Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Feature: Bleedover by Curtis Hox

Gathering Leaves is hosting the Bleedover blog tour today and tomorrow.  Curtix Hox will be stopping by for an interview tomorrow, and you will have a chance to win your own ecopy of Bleedover and a $50 gift card!  Be sure to come back by to learn more about this fantastic novel...

Here's a little preview of what you will find here tomorrow:

Inspirations for Bleedover

Bleedover is a novel that blends intellectual subject matter with popular genre tropes in an examination of what narrative is and how we consume it. I wanted a story that pits literary sensibilities vs. the stuff of pulp fiction and popular culture. This emerges as a battle between the protagonist Dr. Hattie Sterling and an old book club member, Corbin Lyell. Hattie's a professor with an attitude who thinks she knows how to explain (and control) bleedover events seeping into reality. The conflict focuses on how Corbin counters her, and her response. He believes that the sword-and-sorcery fiction of R.E. Howard and the science horror of H.P. Lovecraft is just as important as the serious literature you get in an English department. I threw in a few fun pulp-fiction tropes like a sword-wielding barbarian, a demon-thing and monstrosities from deep space, even a red-goddess. These, I hope, are handled in an original fashion that avoids the clichés and contrived mechanisms we've all seen a million times. In the end, I tried to write a smart novel with all the fun stuff I liked as a kid.

I know Bleedover risks alienating readers who expect standard science fiction and contemporary fantasy, but the slow build is worth the reward in the end when Hattie and Corbin duel.

And now, my review:

By:  Curtis Hox
AISN: B006999LQA
Published November 2, 2011
Available Format:  ebook

My Rating:  ★★★★★

Author’s Synopsis:  An intriguing phenomenon in literature and arts. A maverick professor's quest to find answers. And a discovery that will shock the world.
Books, TV, film, advertising. It’s all being mysteriously altered, and no one knows why. Dr. Harriet Sterling claims she understands, even if no one believes her. She calls it the New Phenomenon of Bleedover.

She's alone, though, because the science establishment stands in her way. When trusted graduate students generate an apple out of thin air in a controversial bleedover project, the world takes notice. So does an old enemy thirsty for revenge, Corbin Lyell, who manipulates bleedover to hurtle monstrosities from the world of his pulp heroes, H.P. Lovecraft and R.E. Howard.

Dr. Sterling must stop Lyell's apocalyptic plans, but with enemies on all sides undermining her discovery, can she succeed?

With a heady mixture of serious literature and genre fiction, Bleedover dazzles as a thought-provoking work of literary science fantasy that both inspires and entertains.

I’ll admit, when I first started reading Bleedover, I was thinking What in the world is going on?  But, pretty soon all the little pieces began to come together and I got right with the flow of the story.  Granted, I did not refresh my memory by rereading the synopsis, and with about a million books on my to-read list, it is easy for me to confuse what an upcoming book is about.  So, I dove right in and discovered the world of Dr. Sterling completely from scratch.

I am highly impressed with the writing skills of Mr. Hox and how well he was able to pull such a rather complex story together so seamlessly!  The main aspect of the story, basically that elements of “imaginary” or “creative” works can bleed over into the real world, is a rather complicated idea, and once I was able to get MY brain together, I realized Hox did an awesome job of introducing the idea without giving the reader a long, exhaustive Bleedover 101 lecture. 

I love the combination of science fiction and fantasy and how the historical and literary are mixed into the plot.  From Lovecraft to Victor Hugo, ancient monsters and sword-wielding warriors to futuristic spaceships and giant red goddesses, there’s a little bit of everything in this excellent novel. Personally, I want one of Dr. Sterling’s portals; I have a TON of favorite books I’d love to rediscover!

I definitely recommend grabbing a copy of Bleedover and trying it out for yourself!

Don't forget to stop back by tomorrow for Curt's interview and the giveaways!!!