Meet “The Ecko”: Pyromaniac, megalomaniac, assassin, and just a little bit loco.
When Ecko recklessly endangers his mission, he finds himself catapulted from futuristic London into an alternative ‘fantasy’ universe. No longer able to separate reality from fiction, Ecko struggles to understand his purpose, and to remain uncaring in the face of danger.
This is Thomas Covenant gone high-tech; Ecko is a cybernetic experiment to the extreme, equipped with flame breathers, heat sensors, turbo-boost, and chameleon skin which blends into any environment. He is reckless, ruthless, savage – and he likes to say f**k a lot.
Ware’s writing is smart and razor sharp. Her sci-fi opening is fast-paced, punchy and oh so enjoyable, instantly immersing you in the matrix-style world. It is easy to see why some people would be disappointed when she switches to the fantasy genre. But Ware writes fantasy like a pro too. Her world is well-developed and teeming with terrifying beasties, and kick-ass warriors up to the task of taking them on.
Ware is able to take a tongue-in-cheek approach to the fantasy genre as only someone who has been immersed in the genre a long time could do. Ware tips her hat to trope and classic alike; D&D, Choose your Own Adventure, Alice in Wonderland, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court – all get a mention in Ecko’s furious inner dialogue. Even her decision to have Ecko wake in a tavern satirises the usual D&D cliché.
Ware’s fantasy world is large. She writes with an omniscient POV and includes a host of interesting, original characters, each as compelling as the next. This is a big read, but there’s plenty to keep the pages turning. There’s a lot of fighting, but Ware blends in a healthy dose of prophecy and political intrigue for good measure. With fast and furious action and more than a smattering of sex, violence, gore and swearing this is the kind of novel where you hang onto your seat, and enjoy the ride.
Loved this novel, can’t wait for the sequel. If this sounds like your kind of book, next week I will be interviewing Danie Ware about Ecko Rising, right here!
10 out of 10 shade-shifting dragons
I received a complimentary copy of the novel from the publisher.