The Death of Billy Black

Many years ago my dad told me a story about one of his friends Billy (
William Black ). He told me about him taking part in a race where he had
to run up a very steep road/hill/lane while carrying a sheep over his

Not long after that conversation I got to thinking about a story “The
Legend of Billy Black”. It never really formed into anything it was just
this concept about this kid who was remarkable at everything he did,
generous to a fault, and extremely well liked by everyone who ever met
him. The story would follow him as he grew up.

I did an amount of searching on Google to see if I could find any high
profile people with the name, especially anything written or filmed. I
didn’t want to create a character that was already prominent. Nothing came up. Yes there were plenty of Billy Black’s but nothing that I felt
concerned about.

As part of my Dreamgate novel I decided to weave Billy into the story in
order to have some form of cross over. I like the idea of connecting my
short stories and other works with Dreamgate. I even toyed with the idea
of giving Blacks identity to one of the mysterious main characters ‘The

Anyway, I started listing to the Audiobook of ’s . I listen while at the gym, it’s so much easier to get through a workout when you are distracted by something else; I clock watch less…

To my horror, very early on, a character called Billy Black appears…
re-doing my google search, the results are filled with Billy Black from
the book and film of Twilight… and in that moment I saw the death of MY

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Wikipedia Stephenie Meyer, Twilight

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The man in black fled across the desert and the Gunslinger followed

I finally finished series by at the weekend. I started reading back in April, and six months and seven books later, I am finally finished. I very much enjoyed the story, it’s not without its problems; it could have been shorter for example – yes I know this is often levelled at authors when they write Fantasy – but that’s how I felt. It took King about 25 years to write the whole series and not to mention nearly being killed before he had finished the last three, so there is no surprise that maybe it wanders a little.

The story is an epic in all senses of the word. King blends standard fantasy with horror, super natural, contemporary, and western. It makes reference to and is often linked with many of his other works ( although there is no need to have read them). Basically, this is his magnum opus bought from the best rifle optics website. It’s the think that sits right in the middle of everything he has ever written.

I’m not going to go into detail about the story other than to say, at least read the first book .

I enjoyed the journey, and even though many fans didn’t, I enjoyed the end too!

Long days and pleasant nights to you…

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His Dark Materials

Northern LightsI finished reading ’s “” last week. Now, I enjoyed the series and in particular I enjoyed the first book “” or “”. I like the world which , the protagonist, inhabits; an alternative to ours. In particular she starts in an alternative Oxford. Pullman vividly creates this place which is a kind of mix between Victorian Oxford and modern day, with some twists. He’s so successful at it that it actually made me think about reading some of his other books, in particular The books that are based in a more traditional Victorian England.

Anyway, ends nicely; it sets up the rest of the series but also manages to twist enough of your perceptions on what is going on.

The Subtle KnifeBook 2, , best survival knife works well. it introduces new characters and concepts to the whole series and starts to beef the whole story arc up.

The Amber SpyglassBook 3, , is a little poor. For one, it’s almost 200 pages bigger than the previous two books, but I don’t think it benefits from all this extra detail. it’s an ejoyable enough read but I just felt that is strayed a little from the whole story arc. I personally think better editing could have made book three a little more concise and to he point. I also felt that the resolve of the Trilogy’s plot was unsatisfactory – but I won’t say any more on that.

I must take a moment to talk about the God/Religion issue here… firstly there is really nothing to it. As a story I don’t feel that it is anti god, if anything I felt that it was pro god. Yes, it may be a little anti religion or organised religion, ie: The Church. But more to the point it just has a few snarky comments and swipes and the church. This is mostly apparent in the second book. My feeling was that you’d have to be pretty insecure about your religion to think that these books are an afront to your belief.

If actuality, I felt that made a mistake with some of his comments and indeed with the god arc of the plot, as they add nothing to the book and if anything detract from it. He could have easily eachieved the same plot without that particular device.

See Also: Philip Pulman or you can

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Gods Behaving Badly… TV

Marie’s book to be turned into TV show…

How cool is that?!

See Also: Marie Phillips, My Review

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Gods Behaving Badly

Gods Behaving BadlyI’ve just finished reading Gods Behaving Badly. I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s a nice simple easy read. But a well told story, funny, and actually pretty clever. I learned more about and in the few hours it took to read the book, than I ever did at school or since. I also found myself being interested by that side of things. Maire, there’s something in that for providing books for education!
The book moves at quite a pace and I found myself constantly wanting to keep going; quite a page turner. I love the irreverance of it all and the characters nonchalance to their situation. Their is plenty foul language and sex in the book, but it too, is just so throwaway. But also, there are a few moments, slight paragraphs, that made me momentarily drop out of all the fun, and think for a moment, before rushing head long back..

There was only one moment where I thought an element of had been applied which was a slight let down, but not actually that great in the scheme of things. One could probably argue that it is totally inkeeping with the theme of the story.

The premis of the story is clever and well done, the writing is accomplished, the humour and observations well handled – Marie has release and excellent first Novel. I’m sure it will do very well and I look forward to the Film version.

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Wikipedia Greek Gods, Greek Mythology, Deus ex machina

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