Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Compared to David Gemmell in a review

The late, great British fantasy author David Gemmell has been a huge inspiration for me - in fact, as I have written before, without his seminal work, Legend, I may never have read any fantasy beyond The Hobbit and The Lord Of The Rings.
As well as being a fan of his work, I felt a certain affinity for Gemmell's work.
He was a long-time resident of Hastings, in Sussex, while I lived in both Eastbourne and Brighton, both towns in Sussex, less than 50 kilometres from Hastings.
Gemmell was an editor of local newspapers in Sussex, I was an editor of local newspapers (albeit in Australia!)
The thought of one day meeting David Gemmell as a published author myself was a secret ambition of mine - although no doubt shared by many other would-be authors.
Sadly he died in July 2006, more than a year before I received my contract for The Dragon Sword Histories, robbing the fantasy world of one of its greatest writers.
Naturally he left many thousands of devoted fans wondering where the next Gemmell-esque book was going to come from.
No doubt there are quite a few authors jostling for this position.
I have to say, while I loved his work, I would hate to be thought of as 'the next David Gemmell' - for a wide variety of reasons. I would rather be thought of as the first Duncan Lay!
But to be compared to him is still, in my opinion, praise of the highest order.
Certainly his work had some flaws, such as his (self-confessed) problems with writing female characters - but his books had a marvellous depth, making them an experience to read both as a teenager and then something different as an adult.
Anyway, the point of all this is a review in the upcoming edition of Australian Bookseller And Publisher of my second book, The Risen Queen, which will be out in the shops from December 15.
The key passage, for me is: "Fast paced and dramatic, Lay writes the kind of battle scenes that I have not seen since the late David Gemmell, and booksellers should definitely be recommending this to his fans."
I've been absolutely pumped since reading this!
To be in the same sentence, particularly one recommending me to David Gemmell fans, is fantastic. This whole experience is a dream come true but let's just say that being compared to David Gemmell is something of a fantasy realised!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Duncan! CONGRATS! That is indeed a review to savour for years to come. I hope you receive many more like it :)

    And, as a side, I thought Stella Gemmell did an incredibly seamless job of finishing Gemmell's last book, Fall of Kings.