burning intensity. Paul Grzegorzek has created a modern novel with a very British heart, reminiscent of The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham, which I would recommend to any curious reader. Coincidently I first came across Paul Grzegorzek in eBook compilations True Brit Grit and Action Pulse Pounding Tales Volume One, he is also the author of the well received The Follow.
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on 24 April 2014
I really liked this. I have read a lot of post apocalyptic fiction and this is definitely one of the best ones out there.

It is nice to sometimes read a different, more human and believable take on what a massive event might do to the population at large rather than about another horde of undead trying to eat brains.

I found the premise very plausible, there were no over the top action sequences that defied belief, and the characters had you rooting for them all the way.

The writing style was crisp and to the point, without unnecessary description, but on the other hand it painted the picture of a collapsing society very nicely. It is also good to have a British take on things too.

I am hoping for a follow up as I think there are more tales to be told from this world. Excellent book; highly recommended.
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on 26 April 2014
Malcolm King is a journalist living in trendy Hove on the south coast of England. His days are taken up with video meetings and research on the internet while he writes articles for magazines around the world. When a solar flare of unprecedented magnitude hits the Earth, effectively hurling us back to the stone age in a matter of hours, Malc is thrust into a terrifying new world as he travels the length of the country to find his young daughter.
Faced with difficult choices at every turn, Malc draws his strength from those around him; Emily, a tough, no-nonsense soldier with a soft spot for lost causes and Jerry, a disgraced astrophysicist who may be the only person left who understands what's happening with the sun. With their help, he must struggle to answer the ultimate question. What won't he do to get his daughter back?

What actually caught and held me was Grzegorzek's protagonist, Malc. He is thoroughly believable as an ordinary chap caught up in a series of unthinkable, violent adventures as he is yanked from his everyday existence with a suddenness that snares us into the story faster than you can say aurora borealis. Malc is decently normal, without an ounce of testosterone-driven anything - which I found immensely refreshing and utterly realistic. He's a magazine journalist - why wouldn't he vomit at the sight of his first dead bodies? I also enjoyed the fact that his female companion, Emily, is an ex-soldier with the REME. So she is the one who can handle herself when it all kicks off.

In addition to having a believable and appealing protagonist, Grzegorzek is adept at spinning an engrossing tale with plenty of incident. This doesn't read like a first novel, and when I looked him up, I discovered that he has two other crime novels published with Amazon. So while the early parts of the book were reasonably familiar - once Malc sets off to rescue his daughter, Melody, I found myself right alongside for the ride. Grzegorzek has a knack for delivering interesting, believable characters in a few short sentences and Malc encounters some real slimeballs, along with some remarkable kindness. There are also politicians - guess whereabouts they come on the sliding scale of morality?

Overall, this is an entertaining, well written thriller that bounces along and is yet another demonstration of the strength of talent out there in the Indie market. Any niggles? The formatting is a bit peelie-wallie in places - the new chapters turned up in a different position on the page almost every time. But that is a relatively easy fix and certainly wasn't going to stop me finding out what happens next. I understand that there is going to be sequel - which I'm certainly going to track down when it comes available. Apocalyptic science fiction is back on my reading list, again, thanks to Flare...
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 30 May 2016
A solar flare of unprecedented strength has taken out all electrical equipment and anything with a microchip. Everything journalist Malc King uses in his job is fried. His friend, discredited scientist Jerry, knew it was about to happen and warned Malc who rang his eleven year-old daughter just as the power went out. He has no faith in his divorce wife and promises to come for her. He’s near the south coast and she’s on the outskirts of Manchester. This book asks some searching questions about the stability of society. How long will it be before law and order breaks down and people behave like animals? Will those who decide to restore the basics of civilised living necessarily be the right people? And how much would you do to protect and save your own child?

I enjoy most post-apocalyptic stories and this was no exception. I’m not sure society would have broken down quite as quickly as in this book. I found Malc to be a bit of an anti-hero. His judgement wasn’t always sound and he definitely wasn’t brave. He did, however, collect a strong female sidekick on the journey. It was good to see Emily being decisive and brave, but still shocked and hurt by what’s happening to their world. I found the story gripping and interesting but more attention to editing, in particular to punctuation, would have given it another star from me.
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