Over at the Tommy Thunder blog, the site owner has recently taken a look at the e-Book edition of The Adventures of Lazarus Gray. Here’s his review!
The Adventures of Lazarus Gray by Barry Reese
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
*Pulp Warning* All my e-reading, and therefore my reviews, are e-pulp skewed. Reader beware 🙂 *Pulp Warning*
Overall: 5 stars (Highly Recommend)
The Adventures of Lazarus Gray is a series of well crafted pulp stories that illustrate exactly what’s available for potential e-pulp afficiandos looking to see what the whole e-pulp thing is about. The supernatural, Dark Avenger concept is well served with great world building, interesting characters and a dark, sinister mood punctuated by crazy supernatural villains. This is modern Dark Avenger e-pulp at its best and if you’re looking for a gateway into the field then this is where you should start.
For those who are already pulp zombies – you should have read this already.
Pacing and Action: 5 stars.
In using a collection of shorter stories the old school pulp pacing is perfect. Each story is consistently good, filled with two fisted action and bizarre and dark supernatural bad guys. The action isn’t as fast or frenetic as your typical adventure pulp but the more consistent pacing is more suited to the sense of menace and darkness provided by the stories. It works really well.
Pulp Concept: 5 stars.
Using its Dark Avenger hero the book develops both its setting and supernatural themes really well. The book is actually set in Sovereign City, the same Sovereign City of a book I’ve reviewed previously, Adventures of Fortune McCall, The which was a nice surprise. Lazarus Gray, however, swims in the much darker, supernatural parts of town and the combination of corrupt, decaying 30s city and the outrageous supernatural bad guys is done really well. Much credit to the author.
Character Development: 5 stars.
The characters are not only interesting but they also develop over the course of each story, providing three dimensional people you care about. In a field in which this aspect often gets lost in the flying bullets, Reese has done a good job not only making the reader care but then promising that there’s more in store and you will want to read further to find out what happens next. And that’s good series writing. The protagonist Lazarus Gray is also well developed with complicated motivations and back story that is slowly revealed and then examined over the course of each story so that, by the end of the book, we have a very good idea of who he is and what possible drama he will end up in during future stories. It’s very very well done.
Production: 5 stars.
Great cover that makes me wonder why they don’t use comic art for more pulp covers. Both styles are from the same fiction genetic pool, after all. The editing is also professional with great setting out etc which is important when you have multiple stories. A very professional product and well worth the price.
Series Potential: 5 stars.
No ‘potential’ about it, over the space of this first book we’re already knee deep in the series. Reese has shown that he can write a series like the best of them so now it’s only a matter of more more more. The vast conspiracy has been established, various reoccurring characters are on the board, and there’s still plenty to learn about our intrepid team of supernatural murder solvers.
Seriously, if you want to know if this Dark Avenger e-pulp thing is your kind of thing then start here. If this doesn’t take then maybe the genre isn’t for you. If it does – welcome aboard.
And, again, if you DO like modern renditions of Dark Avenger stories then you should have read this already.
Thanks so much for the review! I hope you’ve had a chance to check out Volume Two — the third book in the series will be out in a couple of months, as well.