Book review: “Free-Wrench” by Joseph R. Lallo

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free wrench coverIn a world full of morbid plots and dark clouds, Joseph Lallo delivers this little silver lining of a story. Let me say this book was a fun read.

In a fictional steampunk world, plagued by a terrible environmental disaster known as the fug, the land of Caldera has isolated itself from the rest of the world to keep the pollution at bay whilst pursuing more aesthetic ideals. The protagonist, Amanita Graus, is a more unconventional and practical Calderan, who chooses a more practical profession, trading the canvas for a spanner to work with steam-powered machinery. In order to attain a cure for her mother’s terrible illness, she embarks on an adventure by boarding the “Wind Breaker” (yes, I snickered a bit), an airship, commandeered by a group of trader/smugglers from the outside who illegally sell their wares in Caldera…

Did I mention this was a fun book? Joseph Lallo tells a lighthearted steampunk story with interesting, funny characters and even an interesting little creature too. Lallo also incorporates generous helpings of humour, a well crafted setting and a great sense of adventure which all makes this a very likeable story and one I’ll gladly recommend.

I really enjoyed it.

(Click here for the amazon review, and here to buy it on amazon Kindle if you are interested)

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Short Story Review: “The Memory Lights”, by K.M. Weiland

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The Memory Lights coverSo I’ve finally found something to write about on this blog. As an aspiring author, I love stories, not just writing them, but reading them as well, so I figured I might as well review those I really like here and not just on amazon.

In anticipation of K.M. Weiland’s upcoming novel, “Storming”, I decided to read and review one of her short stories.

In “The Memory Lights”, we meet a young girl, Mary, plagued by amnesia and also a strange case of being afraid of lights (photophobia?), specifically street lights. She even goes as far as picking up rocks to throw at them.

Mary, we discover is a fingersmith (i.e. a pickpocket) who works for a man named Colin. When Colin accepts a job to break someone out of jail, tagging Mary along, she learns things about her forgotten past and about herself…

Now before I get carried away and spoil the story, let me review it.

K.M. Weiland masterfully uses 9000 words to tell a very interesting story. The setting is in Victorian London and I couldn’t help but notice the author drew at least some inspiration from Charles Dickens’ stories. (I haven’t really read Dickens myself, but just watch a film adaptation of Oliver Twist and you’ll know what I’m talking about.) The pacing, however is anything but Dickensian. It’s fast paced and it works well to create serious suspense.

Overall Miss Weiland tells an interesting, if somewhat eerie story with quite a twist at the end (not Oliver, but the plot kind). It’s always a pleasure to read the work of an accomplished and skillful writer. This is definitely a story I’ll recommend if you’re looking for a quick narrative fix.

(Click here for the amazon review and here to buy it on amazon kindle.)

Introduction

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Hi there! My name is Morné Fouché and this is my blog. I am currently a Pharmacy student, in Potchefstroom, South Africa. I am actually from George, which is about 1100 km away, but Potch has become my home away from home now as I only go home during holidays. I am also an aspiring novelist and this is what this blog is about – my experiences as a fiction writer. I plan to share things that I’ve learned about writing, talk about story ideas and maybe even host other writers on this blog. Currently I am working on a project, but progressing slowly because of the other things besides writing that I have to do. (i.e. studying etc.) Another interest that I have, is firearms and sport shooting in particular and you might find me writing something about that now and then. Above all, I am a believer in Jesus Christ, without whom, I’m nothing.

So stick around if you’re interested. Blog posts coming soon.