Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
Lonely Werewolf Girlis a thick, intimidating tome but when you actually start reading, it goes down smoothly. What stands out most in this novel is Martin Millar's writing style. Not only does he use simple language and set a quick pace, but his chapters are very short and most of them end on just the right beat. Millar doesn't spend much time describing unnecessary details, instead focusing on the motivations, action, and dialog of the characters. Millar is someone who manages to break the "show don't tell" rule and make it work.
As for the story itself, Millar surrounds his comedy with tragic and deviant characters such as an anorexic protagonist and cross-dressing werewolves. The plot starts out simple — an outcast is on the run from her family — and soon spirals into a complex tale of politics that later evolves into a supernatural sitcom of sorts.... Read More
Martin MillarMartin Millar is a critically acclaimed Scottish writer from Glasgow, now resident in London. He also writes the Thraxas series of fantasy novels under the pseudonym Martin Scott. The novels he writes as Martin Millar dwell on urban decay and British sub-cultures, and the impact this has on a range of characters, both realistic and supernatural. There are elements of magical realism, and the feeling that the boundary between real life and the supernatural is not very thick. Most of them are set in Brixton, Millar’s one-time place of residence. Many are at least semi-autobiographical, and Love and Peace with Melody Paradise and Suzy, Led Zeppelin and Me both feature Millar himself as a character. As Martin Scott his Thraxas novels are a fusion of traditional high fantasy and pulp noir thrillers. Thraxas won the 2000 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel. There are maps and excerpts at the Thraxas website. Here’s Martin Millar’s website.
Werewolf Girl — (2007-2010) Young adult. Publisher: While teenage werewolf Kalix MacRinnalch is being pursued through the streets of London by murderous hunters, her sister, the Werewolf Enchantress, is busy designing clothes for the Fire Queen. Meanwhile, in the Scottish Highlands, the MacRinnalch Clan is plotting and feuding after the head of the clan suddenly dies intestate. As the court intrigue threatens to blow up into all-out civil war, the competing factions determine that Kalix is the swing vote necessary to assume leadership of the clan. Unfortunately, Kalix isn’t really into clan politics — laudanum’s more her thing. Even more unfortunately, Kalix is the reason the head of the clan ended up dead, which is why she’s now on the lam in London… This expansive tale of werewolves in the modern world — friendly werewolves, fashionista werewolves, troubled teenage werewolves, cross-dressing werewolves, werewolves of every sort — is hard-edged, hilarious, and utterly believable.
Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar
The Good Fairies of New York by Martin Millar
Martin Millar’s writing is consistently funny and entertaining. And while The Good Fairies of New York is upbeat and comedic, it also has a layer of tragedy that the author manages to juggle and incorporate seamlessly. The pace is quick and precise so that by the time you're laughing or crying over a particular scene, you're already on to the next one.
Millar manages to thrown in a lot of disparate elements in this novel (rock music, Maoist teachings, exotic diseases) and make them work. The writing is strong — it’s easy to get into and there's no room for confusion, even when Millar is juggling a dozen interweaving characters from two distinct parts of the world.
His characters are another asset — whether it's the fairies who consistently get into trouble despite their best efforts, or the human characters who each have distinct personalities (... Read More
Lux the Poet — (1988) Publisher: There is something about Lux. He’s a thief and a liar; he is selfish and self-absorbed and hopelessly vain. But while he looks like Lana Turner and romances like a true Casanova, Lux is actually more like a bumbling, oblivious Mary Tyler Moore. Amid shouting mobs, police shields, and the hurled bricks of the ’80s Brixton riots, Lux is searching for Pearl — the love of his life. Her home has been burned down by a stray petrol bomb, and she’s searching for sanctuary along with her friend Nicky. Nicky is traumatized after having killed her computer — her best friend — and is herself being followed by Happy Science PLC. It is their plan to breed a superior next generation by implanting the sperm of genius men inside beautiful women. She knows too much about the plan. Lux is helped in his quest by Kalia, a castaway of Heaven attempting to get back in God’s good graces by performing one million good deeds over countless lifetimes. There’s also a thrash metal band, a riot-party, past lives, and KY.
Lux and Alby Sign On and Save the Universe — (1999) Publisher: When Lux the Poet and Alby Starvation, famed inhabitants of South London’s least salubrious areas, find themselves thrown together, the fabric of the universe starts to crumble. The arrival of Ruby, with her plans for total domination of the squatting group, leads them into a fantastic (and quite upsetting) adventure featuring beautiful Goddesses, unhappy, plants, sad rocks, and a full scale assault on Nirvana. While Lux figures that his sensational good looks will probably carry him through any crisis, Alby Starvation, dedicated only to protecting his precious comic collection, is very unhappy. The prospect of having an adventure, and maybe even finding a girlfriend, is almost too much to bear. Ruby, a talented woman with an aversion to shoes, is of the opinion that neither ancient Gods nor terrible flatmates should interfere with the important things in life, like taking revenge on her ex-boyfriend. Will Nirvana ever be free? Will the rocks, plants and fairies ever smile again? Will Lux the Poet manage to charm his way to another benefit cheque?
Suzy, Led Zeppelin and Me — (2002) Publisher: Glasgow, 1972, and all the coolest kids in town are queuing up for Led Zeppelin tickets. Overhead, a Zeppelin approaches. Its passengers, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Hank Williams, think it’s worth leaving heaven to see the greatest rock band in the world. Even the fairies are fans. Martin and Greg have overactive imaginations. When they aren’t fighting the monstrous hordes of Xotha, they are competing for the attentions of Suzy. But she’s not likely to ditch Zed, the hippest boy in the school, for the likes of them, is she? Still, with Led Zeppelin on the way, anything can happen.