Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

cover_defeated_fullA great new review of Quentin S Crisp’s collection Defeated Dogs.

http://www.britishfantasysociety.org/reviews/defeated-dogs-by-quentin-s-crisp-book-review/

“Quentin S. Crisp delights, informs, disturbs and confuses in equal measure. Really, what more could a discerning reader ask for?”

Thanks to Craig Lockley for this one!

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An absolute rave review of Alexander Zelenyj’s Songs for the Lost from Rising Shadow – this book definitely seems to be having an effect on those who read it.  Maybe you will be next?  :-)  Click through to http://www.eibonvalepress.co.uk to try this strong medicine for yourself!

“Every once in a while – if you’re lucky – you’ll come across a short story collection that is so unique and stunning that it’ll make you marvel at its contents. Alexander Zelenyj’s Songs for the Lost is such a collection. It’s an exceptionally good and original collection of speculative fiction stories that are marked by intelligent storytelling, supernatural elements and beautiful and eloquent literary prose.”

http://www.risingshadow.net/articles/433-a-review-of-alexander-zelenyj-s-songs-for-the-lost

The first review in of Alexander Zelenyj’s Ballads to the Burning Twins is up.

Though it was technically a companion piece to Songs for the Lost, this is indeed Eibonvale’s first ever poetry collection available for general release, so a bit of a landmark!  Click here to have a read.

http://hellnotes.com/ballads-to-the-burning-twins-the-complete-song-lyrics-of-the-deathray-bradburys-book-reivew

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Our first review of ‘Caledonia Dreamin’ came in last week, Eibonvale’s groundbreaking anthology of dark fiction of Scottish descent exploring some of the wonderful words afforded us by the Scots dialect. That our first reviewer’s first language is not even English, never mind Scots, is just one reason for us to take our hats off to her. Margrét Helgadóttir writes:

“These tales are weird, terrifying, dark, beautiful, disturbing and funny. It was quite a thought-provoking read. Some of these stories are amongst the best stories I have read for quite a while and I recommend the book for not only the lovers of Scotland, the Scots language or linguistics in general, but for all fans of the weird and unexplainable, or people who enjoys plain good writing…

…There is a sincere voice throughout Caledonia Dreamin’, either the characters speak directly to you or whisper to you as if from the corner of a bizarre dream. In hindsight I think that this is the main reason why I spent such a long time reading this book. It’s such a challenging voice, difficult to not be moved or troubled by. And I can’t help but wonder if it’s the Scottish language that creates this feeling of the sincere and true voice. The editors have done a fine job creating this flow and expression.”
Read Margrét’s review in full over at the Future Fire review site.

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Pauline Masurel has handed in a rave review of Eibonvale’s railway anthology ‘Rustblind and Silverbight’ over at The Short Review website. Pauline writes:

“There are twenty-four stories in this chunky book, which is billed as A Slipstream Anthology of Railway Stories. Many of the stories take liberties with reality, slipping effortlessly into fantastic worlds, but many of them are also quite strongly rooted in reality. This seems appropriate, given that railways are part of the edgelands, borderline places that divide landscapes. The book isn’t a cyberpunk, geek-fest of futuristic fiction but more of an insidious virus eating away at veracity. If ‘strangeness’ is the primary defining feature of slipstream literature then this collection has it by the carriage-load…

…This book may not be the ideal Christmas gift for a trainspotting old buffer (although it might be just the ticket if he or she has suitably open-minded, eclectic reading tastes). But I think it could induce at least a modest portion of train-appreciation in the most vehement rail-deniers. Reading this anthology I became convinced that every story should have a railway in it somewhere; it’s just that no one has realised this before. Try it out for yourself, but don’t forget to mind the gap…”

Our thanks to Pauline. Please do support her website by reading the review in full.

Automata…

Posted: November 13, 2013 by douglasthompson in An Emporium of Automata, Reviews

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Our stalwart American follower, Adam Groves of The Fright Site has posted a glowing review of Dan Watt’s extraordinary tour de force “An Emporium of Automata”. Adam comments

“A most welcome reprinting of a collection originally published in 2010 by Ex Occidente Press, who specialize in extremely expensive limited editions. For this trade paperback version Eibonvale Press provided a gorgeous cover design, but of course it’s the content that really makes this book one of Eibonvale’s finest publications to date…

D.P. Watt has a decidedly unique imagination and a love of esoteric wordplay (sample sentence: “I had not taken you for one who skulks behind the scenes to see God’s entrance debased to pure mechanism”). His writing is reminiscent of horrormeisters like Thomas Ligotti and Robert Aickman, yet it displays the verve, literary mastery and idiosyncratic worldview that denote a standalone master of the form…”

Please do check out Adam’s review in full at: http://www.fright.com/edge/AnEmporium.htm

Miss Dynamite

Posted: October 27, 2013 by douglasthompson in Miss Homicide Plays the Flute, Reviews

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Our very first review of Brendan Connell’s Miss Homicide Plays The Flute is in, and Adam Groves of The Fright Site seems to have been knocked sideways by it. Adam writes:

“Here’s how Eibonvale Press categorizes this typically atypical novel by Brendan Connell: “Fiction, Mystery/Thriller, Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror.” Content-wise it’s sold as “A relentless symphony of pleasantries and things unpleasant sketched with the inimitable style of a master’s hand.” I couldn’t have put it better myself!

