Ink & Quill
Ink and Quill is a podcast that discusses works of fiction from various authors. Your hosts Fizz and Dr. Hot-Fizz will delve into various plots, subtexts, and uses of language within the text as well as personal opinion about the author and their work. To join the Ink and Quill fan community, visit http://spookylogistics.com.
InQ Episode 105: "Artemis Fowl"

Genius 12 year-old evil mastermind Artemis Fowl goes from adventure to adventure accompanied by his faithful bodyguard Butler, Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon,  Foaly the smart-aleck high-tech centaur and Mulch Diggums, a criminal dwarf suffering from flatulence. Together they can pretty much do it all!

Each novel takes the characters into another action-packed adventure with a mystery to solve. Artemis Fowl is a series about growth, trust and friendship. Not your average YA; this one is a bit more serious, making it better, more rounded, more interesting.

In this episode we discuss both the series and the graphic novels :)

Direct download: inq_ep105.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:03pm EST

InQ Episode 104: "The Quick"

After the death of his father, James leaves Yorkshire and his beloved sister Charlotte to move to London and study at Oxford. Once his studies are over, he takes lodging with an exciting young man who goes out every night. Slowly yet surely, James is drawn to this life of party, money and easy pleasures. Until one night when he and his friend get attacked…

From now on, James’ life has taken a turn. For the best or for the worst? That is a matter of perspective.

Direct download: inq_ep104.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:40pm EST

A young man simply referred to as “A” inherits a very large mansion. That happens everyday! He and his mute (not deaf) companion Niamh come to the US from Europe to take possession of said mansion with all its contents. OK! The mansion once belonged to Ambrose Wells, his second cousin twice removed, who jumped off the window. Hmmm…! The cousin committed suicide the exact same way his father did at the exact same age in the exact same room in the house. Wait! What?? Oh, and the house is haunted!

But there is more, so much more! What exactly happened to Ambrose Wells and what kind of person was he before he decided to attempt a somersault a few stories high? Who are those people who names resonate of Greek philosophers? What kind of weird society was Ambrose presiding over? What is going to happen in December at the next scheduled meeting? And most importantly, why is A having all kinds of weird and recurring nightmares?

A great story that plays with both form and content. For those who enjoy Stephen King, Lovecraft, or creepy novels like “House of Leaves” or “The Manuscript found in Sarragosa” this one is for you!

Direct download: inq_ep103.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:43pm EST

InQ Episode 102: "To Hell On a Fast Horse"

When the law (Pat Garrett) meets the outlaw (Billy the Kid), gunfire happens!

In this 2010 extremely well researched text, author Mark Lee Gardner traces the clash between Billy and Pat, and the infamous years of 1880 and 1881 leading to Billy’s (still somewhat strange) death.

A fascinating tale of the Wild West, guns, horses, gambling and cattle. Saddle-up, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride!

Direct download: inq_ep102.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:27pm EST

InQ Episode 101: "Allan Pinkerton: The First Private Eye"

Everybody knows about the Pinkerton Agency. Yet, probably less people know about the man behind it all: Allan Pinkerton. Allan and his wife Joan came to the USA in the 1840’s. Allan was to be a cooper, as was his trade in Scotland. Little did he know he was to be the father of one of the most notorious law enforcement agencies on the continent.

Studying the life and work of Allan Pinkerton year by year, the author does a great job at allowing the reader a peak into what it means to be one of the most thorough crime fighters in history. Enlightening!

Direct download: inq_ep101.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:15pm EST

InQ Episode 100: "Pax Arcana"

John Charming has a lot of issues. Yes, he is a Charming, kissing princesses, fighting dragons and all. But this was a long time ago. Now, he is a bartender in a small town in Virginia. Yet, his peaceful days behind the counter are almost over. When Sig, a tall gorgeous blonde walks into his bar, John soon realizes his life is about to change, not necessarily for the better.

In episode 100 we discuss both “Charming” and “Daring”, books 1 and 2 of the Pax Arcana series.

