H

 

HADDON, Mark    

  A       The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time  2003    Crime/Novel

Triumphant autistic fantasy. Authentic characters, engaging narrative and excellent structure

 

HALDEMAN, Joe

 B        The Accidental Time Machine     2007    SF

Classic old style SF slightly modernised

 

HALL, Rich

 B+      Magnificent Bastards      2009    Humour/Short Stories

Wonderfully laconic, entertaining narration around often surprisingly dark subjects

 

HAMILTON, Peter F.

 B        The Evolutionary Void     2010    SF

Some great ideas better as short story 'what ifs'; juvenile dialogue and perspective

 

HAMMETT, Dashiell

 B+      Nightmare Town 1923-34     Crime/Short Stories

Capable, original Chandler precursor

 

 B+      The Glass Key     1931    Crime

Fascinating alternative world and spin on heroism

 

HARRIS, Robert   

 B+      Fatherland      1992    Thriller / Historical Fiction

Filmic clichés, but able characterisation and plot never sacrificed to novel Nazi hook

 

 B+      PMQ    2000    Humour/Short Story

(in ‘Speaking With the Angel’; Ed. Nick Hornby)

Amusing frightfully British narration of PM in a sitcom style sketch

 

HARRISON, Harry

 B+      The Stainless Steel Rat   1961    SF/Humour

Classic likeable master-thief in comic but workable SF environment

 

 B+      The Stainless Steel Rat’s Revenge   1970    SF/Humour

Enjoyable James Bond/Pimpernel farce in space ships

 

 B+      The Stainless Steel Rat Saves the World     1972    SF/Humour

Enjoyable James Bond/Pimpernel farce in space ships

 

 B        Queen Victoria's Revenge    1974     Action

Pleasant enough silly action pulp

 

 A- A Stainless Steel Rat is Born     1985 SF/Humour

Excellent prequel to the consistent series

 

 B+      Stainless Steel Visions    1994    SF/Short Stories

Ranging between action, humour, comment – pretty consistent

 

 B+      Galactic Dreams 1994    SF/Short Stories

Ranging between action, humour, comment – pretty consistent

 

and HOLM, John 

 B        King and Emperor (The Hammer and the Cross – Book 3)         1996    SF

Alternative history set in 800s, plays with anachronistic technology and grail theories

 

HART, John

 B+      King of Lies    2006    Crime

Some cliché, some melodrama, but a strong ride, and some strengths

 

 C        Down River     2007    Crime

An Edgar? Really?

 

HARVEY, Miles

 B- The Island of Lost Maps 2000    Non-Fiction

Island of content in an ocean of padding

 

HAŠEK, Jaroslav 

 B        The Red Commissar  1923    Humour/Short Stories

Czech satire of bureaucratic absurdities

 

HAWKS, Tony

 B- Round Ireland with a Fridge 1998    Humour/NF(Travel)

Whimsical comedian travelogue. Not as many chuckles as the Moldovans sequel

 

HELLER, Joseph 

 A- Catch 22   1955    Novel

Killer satire, hilarious but black humour, drunkenly uninhibited

 

HERBERT, Frank

 B+      Dune   1965    SF

Original. Grand

     

 C-      Dune Messiah      1969    SF

Disappointing sequel. Supposedly wise characters uninspiring. Random action, rambling dialogue.

 

HERRIOT, James

 B+      If Only They Could Talk   1970    Short Stories/Humour/Autobiography

Light and formulaic, but charming and amusing country vet recollections

 

 B+      Let Sleeping Vets Lie      1973    Short Stories/Humour/Autobiography

Light and formulaic, but charming and amusing country vet recollections

 

 B+      Every Living Thing    1992    Short Stories/Humour/Autobiography

Light and formulaic, but charming and amusing country vet recollections

 

HESSE, Hermann      

 B        Peter Camenzind 1904    Novel

Style a bit windy. Plot, action and dialogue are entirely secondary

     

 C-      The Prodigy    1905    Novel

Utterly detached narrative, no humour, low action, little insight

 

  A       Siddhartha      1922    Historical Fiction

Beautifully readable fictional presentation of the life and enlightenment of Siddhartha

 

HITCHENS, Peter

 B        The Rage Against God    2010    Non-Fiction

Small personal epilogue more powerful than nostalgia and argument

 

HORNBY, Nick     

  A       High Fidelity   1995    Novel

Very readable, penetrating on commitment, honest, well plotted

 

 A+      About A Boy   1998    Novel

Well written, often funny, nice balance of hope and realism, read in one session

 

 B-       NippleJesus   2000    Short Story

(in ‘Speaking With the Angel’; Ed. Nick Hornby)

Security guard’s quirky perspective on art designed to shock

 

  A       How To Be Good 2001    Novel

Good characters, poignant without being preachy

 

 B        A Long Way Down     2005    Novel

Typically good characters and dialogue but wayward structure

 

HOROWITZ, Anthony    

 B+      The House of Silk       2011    Crime

Impressive, satisfying, but falls into some of the Moffat/Gattiss disappointments

 

 B        Forever and a Day     2018    Action (Bond)

Nah, stick to early Fleming writing Bond

 

HOWEY, Hugh

 B+      Wool   2013    SF/Action

Unapologetically formulaic, but cohesive and engaging

 

HUXLEY, Aldous 

 B+      Brave New World       1932    SF

Disturbingly relevant extrapolation to a dystopic ultimately permissive society