Sunday, January 3, 2016

Kevin J. Anderson's And Neil Peart's "Clockwork Lives"...A Book Review

Many of my author friends take the opportunity at Comic Cons and other writing symposiums to buy as many books from their friends as they can afford. I suppose you could say I do the same thing. Unfortunately, many of us authors don't have the disposable income to buy all the books we'd like to buy. 

Such is life.

What does this have to do with Kevin Anderson's and Neil Peart's Clockwork Lives? That's a fair question. At the last Salt Lake Comic Con back in September, I bought my most expensive work I've ever purchased at one of these events; it was this big red book. It's such a great read!

I have not yet read Anderson and Peart's Clockwork Angels. In Clockwork Lives Kevin Anderson explains how the book came be. There were just too many untold stories that needed a voice. The book is a collection of short stories that takes place in this world. We meet Marinda Peake, daughter of a man with a mysterious past. After her father's death, Marinda inherits a book full of blank pages. Her charge, if she wishes to inherit her father's fortune and remain in the home she adores, is to fill the book with stories. To do this, a drop of blood unlocks the secrets of the one giving up that drop, and the blood magically writes the person's story in the book. The greater the story, the more pages are filled. And since Marinda's charge is to fill the book as quickly as possible, her quest is to find the most interesting people possible to share their live's tales.

There's intrigue, terrorism, personal redemption, death, betrayal, revenge, inter-dimension travel--even a spelunking story added to the mix. Each story is fascinating and as varied and colorful as the characters themselves. Which is the point, after all. I can definitely understand why the authors needed to write this book. 

I'm glad I was able to read this book. I'm also glad I could buy it from one of the authors and have him sign it for me. It's an honor, really. I follow Kevin on social media and he has several times mentioned what this book means to him. He also expressed as much within the pages of the book. I knew if was important to him before I started it and as I read it, this thought kept going through my mind. It's hard to explain, but I think I understand why it means so much to him. The stories are honest, the characters real. They hurt, they feel, they love and, perhaps most importantly, they bleed. And through that blood we learn of them.

Yes, this book was one I usually wouldn't buy, choosing instead to go the Kindle route or wait for it at the library. But I'm glad I bought it. I 'm glad I have it signed because I now know it's more than just a book to my friend. As always, Kevin--excellent job!

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