When your very existence is treason, employment opportunities are thin on the ground. But when one of the biggest crime lords in the city makes The Pan of Hamgee a job offer he can't refuse, it's hard to tell what the dumbest move is: accepting the offer or saying no to Big Merv. Neither will do much for The Pan's life expectancy.
Small Beginnings is written in British English and is the first in a series, although it can be read as a stand alone story.
Estimated UK film rating of this book is: U (universal) or G (general)
This is a humorous science fiction fantasy story set in a parallel reality.
INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
Q – So, tell us about the this series. What made you write it? What makes it special?
A – There's a saying, somewhere, that if the book you want to read hasn't been written, you must write it. If you want the honest answer I wrote it for me.
As a reader, I have always loved British satire and humor or humour. I love funny; funny epic fantasy series like the Discworld novels, comedic sci fi like Douglas Adams and misfit characters who don't always fit in. I like a gripping tale that zips along quickly in the time honoured tradition of adventure and action fiction. I guess I love genre fiction mashups; Douglas Adams meets StarTrek, Doctor Who, Terry Pratchett and James Bond. Therefore, my cunning gambit was fantasy that was also science fiction, with weird alien races, because I wanted to make them up myself. I wanted a fast paced story, a gripping tale but also comedy in the tradition of all the great funny British authors.
You won't find standard mythic creatures in my sci fi - I couldn't face the deluge of emails I'd inevitably get from those who knew more about them than I do, telling me I'd got them wrong. However, you will find all sorts of quirky characters and interesting alien species. From six feet Swamp Things with antennae to cute furry creatures like the Blurpons, with their fluffy ears, big button eyes and penchant for extreme violence.
Q – Should this Series be read in order?
A – This one? No. The first batch follow one particular character but there will probably be more, about other characters.
Q – What will readers enjoy most about this series?
A – Hopefully, the same things as I do: the world building, the characterisation, what, I hope, is pithy witty dialogue (or dialog) and of course, characters who are flawed and stuff up, and are not beautiful. There's not one skinny woman in a leather jumpsuit anywhere in this series. I like writing characters who have zero combat skills, putting them in a situation where they could really do with knowing how to fight and seeing how they cope - I'm mean like that. Oh and of course the snurds. You've gotta love a flying car, right?
Q – What is your favourite kind of Book? Would K'Barthan Shorts fit on the list?
A – Oh yes. I wrote them entirely for me. If anyone else likes them, that's gravy. I love British humour, especially satire and parody in sci fi and fantasy: people like Pratchett and Adams. There's so much texture and depth in their books. I think if you're funny you can be harder hitting and setting it all in a parallel reality with made up species of creatures also helps.
Q – Do you have a target reader?
A – Not really. I wrote it with my nephew in mind - he was a teenager at the time - but it's more a mind set and an approach to life that I'm reaching out to. To give you an idea; the oldest fan of my books whom I knew about was in his 90s and the youngest, 10. These books are all supposed to be 'young adult' but my readers are mostly over 45 and close to an exact 50:50 split between male and female.