Friday, 13 May 2016

Pursuit of the Apocalypse - book review.

Welcome back to my blog. In this post I will be reviewing a post apocalyptic novel. I hope I don't drop any plot spoilers **whistles innocently**

The novel I am reviewing is “Pursuit of the Apocalypse” by Benjamin Wallace (find him on twitter @BenMWallace) . This is the third novel in the series. The other novels in the Duck and Cover Post Apocalyptic Adventure series are “Post Apocalyptic Nomadic Warriors” and “Knights of the Apocalypse”. I am a huge fan of Benjamin Wallace's work. The series are good books with a comic twist. One way to describe them is Post Apocalyptic mixed with Monty Python.

Pursuit of the Apocalypse is as the name suggests about a pursuit. The main character is pursuing his kidnapped wife across the wastelands. The kidnapper is a sinister bounty hunter who has the most horrific clothing I have seen in any post apocalyptic setting. The novel has a great and exciting plot, and fantastic characters. I was howling with laughter reading this book. As I was on holiday I was getting evil looks from other holiday makers who must have thought I was either a nutter (guilty) or laughing at them!

Benjamin Wallace is the Terry Pratchett of Post Apoc fiction. As a massive Terry Pratchett fan myself that is a huge complement.

I could not put the novel down and wished I could read more when I had finished it. I was left with a book hangover thinking what happens to the characters next? Which of the other characters will reappear in the next tale? I hope that there will be another novel in the series.

So what is there for us tabletop gamers? The Pursuit of the Apocalypse novel has some great factions and locations. It made me want to start building new tabletop models there and then. If like me, you like a bit of satire in your wastelands this novel is for you. There are bike gangs (as a non Harley rider myself Benjamin Wallace hilariously hits the nail on the head), strange townships, entertaining characters (Willie and Coy are brilliant) are car chases and battles.

I think all post apocalyptic fans should read this series of novels. They are funny and challenge many of the post apocalyptic conventions. They are cleverly written and have many satires that the reader can relate to. I cannot recommend these novels enough to Post Apoc fans or anyone else who likes a good read. As I have mentioned in another blog post I measure any novel by “would I read it again?”. I am currently planning on rereading the whole series soon.

Thanks for reading.

Wasteland Saga - Book review.

Welcome back to my blog. I have recently returned from holiday in Spain. Whilst there I hammered through a few post apocalyptic novels. I will review them here and do my best not to drop any spoilers into the review. As this is a wargaming blog I will try to point out what ideas can be used for the table top.

I have read novels by Nick Cole @NickColeBooks and Benjamin Wallace @BenMWallace . In this blog post I will be reviewing the books by Nick Cole.

I read three novels by Nick Cole which are a series. The novels are The Old Man and the Wasteland, The Savage Boy and The Road is a River (also available as a single book called The Wasteland Saga).

The Old Man and the Wasteland:

For me this was the second read of this novel. I picked it up as I had little to read just before going on Holiday. It was only then a dim and distant light in the back of my skull blinked on and I remembered Nick Cole tweeting me some time back saying that he had written sequels. I immediately had to download them.

The novel is set some 40 years after a nuclear war. It focuses on a Old Man who leaves his village to go on a epic salvage exhibition in the cursed wastelands.

The novel is well written and at the exciting bits it is a real page turner. There are plenty of plot twists and interesting characters and encounters. I recommend this novel to any fan of the Post Apocalyptic genre.

For the Post Apocalyptic role player or table top gamer there is plenty to inspire. Small skirmishes and escapes the Old Man gets into. There is the Old Man's village (old industrial complex with the usual fallout style shacks), a few places along the Old Man's journey, a tribe and at least two major battles. This would keep any gamer going for a while.

The Savage Boy:

The Savage Boy is the second book in the series. It is set in the same setting but it is a different story. The novel follows a Boy and the pre war Army Sergeant who took the him in. The Sergeant is trying to finish a mission he was given in the countries dying years. The tale takes you through many events and emotions. Life after the end of the world isn't easy!

Like the first book there is many encounters and great characters. This book explores the world in more detail. You get to see what had happened and how the world has changed (or in some cases devolved!). It is a great read and a real page turner.

I really liked this novel as it packed with great ideas for you to use. Many tribes and lots of great characters. Lots of adventure and battles to repeat on the tabletop. There is a Chinese remnant/enclave in the novel and I can clearly picture using Copplestone 19th Century Chinese for these forces. I have added this to my ever increasing hobby to do list.

The Road is a River:

The Road is a River is the third installment in the series. The Old Man is back and Nick Cole cleverly mixes to two tales together. It is a mix that works well.

In this novel the Old Man's people receive a strange message pinned on a dead man in a old times dune buggy. As a result the Old Man heads out across the wasteland in desperate rescue mission. This tale visits many places and there is a crazy warlord (aren't they all?) out there.
The Old Man makes a few friends and a few enemies a long the road. Again it has a few hidden twists and plenty of excitement.

For the table top has plenty of things to inspire. There are plenty of battles and lots of tribes to emulate.

In short these books are great post apocalyptic adventures which have given me lots of ideas. They are highly detailed. There is lots of excitement, lots of fantastic factions and tribes. There is a couple of reoccurring themes in the novels which are key to main characters however these do not detract from tales. The novels left me with a serious book hangover. I would love to read more adventures in this setting with some of the other characters (hint hint!). One measure for me of any book is would I read it again? Yes I would re-read all three again (and again). I recommend these books to any fan of the post apocalyptic genre.

Go grab a read and enjoy! Thank you for reading.