“fascinatingly different” – review of The Black Hole Bar on Risingshadow

Artwork by Alison Buck
Artwork by Alison Buck

On Risingshadow, Seregil of Rhiminee has reviewed Dave Weaver’s latest novel The Black Hole Bar. He starts by saying that “there’s something original and unique about this novel that sets it apart from other novels and stories”. Of course, Seregil mentions the inevitable comparison with both The Canterbury Tales and The Decameron. He finds Simon, the main protagonist, to be an interesting character, but also the members of the Black Hole Bar Writers’ Group. Each writer tells their stories, which Seregil says “range from the imaginative to the shocking” and they each react in different ways to each other’s stories. He says the beauty of the novel arises from these unique and different stories “because they reveal in what kind of a world the storytellers live”, a world that is “familiar, but also totally different from our world, because many changes have occurred during the years and disturbing things have happened”.

Of these Seregil especially mentions that “one of the stories is tied to global warming and another story tells about how things have changed when Earth’s natural resources have been depleted. I can also mention that the Greater Depression is an interesting invention, because the society changed during that time and many people who had links to old banks were killed. There are also brilliant and disturbing references to cannibalism.” Seregil liked the fact that the stories encourage the reader to think about these events as he has “always been fascinated by novels and stories that offer food for thoughts (it’s nice to read thought-provoking stories).”

He praises Dave Weaver’s ability not only to write these different stories from the perspective of different characters, to portray each of these characters, and also their interactions which “worked well. I especially enjoyed reading about what happened between Simon and Danni. The interaction between the other characters was also handled admirably by the author.”

Seregil read Dave’s debut novel Jacey’s Kingdom in which he thought Dave showed lots of promise. “After reading The Black Hole Bar I can say that he has matured as an author and is capable of writing original stories. He clearly isn’t afraid of writing something different and that’s a good thing, because it’s nice that there are authors out there who are willing to write original stories. I look forward to reading his future novels.”

He summarises by recommending The Black Hole Bar to anyone who is “looking for new and intriguing science fiction to read” and thinks it will appeal to readers “because the author has created a fascinating vision of the future world”. His conclusion is that The Black Hole Bar is a novel that is “intriguing, well written and thought-provoking entertainment for science fiction readers!

You can read the whole of the review here.