Hello my fellow page turners and wordsmiths,
First of all, Lee I am really sorry that I didn’t get around to this sooner! life has been incredibly hectic since you sent me this, but I am now making good on my promise, sorry its so late! Everyone today we are looking at the amazing debut novel of Mr Lee Harrison, Bastard Wonderland.
Title: Bastard Wonderland
Author: Lee Harrison
Published: 22nd Aug 2016
No of Pages: 432 Pages
Lee Harrison, and I share a few things, a last name for one and a hometown for another, unfortunately we are unrelated but I won’t hold that against him, as the gent sure can write a decent novel.
Bastard Wonderland is a magnificent, epic, steampunk fantasy that takes an unexpected path. It is also gritty, humorous and shall we say has some choice language at times.
Lee is an expert world builder, and he has created a fascinating and complex that is both new and yet strangely familiar at times. The world itself is startlingly detailed, from the technology, religion and even the general descriptions of landscapes you can’t help but feel as if you are actually there in the scene, seeing these sites and taking in the smells of machine oil and grease.
The story itself is written in a dual point of view third person narration between our two main protagonists Warboys, a laddish streetwise waster with a dirty mouth & his all most polar opposite Nouzi Aaranya, who is a young man who has been groomed from an early age to be a soldier and a martyr to ‘the cause’. The story itself is well paced, as it is the case with novels of this nature it’s a slow build, as there is a lot of exposition in the first act accompanied by a heavy chunk of dialogue. but once you are upto speed you won’t want to put it down…or finish it!
The plot follows Warboys as he reluctantly joins his father Bill on a journey across their world as they attempt to flee the prospect of forced conscription following the abdication of their king and their country being put under martial law. Unfortunately for them they did not get very far and end up getting caught, however this just the start of an epic adventure with an ancient cult, slave masters and even living flying machines.
Throughout the journey, questions are asked and answered as our characters change and grow with the challenges they face. I found the ending particularly gripping, and I will be keeping my eyes open for more written by Lee in the future.
I highly recommend this one especially if you are a steampunk fan. I will warn you however, for those who don’t like strong language, you may struggle a little.
But, being a man from Hull, it only made me feel more at home, I loved it!
Until next time, read more books!