Writer Wednesday: Steven Novak

The run up to my first novella coming out (That would be “The Tower and The Eye: A Beginning” – if you haven’t been listening) is quite exciting.

It’ll be a while before it’s due out and there is a fair bit of stuff to get done before it is ready for the eyes of the public, so I’ll be concentrating on that. Editing and whatnot, don’tcha know.

Stay tuned for more news…

* * *

I thought I’d re-introduce another fantasy author to you today – Steven Novak.

For as long as far as he can remember, Steven Novak has been drawing. With a pencil, a pen, a crayon, his mother’s lipstick, on paper, or wood, or the walls,, in the end it really didn’t matter. From an early age anything has been a canvas and everything has been a means with which to draw on it.

As a boy he was introduced to the book “Harold and The Purple Crayon” and he knew from that very moment on that he wanted only to spend his life telling stories.

After honing his talents at the “Columbus College of Art and Design” he moved to California where he was married and started his career as a
professional freelance illustrator and writer. 

It’s California that he currently calls home, where he lives with his wife Tami who is a primary school teacher, muse, best friend, and the only person willing to put up with him constantly asking questions like, “Do you really like it? Seriously, do you think it’s good? If you weren’t married to me, would you still like it?”

He has worked as a graphic designer, product designer, children’s illustrator, written three novels, a graphic novel called “Pen Man,” and a picture book called “Snow Man is My Friend” that has quite surprisingly been used in drug and alcohol rehab centres.

Steven is a wonderful illustrator and writer. His Book, “Forts” is a step through into a brand new world being ravaged by war… here’s my review of it:

For Tommy Jarvis, life has never been simple – quite the opposite, in fact. It is, however, about to become decidedly more difficult.

Moments after stumbling through a doorway to another world, Tommy and his friends discover they are the key to ending a war in which the casualties are too great to count and their chances of survival are almost nonexistent.

The first thing that draws you to this book, no matter whether it is the print copy or the digital edition, is the cover. The artwork is superb and when you open the book, you are greeted by stunning black and white illustrations at the beginning of each chapter.

Each picture is evocative and the writer, Steven Novak, is the illustrator for all the artwork in the book, including the cover. This artwork is one of the many things that set Forts: Fathers & Sons apart from other books of its genre.

Aimed at children 8+, the prose is descriptive and enthralling. It challenges its readers with the difficult situations the characters find themselves in, but the language it is couched in, is such that it won’t scare the reader too much; Kids like to be a little scared, but you don’t want to give them nightmares!

There is some swearing, but nothing out of context or inappropriate.

All the elements are there of a proper fantasy story – the oppressed people, the invaders and a prophecy that no one really believes in. The magic is provided through the children themselves, each of the five characters having a unique and infinitely desirable ability for a child. I can see the games being played in playgrounds all over the world with kids arguing over who is going to be Tommy and who will be Stacey.

This is a brilliant beginning to the series and I for one, am looking forward to reading the next book in the trilogy, Forts: Liars & Thieves and I’ll be buying a print copy of this book for my son (and daughter) to read.

Here’s the link – go on pick up a copy, you won’t regret it!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Forts-Fathers-Sons-Steven-Novak/dp/0615466826/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1306272184&sr=1-1

And just to entice you further, here are a selection of the wonderful images that Steven has created – Enjoy!

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