my first exposure to christopher golden was through media tie-in books of BUFFY, THE VAMPIRE SLAYER and ANGEL. but it wasn’t until THE LOST SLAYER series that i actually started actively looking for other christopher golden books.
the first book i found was STRANGEWOOD–but it was not the first book of him i’ve read. of course, discounting the fact that i’ve read the media tie-in books. STRANGEWOOD was also my introduction into the harsh life of being a christopher golden fan in the philippines–of how hard it is to look for books by him in this country.
thank goodness for FULLY BOOKED.
of course, that’s a story for another day. for now, i will talk about the latest release from christopher golden and tim lebbon: THE CHAMBER OF TEN.
THE CHAMBER OF TEN is the third book of the HIDDEN CITIES series, but each book stands alone on its own. which is a good thing, since i’ve yet to find a copy of the first book.
a little backgrounder: the HIDDEN CITIES series of books all rely on cities around the world that are rich in culture, and have histories of magic. the first one was set in london, the second in new orleans, and THE CHAMBER OF TEN was set in venice.
i admit to being caught a little off-guard when i started reading this particular book. i guess it’s because i’ve been reading a lot of non-fantasy books lately (and while FEED is fantastical, it was given a biography-like treatment). in any case, the first chapter gave me a bit of a jolt.
one character is a mind-reader. or a psychic. anyway you want to put it, he’s sensitive to psychic links. and the character tries to write it off as something that can be scientifically proven (in the second or third chapter), but you know immediately it’s not science-based. it’s magic.
so that was a little jarring how another character just mentions it in passing in ther first chapter.
that aside though, christopher golden (and tim lebbon) definitely delivers another page-turning adventure.
i’ve always been amazed at how two authors can co-write and produce one good book. GOOD OMENS by neil gaiman and terry pratchett certainly comes to mind when speaking of great books that were collaborated on. and in the two HIDDEN CITIES books i’ve read, i’ve never been able to distinguish between christopher golden and tim lebbon.
granted, i’ve yet to read a book by the latter. but i like to think that i have a grasp of christopher golden’s voice as a writer, having read most of the books he’s published (through thorough combing of many bookstores in the city). so i really admire how the two were able to spin THE CHAMBER OF TEN and make it seem as if only one person was telling the story.
but would i recommend this book? to those who are into mysteries and fantasy, yes. but unlike STRANGEWOOD which i recommended to everyone i know (i still do, actually), i don’t think THE CHAMBER OF TEN is for everyone.