Saturday, November 10, 2018

The Midnight Guardian: Hour of Darkness by John Bruening

This fantastic novel clocks in at 407 pages which is long for any New Pulp Fiction story, but it needs to be long. Author John Bruening has created a world of heroes and villains that is entirely inspired by the classic pulp fiction and comic book heroes of yesterday, and manages to make this world vibrant and exciting. It’s not that far removed from our world, but the best adventure stories never are. The high quality prose, attention to detail, historical background and unforgettable characters distinguishes this novel as the best of the New Pulp Fiction literary movement. In fact, the market is saturated with excellent New Pulp titles and something of a Pulp Renaissance is underway. That’s all the more reason to pick-up The Midnight Guardian: Hour of Darkness by John Bruening. This is a story about Jack Hunter, assistant District Attorney and his efforts at bringing the crime boss Nicky Diamond to justice. How Jack Hunter becomes the hero called The Midnight Guardian is at the heart of the tale, in true pulp fiction fashion. The world building is superb, the characters vibrant, and the prose exquisite. There is not a wasted word in this book. I took my time reading it, savoring the paragraphs, reveling in the imaginative world of 1936, and envious of the author’s notable prose mastery. I was never bored and the story never flagged. I consider this the best example of an adventure novel on the market, no matter if you are interested in “New Pulp” or not. I understand a sequel is in the works, and I’d be disappointed if there wasn’t. The Midnight Guardian is published by Flinch Books with stunning cover art is by Thomas Gianni. Highly recommended!

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