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06 - Tom Holt Novels p5


This article is from the Tom Holt FAQ, by Nick Boalch n.g.boalch@durham.ac.uk with numerous contributions by others.

06 - Tom Holt Novels p5

"Only Human" (1999)
ISBN 1-857-23693-9 (hb)
ISBN 1-857-23949-0 (pb)

A gag about God regarding the pursuit of happiness as something to be
done with a fly-swatter resulted in this book.

Something is about to go wrong. Very wrong. What do you expect if the
Supreme Being decides to get away from it all for a few days, leaving his
naturally inquisitive son to look after the cosmic balance of things? A
minor hiccup with a human soul and before you know it you're on the road
to chaos.

"Alexander at the World's End" (1999)
ISBN 0-316-85058-6 (hb)
ISBN 0-349-11315-7 (pb)

This is the sequal to "The Walled Orchard" and "Goatsong".

The story of two men, one of whom conquered empires, one of whom tackled
the drainage problems of a small village. Their paths crossed only
briefly, but the encounter changed their lives forever. The first was
Alexander the Great, the second, Euxenus, philosopher and tutor to the
young Alexander.

"Snow White and the Seven Samurai" (1999)
ISBN 1-856-23898-2 (hb)
ISBN 1-857-23988-1 (pb)

Once upon a time (or last Thursday, as it's sometimes known) the wicked
Queen had a fully functioning, if antiquated, Mirrors system, and all
was well in the kingdom. Then the humans hacked in and the system failed.
Fairytales may never be the same again...

"Olympiad" (2000)
ISBN 0-316-85390-9 (hb)
ISBN 0-349-11316-5 (pb)

Two thousand, seven hundred and seventy-six years ago, a group of men
ran between too piles of stones, and invented history. The first ever
Olympic Games in 776 B.C. were apparently so memorable that all Western
chronology is based on them. But all we know about them is the name of
the man who won the race. Over two and a half millenia later, it's about
time somebody told the story.

Tom writes:

"Olympiad" is my two cents' worth for the Millennium; I got the idea
when I realised that we only think it's going to be 2000 next year
because the Christian church fixed the date of the birth of Christ in
accordance with the Roman system of recording history by time elapsed
since the (mythical) foundation of Rome by (two brothers who never
actually existed, called) Romulus and Remus, which in turn was fixed by
reference to the Greek system of recording history by time elapsed
since the (legendary) foundation of the Olympic Games by (the entirely
fictitious half-god half-human hero) Hercules in 776BC (except, of
course, it wasn't 776BC then, it was the First Olympiad, only it
wasn't, because there were no records at all in 776BC, since writing
wasn't even invented till about fifty years later...); in other words,
our entire concept of history is based on misunderstandings of some
very old fairy-tales, which is what prompted me to make up some more
untrue history, as if there wasn't enough already. Basically, it's a
book about lies, legends and historical fact, and how there's really
nothing to choose between them.

"Valhalla" (2000)
ISBN 1-857-23983-0 (hb)
ISBN 1-841-49042-3 (pb)

"Valhalla" is about a bunch of people who get what they deserve in the
afterlife... more accurately, it's about the way we see ourselves, and
the problems we create for ourselves by not facing up to who we really
are. Actually, it's about 22 cm x 14 cm x 3cm, assuming you're buying
the hardback.

When great warriors die, their reward is eternal life in Odin's great
hall, Valhalla. But Valhalla has changed and like any corporation has
adapted to survive. Unfortunately nothing could have prepared it for the
arrival of currently-dead cocktail waitress Carol Kortright, who is not
at all happy.

"Nothing But Blue Skies" (2001)
ISBN 1-841-49040-7 (hb)
ISBN 1-841-49058-X (pb)

This was listed in previous versions of the FAQ as "The Portable Door",
which was the working title.

There are very many reasons why British summers are either non-existent
or, alternatively, held on a Thursday. Many of these reasons are either
scientific, dull, or both - but all of them are wrong. The real reason
is, of course, irritable Chinese Water Dragons; of which estate agent
Karen is one.

Tom writes that this is about "love, authoritarian government and the
British love/hate relationship with their bloody awful weather".

"Falling Sideways" (2002)
ISBN 1-841-49087-3 (hb)
ISBN 1-841-49110-1 (pb)

From the moment Homo Sapiens descended from the trees, possibly onto their
heads, humanity has striven for civilization. Fire. The Wheel. Running away
from furry things with big teeth. All would be testament to man's
ascendancy; if one man didn't believe every civilization is actually run
by frogs.

Tom writes that this is "a simple love story about a boy, a girl, cloning
and the true meaning of kissing frogs, a gentle, sentimental love story
about a man and the frog (make that frogs) of his dreams".


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