Dark As Angels: romping, stomping near-future noir

This dystopian thriller gets going with a high-tech FUBAR shoot-out that rattles your synapses, and hurtles through the subsequent story with frantic action that barely lets up. Blink not, or you’ll miss something special. Imagine something like Ken MacLeod’s political future-thrillers, mixed with the ultra-tech of Richard Morgan’s Altered Carbon universe. In this reality, England…

Rapid Reviews: murder and mystery; future and history

These crime-thrillers and espionage adventures skim across an entire century, from 1941 through to sometime quite soon. Step this way for convoys under wolf pack attack; historic artworks being stolen; a serial killer being stalked, an intro to an unusual assassin and murder on Mars. In space, no one can hear you scream… The Interrogator…

Contraception: death by parenthood

This speculative thriller is set 50 years away, in a world of ‘what if?’, when the global population has reached catastrophic proportions. Out of endless war and revolutions arose a new universal policy, one which brings out the worst in people so they can create a better world. When Li Hu and his wife want…

The Cost of Living: what price new life?

This is a short excursion into a ‘what if?’ world, one where lifespans are massively extended and drastic action has been taken to curtail global population. In this near future, every new life must be balanced by a death. There’s a strict ‘one in, one out’ policy which is clinically enforced at all levels of…

Crime Time: new books and recommended reads

  The autumn reading season delivers Nordic noir, cosy crime, sci-fi thrillers, feisty female detectives, murder in the Outback and sleaze in Sicily: detectives, vendettas, hardboiled heroes and even some gore-splattered horror. Oh, and the George Smiley spy story which everyone’s been patiently waiting for… A LEGACY OF SPIES by John Le Carre A throwback…

The X-Files: ‘This is how I like my Mulder’

Ten more episodes of The X-Files will be filmed in 2017, and are scheduled to be aired at the end of the year / beginning of 2018. So this seems like the perfect moment to look at Season 10, aka X-Files X. The revived series came in for mixed reviews from the professional critics but……

Revenger: predictable space pirates

This futuristic romp was badly marketed to me, a mature adult with a taste for hard-science speculative fiction. I found it listed as straight sci-fi but Revenger slots neatly into the YA ‘coming of age’ genre alongside Hunger Games, Divergent, et al. It pushes back no boundaries and instead covers all the common ground so…