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Richard Harland

(1947- )
Richard Harland is an Australian author who also writes in other genres and for all ages. You can read extracts from his novels at his website.

Ferren and the Angel: Why are they worshipping a can of fly spray?

Ferren and the Angel by Richard Harland

Never before have I read a book with such epic proportions, such potential, and such originality — and yet was written so carelessly and simplistically. What promises to be a future-fantasy-adventure along the lines of Philip Pullman's amazing His Dark Materials trilogy, instead reads like sci-fi pulp fiction.

Ferren and the Angel is set in the year 3000AD, after a series of scientific discoveries and heavenly experiments that resulted in a full out war between Heaven and Earth. The beginning of the book includes a time-line that includes entries such as “The Rising of the Undead,” the “Depopulation of New York,” “The Great Collapse,” and of course “The Invasion of Heaven,” as well as a map of the world in the f... Read More

Ferren and the White Doctor: Vivid representation of a future-Earth

Ferren and the White Doctor by Richard Harland

This Heaven and Earth trilogy is original, exciting, interesting reading, but I still feel that with a little more work it could have gone from good to excellent and been placed among the likes of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials. Like those books, these deal with conflict between the forces of Heaven and the beings on Earth, but are set in this world, many years into the future.

After scientists discovered that there was indeed life after death, mankind went about exploiting Heaven, resulting in a collapse of the lower Altitudes onto Earth, an expulsion of all souls from Heaven (which now exist as woeful Morphs) and ongoing conflict between angels and Humens: the soulless mechanic... Read More

Worldshaker: Good YA steampunk action fantasy

Worldshaker by Richard Harland

Worldshaker by Richard Harland may, on first blush, remind potential readers of Philip Reeve’s Hungry City Chronicles, with both of them focused on huge mobile steampunk cities crisscrossing Europe. Harland’s work, however, is much more focused setting-wise, taking place entirely within the confines of the eponymous Worldshaker, and mostly within a few small decks of the immense craft. There are lots of other differences as well. Worldshaker is more focused on class themes, has much more over-the-top characters, and is more fully YA than Reeve’s work, by which I mean I’m not sure it will appeal as much to adults or older high school students.

The setting is... Read More

More books by Richard Harland

Richard Harland The Black CrusadeThe Black Crusade — (2004) Publisher: A gothic fantasy, grotesque and macabre with elements of bizarre comedy. It tells of a journey made by Basil Smorta in the company of a group of ‘Fundamental Darwinists’ across Eastern Europe in the year 1894. Along the way, the crusaders encounter memory-ghosts, love-vampires and a bomb-throwing police force. Basil cares only for the Australian singer with whom he has fallen in love or lust; unfortunately she’s locked up inside an iron box. It’s a book that defies categories and is almost impossible to describe. Think of a cross between Edgar Allan Poe and Jasper Fforde, or Mervyn Peake and South Park! The Black Crusade won the Golden Aurealis Award for Best Novel in Any Genre of SF/Fantasy/HorrorRichard Harland Walter Wants to Be a Werewolf: Will Walter Grimm Ever Fit In?.

Walter Wants to Be a Werewolf: Will Walter Grimm Ever Fit In? — (2006) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Every time the full moon shines, the Grimm family begin their transformation into werewolves-except for Walter, the youngest of the pack. But one moonlit night, his tale takes a surprising turn.

An absorbing tale of fame, changing fortunes, and music, set in an alternative Victorian world, from the striking creator of Worldshaker. What if they’d invented rock ‘n roll way back in the 19th century? What if it could take over the world and change the course of history? In the slums of Brummingham, the outcast gangs are making a new kind of music, with pounding rhythms and wild guitars. Astor Vance has been trained in refined classical music. But when her life plummets from riches to rags, the only way she can survive is to play the music the slum gangs want. Charismatic Verrol, once her servant, is now her partner in crime—and he could be so much more if only he’d come clean about his mysterious past.

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