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Alex Bell

Alex Bell was born in 1986. She always wanted to be a writer but had several different back-up plans to ensure she didn’t end up in the poor house first. For some years these ranged from dolphin trainer to animal shelter vet but then, at fifteen, she had an epiphany involving John and Robert Kennedy and decided to become a lawyer instead. To that end she eagerly started a Law Degree only to find it so boring that she was at a very real risk of going completely insane. To mitigate this she started writing again. Now she happily dwells in an entirely make-believe world of blood, death, madness, murder and mayhem. The doctors have advised that it is best not to disturb her, for she appears to be happy there.

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Alex Bell Asks “Who’s Your Favourite Anti-Hero?”

Today we welcome author Alex Bell whose book Lex Trent Versus the Gods has just been released in paperback in the U.S. Amanda enjoyed Lex Trent and  I loved Alex Bell's novel Jasmyn, so we're pleased to introduce you to Alex who wants to talk about anti-heroes. 

There’s no denying that strong, noble, handsome heroes can be enjoyable to read about but, personally, I have always had an immense soft spot for the anti-hero – whether he (or she) is a conman cheating people out of their wealth, or a terrible coward sprinting away from a fight, or simply a good-for-nothing crook out to swindle everyone they meet.

I think it’s the imperfections and flaws of these characters that appeal to me. They ... Read More

Lex Trent versus the Gods: Imaginative YA adventure

Lex Trent versus the Gods by Alex Bell

Lex Trent versus the Gods, Alex Bell’s first YA novel, introduces us to Lex Trent, a thief, swindler, and all-round rogue. He has taken one chance too many and finds himself caught up in the Games, playing as a representative of Lady Luck. We follow his various trials and tribulations over the course of the Game.

Lex Trent versus the Gods takes a little while to really get started — setting the scene and allowing us to get to know Lex — but by the time you reach page 64, you simply cannot put the book down and find yourself gripped by all of Lex’s adventures. Even though Lex is insufferably smug and selfish beyond belief, you just can’t help rooting for him. The book is chockfull of other memorable characters, too. One of my favourites is the representation of Lady Luck as a rather ditzy blonde!

By f... Read More

Jasmyn: An excellent grown-up fairy tale

Jasmyn by Alex Bell

"You have never heard a story quite like this one."

Start a book with a sentence like this, and you've given yourself a tall order to fill. However, Alex Bell doesn't disappoint. Jasmyn is something special indeed, putting me under its spell in a way that only a few books a year ever do.

Our heroine, Jasmyn, is devastated when her beloved husband Liam dies suddenly, just a year after their marriage. Then, at his funeral, things really start getting weird: five black swans fall dead from the sky during the interment. In the coming months, Jasmyn learns that Liam may have had a secret life — and it's not your ordinary garden-variety secret life. She teams up with Liam's grumpy brother, Ben, to uncover the truth. Their quest takes them all over Europe, to real-life places as enchanting as any fairy-tale castle. Read More

The Ninth Circle

fantasy book review Alex Bell The Ninth Circle, Jasmyn, Lex Trent Versus the GodsThe Ninth Circle — (2008) Publisher: A man comes to on the floor of a shabby apartment in the middle of Budapest. His head is glued to the floorboards with his own blood. There’s a fortune in cash on the kitchen table. And he has no idea where, or who, he is. He can do extraordinary things — speak any number of languages fluently, go three days without food or sleep, and fight with extraordinary prowess. But without a name, without a past, he’s isolated from the rest of the world; a stranger to everyone, including himself — until a chance encounter with a young scholar leads to his first friendship and his first hint that someone out there knows more about him than he does. Someone is sending him clues about his past. Photographs hidden in books and crates of wine. Cryptic clues pointing towards a murdered woman. And clear warnings against Stephomi, his only friend. But that’s not all; Gabriel Antaeus is seeing strange, impossible things: a burning man is stalking his dreams and haunting his mirrors, his dreams are filled with violence from the past, and his pregnant young neighbor is surrounded by an extraordinary golden aura. Something dark and violent in Gabriel’s past is trying to resurface. And as he pieces the clues together, everything points towards an astounding war between angels and demons — a battle not just for the future of the world but for the minds and souls of everyone in it.


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FanLit Asks… About Style (Part 2)

Here's another installment of FanLit Asks. Instead of asking one author several questions, we’ve asked several authors just one question. Please leave a comment or suggest a question for us to ask in the future. We’ll choose one commenter to win a copy of Jack Vance's The Eyes of the Overworld (one of my favorites!) on audio CDs (or, if you've got bad taste, something else from our stacks).

Question: Which speculative fiction writer has had the greatest influence on your own writing style and what, specifically, do you find most inspirational about that writer’s style?

Alex Bell: Definitely Terry Pratchett... Read More