Tag: Peter

Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines

Posted April 18, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Fantasy / 0 Comments

Ex-Heroes by Peter ClinesTitle: Ex-Heroes (Goodreads)
Author: Peter Clines
Series: Ex-Heroes #1
Published: Broadway, 2012
Pages: 274
Genres: Fantasy
My Copy: Personal Copy

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

There are not more no super villains for these Crusaders for justice but a zombie apocalypse has given them a new challenge. Hulled up in a film studio-turned-fortress, the Mount, these heroes do their best just to survive in a world overwhelmed but these hungry corpses. While the ex-humans walk the streets night and day these superheroes can no longer call themselves heroes, they are fighting to survive like everyone else; they are Ex-Heroes.

This book has been a little bit of a success story as of late, Peter Clines published the first two books of this trilogy with a tiny little publisher known as Permuted Press. But it was not until one of the editors of Ready Player One got sick of Goodreads recommending him this series did things change. After finally caving and reading Ex-Heroes this editor loved the book so much that he went out and acquired the series for Crown Publishing group. Now this book seems to pop up everywhere, and the new buzz has really brought new life into this book.

I really like the concept of superheroes in a zombie apocalypse; they are no longer heroes, they have to fight for survival just like everyone else. Yet there is a part of them that wants to still protect the innocent and they do try. There is this whole inner turmoil coming out in these ex-heroes that I love, this is the end of the world and while they want to be heroes again they need to think about their own lives as well. The conflict within themselves is what drew me to this novel the most.

Sure, there are other wonderful zombie apocalypse elements within the book, it is jammed pack with action and yet there is a story arc  that feels very much like a super villain’s rise to power which I think will develop over the next few books too. Also you will find a heap of nerd references in Ex-Heroes; not really to the same extent to Ready Player One but they are there and for a nerd like me they are always fun to discover.

Ex-Heroes feels like an attempt to try something new in the Zombie Apocalypse genre. Blending his love for Superheroes and Zombies, Peter Clines has produced this wonderful action-packed adventure that is worth checking out. I’m interested to see where the next couple of books take us and wish Clines best of luck for the future success of this series.

Monthly Review – March 2013

Posted March 31, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Monthly Reading / 2 Comments

Happy Easter everyone, hope you are all enjoying the long weekend. I hope everyone has had a wonderful month of reading and had time to fit Lolita into their busy schedule. I’ve noticed a lot of mixed reactions to this book which would mainly be a result of the controversial nature of this book but it really is one of those books that have helped shape twentieth century literature, so well worth checking out. Still a lot of action happening with the reading challenge as well; looks like two hundred books been added this month. For those who don’t know about the reading challenge, there is still time to join in the fun, so check out my introductory post here.

A reminder that next month’s book will Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami for our Japanese literature theme. I haven’t read much Murakami but expect some great discussion on this book, hopefully with some thoughts to the Magical Realism genre.

Highlights for my month’s reading included Infinite Jest which I’ve finally finished; the beautiful painting of Painter of Silence by Georgina Harding; Lolita; and In a Lonely Place. I would like to mention two other books that really blew me away. First, Pride and Prejudice which I finally got around to reading after putting it off for far too long (also have you seen the Lizzie Bennett Diaries?). Also Tenth of December; while I’m not much of a reader of short stories George Saunders showed me just enough to change my mind. What have you been reading this month and what were the highlights?

My Monthly Reading

Truth by Peter Temple

Posted February 19, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Crime / 0 Comments

Truth by Peter TempleTitle: Truth (Goodreads)
Author: Peter Temple
Published: Text, 2009
Pages: 287
Genres: Crime, Literary Fiction
My Copy: Personal Copy

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

Inspector Stephen Villani stands in a luxury apartment, a young woman dead in the bath. He finds certainties of his life crumbling after the discovery of this murder. His four months as the acting head of the Victoria Police homicide squad have not gone well; first, two Aboriginal teenagers are shot dead and there is also no progress on the killing of a man in front of his daughter. A novel about murder, corruption, treachery and ultimately the Truth.

