If ever there was a superbly-written review of a superbly-written book, this is it. Nigel Robert Wilson has just reviewed the brilliant Good Red Herring for the British Fantasy Society, and he found more than a little to love.
‘Imagine a book like a Pogues concert! Chaotic, powerfully creative, wonderful, whilst utterly exasperating at times, littered with classic and classical Irish references all united in a glorious cacophony of intense delight and beauty. Well this is it! … this story is as sustaining as buttered fruit-cake with all the glory of a besieged post office. You can last out days in it.’
If that isn’t the best line from a book review ever, then we’ll eat our hats.
It’s followed by an appreciation for Maxwell’s beautiful devotion to detail which aids in the world-building of the novel as well as the sculpting of the plot.
‘There in an intense, almost magical devotion to incidental detail that easily leads the reader away from the plot into a fantastic landscape with a bizarre yet strangely familiar society peopled by vampires, werewolves, witches, druids and other odd folk, including aliens. This often causes the reader to go back and re-read given passages not just because of the story but also to fully understand the universe in which it is contained. This is quite an extraordinary experience as often all you are left with is a tantalising hint of distant, half-understood, poorly explained events which leaves you asking for more.’
And they even managed to spot Maxwell’s exposure to a little more bureaucracy than she’d like!
‘This is a very moral tale told in the most entertaining way possible. It is always fascinating that writers who work or have worked in large bureaucracies can become absorbed by process, yet Maxwell has managed to do this in a quite amusing, hilarious yet polite fashion. This is a good story, rich in imagination.’
Thanks to the British Fantasy Society for their super review and congratulations to Susan! Read the full review and check out the website here.