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Book Review: The Fallen by Charlie Higson

By Amazon, Books & Authors, Reviews11 Comments
the-fallen-charlie-higson-book-cover The Enemy Series is a series of books by Charlie Higson about all adults becoming diseased sicko’s that like to eat children. The stories are about the kids survival (or not).

This review will be like the ones I’ve done for the other books in the series – it will give an overview of the storyline. So please be aware that this review contains spoilers.

In The Fallen by Charlie Higson The Holloway Kids are finally back! These were the children introduced to us in book one of the series: The Enemy. Since then there’s been three books (The Dead, The Fear & The Sacrifice) with little mention of Maxie, Blue and the others.

The book starts by reintroducing the kids to the reader as they reach The Natural History Museum in London. They’ve travelled a long way to get there, but it’s not exactly the safe haven they imagined. They arrive to a scene of carnage. Grownup’s and lots of them are chasing the kids that have took up residence at The National History Museum.

The grownup’s were released from below the museum by Paul, a kid who got bit on the neck by and adult in one of the previous books and has started to get diseased. Blue, Maxie and Co get to work and help the geeky kids make the museum safe again.

The museum kids welcome the new comers and talk about their work – trying to find a cure for the disease. They explain that they need to get some supplies from a warehouse which used to be run by Promithios (a biomedical company). The problem is that the warehouse is a few miles away near Heathrow Airport. It might as well be hundreds of miles away, giving how dangerous the streets are.

So Blue, some of his crew and some of the museum kids set out on this perilous journey to the warehouse and back. The reader joins them on this journey, which is a throughly entertaining read. The excerpts of Lettis’s diary give the reader an insight to her character and perspective.

Big Mick’s death was a concern. It felt like Higson had been unsure where to take his character, so he killed him off. I recognise Higson’s need to develop Blue’s character to make him feel more vulnerable, more human, but killing off Big Mick didn’t fully achieve this for the reader.

Meanwhile back at the Museum: Maxie and the rest of the kids have got problems of their own – as Paul continues to cause trouble.

Blue is forced to leave some of the group in a Church, taking a smaller group onto the Promithios Warehouse. They reach the Promithios Warehouse to be met by The Twisted Kids. The Twisted Kids explain that they are the children of the Scientists at Promithios. That their parents found a lost tribe of people and were careful not to infect them with any diseases; but didn’t realise that the tribe had infected them with something.

An infection that only became apparent when the Scientists children were born odd and twisted. The Twisted Kids explain that they can’t stay there because the diseased grownup’s keep getting in. They agree to let Blue and Co take what they want, in return for letting them move into the Museum with the other kids. The Twisted Kids send a small group of their kids back with Blue and Co to check out the Museum.

Paul realises he can communicate with the diseased adults, leaves the Museum and heads back to David at Buckingham Palace.

Chapter 90 gives a summary of the over-arching plot. In North London Shadowman is following St. George’s Army; In East London The Kid is trapped in a dark cellar with The Green Man (a diseased adult) trying to stay alive; Southern London is a blackened ruin caused by a fire with Ed & Kyle crossing Lambeth Bridge to St. Paul’s Cathedral looking for Small Sam. Small Sam trapped by Mad Matt and his followers.

The Enemy Series has a very detailed storyline with lots of characters. Add to this a year between new releases and it means the reader (even one that’s an avid fan) looses track. It doesn’t help that the books in the series don’t always follow a straight forward timeline. So Higson should do more of these plot overviews like the one in Chapter 90.

The book ends with Small Sam finally arriving at the Museum to find his sister Ella. Only he’s a day late. Ella left with Maeve, Robbie and Monkey Boy a day ago for the countryside. Small Sam arrives with Ed, Kylie, The Kid, The Green Man and some other kids.

The Fallen is the best book of the series to date. Not as much action as some of the other books in the series, but as brilliantly written as ever. Lots of character and plot development that is starting to bring all of the kids together for the grand finale. It’s going to be an unbearable wait for the next book in the series.

