Alan's Profile

Writers: Alan Baker

  • Catherine Hawley

    The Lighthouse Keeper

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    Set across December and January 1900/1901 and with a parallel contemporary narrative thread too, 'The Lighthouse Keeper' begins with the true story of the mysterious disappearance of three keepers from their posting on the Flannan Isles, one of the most remote parts of the UK. The parallel stories continue as we follow the experieinces and the discoveries of thre relief lighthouse kepers sent out after the disappearance in 1900 and the modern day scientists on the island. The events in each story are an echo of the other, and the reader wants to race to the end (as I did!) to discover whether any of the characters, in either chronology, escape and how. Baker builds up the interest, atmosphere and suspence from the first pages. The book has a strong sense of place, and of time, and uses these beautifully to build the ghostly atmsophere. His prose is very neat and tidy just like a spic and span Victorian lighthouse, or the thought processes of the modern scientists, and as such is ...Set across December and January 1900/1901 and with a parallel contemporary narrative thread too, 'The Lighthouse Keeper' begins with the true story of the mysterious disappearance of three keepers from their posting on the Flannan Isles, one of the most remote parts of the UK. The parallel stories continue as we follow the experieinces and the discoveries of thre relief lighthouse kepers sent out after the disappearance in 1900 and the modern day scientists on the island. The events in each story are an echo of the other, and the reader wants to race to the end (as I did!) to discover whether any of the characters, in either chronology, escape and how. Baker builds up the interest, atmosphere and suspence from the first pages. The book has a strong sense of place, and of time, and uses these beautifully to build the ghostly atmsophere. His prose is very neat and tidy just like a spic and span Victorian lighthouse, or the thought processes of the modern scientists, and as such is perfect for the job in hand. Nothing is overplayed en route to the end in his orderly sentences; and of course the hysteria should be the reader's and the protganists,' not the narrator's, so this just as it should be. Part supernatural thriller, part convincing historical fiction and part science-fiction it is scary in the fun way of classics such as The Mysteries of Udolpho and The Woman in Black. But like The Mysteries of Udolpho the ending is a little disappointing, but in a sense that is a tribute to the strength of the build-up. The prose is so tight and the emotional build-up so strong that nothing, however bizarre, in this world, the next world or a parallel world, could be suficiently bizzare to be truly satisfying. This is a tiny quibble; The Lighthouse Keeper is a hugely enjoyable read. (more)

  • Karen MacKenzie

    The Lighthouse Keeper

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    I don't think I've got the hang of this site yet. I added you to my library, but you seem to have gone!! But I've been reading this for a few days! Anyway, I found this a good book. I had read about the history of Eilean M

  • Heidi Polk

    A tale of the otherworldly elements that exist on the fringes of our own dimension...

