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The Boy in the Storm

NickP

Member
Published by SLP
#1
Johnpic.png

Excerpt:
"[he] helped me a out with a lot the background on what had occurred over those fateful days in Lancashire. He understood, well enough, that the publication of this book would be dynamite, but he felt, as I do, that the truth needs to be known; people need to know what this ordinary boy and his mother went through in order to help mankind. That’s going to be my challenge now though....."

Hi all,

sorry I've not been as active on this forum as I would have wanted to be. Just quite busy.

I'm really pleased that Boy in the Storm stayed in the top 100 Alt history section for a week or so, and I am really happy with the feedback and the reviews I have received so far. As a total novice, its always a nice feeling when people genuinely like what you've created.

The book started as Lancashire Life on 'another site' and it was the support of those patrons that made me get in touch with SLP, to which I owe my undying loyalty! :)

Hope some of you have had a chance to have a read of it. If you have please give me your feedback (there's always time for edits) and if not, maybe give it a go?

Cheers

Nick

https://www.sealionpress.co.uk/product-page/the-boy-in-the-storm

PS big thanks to Jack for the artwork on the cover. The above pic was my own idea, which just goes to show, we were thinking on the same lines.
 

NickP

Member
Published by SLP
#3
5 reviews so far on Amazon UK, and 1 on Amazon Aus! Plus 1 review on Goodreads.

7 sets of 5 stars with some really inspiring and uplifting comments left!

People seem to be enjoying it a lot!

If any forum member has yet read it and wants any dialogue with me about it, please feel free to post. I'd really welcome that.
 

Omund the Wooden-Leg

Chazadjin Marmaduke Brandybuck
#4
Viking is pleased to report he has read the book you published, Mr. Peel. A quite excellent A.H. thriller, perhaps too thrilling, Viking wants to ask did you go out of your way to cram in as much suspense as possible? For example, the Angel with the Dead Soul appears dead, medical help is coming for the Boy; but OH DEAR GOD, NO! it's not over!

It seems amazing that the climax on Blackpool pier could have come from one small beginning in an impoverished homely neighbourhood in Bolton. Sheila and John are believable, bewildered and mystified on why men in the U.S. Occupation Forces up to the Chief himself are pursuing them and also pursued by traitors and spies, forced out of their home and fleeing to Blackpool for a temporary haven. You follow all the characters' worries, reminisces, avenging, anger, furies, madness, agonies, etc.

There is A.H. out there which posits a longer-lasting but unstable Third Reich, but this is one of those depicting a stable longer-lasting Third Reich, all because Goering deposing Hitler in a coup. Goering becomes Fuhrer despite nearly twenty years of morphine addiction and being very fat, but he does stabilise the economy and factional nature of the Reich's government. This is most exemplified by what would have been Victory Day becoming a Defeat Day for the Soviets, no major spoiling here, you see.

Viking toys with the idea of posting a review for "Saving Hitler" by Ian James on that e-book's Amazon page; and keying up a review for this book's page on Amazon, pointing out by how far the latter succeeds over the former in believability. It is appears to me that Goering launching a coup against Hitler in 1941 brings about a much more stronger and stable Reich than Mr. James' positing Goering taking over after a successful assassination of Hitler in July 1944, ergo in a manner opaque to the reader, this resulting in one-half of the world conquered by the Aryan Reich, and the other half conquered by Yamato Kyoeiken, which is completely impossible, as explained in the review. In fact, Heydrich in "T.B.I.T.S." could very well have launched a full-on Red Death pandemic on the U.S.A., hobbling it, causing a complete collapse, an opening the Reich could step in to. Heh, the tangents I ride on.

The background stories leading up to the main chase that is the book's main plot, are engaging, allowing the reader a breather, as it were. Some from a Nazi P.O.V. or others does keep the reader begging to know if the "Germanians" are fully punished for their actions. Those same P.O.V. pieces does provide sympathy for some characters, but for others, only reveals how irredeemably despicable they are. Other P.O.V. pieces lay disturbing steps which build up to a horrifying payoff, increasing the fury against the Nazis.

