The Gone-away World


The Gone-Away World took a year to complete for the first time.

I wasn’t doing any other work, although I was getting married. It is two hundred thousand words long (ish), which is a lot. On the other hand, most people guess that it’s shorter.

It’s really, really hard to describe to someone who hasn’t read it. I have trouble. So do most booksellers. It’s an adventure story, in that the characters have adventures, but not everyone who loves it usually likes that kind of thing. It’s a war story, in that there’s a war in it which changes everything, but it’s not a guns-and-naked steel story. It’s a love story, because people love, and they do crazy, wonderful, awful things for love – but… it’s not a romance.

And yes, as you may have heard, there are ninjas. Very few serious books have ninjas. This is one of them. It’s also a comedy, of course, because serious things are funny.

Beyond that, though, despite the fact that four billion people die and very awful things happen to our heroes, it’s a book which makes people smile. A friend of mine said it was like watching a seal play with a ball.

See how that might be hard to describe?



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Cheers, NH





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