Jamie Marriage

Jamie Marriage is an Australian science fiction writer who lives Sydney. He has a keen interest in the cyberpunk genre and Japan.

robinson_the last great heroThe Age of Heroes, first of Scott Robinson’s newest series The Last Great Hero, is a refreshing look at the fantasy hero genre.

Centered around Rawk — a classic-styled hero resisting both retirement and death, which has taken so many of his competition — who is living the life of a legend but with little to do when word spreads of new threats to his community. Creatures long thought banished or extinct have returned, and as the last living hero in the land it naturally falls to Rawk to slay them. So despite aching back and limbs, feelings of irrelevance, and constant reminders of his advanced years, Rawk proceeds to the forest edge to face another in a long life of challenges, unaware of greater threats ahead.

Robinson does well to diverge from the traditional sword and sorcery of classic fantasy. Rawk is deeply flawed with decades of prejudice and insecurities exposed though action and inaction, bringing forth a depth of character seldom seen in the genre.

While not an overly long read, The Age of Heroes manages to engage in plenty of action, and create strong characters and a compelling narrative. Settings are detailed without being dense, and dialogue does well to convey the feelings of bit-players without the usual dramatic boasting of most bare-chested barbarians.

The Age of Heroes is a great, quick read by a talented author. Well worth picking up if you like your classic fantasy with a little extra depth.

Available at :

http://www.amazon.com/Heroes-Last-Great-Hero-Book-ebook/dp/B00PK18VR8/

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/492437

reviewed by Jamie Marriage

Set upon islands floating above a forsaken world, The Brightest Light, by Scott J. Robinson, is a classic action adventure story with plenty of surprises. Within a fast paced world of organized crime and seemingly endless chaos; Robinson has set the stage for a twisted tale of violence and redemption.

The Brightest Light is the first novel I’ve been able to comfortably categorize as ‘CrystalPunk’. Many fascinating universes exist within speculative fiction; some are cybernetic, some are steam or clockwork powered, and some breath diesel fumes, but the Brightest Light is the one of the few that stand tall and proudly proclaim “Because… crystals”. This is a great thing. By establishing a technological basis for his work, Robinson has been able to fully explore culture and intrigue without delving into the heady waters of scientific detail that often detracts from the action. And action, there is a plenty. Barely a chapter passes between gun-fights, back-alley chases or poisonous political corruption. This makes for a novel difficult to put down.

Story and character design is solid and consistent. Kade, an criminal turned honest citizen after his last job turned bad, is called back after a decade of exile, for one more big theft. Unbeknownst to him his criminal revival is less to bring him back to the fold of the Skyway men, and more to frame him for an even more important crime. Every island he travels to with his police officer companion, Lana, brings forth new challenges and dangers, but also new opportunities. Morals and money are loose in the Skylands. Kade is reminded of this when he encounters crooked police, corrupt politicians and plenty of everyday people happy to take him for all he’s got, while he’s attempting to clear his name and take back something that could put all the skylands at risk.

The Brightest Light is a heady and enjoyable read from cover-to-cover, at worst suffering for its frenetic pace, but made up for with lashings of strong characters, imaginative scenes, and well choreographed action.

Kindle link for US http://www.amazon.com/Brightest-Light-Scott-J-Robinson-ebook/dp/B007XCWAEW/
Kindle link for Aus http://www.amazon.com.au/The-Brightest-Light-Scott-Robinson-ebook/dp/B007XCWAEW/ Paperback Link for amazon http://www.amazon.com/The-Brightest-Light-Scott-Robinson/dp/1479393185/

Paper back link for Book Depository http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Brightest-Light-Scott-J-Robinson/9781479393183

 

Awards

davitt-award  aurealis-award   logo-curtin-university

Peacemaker - Aurealis Award
Best Science Fiction Novel 2014

Curtin University Distinguished Alumni Award 2014

Transformation Space - Aurealis Award
 Best Science Fiction Novel 2010

Sharp Shooter - Davitt Award
Best Crime Novel 2009 (Sisters in Crime Australia) 

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