J A Warnock’s Review
I thought to open this review by likening Onyx Webb to being hit by a train but hesitate as people may take that as a bad thing. So… Don’t think intercity express that is going to unceremoniously flatten you; think heritage engine, steam billowing, that will sweep you onto the footplate and carry you along at such a pace, you think you can fly. To labour the metaphor, the impact is unmistakable and, rather than fight it, the best approach is to let the characters take you where you need to go. The place is not constant, time is not linear; both curl around you like steam and smoke from the engines. Relax, don’t overthink anything and (I promise this is the last train reference) enjoy the journey.
Book one of this ten book series opens with a warning that we should not expect everything to be sewn up in the first instalment. I would go further for, in a world where we accept that death is not necessarily the end, we can never really know if something has been sewn up or not. Traditional narrative is interspersed with journal extracts, poems and quotations which could have been off-putting but in fact flowed remarkably well. Chapters, though I use the word loosely, employ an economy of language; although short there is a vibrancy and detail that conveys more than you might expect. As much as the writers would have you believe they practically channelled the words onto the page, it has the feeling of being well crafted and carefully considered.
I am positive that anyone who reads this first book will want to read the rest if not because they are captivated then out of sheer curiosity. I loved it and will (sorry couldn’t resist) be hanging on for the rest of the ride.
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