The Black Lo­tus

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Reviews - Teenage mu­tant ninja hu­mans

This month’s big­gest pa­per­back is Stephen King’s RE­VIVAL ( 10 Septem­ber, Hod­der). Another decadess­pan­ning fic­tional bi­og­ra­phy, it cen­tres on a rock gui­tarist, weav­ing in the tale of an elec­tric­i­ty­ob­sessed ex- Rev­erend who cre­ates a heal­ing min­istry. We said: “The char­ac­ters are great, and the pac­ing and plot­ting more eco­nom­i­cal than many re­cent King nov­els… but the sud­den gear change to cos­mic, apoc­a­lyp­tic goth­dom at the fi­nale feels like a cheap, gaudy par­lour trick.” The first of two vol­umes that’ll com­plete Peter F Hamil­ton’s Com­mon­wealth saga, THE ABYSS BE­YOND DREAMS ( , 27 Au­gust, Tor) fea­tures the Void, a mys­te­ri­ous ob­ject re­sem­bling a mas­sive black hole lo­cated at the cen­tre of the Milky Way, and some vis­ceral hor­ror – in­clud­ing alien eggs that ab­sorb hu­man bod­ies, Body Snatchers- style. Our ver­dict: “hugely en­joy­able… Hamil­ton’s so good at main­tain­ing for­ward mo­men­tum even as he shifts per­spec­tives or throws in an un­ex­pected twist.” Fan­tasy au­thor Steven Erik­son’s latest sees him hav­ing a stab at SF: WILL­FUL CHILD ( 27 Au­gust, Ban­tam) is a Star Trek spoof, fea­tur­ing char­ac­ters like a sword­wield­ing of­fi­cer called Zulu. Sadly, our re­viewer wasn’t im­pressed: “Erik­son is no Dou­glas Adams… If Will­ful Child was fan­fic found in the nether re­gions of self- pub­lish­ing you’d be rea­son­ably amused. But from a ma­jor au­thor it feels a lit­tle em­bar­rass­ing.”

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