An hilarious, fast pace read featuring John Charming, Prince, Knight, Werewolf, Renegade and all together badass with a exceptional supply of punchlines, smart aleck comments and loaded guns. I strongly recommend! :D

Direct download: inq_ep100.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:51pm EST

InQ Episode 99: "The Nightside Series"

John Taylor really does not want to go back to the Nightside, that shady weird underside of London, where all types of mythical creatures dwell, good and bad. But when a rich lady comes begging to help her find her missing teenager, John cannot say no. Plus she is offering a lot of money!

And just like that John is back in the Nightside! His reputation for locating things with his “gift” precedes him. Clearly John and the Nightside have a history. Could be because of his mother?

In episode 99, we discuss both “Something from the Nightside” (looking for the missing teenager) and “Agents of Light and Darkness” (who stole the Unholy Grail?), books 1 and 2 of the Nightside series.

Fun (and funny) little novels. Highly enjoyable! Can’t wait to read all the others and tie the loose ends :)

Direct download: inq_ep99.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:07pm EST

InQ Episode 98: "The Gods of Gotham"

New York, 1845.

The Irish population is increasing with new immigrants coming by the dozens every day. The “copper stars” are born. A few children are found dead.

Three events that look like they have nothing in common; yet, they are deeply intertwined. This is what Timothy Wilde, ex-bartender turned “copper” is going to find out. 

In this mystery novel told from Tim’s point of view, the reader is thrown into the slums of New York. Very-well written with an abundant use of “flash” speech (slang of the time and place), the reader will follow Tim as he pieces the reasons why 10 year old Bird Daly came running to him one fine evening, her nightgown covered in blood…

Direct download: inq_ep98.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:54pm EST

InQ Episode 97: "The Alienist"

New York, 1896. The city is devastated and shocked! Young boys have been found dead, utterly mutilated.

The police does not even know where to begin.

New York City police commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt, reaches out to two of his college buddies: one John Moore, our narrator and New York Times journalist, and one Laszlo Kreizler, an alienist. With new methods and in the wake of H.H Holmes’ and The London Ripper’s killings, a team of five including Moore and Kreizler will try to profile and hunt a new breed of New York murderer: the serial killer!

 

Direct download: inq_ep97.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:17pm EST

InQ Episode 96: "Among Others"

New father, new boarding school, new “friends” (if you can call the girls in school “friends”), a twin sister gone and an insane mother. Oh, and of course that father you have never seen before takes you away from Wales to England,  so now, you also have to deal with culture shock. Great!

This is Mori’s life in a nutshell. And to add insult to injury, she needs the help of a stick to help her walk, making her the pariah of her new boarding school. Awful, right? Well it would be if it weren’t for Sci-Fi novels and faeries. Yes, faeries! They do make life a bit better, if you know where to look.

A great Hugo Award winner that takes you through Mori’s life at 15. Written in the form of a diary, the novel takes the reader through the trials and tribulations of a teenager discovering love, life and whole bookshelves of Sci-Fi novels :)

Direct download: inq_ep96.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:56pm EST

InQ Episode 95: "Redshirts"

Welcome to the Intrepid! Congratulations, you are a brand new ensign on a famous spaceship. You have your life of adventures ahead of you.

Yet you notice that as soon as a senior officer comes along asking for volunteers for an “away mission”, most of your team mates suddenly disappear, following an irresistible craving for coffee or disappearing into closets for inventory. Something weird is going on! Better ask Jenkins. Jenkins knows. But what Jenkins has to say about why most ensigns who go on “away missions” die freakish deaths is almost too much to fathom.

The knowledge will take our crew of ensigns all the way back to the 21st century Hollywood, bringing with them a few answers and a whole lot of questions.

A fun read that asks deep questions. Highly entertaining but profound just as much!

Direct download: inq_ep95.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:23pm EST

InQ Episode 94: "Parade's End"

A very difficult language to follow but a tremendous story of love and honor. Christopher Tietjens is torn between a wife he hates but cannot divorce, and a young lady he loves but cannot be with. All this in the middle of World War One!

