19 of 42 people found the following review helpful
A bit too clever, a bit too intransigent,
This review is from: Voice Of The Fire (Paperback)
I am wrting this as a dyed-in-the-wool Alan Moore fan, so I was really looking forward to enjoying this book, but I'm afraid that I didn't. He is writing about the same "magical" area of Northampton, in about 10 or 12 different short stories - some just fragments of story - each set scores of years to several centuries apart, about "famous" characters from the area's history. Presumably.
Unfortunately that's where it all falls down - you see, I live but 20-30 miles from Northampton, and I've never heard of any of the people or places or landmarks. Sorry, Alan, but the point of most of the characters and tales were completely lost on me, and on everyone else too I suspect.
Yes, the magical Alan Moore masterful writing style and characterisation was there, but there wasn't enough story to keep me enthralled, and not enough sympathy/understanding of the background characters and events to keep me intellectually interested.
Also, the first part also was 56 pages of extremely stilted "early English" spoken first person by an early caveman-type character, very difficult to read and understand, which will probably put most casual readers off. Alan should have put this part last or lost it in the middle, if indeed he felt he could not leave it out altogether, it added nothing not covered better in other chapters, and was overlong. I struggled through it - and the rest of the book - because I'm a fan and thought I'd give him the benefit of the doubt. I suspect others will not.
In summary, don't bother with this one unless you really fancy a hard slog of a read (admittedly with a well-crafted writing style with perfect capture of the characters involved) but with no real point to it, and full of detail about a place you've never heard of.
Buy Alan's Swamp Thing comic books instead and have a blast, but avoid this one.