Review soon,



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Film Nights

By Reviews, TV, Online Streaming & FilmsNo Comments

Monies been tight, so what better way to enjoy a cheap night in than a Film Night?

I’ve had a few film nights recently, picking up a DVD or two for a fiver and then settling down with some popcorn. So what have I watched and what have I thought? Well…here goes…

Simon Pegg and Nick Frost have created some brilliant films such as Shaun of The Dead and Hot Fuzz. Paul is their latest film about two sci-fi geeks who travel to America for a road trip of UFO hot spots. Then by chance they meet Paul.

Paul is an alien who’s been hanging out in a military base but has decided to catch the first ride home. In pursuit of Graeme (Pegg), Clive (Frost) and Paul are federal agents. Along the way they meet Ruth a Christian Fundamentalist who comes along for the ride and Graeme finds he likes. What follows is an hilarious sci-fi comedy which ends with Paul getting home, Graeme and Clive writing a book that everyone at Comic Con assumes is fiction.

The film starts 6 years after NASA discovered the possibility of alien life within our solar system. A probe was sent to collect samples and on it’s return it crashed over Central America. It created an Infected Zone taking up half of Mexico.

The film starts in Mexico were the two central characters are introduced. Kaulder is a US Journalist trying to get photos of the aliens for a paper he works for and Sam the daughter of the owner of the paper. Her father instructs Kaulder to get her home safely. They are forced to go through the Infected Zone to get back to the US.

What follows is a story about the development of a relationship between the two main characters. The acting is weak at best and although there are the occasional action scenes, the film is somewhat forgettable. If I’d seen the film on the TV, I certainly wouldn’t have bought it.

The Last Airbender
Aang is the last Airbender and appears in the Southern Water nation. The Fire nation soon discover him and chase after him. The Fire nation want dominance over all and they’ve already killed off the Air nation, mostly dominate the earth nation and are starting to dominate the Water nation. Each nation has the ability to manipulate their element.

Traditionally one member of the Air Nation becomes the Avatar: the one that keeps balance and peace between all nations. Aang was the chosen one but ran away as he didn’t want to be the Avatar. The Avatar has mastery over all the elements which is how they must keep balance. Aang sees the suffering of the people and decides to become the Avatar. But he needs to learn how to manipulate Water, Earth and Fire.

In this film he learns to manipulate Water and Earth but the Fire nation are closing in on him. As the film comes to an end I realise that the story is to continue in another film. I tried to Google the next film but it turns out that Nickelodeon haven’t decided if they are making the next film or not yet.

The Mist
This film is based on the book by Stephen King. It’s a horror-type-film based in a small town in New England. After a storm, a mist develops and envelops town while a father and his young son are in a supermarket. People try to leave the supermarket but there are things in the mist, creatures from another dimension. It turns out that an Army Base close by had been working on a way to make a window to other dimensions but accidentally created a door – allowing the mist and the creatures through too their world.

What follows is a brilliant film with suspense, action and characters that all deal with the stress of life threatening situation in different ways. Eventually the father and son and a few other characters escape to a car and drive. They drive and drive until they run out of petrol. The father has a gun with four bullets but there are five people in the car.

They all feel hopeless, so he shoots the others and then in emotional state gets out of the car shouting the creatures in the mist to come for him. But at that point the army turns up to clear up their mess and eradicate the creatures. That’s how the film ends and I couldn’t help being disappointed that they’d given up hope.

Season Of The Witch
This film is set in the time of the crusades with two particular crusaders. After slaughtering women and children in the name of god they decide to leave the crusades. Known as deserters a Cardinal catches them. He agrees to let them go home if they first transport a girl suspected of being a dangerous witch to a remote monastery so that Monks can perform a ritual to rid the land of her curse. But is she an innocent girl or a witch?

There’s a lot of suspense in this film but the end of it is good. At the end the witch becomes a powerful demon trying to distory all copies of a book full of rituals to banish him and other demons. Needless to say the crusaders are successful but die in the process and the girl is free of the demon. The end of the film is good, but it does drag through the middle.