More than a mere love story, this is the story of a changing society and what its people need to do (or give up) to adapt and survive. The new versus the old, tradition versus change and new beginnings. A difficult but rewarding read. In this episode we talk as much about the book as about the mini series with Benedict Cumberbatch.

Direct download: inq_ep94.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:40pm EST

InQ Episode 93: "The Quiet American"

Thomas Fowler, British reporter in his 50s, has been in Saigon for a few years, happily living with Phuong, his young Vietnamese mistress. Despite the conflict between the French and the Viet Minhs, life is not so bad. Until the arrival of Pyle. Alden Pyle is an American, very well mannered, quiet, and in love with Phuong. Will this love destroy his friendship with Fowler?

But what if Pyle had ulterior motives? Why is he really in Saigon? Could he have been sent on a special mission? What if there was more than the eye could see and more at stake politically than everyone knows?

A wonderful story of love in the midst of political intrigues by a world famous British author :)

Direct download: inq_ep93.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:43pm EST

InQ Episode 92: "To Say Nothing of the Dog"

What happens when you steal a cat from the past? Does the whole course of history changes? What can you do to make sure what is supposed to happen actually does happen? Do you bring the cat back? And where on earth is the bird stump?

Those are a few of the questions Ned will have to answer. In doing so, this time traveler from the 2050′s will have to spend some time in the Victorian era, learn to be trusted by the people whose life he hopes the cat situation has not altered (too much!), and bring back the bird stump for Lady Schrapnell’s consecration.

A really funny book with deep underground themes along the time of determinism, free will, time, space and the many lives of cats! But we can’t really expect any less from a Hugo and Nebula award winner now, can we?

Direct download: inq_ep92.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:34pm EST

InQ Episode 91: "The Accidental Time Machine"

Matthew is an unassuming research assistant at MIT. Somewhat mediocre, nothing special about him really. Except that one fine day, the time machine he is working on disappears and reappears almost instantaneously. Matt decides to investigate, and, why not, see where it is willing to take him.

He thus embarks on a journey from one future to the next, each further away. Can the machine go back or is it only capable of taking Matt further away towards the end of times? And more importantly, what type of humanity is he going to encounter? New and improved? Or same old same old?

Direct download: inq_ep91.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 9:37pm EST

No good deed goes unpunished! Richard Mayhew decides in a split second to rescue a wounded girl bleeding on the pavement instead of accompanying his girl-friend to an important dinner, and his life is turned upside down. And by upside down, I do mean upside down! He is drawn into a world underground that bears little resemblance (and yet it does!) to his own.

Richard has entered London Below, the labyrinthic universe of the London “Tube” where things are not what they seem. Akin to Alice stepping into the looking-glass, Richard will have to figure out how to behave in a world whose rules are unfamiliar. And to top it all, he is now fully involved in a creepy situation helping Door, the young wounded lady, find out who killed her family and why.

By now “Neverwhere” has become a Classic of urban fantasy. Dark but overly, funny at times, definitely exciting and fast pace, the reader is taken along with Richard into a world that will make you wonder which one of the two, London Below or London Above is better, and, to some extend, which one (of any) is real.

A fun take on perception and reality. A great great GREAT book! :D

Direct download: inq_ep90.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:35pm EST

InQ Episode 89: "King Rat"

Welcome to the world of the strange, the creepy, darkness and dread.

Saul has been accused of killing his father and sent to jail. Comes to visit him a weird character who calls himself King Rat and who helps Saul escape. Did King Rat help Saul out of the kindness of his heart? Probably not! The enemy is back and Saul is the only one who cannot be touched. Who’s the enemy? The Pied Piper of Hamelin.

Yes, the Piper is back! The same one who so long ago forced all the rats out of Hamelin. He is back and he expects everyone to dance to his tune. A very evil creature! Saul’s half-ratness, may well be the only thing that can prevent the Piper from taking over the world.

