Tag Archives: gareth l. powell

Author Interview: James Brogden

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Today I am interviewing James Brogden author of the new supernatural thriller, The Hollow Tree.

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DJ: Hi James! Thanks for agreeing to do this interview!

For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

James Brogden: In my day job I’m an English teacher which means I am simultaneously deluded enough to believe that I can create Great Literature whilst being surrounded by so much of it on a daily basis that I know I never will. I write mostly horror and contemporary fantasy, and while I have been tempted to stray into science fiction occasionally I’m basically too lazy to make the science bit of it fit together. This is my second book for Titan and my fifth overall. I like to set my books in the Midlands, where I live. I am a cat person, a Scorpio, and I possess more lego than is reasonable for a grown man.

DJ: What is The Hollow Tree about?

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James: When Rachel Cooper loses her left hand in a boating accident, she experiences phantom pains in her missing limb, as many amputees do. But her sensations develop into an ability to touch the shadowy realm of the umbra which lies behind reality. She discovers that she can bring things through from the umbra – usually it’s just junk (things like dead leaves and bits of rubble, basically the detritus of the living world), but every time she does it she disturbs the balance between life and death and the umbra lashes back in reaction. Then she encounters a human hand, and accidentally pulls through a woman who has no memory beyond that her name is Mary, at which point hell literally breaks loose. Figures emerge from the umbra to reclaim Mary, and the only way they can be defeated is if Rachel can help Mary to figure out who she is and how she died, but the answers lie in a dark secret buried in the past of Rachel’s own family. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Gareth L. Powell

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Picture © Gemma Beynon

Today I am interviewing Gareth L. Powell, author of the new science-fiction novel, Embers of War, first book in the Embers of War trilogy.

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DJ: Hi Gareth! Welcome back again for another interview

For readers who aren’t familiar with you or may have missed our previous chat, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Gareth L. Powell: I’m a novelist. I mostly write science fiction, but I’m also trying to branch out into crime/thrillers. I’ve been lucky enough to win a BSFA Award and be a finalist for the Seiun Award in Japan. I’m the author of the novels Embers of War, Ack-Ack Macaque: The Complete Trilogy, and The Recollection, among others.

DJ: What is Embers of War about?

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Gareth: At its heart, Embers of War is the story of a group of misfit characters searching for atonement and meaning in the wake of a particularly brutal war. It’s also a story about loyalty, forgiveness, and the families we create for ourselves. And it features some insane space battles.

DJ: What were some of your influences when writing Embers of War and the trilogy?

Gareth: I wasn’t consciously channeling any particular influences while writing the books, but I’m certain books such as Nova by Samuel Delany, the entire Culture series by Iain M. Banks, and maybe Ann Leckie’s Ancillary Justice unconsciously influenced them.

DJ: Could you briefly tell us a little about your main characters? Do they have any cool quirks or habits, or any reason why readers with sympathize with them? 

Gareth: The main character is the sentient warship Trouble Dog. During the war, she was a heavy cruiser—a machine with the capacity for unimaginable destruction. Unfortunately, because part of her neural architecture runs on cloned human cells, she accidentally grew a conscience. And following a devastating war crime, she turns her back on the military and sets out to do some good in the world. However, she’s still a warship t heart and has to contend with her military conditioning and conflicted loyalties. One the one hand, she’s this incredibly powerful weapon, and on the other she’s like a confused fourteen year-old girl. Continue reading

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Author Interview: Gareth L. Powell

Picture © Gemma Beynon

Today I am interviewing Gareth L. Powell, author of the new omnibus, Ack-Ack Macaque: The Complete Trilogy, a collection of the three books in the sci-fi trilogy, Ack-Ack Macaque trilogy.

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DJ: Hey Gareth! Thanks for stopping by to do this interview!
For readers who aren’t familiar with you, could you tell us a little about yourself?

Gareth: I’ve written eight novels and two collections of short fiction. I’ve won the BSFA Award for best novel, and been a finalist for the Seiun Award in Japan. I live in Bristol, in the South West of England, and enjoy reading, tea, and the smell of bookshops.

DJ: What is the Ack-Ack Macaque trilogy about?

Gareth: Put simply, it’s an alternate history thriller in which a handful of unlikely characters set out to investigate a murder and end up having to save the world.

DJ: What were some of your influences for the Ack-Ack Macaque trilogy?

Gareth: While I was writing, I wasn’t particularly aware of any specific influence, but looking back after the fact, I’d have to say that you can definitely see traces of influence from Michael Moorcock’s Cornelius Quartet, which I read at an impressionable age, as well as work by Philip K. Dick and William Gibson.

DJ: Could you actually tell us a little about the first book in the trilogy, Ack-Ack Macaque, too? (Seeing as how this is where readers will be starting) 😛

Gareth: The first book introduces us to the setting, which is a Europe in which the UK and France agreed a political merger in the late 1950s, following an unexpected victory in Suez. The action takes place a century later, and follows former journalist Victoria Valois as she tries to discover why someone killed her ex-husband and scooped out his brain. Continue reading

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