I'm a Geek - yes it is official!

I've got a T-shirt to prove it...

Like my T-shirts from races it's only been worn after the hard work has been done.

Gollancz publishing is one of those companies I've grown up with, as my enjoyment of SF & Fantsay books has waxed and waned over the years it's been these guy's publications more often than not that have dragged me back from a self-imposed diet of popular science and random diversions into historical fiction, crime and war novels.

So when I heard about Gollancz Geeks, through Mitch Benn (buy the albums, but definitely if you like SF with a gentle humorous twist buy Terra!!!!), I signed up - expecting to get spam... Not expecting the second or third time I volunteered to review a book to be sent it within a couple of days...

Path of Anger - Antione Rouaud was the book, and so I read it... and enjoyed it... a lot...

My review was short, as I tried desperately not to give away any of the plot:

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This book shouldn’t work, it should be yet another by the numbers fantasy book of the type that almost drove me from the genre in the 90s. It’s a sword quest, with knights with ‘force’ like powers… Good hides in the bosom of evil, and finds its not evil, just a bit cranky. The real evil doers are those who use politics for their own gain, whichever (or both) sides they’re on.  Revenge, a girl, mysterious strangers, hooded assassins… It really shouldn’t work.

But it does.

The non-linear story telling makes sense, most of the emotions feel real, the action scenes roll through well and you care about the characters.  It also manages to gently insert sections on the importance of tolerance, literacy, gender and sexuality equality; without making it heavy, but making its points well. That’s good storytelling and is something that comes through the translation from the French, and makes me want to know about the adventures of Sir Frog, the sword and the book.

In summary, all the classics are there, even dragons, but in a coherent world that feels like it should work with characters that have more depths than you think they will. I ended up reading it in 2 days, always a sign of a good book for me😊
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So thank you Gollanzc, the t-shirt can now officially be worn...

(12 mile LSR tomorrow... Pasta tonight:-) )

TTFN

Paul

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