The Secret War, by M.F.W. Curran

Review by Christopher Teague

When it was unveiled, Macmillan was lambasted by many commentators with its ‘New Writing’ imprint. Well, from that stable comes M.F.W. Curran, a debut novelist who may quite well have lain undiscovered if it weren’t for such a new venture. The Secret War is the start of a proposed series of fantasies featuring Captain William Saxon; an alternate, 18th Century tale where the fantastical infringes upon the natural with regular occurrence.

Captain Saxon and his great friend Lieutenant Keiran Harte, veterans of The Battle of Waterloo, become embroiled within the battle for the Scarimadaen and the daemonic forces of Count Ordane, not to mention the clandestine activities of the Vatican.

Suffice to say, this is not a work of literary genius but Curran has an engaging style which has produced a very entertaining book, and for me that is all I want: to be entertained. No airs or graces, just an adventurous yarn, with plenty of blood, guts and daring-do.

Curran’s talent is in ascension, and I for one cannot wait to read the sequel which has been sitting on my bedside table for some time, The Hoard of Mhorrer.

The Secret War, by M. F. W. Curran, Macmillan.

About Stephen Theaker (306 Articles)
Stephen Theaker's reviews, interviews and articles have appeared in Interzone, Black Static, Prism and the BFS Journal. Among other work for the BFS, he has been awards administrator, short story competition administrator, Dark Horizons editor, FantasyCon secretary and treasurer, and (briefly) chair.