Russell Kirkpatrick's Journal
This came across my desk yesterday:
'Top New Zealand fantasy author Russell Kirkpatrick takes no prisoners with his second book in the Husk trilogy Dark Heart (Voyager PB $34). His richly complex plot line brings together his three main characters, fisherman Noetos, troubled brilliant cosmographer Lenares and immortal queen Stella, to consider a joint enemy before forcing them back to their individual journeys. In the background is the spectre of a painwracked enemy they are only just beginning to comprehend. A fascinating world by a master world builder and map maker, full of flying body parts and powerful character development.' - DOMINION POST, Sunday March 8, 2008, p20.
Nice to get reviewed in New Zealand, and even more so when the reviewer has read the book. I do like the 'flying body parts' bit.
By contrast, have a look at this:
'They keep coming, these faux-medieval quest fantasy epics, vast sagas set in mythical lands where people with names like Bregor, Sauxa and Diphona of Hupallage brandish their halberds. Five hundred pages of Path of Revenge by Russell Kirkpatrick hit the Listener in-tray recently, and that's just book one of a projected series called Husk. Well, good on you, Russell (a New Zealander): if people buy them, and HarperCollins is willing to publish them, don't let us stand in your way. But there's almost an element of self-parody in blurbs advising us that "the Undying Man, Lord of Bhrudwo, lies, eviscerated, in the dungeon of Andratan." Bhrudwo?'
Dear old Denis Welch. Long replaced by others as a columnist of real humour, his demeaning job now is to remind his readers of their literary superiority (the Listener is, after all, the intelligent person's choice, far superior to TV Guide - and much more seldom read). They keep coming, these faux-literary reviews, allowing these superior ones to sneer at their less intellectually well endowed fellows. Trouble is, Denis only read the blurb, and he got that wrong. It's Husk lying in the dungeon, Denis. Husk.
I note with interest the following book gets a positive review from Mr Welch: Manhire at 60: A Book For Bill. It's a tribute to a local poet, with a print run of 500 copies. Some are apparently still available from selected book stores, says Denis, perhaps expecting both his readers to rush out then and there, Titanium Visas in hand. Meanwhile, at the editorial desk, the editor wonders why the Listener doesn't sell as well as it used to.
The more arty and unreadable the book, the higher the praise.
I would rather read Husk than boutique poetry any day.
Great review in the Dominion. You have a fan. The other guy Denis has a limited attention span. He can't finish reading the blurb.
And while I am here..congrats on your first series being published here in the US. I finally got around to reading and reviewing the first book in March. I hope to get around to reading the other 2 soon (i already bought them).