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    *Minor spoiler alert* I was immediately immersed in this story and ended up reading it in less than 24 hours, as I literally could not put it down... I think Baker does an absolutely wonderful job of describing the setting of the story; he skillfully creates a moody, brooding atmosphere which contributes to the overall tension of the plot and the ocean, island and lighthouse all seem as crucial to the story as the characters themselves. I found all of the characters in the journal believable, and my heart ached especially for John Milne, that strong, silent, stalwart man with strength to spare, who is driven to the very limits of what humanity might endure. While I enjoyed the narrative provided by Alec Dalemore, there were times I felt his comments (on Joseph's apparent psychological/physical deterioration, on the fate of the original three men, on the circumstances they found themselves within) were a bit repetitive. In particular crisis moments, he seemed to be a bit a...*Minor spoiler alert* I was immediately immersed in this story and ended up reading it in less than 24 hours, as I literally could not put it down... I think Baker does an absolutely wonderful job of describing the setting of the story; he skillfully creates a moody, brooding atmosphere which contributes to the overall tension of the plot and the ocean, island and lighthouse all seem as crucial to the story as the characters themselves. I found all of the characters in the journal believable, and my heart ached especially for John Milne, that strong, silent, stalwart man with strength to spare, who is driven to the very limits of what humanity might endure. While I enjoyed the narrative provided by Alec Dalemore, there were times I felt his comments (on Joseph's apparent psychological/physical deterioration, on the fate of the original three men, on the circumstances they found themselves within) were a bit repetitive. In particular crisis moments, he seemed to be a bit at a remove, as though he was distancing himself from expressing his true horror...then again, one could argue that it was his way of rationalizing that which could not be explained by any means, at least for human understanding. Also, Baker's style (as represented in Dalemore's journal) reminded me a great deal of the style used in horror/gothic tales written in the late Victorian-early Edwardian period, and so that forever endeared these portions of the book to me, regardless of any minor quibbles I may have had with some portions. My only real issue with the plot was the use of the contemporary storyline. I liked it initially, and I feel it acts as an appropriate frame for the journal...but...though the opening parts are good, as the book continues, the contemporary storyline becomes smaller and smaller. On one hand, I could accept this, as we know the contemporary characters are going to be experiencing a similar fate and so it's not as important to become invested in them (their function seems almost like the group of sexy youths in any slasher film, fodder for the carnage to come). However, because of this, I felt the end was a bit rushed and didn't conclude quite as thoroughly as it could have. It's like Dalemore's embarked on this amazing, fantastic tale, the horror and dread is growing in Rebecca et al., strange events are occurring which mirror the book's events...it's drawing you out further and further...and then, that's it, journal is done and the men are safe, and two pages later, the book is done with only a cursory description of the fate of Rebecca, Nick and others. It wasn't majorly detrimental to the book overall, but it left me feeling, like, wait, that's it?!? However, despite its abrupt ending, I loved the idea, and my imagination is definitely tingling at what fate the real men may have undergone. I think this book is an excellent read and I will most definitely be interested in seeing what else the author has to offer in the future. (more)

  • Kat Matfield

    Superb, chilling tale of the uncanny

    Unlike other readers, I didn't read this in 24 hours - but I thought of little else in the hours between reading. I'm not familiar with the work of H P Lovecraft - who provides the very apt epigraph for the novel - or anyone who writes in the same genre, but I was hooked by this supernatural horror story. I'm a great fan of Victorian ghost stories (modern or from the period) and I found much of what endears these tales to me in this novel: the gradually increasing sense of forboding and fear, the ambiguous 'hauntings' which cut across everyday events and the refusal to give a pat conclusion, which ensures the story stays with you. Baker builds suspense with an exquisite lightness of touch, and his portrayal of the human reactions to the terrifyingly unknowable events on the island is pitch perfect. Th reader - much like the lighthouse keepers - has to know what comes next, even though we know it will be appallingly strange and scary. He tells us just enough and no more to ...Unlike other readers, I didn't read this in 24 hours - but I thought of little else in the hours between reading. I'm not familiar with the work of H P Lovecraft - who provides the very apt epigraph for the novel - or anyone who writes in the same genre, but I was hooked by this supernatural horror story. I'm a great fan of Victorian ghost stories (modern or from the period) and I found much of what endears these tales to me in this novel: the gradually increasing sense of forboding and fear, the ambiguous 'hauntings' which cut across everyday events and the refusal to give a pat conclusion, which ensures the story stays with you. Baker builds suspense with an exquisite lightness of touch, and his portrayal of the human reactions to the terrifyingly unknowable events on the island is pitch perfect. Th reader - much like the lighthouse keepers - has to know what comes next, even though we know it will be appallingly strange and scary. He tells us just enough and no more to keep the slow unfolding of the story gripping, and manages the story's rhythms of normalist and weirdness with consummate skill. It's a finely done thing, as Baker manages to give such a vivid sense of the very unsual setting of the novel (and does so with great poetic beauty) that the everyday, domestic events (that are necessary to the building of tension) could seem out of place. They probably would in the hands of a lesser writer, but in this novel all these elements offset each other perfectly. Baker should also be applauded for being able to write convincingly of the men's Victorian view of events far, far beyond even modern understanding, and their Victorian attempts at interpretation. His ventriloquism is as good with a 21st century female student historian as it is with a 19th century male lighthouse keeper. While I would disagree with other reviewers about the ending - which I think was perfectly judged and a great twist (to reverse the expectations of which group would come to which sort of end) - I do think just a little more of the modern story would improve the novel. At the moment, it's just slightly off-balance, leaning towards the 19th century narrative. Perhaps just one more chapter/strange event in the present day? [A couple of nick-picking things: I was confused by the dates given on p50, and think that maybe a 15th was written where a 14th should have been, or vice versa. On p1163, it's 'write-off', not 'right-off'.] (more)