Blog soon,


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Book Review: The Fear by Charlie Higson

By Amazon, Books & Authors, Reviews4 Comments
the-fear-charlie-higson-book-cover The Fear by Charlie Higson is the third in The Enemy series (the first being The Enemy and the second The Dead).

The opening chapter describes The Collector and his search for new “toys” which we quickly discover means kids. This really sets the tone of the book. It it is different from The Enemy & The Dead, rather than just focusing on the children this book gives an insight in to the mothers and fathers, grown-ups, strangers – the diseased adults as well.

I got a little worried when after the opening chapter a page states: The action in this book begins five days before the incidents described at the end of The Dead. Having read The Dead when it first came out over a year ago, I was worried that I’d have to go back and re-read it before I could enjoy and understand The Fear. My worries were soon put at rest as I started to read. Charlie (Higson – the author) gives enough information about the characters and the events that have happened to them so that even if you hadn’t read any of the previous books in the series you could pick it up and have an enjoyable read. If you have read the previous books you’ll see the links to The Enemy & The Dead and it is these links that help you remember what has happened the previous two books as well as contribute to the over-arching story.

The story starts in The Tower of London with Dognut, Courtney, Marco, Felix, Al, Fin, Jessica and Olivia deciding to go in search of the others they lost at Lambeth Bridge a year ago. They all have their own individual motivations. Dognut wants to find Brooke (a mouthy girl who he fancies); Courtney (one of Brooke’s best friends) is going to show she can be strong and brave to Dognut who she fancies and can’t decide if she wants to find Brooke or not; Marco & Felix are going for adventure, Al is looking for his little sister Maria, Fin to look for some of his friends from Rowhurst (a private school from one of the previous books); Jessica because she’s just split up from her boyfriend and wants to be away from him and finally Olivia who wants to find her brother Paul. They travel up the Thames by row boat, to avoid the diseased adults and stop when they see a group of children in Westminster at the Houses of Parliament.

Their boat unfortunately sinks and they are met by the leader of this group Nicola, elected by the other children as Prime Minister. They ask about the people they are searching for but they don’t know anything. Nicola is also oddly suspicious of them. They ask about David and Nicola tells them that David has taken up residence at Buckingham Palace, but that he can’t be trusted. Dognut and the group know they must travel by foot and that it will be dangerous. Nicola gives then a good meal and water. At the gates to The Houses of Parliament once the gates are open a group of kids barge in. They claim to be looters and begin to pick on a kid called Bozo whose on the gate. Dognut doesn’t like seeing Bozo getting bullied and after a few exchanges the looters are fended off by Dognut and his group. It turns out these looters are from St. James Park and are led by a psycho child John.

Dognut and his group set off and at first all is fine. Until they see a large group of disease ridden adults. They get cornered in a dead end of a side street. They know there are too many to fight but as they’re out of options that’s what they do. Then another group of children save them and send the adults off running. This other group describe themselves as “hunters” and stated they are mercenaries that for payment from the settlements of kids they clear the streets of the adults killing as many as possible. Their leader Ryan. Dognut states that his group are on their way to Buckingham Palace and Ryan explains that he doesn’t like David (the self appointed King) as he never paid them for some work they did for him. They urge Dognut to be careful and offer to get his group to Buckingham Palace safely – free of charge.

Dognut and his gang arrive at Buckingham Palace and are introduced to David and his right hand man Jester. David claims that he doesn’t know where Brooke is. To make things worse David tells the group that Brooke abandoned them and didn’t share the loot on the back of the Tesco lorry in The Dead. Dognut’s group ask about their friends and family are looking for and David reveals that Maria (Al’s little sister) is there. Maria tells the group that Brooke and some of the others have made Natural History Museum their home. Dognut finds away over Buckingham Palace walls and all but Al (who chooses to stay with his little sister Maria) escape and head to the Natural History Museum.

