Review of October Rain by Dylan J. Morgan

An Unexpected Ending

Set in the (hopefully) distant future Imagewhen Earth has long since disappeared into the sun and what is left of its inhabitants have colonised the remaining planets of the solar system.  The main character, having been born and grown up on Titan, is now living and working in the rapidly disintegrating settlement of Olympia on Mars. Working for the Government, his job is to dispose of the City’s undesirables.

This is an easy story to read in a single sitting. It moves on quickly and the style of writing is quite captivating. There is a good balance between action and description with neither seeming to be lacking. I had to re-read parts of it to work out how this was achieved and I think the main reason is that all of the description is very carefully chosen to heighten the tension.

There were a couple of places where I felt that the elements of the plot were a little overstated (i.e. the reader is told after having already worked it out for themselves) but they are so minor that I don’t think they detract from the entertainment value at all.

The story didn’t end as I had wanted it to but it was certainly quite powerful nevertheless.

I liked it. A good way to spend an evening.

Roachkiller by R Narvaez


A dark collection of short stories.

The characters in each of these short stories are almost tangible. Like real people, all of them are flawed in some way, even the good ones. Conversely, in the same way that in real life nobody is all bad, even the ‘bad’ characters have a trace of good. These elements of personality are trickled to us in such a subtle way that our reaction to them is shaped almost without our awareness. You will probably neither love nor loathe any of the characters but you will certainly feel something about them because they seem so real.

As far as the narrative is concerned, each story is written in the distinctive voice of one (or, in the last story, two) of the characters. Narvaez seems to completely step into these characters so that the narrative seems authentic and the style of each one different. Each story has a different and interesting premise and many of them cause the reader to question their own assumptions about the black and white distinction between good and bad. There are a couple of great twist endings as well.

On the whole this collection is well worth reading. I’ll certainly be watching out for any more titles from Narvaez.

R Narvaez is a talented writer and one to watch out for.