  • Gary Hurlstone

    The Lighthouse Keeper

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    A great read! This kept me good during the Easter break and, once I had started just kept going. The suspense is set up in the opening paragraphs and continues throughout the work. The true and imagined storyline works well and the descriptive first-class. I know the area and it was easy to be there in real time, shivering on the rocks and watching the birds dive and call, such evocative writing. Congratulations on a well written book that deserves to find a much bigger market. Gary

  • Harrison Abbott

    Good stuff

    Atmospheric and convincing. Follows exactly the tradition of Lovecraft et al

  • Robin Bott

    it's been a while since a book has freaked me out quite like this...

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    the novel describes two parties' experiences in relation to a true story in which 3 lighthouse keepers went missing: the 1900s 3-man relief team for this group, including a keeper who has vowed to find out what happened to the original team, and a modern day young team camping out on the same island. When Rebecca (modern girl) discovers the diary of Alec (one of the relief crew) she reads their experiences with increasing horror. The great thing about this book is the continual build up of tension through a series of increasingly disquieting events, until the books shocking climax. Once this book has hold of you, you will not want to put it down until you find out what happens. In my opinion, Alan Baker provides just the right levels of answers and mystery throughout, so that at the end I felt still intrigued but not cheated. Not typically a horror fan (other than zombies), this book was very different from anything I've read, but hugely entertaining throughout. Alan take...the novel describes two parties' experiences in relation to a true story in which 3 lighthouse keepers went missing: the 1900s 3-man relief team for this group, including a keeper who has vowed to find out what happened to the original team, and a modern day young team camping out on the same island. When Rebecca (modern girl) discovers the diary of Alec (one of the relief crew) she reads their experiences with increasing horror. The great thing about this book is the continual build up of tension through a series of increasingly disquieting events, until the books shocking climax. Once this book has hold of you, you will not want to put it down until you find out what happens. In my opinion, Alan Baker provides just the right levels of answers and mystery throughout, so that at the end I felt still intrigued but not cheated. Not typically a horror fan (other than zombies), this book was very different from anything I've read, but hugely entertaining throughout. Alan takes great delight in his descriptions of the sea, the storms, the fogs, and the numerous strange phenomena going on. He brings it all to life magnificently. (more)

  • Peter J Hill

    I was sceptical at first how Alan would manage to portray the disappearance of the keepers on Eilean Mor, as a former lighthouse keeper in the sriosity. I am pleased to say that Alan not only tells his story well but keeps true to

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    I was sceptical at first how Alan would manage to portray the disappeaarnce of the the keepers on Eilean Mor, as a former lighthouse keeper in the service I have a natural curiosity. I am pleased to say that Alan not only tells his story well but keeps true to the memory of the keepers lost and to those who had to spend those first mystifying weeks on that remote outpost after the tragedy. He weaves his own story around the known facts and interlaces it with supernatural intrigue which makes it more than a compelling read.

  • Lyndsay Hammersley

    Fantastic

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    Loved this book. Was my first read on the website and could not stop reading. Finished it in twenty four hours. Would love to try another Alan Baker book if he has written any....

