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Fans of James Treadwell’s Advent are going to be delighted with the second in the series, Anarchy.

Corporal “Goose” Maculloch of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police isn’t expecting much from her new posting: one of those back end of nowhere places where nothing ever happens. That’s until a girl who’s been accused of murder disappears from a locked cell on Goose’s watch. On top of that, something’s going funny with the internet connection …

As the world beyond begins to fail, Goose tracks the vanished girl through the wilderness of Vancouver Island.



Meanwhile in Cornwall a desolate child leaves the home that has kept her safe all her life and strikes out into the unknown.

And a mother, half-mad with grief for her lost son, sets off to find him.

There is a place where all their journeys meet.

But someone is watching the roads …

Anarchy is, like its predecessor, an absolutely outstanding read. Treadwell writes so uniquely that I can’t think of anyone to compare him to. The best I can do is to suggest taking a large pinch of Charles de Lint, drizzling liberally with Stephen King and sprinkling with just a hint of Laini Taylor. If you think that sounds tasty, you’ll love him. Promise.

Anarchy follows straight on from the end of Advent. If you’ve not read Advent yet, you definitely need to before picking this one up (and, why haven’t you read it? It’s amazing) as otherwise it’s not going to make an ounce of sense. This was actually a huge plus for me because absolutely no time was wasted in recaps or summaries, which made a nice change. It’s straight in and on with the story. I love that!

Initially, I have to confess, I missed Pendurra. Most of the first half of Anarchy is set in Northern Canada, and it’s beautifully described and a nice contrast. But, I was missing Cornwall. I’m a chronic creature of habit, and much as I did enjoy the new setting and characters, Pendurra is the heart of the series for me. Getting back there at last was like coming home. Although the circumstances in which we return are so, so different to when we left.

Treadwell’s Canadian characters are vividly imagined. I adored Jonas, and ‘Goose’ was fascinatingly complex. My only problem with her was that each time I read the name Goose my brain went ‘Top Gun’ and I could hear ‘Take my breath away’. Every single time. My 80’s obsessions aside, the female characters are written brilliantly. Really, genuinely brilliantly. Forget any of the usual crap by those supposed ‘kick-ass’ heroine devotees that both YA and the fantasy genre are so riddled with, Treadwell writes fully three dimensional heroines bursting with soulful, heartfelt, emotional complexity. It completely blows my mind that this is, technically, fiction for older teens. It’s the perfect antidote to all those YA authors who dumb everything down and write at the lowest common denominator. This, this is YA you can be stupidly proud of your kids reading. And make sure you borrow it after them.

As with Advent, pacing is going to be a bit of a love it or hate it situation here. If you like a slow burn to your fiction, and you enjoy scenes bursting with detail, characters heavy with emotion, and you like the idea of a steady build of cleverly understated menace, you will love Anarchy. And if you don’t, you have no idea what you’re missing. At times it can feel like on the surface little is happening, but there’s always so much going on the hood. Treadwell is a genius when it comes to sinking his hooks into you without you even realising it. The journey is every sbit as fantastic as the destination here.

It’s a massively emotional read. I wasn’t sure how the technological aspects to the novel would be handled, but I needn’t have worried. The effect ancient magic has on current technology is completely chilling, and brings a whole new layer of terror into the mix. It’s genuinely frightening to watch the magic spread and see the effect it has on our world. The Post Apocalyptic aspects to this were a real treat, and so, so well done.

For me, Anarchy was total a win-win situation. I did, eventually, get a dose of all my favourites from Advent, and I got some incredible new characters on incredible new journeys thrown in for good measure. I honestly can’t find a bad word to say about it. It captivated me, terrified me, delighted me, shocked me, and at one point even had me in tears.

James Treadwell should, in my humble opinion, be immediately elevated to the status of National Treasure. If you’ve never read him, go and get yourself a copy of Advent and book a couple of days off work. And if you’ve already enjoyed Advent, you should pre-order Anarchy immediately, and book an extra day off for good measure this time around.

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Posted by on June 11, 2013 in Reviews

 

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Not a review: Advent, James Treadwell

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“For centuries it has been locked away 
Lost beneath the sea 
Warded from earth, air, water, fire, spirits, thought and sight.

But now magic is rising to the world once more.

And a boy called Gavin, who thinks only that he is a city kid with parents who hate him, and knows only that he sees things no one else will believe, is boarding a train, alone, to Cornwall.

No one will be there to meet him.”

Having already read and reviewed James Treadwell’s Advent last year, I don’t want to re-post another review, but as my old site is no long accessible I thought I should at least mention afresh that it’s an unutterably beautiful read. The novel is so full of myth and detail that it stands up brilliantly to a re-read, and I wanted to refresh myself in readiness for the release of the second book in the series this summer.

Anarchy will be published early in July in the UK and Commonwealth, and in September in the US.
Prepare yourselves for gods, demons, bicycles and Canadians.

If you’ve not tried Advent, and you’re a fan of Charles De Lint, you HAVE to give this a go. It’s completely gorgeous. I believe ‘technically’ it’s YA, but it’s like no other YA you’ve read, I promise. It’s rich and challenging and full of depth, nothing like titles by the likes of Hocking or Clare. Treadwell puts them to shame. It’s really interesting to compare Advent to Wake, for example. Treadwell’s book is like a 3 course steak dinner in a beautiful ocean view restaurant, whilst Hocking’s is more your three day old Tesco value burger with a hint of dobbin around the edges. He really is in a class of his own.

I absolutely can’t recommend this highly enough. If you’re looking for something daft and fluffy, it won’t be for you, but if you want to read something truly beautiful, look no further.

 
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Posted by on February 21, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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Smoke, Bones & Witches

I have to confess, I was hoping for a much bigger haul from my once-a-year-or-so day off work and todder-less trip out. That said though, I really do need to start focusing on quality rather than quantity, so it may well have been a blessing in disguise.  My trip to Waterstones was a little frustrating due to some poor stock and some irritatingly clueless staff (doesn’t often happen, but when it does? Mind-numbingly annoying. If you’re not arsed about books, don’t work in a bookshop), and of all places I actually picked up these two in Sainsburys;

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Now, I know we’re not supposed to buy books from the Big Evils, but…Waterstones wound me up, and looking at their website right now I saved over a fiver by getting these two from the supermarket. If they want me to not do that, they need less mardy staff. Simples.

I’ve not read or written much over the last week or so, but I’m about to bury myself in fiction once more, and later this week I really need to crack on with the second chapter of my new idea for a novel. I’m a little over halfway through my second read of Advent at the moment, and it’s even more gorgeous this time around. I can’t wait for the release of the second book this summer. I’ve also got some interesting eARCs that I’ll post about soon.

For now though? time to catch up on some work 😦

 

 
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Posted by on February 19, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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MIA, & Advent

Still alive! Still writing & reading, just a bit caught up in the Epic preparations for my 3 year old’s Birthday Weekend. No one warns you of this. The party planning thing. Social, I am not. But I’m making a Herculean effort all the same.

In between bouts of banner hanging, present wrapping, party bag packing and outfit selecting, I am having a refreshingly gorgeous re-read of James Treadwell’s Advent in preparation for the release of the second book in the series this summer, yay 🙂 Always a special one for me, given that it’s the first Mass Market title I’ve been quoted on the back of. It’s my baby! If you’ve not discovered Treadwell yet, you must. Beautiful.

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Even the cover is delicious. Hodder are fast becoming my heroes.

 
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Posted by on February 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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