Reviews

Some people have been kind enough to review my work. Here are some excerpts with links to the originals.

I have come across this author’s fiction before, I’m sure. Reviewed it, too. Once you have read this story, I’m sure you will agree it is an important one, important in itself and also important as part of the gestalt of this Journal’s fiction and poetry. Although its genius loci represents more of an industrial town, one with an abandoned film studio and a bereft housing estate, the types of shops, a Punch & Judy show, a travelling salesman selling bathroom stuff etc. also make it feel like a seaside resort ambiance. It is indeed intensely atmospheric, telling of a well-characterised policeman, one who tries to avoid ‘fusses’. And the story has another soaring image like the book’s cover … Soaring towards dreams, as many people do, especially the people here, soaring toward dreams, too, from an old-fashioned paper comic – along with a cyborg-like comic character, also tellingly along with the policeman’s later poignant change of costume. All has a remarkably haunting deadpan, even dead-end, splendour, if that is not a contradiction in terms. I wonder if these characters, policeman, costume shop proprietor and wildly intent children will ever reach Sim’s earlier version of God’s Heaven and be similarly judged…
(Loved the touch of the ‘half of Mackeson’.)
D.F.Lewis review of “Souvenirs from Sanctuary Street”.
http://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2014/02/17/this-mornings-skyline-as-i-walk-to-and-from-the-end-of-clacton-pier/

Black Ribbon by Gary Budgen
“‘The black ribbon must be transcribed,’ he said again, ‘All life must become text.’”
Like this physical book itself, a neat pocket tale that tantalises us with its various vintages of reel-to-reel, cartridge or cassette recording tape as the form of a Noumenon of self that some people harbour, real-to-real, within their bodies (as others harbour microdots or crystals) and it needs to be harvested by the female protagonist – or ‘transcribed’ as the Captain puts it – in some aftermath of a just completed war and as some means of granting memory to God Himself. Or that is how I interpret this fascinating work.
Review by D.F. Lewis of my story “Black Ribbon”
http://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/theakers-quarterly-fiction-46/

“Lilies” by Gary Budgen: A sad but powerful tale of love…and death.
From a review of Morpheus Tales on the Literary Mayhem site: http://literarymayhem.com/wordpress/2012/08/28/magazine-review-morpheus-tales-xvi/#.U1koPjZwbcs

 

Gary Budgen’s “Lilies” is the highlight of the issue….It’s a strange and offbeat piece; beautifully paced and written, with obsession and jealousy playing out on the stage, and in the image of the lilies hints of a subtext on the theme of how we doom ourselves.

Peter Tennant reviewing “Lilies” in the pages of Black Static 28

 

Gary Budgen’s opening tale, Dead Country, is about two friends. One of them is sliding into drugs and despair, whilst the other is obsessed with a country called Quassia, an idyllic place that is like an addictive substance in its own way. I liked the ambiguity of this story and the way it appears to mix up the timelines its narrative with letters from the future.
From Warpcore’s SF’s review of Where are We Going?
http://www.warpcoresf.co.uk/where-are-we-going.php

The editors notes on “Salt Cellar” in M-Brane SF
I was not familiar with Gary Budgen, but his entry was one of those items that went directly from the slush folder to the “maybe” folder after I read the first page. When I went back to look at the “maybes,” it quickly went to the “yes” folder. It’s shorter than I usually choose for M-Brane, but it’s lovely.
http://www.mbranesf.com/2011/03/m-brane-26-releases-tonight-few.html

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