  • Anna Lewis

    A cleverly crafted and chilling tale

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    I knew from reading the other reviews on this site that this was going to be rather on the scary side. Typically, I don't think I would really go for a 'supernatural thriller' but after reading this, I will definitely have to reassess that feeling! The Lighthouse Keeper kept me gripped throughout! Alan switches between the present and the past is such a way to enable you to really get under the skin of the story. His research into the Scottish Islands and lighthouses really shows through by the fact that the book is so believable, despite the incredibly bizarre happenings on the island or Eilean Mór. The story builds up wonderfully, and the descriptions of the vast ocean compared with the small barren island mean that when one of the characters confesses to being unsure whether they are suffering from claustrophobia or agoraphobia, you know exactly what they mean and can share their fear. This is a fantastic story (even better that it is based on a real mystery!) and I would def...I knew from reading the other reviews on this site that this was going to be rather on the scary side. Typically, I don't think I would really go for a 'supernatural thriller' but after reading this, I will definitely have to reassess that feeling! The Lighthouse Keeper kept me gripped throughout! Alan switches between the present and the past is such a way to enable you to really get under the skin of the story. His research into the Scottish Islands and lighthouses really shows through by the fact that the book is so believable, despite the incredibly bizarre happenings on the island or Eilean Mór. The story builds up wonderfully, and the descriptions of the vast ocean compared with the small barren island mean that when one of the characters confesses to being unsure whether they are suffering from claustrophobia or agoraphobia, you know exactly what they mean and can share their fear. This is a fantastic story (even better that it is based on a real mystery!) and I would definitely recommend it! (more)

  • Jim Annison

    In the best tradition of HPL

    'The Lighthouse Keeper' immediately caught my attention as I'm a big fan of HP Lovecraft and the other writers of that ilk. Once my copy arrived, I settled down and began to read. I was not disapointed. In fact, I ws so gripped by the unfolding narrative that I read the whole book in a single sitting. The two time frames in the book are woven together in a seamless manner with well defined characters and a palpable sense of menace pervading the whole work. Highly recommended

  • Oliver Brooks

    Deep, dark, mystery adventure

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    Thoroughly enjoyed this adventure which pits human intelligence, logic and reason from 2 time periods against the powerful forces of nature and the unknown. Alan brings both popular theist and scientific principles into the tale which provide a grounding to the strange goings on helping you to rationally explain seemingly unexplainable events. The book starts at a moderate pace, perhaps a little slow for me, but builds up the story and characters nicely. The pace speeds up through the book until at the end it is hard to put the book down and you'll probably want to put a couple of hours aside so you don't get interrupted! Events start tumbling from the pages taking you on a roller coaster ride culminating in a very fitting but unexpected and powerful ending!

  • Bryony Allen

    Engaging and really atmospheric!

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    Alan, I must thank you for a truly nice read with this book. I used to read a lot of horror books in my youth but felt that this book was going to be more subtle than pure horror, blood and guts! (that suits me more now) I loved the style in which you wrote which brought past and present together in a captivating and engaging but spooky way too. You have clearly researched all the elements which make up the novel be they historical or technical which added to the experience of being able to believe and feel what your characters were feeling throughout their time on the island in all of its weird and wonderful states in time. I found it easy to be carried along to the point that I became really immersed in the whole adventure and needed to know where things were going, this kept me reading when I should have been doing other things! This book is certainly worthy of being taken on by an independent or mainstream publisher in my opinion.

