Archive for February, 2012

Event – SFX Weekender 3

February 7, 2012 - 8:44 pm No Comments

 

 

 

 

 

 

Event – SFX Weekender 3

Held in sunny Prestatyn last weekend, SFX ran its third weekender event with four thousand attendees. Yours truly went along with a couple of friends. After an hour and half queuing to register and gain access to our chalet, we decided to start the weekend with a meal in the restaurant. It’s a good job we had such a fabulous weekend thanks to the SFX Crew, because the onsite facilities, particularly the food, left a lot to be desired.

So, enough about that, and the slightly disorganised start to the autograph queuing and ticketing system, which was swiftly abandoned in favour of a ‘first come first served’ approach. What was the event like overall? Pretty bloody good actually!

With a myriad of interesting speakers, both literary & media based, the programme was varied enough to occupy the most grumpy of fans, including two Doctors, Eve Myles from Torchwood, creators from Being Human and the national treasure that is Brian Blessed. When Mr Blessed stepped forward with the words “Gordon’s Alive!”, the screams of delight from the audience could be heard throughout the auditorium all the way through to Bartertown. Between the pleasure of meeting Mr Blessed and the sheer insanity of Robert Rankin’s MC duties at the SFX Awards ceremonies, the event was a hoot a minute. On top of that, each evening the choices were a night in the pub, dancing to Craig Charles or Pat Sharp or a night in the Screening Zone watching such gems as Aliens, The Thing or Dawn of the Dead. Add to that the chance to catch over twenty genre writers for signings or the opportunity to catch up with fellow fans and friends, and the SFX Weekender was a truly enjoyable event.

Yes, the food was bad. Yes, the rooms weren’t exactly the Hilton, but said rooms were clean, the programme of events was full and the bars were open in to the wee hours. Providing the SFX Team learn from the hiccups that occurred, next year should be a pretty tremendous event.

Review – The Faceless

February 7, 2012 - 8:11 pm No Comments

The Faceless

Author: Simon Bestwick

Publisher: Solaris Books

Page count: 412pp

Release date: 2 Feb 2012

Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

Jobless and depressed, Martyn just can’t seem to motivate himself and this is wearing hard on his wife Eva. Things become even worse when a fire strikes a local school and Eva dies, leaving Martyn to care for his young daughter Mary, with the help of his sister Anna. Widowed and distraught, Martyn and Mary move into Anna’s as a support mechanism as he tries to recover from the loss of his wife.

As more people are killed or go missing, DCI Renwick and Sergeant Stakowski reluctantly accept help in their various cases from TV psychic Allen Cowell, who is drawn inexplicably into the events occurring in Kempforth, events that include the horrific local legends; The Spindly Men.

Creepy and atmospheric, this supernatural novel is proof positive that Bestwick is a strong new voice in British horror. The characters are well constructed, the narrative is imbued with atmosphere, the story is unsettling and the excerpts from WWI diaries that are weaved throughout the book are authentic and disturbing. It is clear Bestwick has researched the historical aspects of the novel fully and I predict a solid literary career for him, given the extent to which this book alarms the reader.

The Faceless is a genuinely creepy, classic book.