I didn’t realise this was the sequel to The Broken Shore when I started this novel but seeing Inspector Stephen Villani was only a minor character in the first book I thought it was ok to continue. But I wonder if I should have read them in order, because Truth never really clicked with me.

The novel was very difficult to read and hold my attention; the flashbacks, the sheer amount of characters and attempts at complexity made it really difficult to know what is what in this novel. It tried to be a gritty police procedural with some political aspects but never really seemed to click. While the main plot could have worked well, the flashbacks and cast size turned this book into a difficult book.

I’m surprised this book won the Miles Franklin award; I know a lot of people that loved The Broken Shore and hated this book so I can’t help but wonder if this book won based on the love of its predecessor. It was interesting to see Peter Temple’s character Jack Irish making an appearance in the book.

I just don’t see the appeal to this book but it wasn’t the writing style that made this book so hard to read. While this is the first Peter Temple book I’ve read, I can see why he is one of Australia’s better crime writers. I will try The Broken Shore sometime just to see why one was so loved and this one was so hated.

The Dog Stars by Peter Heller

Posted August 5, 2012 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Literary Fiction, Science Fiction / 0 Comments

The Dog Stars by Peter HellerTitle: The Dog Stars (Goodreads)
Author: Peter Heller
Published: Knopf Doubleday, 2012
Pages: 336
Genres: Literary Fiction, Science Fiction
My Copy: ARC from Netgalley

Buy: AmazonBook DepositoryKindle (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

The Dog Stars is really a stylised book full of interesting characters and quirks. Peter Heller’s novel is a story of a pilot who has survived a pandemic flu that has killed off most of the world’s population.  He’s lost his wife and is living in a hangar of an abandoned airfield with his dog and his only neighbour is a misanthrope. He is now living in a world filled with loss, what will he risk to rediscover himself and reconnect with other survivors? Will he go against all odds just to make a connection?

This book has an interesting blend of literary fiction and dystopian adventure, it reminds me a little of Cormac McCarthy’s The Road in that aspect. The characters are great in the book, with their flaws and interesting personalities. I think Peter Heller did a great job with the characters. The book at times tends to be dark and gritty which works well with the sense of the end of the world and the violence that would assume such an event. But then at times the book seems over descriptive and sometimes feels too flowery and nice which never really seemed to match this dystopian novel.

There are so many great elements in this book but there are other aspects of the book that didn’t work for me. My main problem with the narrative; it felt almost experimental, trying to do something that didn’t quite work for this style of book. It is written in a first person perspective but also written in a past tense, so you have a feeling that everything will be ok and no sense of tension throughout the novel. At times the sentence feels broken and disjointed, I’m not sure if this is an attempt to show that the narrator is unreliable but I don’t think it worked too well in this kind of novel.

The Dog Stars is a remarkably unique novel and there are some great aspects of this novel to sink your teeth into. It was a captivating and enjoyable ride; even if I had issues with the narrative and at times felt bored with the story. The characters in the novel were definitely the highlight of this book but the adventure helped move the plot along. Personally if I compare this book with Cormac McCarthy’s book The Road, I would recommend it over The Dog Stars, but this doesn’t mean you should overlook this novel.

What Books Have Been Trending – April-June 2012

Posted June 25, 2012 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Book Trends / 0 Comments

Back in March I did a post where I talked about what books I’ve noticed were trending for the first three months of 2012. I loved doing this post and thought it was really interesting looking at what was popular and what was been talked about. There is no real science to the books I’ve picked for this post, I looked at Goodreads and Twitter and book blogs and just picked the books that seemed to be mentioned. Sure there are probably other books that were trending but the post was just an interesting way to reflect on what was popular. Since this post I’ve had been thinking about trending books more and more and have been keeping an eye on what seems popular so I thought maybe I could do something similar again. In fact maybe I can do this every quarter as a way to look at what’s been happening in book trends. I’d like to have a better system and I hope with practice and help maybe these trending posts will become more accurate and maybe more frequent.