…The insanity of the story is complimented by the author’s miscellany, if miscellany is even the correct term for the odd dreams, lengthy “recipes” of murderous methodology, brief glimpses of Hell (“…and the sinners suffering therein–them being fried in great pans, chopped into little bits with huge hatchets”), lengthy descriptions of the artwork the heroine admires and overall obsession with ancient Greece (evident in passages like a description of a nightclub that devolves into a highly eccentric dissertation on Greek dance). Such things may qualify as deviations from the main narrative, or perhaps it’s the other way around. Either way this is a fascinating oddity that resembles nothing so much as itself.”

Thanks, Adam!

Rustblinder…

Posted: October 27, 2013 by douglasthompson in News, Reviews, Rustblind and Silverbright

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Nick Jackson (author of The Secret Life Of The Panda) has given Rustblind and Silverbright are rattling good thumbs-up, writing over at the reviews section of the most excellent Sein Und Werden magazine. Nick writes:

“Taking its title from a story by Wolfgang Borchert, this anthology is a shrine to the railway in all its manifestations and draws as much on the iconic status of these iron behemoths as on the collective psyche of railway buffs that worship them. There’s not a train spotter in sight and there are no pieces about the Orient Express, the Trans-Siberian railway or any of the world’s other great train lines but to my mind the anthology is all the better for it, looking beyond these clichéd images of railways at what makes them such lasting objects of fascination. Railways feature as subjects of obsession or in the form of a developing fanaticism into which the characters are slowly, sometimes unwillingly, drawn…

…I found this a hugely enjoyable collection and whatever their individual merits, there’s a synchronicity which makes the stories ping off each other in a very satisfying way. David Rix has brought together a bunch of stylistically disparate stories and, though I have my favourites, I think the weaker are improved by their placement in the anthology. The stylistic excesses of several gave an astringent edge to the deadpan delivery of others.”

Please do read the review in full, because Nick seems to have taken the time review almost every single story in a decent amount of detail, which is quite a feat. Cheers, dude.

Leaves on the line…

Posted: September 19, 2013 by douglasthompson in News, Reviews, Rustblind and Silverbright, Uncategorized

Rustblind 5-extractOops… looks like my brain has been so overworked and understaffed that it neglected to mention one of our recent reviews. Not to worry, I’ll make it up to you now with an endless string of apologies announced over a deafening tannoy system. The great Sami Airola of the Rising Shadow website has written glowingly of Rustblind and Silverbright, and in considerable depth, giving it 5-out-of-5 stars and describing it as one of the best anthologies of the year. Sami writes:

“…I liked all the stories in this anthology, so it’s difficult for me to choose my favourite stories, but if I had to pick a few stories, I’d probably pick these stories: Nina Allan’s Vivian Guppy and the Brighton Belle, Andrew Hook’s Tetsudo Fan, Rhys Hughes’ The Path of Garden Forks, Joel Lane’s The Last Train, Allen Ashley’s On the Level, Daniella Geary’s Death Trains of Durdensk, Jet McDonald’s The Engineered Soul, Steve Rasnic Tem’s Escape on a Train, Danny Rhodes’ The Cuts, Christopher Harman’s Sleepers, Steven Pirie’s Not All Trains Crash, Matt Joiner and Rosanne Rabinowitz’s The Turning Track, and Douglas Thompson’s Sunday Relatives. All of these stories (and also the ones that aren’t mentioned here) are worth reading and praising.

I dare say that Rustblind and Silverbright is the most versatile speculative fiction anthology of the year. Some of these stories are touching and beautiful while others are weird, shocking and disturbing, so there’s something for everybody in this anthology. This anthology will be of interest to both experienced readers and newcomers, because it contains diverse stories that have plenty of depth and atmosphere in them.

I give this unique and versatile anthology full five stars and I highly recommend it to all readers, because it contains original and fascinating speculative fiction stories about trains and railways. All the stories in Rustblind and Silverbright are fine examples of how versatile and well written speculative fiction stories can be and how much they offer to the readers in terms of depth, characterization and storytelling. If you’re thinking of reading only one anthology this year, please make sure that it is Rustblind and Silverbright, because you won’t regret reading it.”

Our thanks as ever go out to the tireless Sami Airola, Finland’s greatest export.

Arriving at Platform 3…

Posted: September 16, 2013 by douglasthompson in News, Reviews, Rustblind and Silverbright

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Charles Packer over at the Sci Fi Online/Review Graveyard website, has reviewed our railway anthology ‘Rustblind and Silverbright’ in glowing terms, giving it a spectacular 9 out of 10.

Charles writes:

“Rustblind and Silverbright is a new collection of Slipstream stories edited by David Rix and published by that excellent purveyor of quality stories, Eibonvale Press, based around the themes of trains and their stations. If you have not read any Slipstream, it is a genre of writing which has shrugged off known genre chains, pulling influences from multiple literary influence to produce something which is both unique and deliciously unpredictable…

As you can imagine with so many writers telling tales set around a single theme, there are some similarities between some of the stories, a restriction born of only having two settings. And yet not a single author failed to turn in something worth reading…

…It’s difficult to pick a favourite amongst the collection, some are creepy, Death Trains of Durdensk is able to be touching and creepy concurrently with the idea of placing the dead on a train which just travels round the tracks, which is contrasted with outright romances or rites of passage.

The collection is strongly edited and an excellent way of discovering the authors at the cutting edge of slipstream literature.”
Our sincere thanks to Mr Packer, and do remember to read his review in full here.