Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

Engines Of Empathy Engines Of Empathy
by Paul Mannering
Paper Road Press

Reviewed By: Simon Litten

Empathic energy powers the world, and the sole distributor of that energy is the Godden Energy Corporation a beneficent yet shadowy and surprisingly omnipresent organisation that has an over-developed interest in Charlotte pudding’s desk: a desk that has somehow managed to record a conversation from the time when empathic energy was discovered. Intrude Vole Drakeforth, a man with a highly tuned sense of paranoia and an ability to attract unwanted attention, into Charlotte’s life and the recipes for misunderstanding and misdirection are complete.

Engines of Empathy is a fun brisk read by an author whom I had previously only encountered before in short story and novelette length works. I can happily say he has easily made the transition to novel without loss of quality.

I found this book to be a wonderful tonic to the seemingly endless parade of fat fantasies that adorn the shelves of most bookshops. No endless parade of heavily-thewed heroes and villains fighting for good or evil contending across a panoramic landscape bigger than Texas. The quest in Engines of Empathy was for patchouli oil and control of the desk – and a decent cup of tea.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes a little humour with their mystery and doesn’t need a romance. I certainly enjoyed Engines of Empathy and wish the author will write more of this ilk.

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