While all this going on their’s a kid whose an observer and his name is Shadowman. Shadowman is a great addition to the story being generally a loner and gives Charlie (Higson – the author) a different method of telling the over-arching story whilst telling Shadowman’s story as well.

As Dognut and his group make their way to the Natural History Museum, David decides he needs kids that can fight and sends Jester on his way to find some. David makes an agreement with Nicola (from Parliament) that if he can rid St. James Park of the looters that they will join forces and rule together. David not just thinking about their part of London, or the whole of London but all of England. David’s dastardly plan is for Jester to find kids that can fight to clear St. James’ Park of the rough, looter kids living there. Whatever the group of kids there had always been the rule: Kids don’t harm kids. The ememy are the grown-ups.

This twist gets you thinking, who are worse? The different groups of children plotting against one another (who have their minds intact) or the adults (who are acting with twisted minds because of illness). This is exactly what Charlie Higson (the author) wants you to ask yourself. Indeed it could be said that the theme of the book is about human nature and our nature to be selfish, greedy, power-seeking, even if that means the death and destruction of other human beings.

On the way to the Natural History Museum unfortunately Olivia gets killed by The Collector (the group do later go back and kill The Collector in what could be seen as a revenge attack). Dognut and his group arrive at the Natural History Museum and they finally find Brooke and the geeks. Brooke’s changed a lot in a year, less mouthy (reporting that she had grown-up), short brown hair (her bottle blonde having grown out as the year passed) and wearing old fashioned clothing from the Museum. The kids catch up and Dognut tells Paul (Olivia’s brother) what happened. Paul is distraught about learning of the death of his sister. Brooke reveals why she left David behind instead of sharing the loot from the Tesco lorry – because David shot a kid on Lambeth Bridge when the kid refused to move.

In the Chapters that follow Greg makes an appearance (the clever diseased adult from the The Dead) as The Fear begins to link The Enemy and The Dead together. Jester meets the Waitrose and Morrisons crew led by Blue and Maxie and it was at this point that I started to realise how clever of a writer Charlie Higson is.

Dognut and his group decide to head back to The Tower of London with Brooke going with them. But on the way the group are attacked by grown-up’s and are forced to seek refuge in a tube station, but this is exactly where other diseased adults like to live as it’s dark. They are quickly overwhelmed but then are saved by Blue and Maxie’s gangs. Out of Dognut’s group only Brooke survives, and she is taken to Buckingham Palace to the infirmary. Luckily David and Jester doesn’t recognise her. Blue and Maxie are quick to join her in the infirmary after clashes with the rough looting kids from St. James’ Park. David intends to keep them both in the infirmary so that he can take control of their groups.

While all this is going on Shadowman has observed that the diseased grown-up’s seem to be getting leaders – the more clever ones of the group. He realises that the more intelligent leaders can use tools (such as knifes and sticks) and that there is quickly becoming an army of diseased adults following these leaders.

Back at the infirmary at Buckingham Palace Brooke tells Blue and Maxie the truth about David. Meanwhile Paul (Olivia’s brother) still bereaved goes to David and Jester slightly mad talking about how he can’t trust anyone at the museum. David and Jester convinces Paul that they had caused Olivia’s death and Paul agrees to go back to the Museum and release the diseased adults from the basement to set them loose on the kids. Paul tries to strangle one of the guards but fails. While the kid guarding the locked door comes round Paul pulls down his polar neck and reveals a bite from an adult – which is how the disease is spread. Paul opens the door and let’s the grown-ups loose to get the kids in the museum.

The book ends there and I can’t believe I have to wait over a year for the next part of the story. I received the book from Amazon on a Saturday afternoon and had finished it within twenty-four hours. It truly is an addictive page turner, especially if your into diseased adults and kids making an attempt at surviving the blood thirsty adults.

You can buy The Fear on Amazon.

You can read my reviews of the other two books in the series here:

Write soon,



I aim for posts on this blog to be informative, educational and entertaining. If you have found this post useful or enjoyable, please consider making a contribution by Paypal:

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