When a train driver is driven insane by something indescribable in the remote tunnel known as the Kennington Loop, Queen Victoria instructs her Bureau of Clandestine Affairs to aid the Metropolitan Templar Police in their investigation.
Enter Thomas Blackwood, Special Investigator, and Lady Sophia Harrington, Secretary of the Society for Psychical Research. Along with Detective Gerhard de Chardin and the famous occultist Simon Castaigne, Blackwood and Sophia plunge into a terrifying adventure which takes them from the dank tunnels of the London Underground to the depths of interstellar space and a dying planet known as Carcosa, where a horrific being from beyond Space and Time has set its sights on Earth.
The being is known in the annals of the occult as the King in Yellow, or the Feaster from the Stars, and unless Blackwood and Sophia can prevail, it will descend upon the Earth and consume every living thing on it!
©2011 Alan K Baker (P)2012 Audible Ltd
First thing, this is No 2 in the series. The Martian Ambassador comes first, which is not at all apparent from the descriptions available, and, because of the constant references to the events in the first book in this one, I would advise you to listen to that one first (unlike me).
The author of this book appears to have taken history, science fiction, fantasy, Conan Doyle, legend and steampunk; dropped them all into a blender and poured the resultant gloop between the covers of a book.
As a story it flows along well enough, and Michael Maloney's narration is well up to the task, but occasionally it does fly off into the esoteric in a way that does not really, in my opinon, add to the plot.
All in all, whilst I listened to the end and got quite interested in most of the story-line, the whole did not give the satisfying feeling of a well-crafted universe. I rather got the impression that the author threw certain elements into the mix on a whim, more than because they either fitted or were needed.
I shall probably listen to The Martian Ambassador in due course, but more to see whether it fills in any of the gaps rather than from an overwhelming urge to hear more of the same.
"Beautiful writing and performance....strange story"
I was completely captivated by the "The lighthouse Keeper" and picked this up because I wanted more of this author, Alan K. Baker. I was not disappointed. However, this story isn't for everyone. This story has all elements of creepy and scary but lost me at the conception of species from other planets. Baker delves quite deeply into "clandestine affairs" and I could not help but roll my eyes in disbelief. I adore his writing style and horror imagery but I cannot comprehend some of his notions regarding "other worlds."
….I never finished this book because the story lost me but what I did read was worth its weight in Gold. If you are into a suspenseful sci-fi tale that goes beyond earth and far into outer space then grab this one! Either way, this book has haunting imagery, well-developed characters, entirely original concepts and a VERY eerie villain...I recommend this author alone just to experience something incredible and spooky!
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