We embark on a coming of age fantasy story in 'TTEO: Take The Emotion Out’ by Ren Laws. 18-year old Brissy is gearing up to embark on the next stage of her life; finishing up her A levels with the aim of going to university. She tries to fit in and appear as normal as possible, but when the things that make her unusual turn out to mean something bigger than she ever could have imagined, the fantasy adventure begins. I like Brissy, from the start she’s an endearing and warm character with lots of similar concerns to readers of her age. I also like the way that the book begins focusing on the mundane, getting us settled in the world of A Levels and university offers, before the fantasy elements are slowly introduced. I personally feel that the writing could do with a little bit more polish, at times it was a little bit repetitive - Bus said three times in one paragraph on p. 17 and lake and water repeated twice in a similarly short space of time on page 16 - but when I became immersed in the story I found this didn’t really detract from the action. I found the plot of ‘Take The Emotion Out’ action-packed and entertaining, the ending leaving you eager to see what happens in future books. An enjoyable and quick read for fans of YA Fantasy. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading Ambassador
Vividly bold and full of attitude, in fact it's gutsy as heck, this provocative supernatural crime novel takes a fabulous premise and nails its colours to the mast. While on a drugs operation Detective Joe Lazarus is suddenly faced with his own dead body and a new partner from the other side. I have to confess that while reading I completely forgot to make any notes for my review as I just sank in and was consumed. The live side smacked me in the face with its gritty reality, while the dead side just blew me away. I could see, feel, taste and smell purgatory, it menaced into existence as a fully formed entity in my minds eye. Adam Simcox writes with the most imaginative, smirky, thought-provoking pen. I really had no idea where this reading journey was going to take me, and I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to learn that this is the first in a series, I will be camping outside my local bookshop when the next book is due. Chosen as a Liz Robinson Pick of the Month, The Dying Squad is a fabulously unique novel that feels as real and yet outrageously inventive as can be. A standing ovation from me to Adam Simcox, absolutely blimmin loved it!