  • Mark Kilner

    Haunting and atmospheric

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    Inspired by the enduring "Flannan Isles mystery" of 1900, The Lighthouse Keeper is a haunting tale of mounting dread in the face of unspeakable "cosmic horror" in the tradition of HP Lovecraft. Alan Baker is a skilled writer and his prose has a "you are there" quality about it which draws the reader in. The sense of place is very strong, both in the descriptions of the island and the use of local terminology; clearly, a lot of research has gone into it. The historical narrative in particular is beautifully written and probably strong enough to stand on its own. Indeed, this split-timeline structure occasionally works against the flow of the book; just as you become invested in one set of characters, the plot suddenly reaches a cliffhanger and the narrative flips from the present day back to 1901 or vice versa, leaving the reader (and one set of protagonists) hanging. Also, like a lot of Lovecraft's attempts at the longer form, the gradual escalation of terror from first page to las...Inspired by the enduring "Flannan Isles mystery" of 1900, The Lighthouse Keeper is a haunting tale of mounting dread in the face of unspeakable "cosmic horror" in the tradition of HP Lovecraft. Alan Baker is a skilled writer and his prose has a "you are there" quality about it which draws the reader in. The sense of place is very strong, both in the descriptions of the island and the use of local terminology; clearly, a lot of research has gone into it. The historical narrative in particular is beautifully written and probably strong enough to stand on its own. Indeed, this split-timeline structure occasionally works against the flow of the book; just as you become invested in one set of characters, the plot suddenly reaches a cliffhanger and the narrative flips from the present day back to 1901 or vice versa, leaving the reader (and one set of protagonists) hanging. Also, like a lot of Lovecraft's attempts at the longer form, the gradual escalation of terror from first page to last meant that the book felt more like a short story or novella blown up to novel length than a genuine novel in which plot feeds character and character feeds plot. I wouldn't normally recommend applying screenwriting three-act "rules" onto a novel but - as other reviewers have commented - the resolution of both narratives felt a little abrupt compared to the amount of time spent building up to them. Those criticisms aside, The Lighthouse Keeper is a welcome reminder of the days when the horror genre was about fear of the unknown rather than gun-toting vampires. (That's not to say I don't like vampire stories, but you can have too much of a good thing.) (more)

  • Visitor

    A riveting read, and one I'd recommend.

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    The author has kept the tension high from begining to end with this well written offering. A very enjoyable read, one you will not be able to put down.

  • Emelda Brooks

    Good book, easy reading

    Its very easy to get caught up in this book! I like reading about places that exist already. very enjoyable.

  • alecia  gray

    this book sounds very interesting

    this book sounds very interesting

  • Ruth Benjamin

    This book holds the reader until the last mystical terrifying page!

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    This book holds the reader from beginning to end and it flows freely; even though the writer goes between two time zones with two different stories ; even though he deals with the same circumstances in the same place. That kind of blending must take a great deal of skill. In general the book is riveting from the first till the last moment.

  • Ross Kitson

    An intense page-turner

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    It's many years since I read any horror- in fact I think it was as a teenager reading Stephen King and a quick dabble into HP Lovecraft. It's never really appealed since. Yet I relished every page of this exquisitely written book. The style is excellent and the transition between the century old journal and the contemporary is beautifully handled in both the narrative style and the pace. Simply a great read, fizzing with tension and suspense. Can't recommend it enough.

  • S.H Raja

    Wow

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    Just reading the blurb has put this book on the top of my reading list. The genre reminds me of Susan Hills book: The Woman in black which was terrifying to read but too gripping to put down.

  • David L Atkinson

    Great style and descriptions

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    An excellent tale full of brilliant description that takes the reader to where the author needs us to go.

  • Heidi Polk

    Strange and beautiful...

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    Alan Baker excels at portraying the marvelous and terrifying circumstances occurring to those who stumble beyond the boundaries of normal. He has created a beautifully written narrative which details the extraordinary journey that a man undertakes to restore his heart, mind and soul. It is an exploration of incredible realms and alternate planes of existence and the reader is left with mouth agape at the stunning descriptions that Baker employs. *Technical comments - potential spoiler alerts* In terms of technical criticisms, two aspects in particular caught my attention. First, I noticed that, as a whole, the narrative was recounted for the most part in the past tense - in other words, the majority of it reads more like one's journal entry, so that the action seems to happen at a somewhat distanced remove, rather than the here-and-now present. This is not a huge issue for me, but it might detract from some of the action sequences for other readers. Second, within the sec...Alan Baker excels at portraying the marvelous and terrifying circumstances occurring to those who stumble beyond the boundaries of normal. He has created a beautifully written narrative which details the extraordinary journey that a man undertakes to restore his heart, mind and soul. It is an exploration of incredible realms and alternate planes of existence and the reader is left with mouth agape at the stunning descriptions that Baker employs. *Technical comments - potential spoiler alerts* In terms of technical criticisms, two aspects in particular caught my attention. First, I noticed that, as a whole, the narrative was recounted for the most part in the past tense - in other words, the majority of it reads more like one's journal entry, so that the action seems to happen at a somewhat distanced remove, rather than the here-and-now present. This is not a huge issue for me, but it might detract from some of the action sequences for other readers. Second, within the second half of the novel, there is a brief portion which takes Atalanta's point of view - I appreciated this in part, b/c the reader might gain increased understanding of particular characters and their motivations. However, this section is quite short and, since the narrative then resumes from our hero's point of view so quickly, it does not feel necessary to the story as a whole. I did like the section, but it is somewhat disconcerting to switch narrative voices so suddenly, and without apparent reason. My only other comment would be that those who are not thoroughly familiar with myths, legends, etc., might experience some frustration, feeling like there are deeper references that they are missing out on. On the other hand, I think Baker does a superb job of giving his audience all the information they need in order to thoroughly enjoy the book. Wonderful read and a testament to the abilities of a great writer... (more)