Direct download: inq_ep89.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 8:20pm EST

InQ Episode 88: "The Lies of Locke Lamora"

Young Locke is an orphan, picked up in the street by the Thiefmaker who teaches him and dozens of other children the fine art of picking pockets. But when he goes too far, brings too much attention to himself and ends up having another boy killed, Locke is sold to the Eyeless Priest.

There a new life begins for Locke. The Eyeless Priest will teach Locke, along with a few other boys, the art of thieving, of the masquerade, of faking accents, how to pass for a Noble, for a merchant, for a King even, turning his group of teenage boys into the Gentlemen Bastards, the finest most capable band of bandits this side of Camorr! Five young men, highly trained in lies and masquerades, able to con and fool anyone and anything, Locke and his Gentlemen Bastards are quite the group!

But that is without taking into account the ongoing feud between the two main leaders of the thieves world. On the one hand Capa Barsavi, to whom Locke owes allegiance, and on the other, the mysterious Gray King who also wants a piece of the action, and who thinks that Locke, with all his resources, might very well be the best person to help him in his endeavor…

Direct download: inq_ep88.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:44pm EST

InQ Episode 87: "The Black Company"

When you are a band of mercenaries to hire, you don’t really care what the job is. When it turns out that you are going to have to go into battles with big bad evil dark sorcerers recently out of their grave, well, so be it! To battle we go!

Told from the perspective of Croaker, the doctor and the historian, The Black Company is a fascinating tale of adventure despite its slow start. Once the story starts moving and the reader finally figures out who is who, and who is behind it all, hold on to your seat, you are in for a bumpy ride!

The Black Company   is a mix between medieval fantasy and an epic tale filled with mystery, first in a long series of books that will little by little fill in all the gaps and leave the reader satisfied, fulfilled with a plot well wrapped and characters well developed  :)

Direct download: inq_ep87.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:21pm EST

InQ Episode 86: "The Feast of the Goat"

Written from three different perspectives and in three different time periods, “The Feast of the Goat” retells the Dominican Republic years of dictatorship under General Rafael Trujillo.

First and foremost, Urania in the present. Daughter of Trujillo’s secretary of state Agustin Cabral, Urania comes back to Cuidad Trujillo (now Santo Domingo) to visit a father she has not seen in more than 30 years. She will also have to face the demons she has left behind and the gruesome reason why she so deeply hates her father.

Second, the assassins in 1961. A gathering of men, soldiers or ex-military who have been wronged one way or another by Trujillo will plot to take matters into their own hands and free the country of Trujillo’s power once and for all. Will they succeed? And if they do, what consequences will the face?

Third, Trujillo himself from 1930 to 1961. The reader will follow his raise to power, his reign of terror, his life as “the Chief”, as well as his slow descent into decadence as the now old man tries to hold on to his dignity while his body slowly abandons him.

For anyone interested in Latin America’s history, this is a great novel. Full of details, very much alive and realistic to the point of verging on naturalism, “The Feast of the Goat” will chill you to the bone, in so many ways :)

Direct download: inq_ep86.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:16pm EST

InQ Episode 85: "The Blind Owl"

In this masterpiece of Iranian literature by Sadegh Hedayat, the nameless narrator is slowly falling into madness. The images he sees are troublesome to say the least. Is he dreaming? Is he losing touch with reality? Are we dealing with the hallucinations of an opium user? The text does not provide any answer and the reader is left to decide on his/her own how to interpret the maniacal laughter and the various shadows that keep disturbing the narrator’s peace. And death, ever so present.

A fascinating read but not recommended for a fun novel to bring on the beach. It will make your mind wonder if you are all sane yourself and if the murderous tendencies the narrator exhibits may not be yours just as well.  “The Blind Owl” has been compared to Poe’s stories, to “One Hundred Years of Solitude” and to some of Dostoevsky’s novels.

Written from the first person narrative for a more “hands-on” experience, “The Blind Owl,” short yet dense, will shake you to the core. Prepare to be moved! :)

Direct download: inq_ep85.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:20pm EST