Part of the ‘mission’ of South African indie publishing house P’kaboo is to be a springboard from which to launch authors to bigger things, to be the first step for an author in getting himself or herself noticed by mainstream publishers in the wider world, particularly in the UK and USA. With that in mind, this agency, as the UK representative of P’kaboo, would like to bring three books to your attention.
Each one is available on request, for consideration by any commercial publisher in the UK, the USA, or worldwide. Just email this agency!
Although the three books here may all be classified generally in the ‘fantasy’ genre, this is only one of the strings to P’kaboo’s bow. Their list includes a range from children’s books to music manuals.
Solar Wind I: The Mystery of the Solar Wind
This is the first of a series – the author has completed No.IV – and the most obvious place to start. Although this novel and its sequels may fit the ‘fantasy’ genre, this one may be thought of rather as a mystery novel in a futuristic setting.
The year is 2116. Captain Radomir Lascek sails his pirate ship, the Solar Wind, around the oceans, collecting outlaws and fugitives and dodging the authorities. But then he hires three young musicians in Dublin – the Donegal Troubles. Radomir Lascek, with all his wily schemes, is about to learn the real meaning of ‘trouble’.
Here is what some readers and reviewers have had to say. Firstly in the Father’s Day issue of South Africa’s Your Family magazine:
Mystery of the Solar Wind… is a heart-warming and sometimes breath-stopping tale of murder, flight, and friendship. The Solar Wind’s crew is more than a motley one. They are a bickering, eccentric clan, full of shenanigans and loyal to the death… which might just be around the corner.
Fran Lewis, book reviewer and author of the Bertha series, says:
Secrets, mysteries, lies, deceptions, intrigue and murder are just some of what you will encounter when you board the Solar Wind for your journey into the 22nd century. This will not be just any ordinary journey, it will keep you spellbound, alert, terrified, inquisitive and more, about the new world powers of the year 2116 and just what changes are in store for you. With a cast of characters so diversified, yet so alike, you will want to not only learn the reasons why each crewmember signed on to the Solar Wind, but go along with them on their dangerous journey to find freedom and safety in a world filled with fear.
Other readers say:
The fast-moving and often surprising action leaves one quite breathless, rather like gypsy music played at a rousing pace. Yet one has time to get to know the characters, so that one can’t help but be drawn into their differing mind sets. Interesting how these diverse characters are tied into an intrinsically functioning unit, without the reader even noticing the natural ease with which the author does this. – The book raises some thought-provoking questions and leaves one looking forward to more from the pen of this intriguing author.
This book is a definite must-have for your library. A gripping tale from beginning to end, with characters so vividly described and with such varied and interesting personalities (one can’t help thinking of them as friends), you feel as though you know each of them personally. After reading this book all I can say is – Ahoy! Off to the next adventure!
Leslie Hyla Winton Noble
Beautiful and brilliant young Lady Regina-Valerie, only child of a wealthy lord, has everything. Everything, that is, except friendship and happiness. Her Siamese cat Tickle has a lot to say, but not much she can understand … until suddenly, she does. Then she is swept from her modern world into a wild adventure in the Warrior Magic Circle land where war is the main thing and ‘non-combat creatures’ like women are looked down upon. She and Tickle are kept very busy in a battle not only against evil forces and terrifying creatures, but also against the silly customs. To top it all, Regina has to fight with her own nature. After combating overwhelming obstacles with the help of a prince and princess, a wolfhound, a shy Scottish admirer, horses, and a martial eagle, she and Tickle are set the task of solving an impossible conundrum and tracking to his lair a malevolent creature powerful beyond imagining.
Fantasy lovers of all ages will be captivated by the excitement, humour and imagination in this epic tale of a quest with a difference.
The Everywhen Angels
In these turbulent times with everything streaming towards its final demise, who can be a normal kid and simply go to school? Caught in the maelstrom of events in what may be the ‘Last Days’, the Angels are there when they are needed, preventing accidents, saving lives. They feel like heroes, invincible… until things start going wrong. Their story is told through the eyes of three youngsters from a comprehensive school on the outskirts of London. Angela is a poet, a rebel, and a questioner of how things seem. Charlie is a boy with great dreams, but who seems unaware of the troubles of his own mind. Ashe is young, strange, and very special. Join them as they uncover more questions than answers.
Scottish author and poet Marie Marshall wrote this novel for teenagers as a response to a challenge to set a fantasy in a school, and produce a novel as good as anything that a certain famous and wealthy compatriot of hers could write. Well, mission accomplished… and maybe even exceeded!
Here are some reviews and comments. Firstly from Nikki Mason at BestChickLit.com:
Three extraordinary kids. Three astounding stories. What will you believe?
Angela is just an ordinary teenager until the day she falls through a fence at school into the alternative reality of the Guardian Angels, a group of twelve teens who are tasked with protecting people in the build up of the final war between good and evil. But no one will answer Angela’s question: why?
Charlie knows he is special. Of course he’s a Guardian Angel. But he is also a Yellow – the GA’s rivals who try to prevent all their good work. But why is everyone suddenly ignoring him?
Ashe is diagnosed with Aspergers Syndrome and yet he can open doors between worlds and time. He understands what it really means to be a Guardian Angel but can he cope with the knowledge alone?
Marie Marshall tackles big subjects in The Everywhen Angels from religion and science to war and politics. All this rages on in the foreground of the lives of three teenagers who are trying to find their place in their world and be comfortable in their own skin. Action packed, full of crazy tangents, incredible ideas and stunning description, the novel is completely different to anything I have read before. It can at times be confusing, but bear with the story – the mind-boggling themes and plot diversions will be explained and will feed the curious minds of young adults.
Other readers say:
Writing of this quality ought to win the Carnegie Medal or something.
Straight up, no bull, the best book for this age-group that I have read in a long, long time.
The book is something special. The characterisation is convincing. The narrative is entertaining and gripping, but at the same time shows a wealth of knowledge and research and introduces challenging food for thought on abstract matters.
The Everywhen Angels by Marie Marshall is told through the eyes of three different teenagers in a school somewhere in England, as they take on the function of angels. They discover along with a small band of others that they have supernatural abilities which they are obliged to keep secret, however. How they put these abilities to use, for good or bad, that is the matter of the story. This book challenges its reader to face deep, existential questions; about life, the nature of the universe, the ‘ending times’ and what they mean (from several different perspectives); what is good and what is bad, or is there, and if so, by which right or logic do we interfere in what happens to others. The story left me feeling somewhat rattled and as though my cupboard of philosophies has received a good airing and spring-cleaning, and I now need to put things back and decide what to keep. It is an excellent book; one of those ‘clingy’ ones that stays with you for days after because you have to think about it.
It’s tough to capture the sheer suspense of this book in mere words.
If you would like to know more about P’kaboo Publishers please feel free to visit their web site. There you will find details of their entire list, plus other information. If there is anything else you would like to know please contact this agency or P’kaboo direct.
Due out soon – Marie Marshall’s From My Cold, Undead Hand, a non-stop teen-vampire story, the first of a planned trilogy. More news as we get it…