  • Chinelo Ibekwe

    Contrast; Featureless versus Pure pristine.

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    Still reading this at the moment so can't quite tell if it Fantasy?Science Fiction or otherwise. The short bursts of well-crafted sentences move the story along with it's steady flow of illuminating adjectives. Looking forward to continuing a very educative read.

  • Lyndsay Hammersley

    Great read once again.

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    Fantastic book. Again I really enjoyed the read. Got slightly confused towards the end with Alisa's explanation about theories but got the gist of it.

  • Bryony Allen

    Great story, well researched and full of suspense!

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    Finally got around to completing this and I was again pleasantly surprised by the read. I did find it slightly harder going than some of your other work due to having to get used to the eastern European names used and quick shifting between the characters, I'm not sure how you might change that to make reading easier given the setting of the story. Overall I really enjoyed the read and can see you researched the true mystery well. The pace of the book was just right for me too. That's it.

  • Visitor

    A very nice read

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    First and foremost, I have to be quite honest, I'm usually not that much of a sci-fi fan. Especially since most works have an over abundance of aliens, machines and everything that can ruin a good story. But this book is a great read. It gives you a nice introduction to the main character and his persona within the first few pages, and it still doesn't give away his whole 'story'. The dialogue is just great, something that is sadly sacrificed in most work, science fiction or other, and is fresh and a joy to read. And while I've read the first few pages of the work, I felt that an early review was more than needed for this book. I can easily see this thing being up there with 'Dune' and other great works of science fiction.

  • Anna Lewis

    An enthralling mystery with a Martian twist

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    I read a taster of this book online and then finally settled down to read the whole thing. I decided to start from the beginning again to make sure that I was fully immersed in the fascinating world that Alan Baker has created. The novel is based in 1899 in an alternative reality to our own, where humans have made contact with Mars. Lunan R'ondd, the Martian Ambassador, has died while attending a banquet in his honour at Buckingham Palace. The discovery of microscopic larvae in his breathing tank leads the authorities (and Queen Victoria herself) to suspect that he may have been assassinated. Anxious to avoid an interplanetary diplomatic incident, the Bureau of Clandestine Affairs puts its best man forward to solve the case - Thomas Blackwood. After some other strange and brutal goings on in London are suspected to be related, he joins forces with Lady Sophia Harrington from the Society for Psychical Research. Together they piece together the clues to find out who is behind the plo...I read a taster of this book online and then finally settled down to read the whole thing. I decided to start from the beginning again to make sure that I was fully immersed in the fascinating world that Alan Baker has created. The novel is based in 1899 in an alternative reality to our own, where humans have made contact with Mars. Lunan R'ondd, the Martian Ambassador, has died while attending a banquet in his honour at Buckingham Palace. The discovery of microscopic larvae in his breathing tank leads the authorities (and Queen Victoria herself) to suspect that he may have been assassinated. Anxious to avoid an interplanetary diplomatic incident, the Bureau of Clandestine Affairs puts its best man forward to solve the case - Thomas Blackwood. After some other strange and brutal goings on in London are suspected to be related, he joins forces with Lady Sophia Harrington from the Society for Psychical Research. Together they piece together the clues to find out who is behind the plot. There is a great sense of humour running throughout the book which offers plenty of nods and winks to historical events and popular culture. I particularly liked the fact that Queen Victoria (famed for, amongst other things, being our longest reigning monarch) has used Martian technology to lengthen her life even more. We also find out about the 'Greater' Exhibition (like the first one but with some Martian exhibits thrown in for good measure) and there are some fantastic references to myths and folklore. I was really impressed not only with the imagination, but with the research and care that has gone into this book to make it so engaging. The two main characters are well rounded and convincing and as the book progresses you find yourself really routing for them. I'm really looking forward to finding out what they get up to next! (more)

  • Oliver Brooks

    Fast paced, needs to be made into a film soon!

