Steven Poore writes epic fantasies (Malessar’s Curse), ripping space adventures (The Empire Dance), and other shaggy dog tales. He has been onstage with Jane Horrocks and the RSC, and co-produced the Sheffield theatre premiere of Terry Pratchett’s Wyrd Sisters. Steven is a founder member of the Sheffield SF&F Writers’ Group, where much of Heir to the North was drafted and workshopped. BFS Award-nominated publisher Fox Spirit Books will be publishing several of his short stories during 2015. Steven lives in Sheffield with his partner and a critical mass of books and vinyl records.
Incidentally, Mr Pratchett had been expecting someone taller.
Where to find Steven Poore online
This member has not published any books.
Smashwords book reviews by Steven Poore
- Engraved on the Eye
on April 25, 2013
Fresh heroic fantasy stories without the heavy reliance on Westernised tropes. Some of the tales are very slight, but most are very good indeed, and none are too long or too heavy to support themselves. I would have loved to see Doctor Diablo's short story extended and further explored, for example. The Conan-esque Zok is also an interesting creation, but it is the first story, that introduces the ghul-hunting protagonist of Saladin's full-length debut novel, that will probably draw most readers to this collection. Nicely done, and consistently told, with a good ear for the intricacies of honour and faith that many fantasies lack.
(This review also appears on Goodreads)
- The Book of Orm
on May 26, 2015
AJ Dalton's first collection of short stories features a line-up of epic, imperfect yet steadfast heroes - yes, even the troll Orm of the title counts as a proper hero, since he has a quest of his own to endure. Orm and his fellow inhuman, the (reluctant) dragon, are written in lighter tones and have a lighter touch in general when compared to the weightier quests of the very Gemmellesque heroes of the two tales that are the backbone of this collection. And "Gemmellesque" is no disservice either - Warrior of Ages is a thunderous romp against the minions of a manipulative god, pitting faith and self against "progress", while Knight of Ages draws deep into realms of legend and fable to achieve the same effect. The fact that these two stories share several themes and tropes (for example the gathering of a band of heroes to save the day) is really the only thing I can find to count against them, as otherwise Dalton's prose powers the reader through both stories like Dros Delnoch never fell.
Oddly for a single-author collection, this isn't a single-author collection. Two other stories - Rusalka, by Nadine West, and The Nine Rules of the Nisse, by Matthew White, are included too, and though each is markedly different they do fit in with the North-European tone of Dalton's stories. Matthew White evokes Scandinavian childrens' stories of my childhood with his chapter headings, as his heroine does battle with a house-invading, rule-spouting imp. Nadine West goes into deeper waters with a tale of love and loss that also manages to make clear just how little human life means to the water spirits. Neither story is here just to make up the numbers, and I recommend reading through to the end.
Excellent fun for any fan of straight-out heroic fantasy, but also for anyone who wants some fresh talent in the mix too.