Horn

Adult
Rated 4.00/5 based on 3 reviews
A dead girl in a dumpster and a unicorn on the loose – no-one knows how bad that combination can get better than Miriam Aster. A consulting job for city homicide quickly becomes a tangled knot of unexpected questions, and the link between the dead girl and the unicorn will draw Aster back into the world of the exiled fey she thought she’d left behind ten years ago, and she isn’t happy.

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About Peter M Ball

I live in Brisbane, Australia, where I work on my fiction and a post-graduate thesis on the gothic. I’ve worked as a sessional tutor and lecturer at Griffith University and the Queensland Institute of Technology, took part in the organisation of the first Gen Con Australia, and occasionally break up the long stings of writing and research by playing role-playing games. I‘ve been known to write poetry and role-playing products in addition to fiction, have done a short stint as a dramaturge, and once toured Australian writing festivals as part of the Post-Hoc Performing Word Company. Rumours of me wearing a feather boa and top-hat while performing rhyming couplets are, alas, not terribly exaggerated.

A more-or-less complete list of my publications can be found here. This should cover the less part: over 2004 & 2005 I ran a small RPG e-publisher dubbed the Clockwork Golem Workshop, which involved a lot of editing and self-publishing, but I generally choose not to list that in my publications. Prior to 2004 I primarily wrote poetry, some of which was published in small-press anthologies I don’t have records or copies of.

I don’t keep cats. Or dogs. Or fish. As you can expect, this is a significant drawback when maintaining a blog in the SF community. I do have a stuffed bear named Fudge. He’s the cute one in the Ball household.

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Reviews

Review by: Sense Memory on Feb. 10, 2011 :
A fast paced, well written noir detective mystery with paranormal elements.

The sassy lead Miriam Aster is an ex-cop who is reluctantly called in to consult on cases which involve fey influence, such as a murdered child covered in fairy glitter. Be warned, however, this is no children's fairy tale.

I enjoyed this tale from Peter M Ball and the skilful way the paranormal elements were blended with noir ambience.

I look forward to reading others in the series.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: seandblogonaut on Dec. 30, 2010 :
Horn by Peter M Ball is another brilliant Australian novella from Twelfth Planet Press. It's a paranormal detective story.

But be prepared, this ain't your little sisters ( unless you have a rather odd family) book about faeries and unicorns. This is a hard boiled detective novel, dark and probably a little confronting for some.


Miriam Aster ain't no Nancy Drew, either, she's an undead freelance investigator on the trail of a murderous, horny unicorn- Oh did I mention she's a Lesbian.

To give away more, would I think ruin the novella. Horn needs to be experienced on a personal level.


Now for those not reading closely, I said undead, lesbian, and horny unicorn all in the same sentence. No this isn't some paranormal erotica gone wrong. It's possibly the best paranormal fiction I have read all year, possibly ever. It will be confronting, it will take some of you close to edge. But I think Ball crafts a delightfully dark little tale, revealing a more honest portrayal of the Fae, the sex, lust and double edged devious nature.

If you grew up playing Faeries and Unicorns with 'My Little Pony' you might want to skip this one. If you are looking for great noir fiction and a good angle on paranormal fiction, read it, possibly with stiff drink in hand.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Ian Mackereth on Dec. 21, 2009 : (no rating)
Peter Ball nails the noir voice exactly, blending the fantasy elements into the weave seamlessly.

A hard-bitten ex-cop turned private investigator is called in to deal with a young girl's death that appears to involve the "weird stuff" that the PI has history with.

There's rampant unicorns, faerie queens, hobgoblins, and sparkly fairies, but it's still dark and gritty and completely urban and non-Disney.

The references to back-story, the histories that these characters have shared off the page, is so Chandleresque and pitch-perfect that it had me smiling even while I read on to see how it all resolved.

A wonderful debut, and I look forward to the sequels that have been promised.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

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