threemonkeys: (Waxlion)
A few years back, I was fan guest at the NZ natcon. That honour comes with the obligation to give a speech. I did a presentation of my life as a series of books - illustrated with images of the covers. This blog is a kind of continuation of that. I mark my life by recording the books that I read. Entries are not reviews, they are signposts along my life. I mention this because at the end of that presentation a chap came up and introduced himself as Russell Kirkpatrick. Luckily we had something to talk about because I had quite recently read his first novel and even better I had liked the fantasy adventure story told across a really stunning work of world building.

Fast forward to the present and I have just finished Path of Revenge, Russell's fourth novel and the first in his new Husk series. A book tantalisingly dedicated "To the Down-under speculative fiction community." Like the first and intervening books it tells its story as the characters traverse the landscape. This time three story streams from the three lobes of the landmass of Russell's world. Where you see a real difference from the first book is the development of his general writing skills. The characters are more vividly drawn while plot structure and pacing are tighter and more polished. In fact the whole thing just seems more detailed and polished - and remember that I liked the first one. It is pretty compelling stuff. I just want to read the next one. Russell, I know you are reading this - come on where is it - I want to read it now.

Oh and for those of you out there who know Russell and haven't read this book yet, I offer you this quote "Phemanderac had been commissioned to write an official history of the Falthian War, but in sixty years had not finished it. Afraid to insult or belittle any of his friends, he'd spent far too long on the maps."


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