Viking sees you laid out three hyperpowers in the book, bearing a great similarity to the three hyperpower world any A.H. reader remembers and dreads from "1984". For a moment it does seem the U.S.A., really the only big protagonist, in the story, could continue sliding down to become the oppressive hyperpower (with nearly all the trimmings, you are able to spot them) from the novel aforementioned above. But thankfully, the slide is averted.

Heh, the Great Germanian Reich styles itself as superior to the Wilhelmine Reich, but they were lead by only three people each.

Pleased to see you brought "Mrs. Robinson" forward by about six years. Imagine M.K. happening to be related to Paul Simon. Didn't link the "Paul" to the "Simon" of Simon and Garfunkel". Maybe it is true that the best A.H. is created through exploring the cultural changes after a P.O.D.

While reading this, the length of the book does not impress itself on the mind of the reader. Pages are turned rapidly to keep up with the action. It was when I looked up the blurb on Amazon that Viking found it was more than eight hundred pages. Viking looks forward to reading this again.
 

NickP

Member
Published by SLP
#5
Hi Viking!

I'm really glad that you've posted your comments. Yours is the most detailed appraisal I have received so far, and I see you have delved a lot into the substance of the plot and the characters. This is what interests me most rather than the structure. To be honest, the structure really came as a secondary consideration. For the first few months of writing, there was no plan. It just kind of evolved!

My original intention was to just follow the characters in modern day Britain (1957) and occasionally dropping dark hints of the word outside, and how we had got to this situation. (I wrote Incident over Japan in this style) I wanted to keep the reader guessing. However, I realised soon that there was simply way too many unanswered questions, that would ultimately have caused too much confusion, and perhaps frustration. So the structured historical flashbacks were really an afterthought!

My main inspiration was to explore human nature and the concept of good and evil, within an AH setting. (This comes out in the final narrative) I was fascinated by the characters in George RR Martins books that left you wondering if you liked or disliked a character. I attempted to delve somewhat into that idea.

A lot of the comments I have received talk about the repeated 'cliff hangers' and suspense. The reason that this style developed in such a repeated manner, was that I was posting the sections on another site originally, and wanted the followers to keep coming back for more, which they did. This has inevitably led to a novel that compels the reader to keep turning the page, and saying "just half an hour more", as their bedtime passes! Feedback is that this is a book that people don’t want to put down, as they race through it.

There are only 2 PODS in the book - Dunkirk and Roosevelt. Everything else butterflies from that. I fully realise that some of the developments from the PODs may well be far-fetched and questionable, but I always took the view that this was first and foremost - a thriller, and I was going to use some artistic license, even if the purists were offended. I must admit, however, that I did take some serious advice from a bacteriologist, and refined my 'Red Death' to make it technically possible. My original idea was that it would be instant acting. (I was inspired by the great thriller - '48' by the great British horror writer, James Herbert, who I have thrown a nod to in the book.

I'm glad you picked up on the drift towards a 1984 scenario. The section of the book "We are the Dead - a Side Issue" was intended as a tribute to those many AH timelines I have seen that have attempted to complete that mammoth task.

The Mrs Robinson reference was great fun! The words just seemed to fit the characters! I also had references in there to the great Morrissey - with "Sheila take a Bow' and 'Alma Matters'. I also used lyrics from the OMD song - Enola Gay, and even lyrics from 'Jesus Christ Superstar'! I find song lyrics can give you a lot on inspiration.

The constructive criticism I have had is from people who thought that there may have been too much historical detail, and that this got in the way of a good thriller. In addition, one person didn’t like the supernatural references, and felt it was unnecessary. I suppose I could be guilty of trying to cover multiple themes at the same time.

Thanks again for your feedback. I hope you enjoy your second read and may pick up on even more nuances and hints, second time round!

Cheers
Nick

PS the English translation of "ein Dämon mit einer toten Seele" is "a demon with a dead soul", not an 'angel.