Down Station by Simon Morden
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I came into this one pretty blind, but one thing is clear: Starting out in modern London, it pretty much finishes as far away as you can get from there, at least in terms of being grounded in the normal.
There was a slight hint of SF, but all in all, it's a fantasy more reminiscent of a blend of Donaldson and Palladium Rifts, with a heavy blend of Ley-Line Geomancy and deep-core transformation magic. I was worried, at first, that the appearance of werewolves might turn it into something a little less original, but the wild transformations that both the characters go through in their psyches and their bodies makes this a much more interesting fantasy than it first appears.
Very strong opening. Starting in London like this was exciting and strange and winding up in a new world was particularly great. I did kinda wish that it got right into the faster pace of the later novel, though, or at least skipped the mundane survival bits. That might just be me, though. I really enjoyed the wild action later, though, and I think this will be a real treat for those of us that miss the old 80's Fantasy scene with a modern feel and updated magic sensibilities. I mean, Geomancy, people!
Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC!
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