Monday, May 25, 2020

Something from the Nightside - Simon R Green

Book was read between April 22nd 2020 and April 26th, 2020

Edition Details:
Format : Mass Market Paperback
Page Count: 230
Publisher: Ace Books
ISBN: 9780441010653
Series: Nightside #1


Something from the Nightside by Simon R Green
Something from the Nightside by Simon R Green


First Sentence:
Private eyes come in all shapes and sizes, and none of them look like television stars.

Story:
John Taylor is a private investigator and he specialises in finding things. Off late the work has dried up and he has been finding it difficult to make his ends meet.

And then,Joanna comes into his office. Joanna Barrett was a rich businesswoman.There was no reason for her to be there. But she was there and she needed John and was willing to pay him whatever he wanted.

Joanna's daughter Cathy was missing.She had reasons to believe that Cathy was in Nightside. And she knew only John could retrieve her.

John needed money but he also dreaded going back to the world which he had left five years ago. He knew if he went there something bad is going to happen to him. But he had to make a decision.

What did John do?
What was Nightside?
What was waiting for him in the Nightside?
Was he able to come back?


Major Characters:
John Taylor - Private Investigator
Joanna Barrett - A rich woman who had come to John for help
Catherine Barrett - Joanna's teenage daughter
Alex Morisey - Owner of the Strangefellows, the oldest bar in England
Lucy and Betty Coltrane- Bouncers at the Strangefellows
Razor Eddie - A citizen of Nighside who had a reputation for being a top notch killer
The Harrowing - the undead assassins
Shotgun Suzie-  A mercenary who had a history with John
A collector - Collecter collected things and had the ability to go back in time
Veronica - Waitress in Hawk's wind bar and Grill. This was a ghost cafe
Walker - Representative of the Authorities in the nightside

My Views:
Something from the Nightside by Simon R Green is the first novel of Nightside series. This series is  about a private Investigator called John Taylor and his birth place called Nightside. This series is a dark fantasy which beautifully amalgamates fantasy with PI fiction.

Nightside is place in the middle of London .It's always night in the nightside. It's always three am in the morning. And while describing Nightside to Joanna John says the following:

Everything you ever feared or dreamed of is running loose somewhere in the shifting streets of the Nightside, or waiting patiently for you in the expensive private rooms of patrons-only clubs. You can find anything in the nightside, if it doesn't find you first. It's as sick, magical,dangerous place.
(page 16)

Since it's a fantasy novel it allows the writer to expand his imagination. I liked the place that author has created  It feels like every kind of weird is thrown into the box and given a shake. And this box is Nightside. And when you are thrown into that box,like you are in this book, you never know which kind of weird you would encounter. There are horses here who talk, there are cars that can eat you alive, there are aliens, there are magicians, warlocks there is a cafe which is a ghost cafe and is frozen in a time frame, there are time portals that can take you to your present or past and there are characters which are as wacky as they come. Yes, there is a lot that is packed in the 230 pages of this novel and this could be overwhelming for some readers. But i enjoyed this weirdness. And since you are not alone in experiencing it, there is Joanna who is as overwhelmed by it as the reader, you tend to feel it's okay to be have that feeling.

John is not your average gumshoe.Since he was born in Nightside, he has some supernatural abilities which get enhanced in Nightside. People are afraid of him. He has a reputation in nightside. This piques the interest of the reader into John and one wants to know more about him. You want to know how he earned that reputation and what had made him leave Nigthside.

John's friends are as weird as him. I really liked Shotgun Suzie. I would love to see more of her in the coming books.  The collector was also and interesting character. Walker is an enigma. I would love to see how his character evolves in the next part of the series.

The book is a detective fiction and the author is able to keep the mystery till the end. Yes, the basic premise seems like a cliche(a down on luck PI gets a call from a rich dame) but a different weird setting make it an entertaining read.

'Something from the Nightside' is an introduction to this fantastic world called Nightside and it does its job well. By the time you are finished you want to know more about this weird place. You want to know more about John and his relationship with this place.You want to come here again. I would definitely read other books of this series.

If you like detective fiction and dark fantasy then do give it a try.

Some lines from the book that i liked:

Women always make the best clients. They say they want information, but mostly they really want is revenge; and they aren't mean when it comes to paying for what they want. What they need. Hell hath no fury; and I should know.


They always say they want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, but few of them really mean it. Not when a little white lie can be so much more comforting. But i don't deal in lies. Which is why i've never made the kind of money that would allow me to move in Mrs Barrett's circles. People only come to me when they'v tried absolutely everything else, including prayer and fortune-tellers.

Clients like a touch of romance and danger when they're hiring a private detective, even if they only want some papers served.

There's a certain comfort to be had in finding the answers to other people's problems, if you can't solve your own.

There's no-one closer, more like family, than old enemies.

"I'm no hero," I said, very definitely. I just find things. I'm not here to clean up the Nightside. It's too big, and i'm too small. I'm just one man, using what gifts i have to help my clients, because everyone should have someone to turn to, in time of need."

I knew this wasn't a good idea. Never get personally involved with a client. It's written in large capital letters on page one of How to be a private detective. Right next to Get as much cash as you can up front, just in case the cheque bounces, and Don't go looking for the Maltese Falcon because it'll all end in tears. I'm not stupid. I have read Raymond Chandler.

Like so many times before in the Nightside, i had found the truth at last, and it didn't please or comfort me one bit.

When I started out I had a dream, a dream of helping people who had nowhere else to turn; but dreams don't last. They can't compete with reality. The reality of struggling to find money for food and rent, and the way your feet hurt from pounding the streets looking for people who don't want to be found.

You have to believe in dreams because sometimes they believe in you.


Dreams can come true, in the Nightside. Everyone knows that. But they still vanish when you wake up.

Rating: 3.5/5

 If you have read this book then what did you think of it?
If you haven't then you can get the book from the following links:
Paperback
Kindle

Other fantasy books that i have read:
Fantasy

Other dark fantasy that i have read:
Dark Fantasy

Other detective fiction that i have read:
Detective Fiction

© विकास नैनवाल 'अंजान'

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