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    I loved this book, imagine a Sherlock Holmes style plot set in an alternate, intricate and well woven reality in which we're not the only sapient life in the solar system. The book has a slight comic book style and the fast pace and detailed descriptions cunjur strong imagery which made it feel more like I was watching the book than reading it. The book has a well rounded cast of characters and with bad guys with names like Lord Panic you can't go wrong. I'm not going to say much more, just read it!

  • Bryony Allen

    Sherlock Holmes meets war of the worlds!

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    I have finally got around to completing this book and for someone who doesn't really read much Sci-fi I have to say I have been pleasantly surprised by the read Alan has supplied here, it has introduced me to a new genre in style. I really enjoyed the book and it was clear to me that a good deal of research went in creating the right atmosphere throughout the story. I was really intrigued by the Cogitator devices, kind of like a Victorian Mac book that knows everything. I wish the Martian Ambassador well for the future in its publication, it certainly deserves it. Like Oli I could imagine seeing this on screen, it would certainly make great entertainment, hopefully it will fall in to the lap of a London director somewhere! Bryony

  • Bryony Allen

    An interstellar marvel

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    I finally got around to completing the book today and I have to say that Alan Baker has really done a fine job of continuing where he left off with the Martian Ambassador. The story held my interest very well (I personally love most things involving ghosts anyway) and I found myself being carried along at a good pace with superb descriptions of the environments and situations facing the familiar characters of Blackwood, de Chardin and the lovely Sophia Harrington from the first book in his series. Yet again Alan fuses the great era of the Victorian age with a different highly original and futuristic plot that sees the earth escape a gruesome possible future. Steampunk is really something new to me as a reader and I have really been impressed by Alan's take on the genre. It has certainly broadened my outlook when choosing what to read too. Alan has also clearly used his knowledge and interest of the world of science fiction to great effect in the book but in a way that that was clear...I finally got around to completing the book today and I have to say that Alan Baker has really done a fine job of continuing where he left off with the Martian Ambassador. The story held my interest very well (I personally love most things involving ghosts anyway) and I found myself being carried along at a good pace with superb descriptions of the environments and situations facing the familiar characters of Blackwood, de Chardin and the lovely Sophia Harrington from the first book in his series. Yet again Alan fuses the great era of the Victorian age with a different highly original and futuristic plot that sees the earth escape a gruesome possible future. Steampunk is really something new to me as a reader and I have really been impressed by Alan's take on the genre. It has certainly broadened my outlook when choosing what to read too. Alan has also clearly used his knowledge and interest of the world of science fiction to great effect in the book but in a way that that was clear for the non-scientific buff to understand too. I won't mention spoilers for the simple fact that, you'd be mad not to read it, especially if you have read the first, it really won't disappoint. I sincerely hope that Alan's publisher for the first book are going to be running with the second one too, they would simply be crazy to pass on it. Thanks for a great time Alan. I could really see this book being adapted for the screen or television and it's really that good in my opinion, it is certainly something I would love to watch come to life that way. Hopefully someone out there will stumble across it and take it on. On a separate note Alan, during reading I noticed what look to be 3 typo/wrong words. If I'm incorrect then accept my apologies. Please check the following; p213 8th line down - 'you' should be 'your' p267 10th line down - 'wander' should be 'wanderer' p269 8th line down - 'of' should be 'if' If you can check and confirm Alan, I'll remove the last bit of this post from the review if possible. (more)

  • Betty smith

    Nice One

    Amazing

Average Book Rating

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