In the last post I tried to predict a book that would be trend in the next few months; my pick was Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway.   While it seemed to do really well, unfortunately the book was outshined by the ever annoying popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey. So let’s look at what I’ve noticed trending for the past three months (minus Fifty Shades) and for the sake of not flooding the post with YA novels I will only pick one or two of the most popular Young Adult book for each month (YA book bloggers might want to focus on these books, I would rather have more of an overview from all genres).


Let’s Pretend This Never Happened is a mostly true memoir of one of the most known bloggers of our time; Jenny Lawson, also known as The Bloggess. Her blog averages close to half a million page views a month; now that is the kind of readership I can only dream of.


The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa looks like it has every key ingredients to make this book a popular YA novel; Vampires, Paranormal Romance and a dystopian world, so it was no surprise this book trended from the very start of publication. The Immortal Rules is a fantastical is the story of Allison who has to face the difficult choice; to die or become one of the monsters (vampire).

The Selection by Kiera Cass is another dystopian young adult romance, but this one seems to be written to be more like a fairy tale. Maybe this book would be more suited as a gateway between YA romance and chick lit, but I’ve not read it so couldn’t tell you. The Selection is about a woman named American hoping to win the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.


Book twelve of the ever popular Southern Vampire Mysteries (or should I call it the Sookie Stackhouse series or maybe True Blood), Deadlocked was always going to trend. This time there is trouble and bad timing for a body to show up in Eric Northman’s front yard—especially when the body is of a woman whose blood he just drank.


Insurgent by Veronica Roth is book two in the popular dystopian YA; Divergant series. Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.


Book five in The Mortal Instruments series, City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clair is another paranormal romance YA novel, this one features vampires, angels and demons. Not only is the boy Clary loves missing–but so is the boy she hates, Sebastian, the son of her father Valentine: a son determined to succeed where their father failed, and bring the Shadowhunters to their knees.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg was released back in February but it wasn’t till May that I seemed to see this Non-Fiction novel being mentioned. This might have something to do with the #fridayreads giveaway of this book. In this book, Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed.


Man Booker Prize winner Hilary Mantel is back with the next book in the Wolf Hall series; Bring Up the Bodies. This book continues the Tudor history, but this time focusing mainly on the rise and fall of Anne Boleyn. Read my reveiw of Wolf Hall here.


Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn seems to be the first mystery/thriller to trend since last year’s Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson. Amy’s disappearance leads to a gripping and chilling book of love, hate and revenge. I’m currently enjoying this book at the moment.


The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead is the second book in the Bloodlines series; which is a spinoff of her popular Vampire Academy series. This is another vampire, paranormal YA novel that always seems to be popular and dominate the book trends.


Nick Harkaway does make it into the book trends but not with the expected Angelmaker but with is non-fiction book The Blind Giant. The digital age;an age of isolation, warped communication, disintegrating community. Where unfiltered and unregulated information pours relentlessly into our lives, destroying what it means to be human; or an age of marvels.

I did try to cover both fiction and non-fiction book as well as adult and young adult books. I hope I didn’t flood this post with too many YA novels. While I’ve not read any of these books there is a few that look interesting and I’m looking forward to checking out. Like the last post, I feel I should try and predict a book that will trend next quarter (not a YA novel, as they are a little easier to predict. So my pick for next quarter is The Dog Stars by Peter Heller. This Post-Apocalyptic novel follows the story of Hig a pilot that has survived the flu that killed everyone he knows and loves. I’m expecting it to be a book of love, loss, risk, rediscovery and battling against the odds. I would love to know what other thing of the books that have trended, which books did I miss and what should we keep an eye out in the next three months.