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To Battle Beyond Paperback – December 4, 2014
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Learn more
About the Author
C.J. Henderson (1951-2014) was the creator of both the Jack Hagee hardboiled private eye series and the Teddy London supernatural-detective series. Over the decades, C.J. wrote over fifty books and novels, hundreds of short stories and comics and literally thousands of non-fiction articles. His work has been translated into languages found in every corner of the world. To find out more about this fascinating fellow, to read free short stories or to perhaps comment on this book, visit his website at www.cjhenderson.com, or write to the publisher at www.boldventurepress.com.
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Within days, an occult magician named Ravenwood, summons three people to his New York apartments. They are Ellen Patrick, the crime fighting Domino Lady from California, Anthony Quinn, the blind lawyer from New York who is really the avenger known as the Black Bat and lastly, Inspector John Raymond Legrasse of New Orleans, a veteran in fighting the forces of arcane evil. This is very much the pulp version of "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" and the conceit works extremely well. Taking a bunch of second string pulp heroes, Henderson ties them to the world of H.P.Lovecraft's Ancient Gods myth by brining in Legrasse, a character he's used many, many times in other horror orientated adventures.
Henderson is brilliant at capturing personalities with only a few words and I found myself seeing these familiar heroes in an entirely new and exciting new light. The interaction between them is fun and as always C.J. doesn't scrimp on the action. There's plenty of it, all in the rousing traditional bloody pulps mode. So if, like me, you truly enjoy pulp action and adventure, pick this one up. Oh, and did I mention it has an introduction by some pulp fan named Fortier?
I wanted to write a review for a novel I just read called "To Battle Beyond" by CJ Henderson. ([...]) Now, let me say from the start that I approached this novel with some bias, I like Pulp novels to begin with and I am a friend of the authors. However, I am also known as a mean, heartless critic who has reduced friends, friends girlfriends and the occasionally tot to tears for my brutally honest brand of commentary on just about everything. So putting those two factors up on the scales I hoped I could write a fair review of the book.
Oh and why am I writing the review you may ask... since I don't usually have time to write reviews on everything that fly's my way. Well that's simple, cause when I finished the book I was bowled over. Not because I had just read the modern equivalent of Melville or Milton, not because it was grounded in such deep thought constructs as to shift my world view upon closing the cover. No, I was bowled over because I had just spent a night of time, a portion of my life that I would not get back and I was glad I had. See, it was fun with a capital F. I don't get to say that many days, but this day I can.
The book is a wonderful pastiche of pulp characters from the Domino lady to the Black bat to Lovecraft's Inspector Legrasse thrown together in the time prior to WWII in a plot to lay America low that seems to originate beyond the stars. It's written in a style that while lending homage to those pulp authors who have gone before still has its own unique voice. Its rollicking two fisted FUN with plenty of twists and turns included.
All in all, if you like adventure and pulps in particular, this book is one you will like.
These days, in an age where everything is in turmoil, change is your only constant, the media we are given for entertainment from books to movies to TV to online is a barrage of mediocre stuff that just seems to be seen because it overwhelms us by sheer volume. In a world of scatter shot attempts to get the next hit, it's refreshing to come across a book that can be read in a sitting, bring a thrill along the way and in the end leave the reader satisfied that he or she just had a fun time.
Read this review and take it all with the grains of salt I outlined at the beginning as far as my bias, but if it interests you at all, then take a chance and give this book a shot. Who knows you just might find yourself having fun after all.
chilling ride. When CJ Henderson writes pulp fiction, it's like riding with Mr. Peabody and Sherman in the WayBack machine to 1941, to another time and place.
In terms of editing, I thought that the few editing errors I saw were actually part of the story, even deliberately introduced to provide a real "Pulp Fiction" feel.
Never boring, I was in no danger of falling asleep, or for that matter, getting any sleep. CJ Henderson's creative juices were flowing so freely my fingers are sticky.
I enjoyed all of the characters and look forward to more adventures with the Domino Lady; Black Bat and Inspector Lagrasse as well.
This book is definitely an E-Ticket ride.