ESCAPING THE CRIMSON SPHERE
(Serialised in Pantheon magazine)
Follow Billy, as he pushes himself around the baron, sand strewn ramparts of a seemingly deserted planet in an abandoned trolley cart, and witness the malevolent species dwelling in the outskirts.
On his bare chest were huge black leeches sucking at him. One covered from Jerry’s collar bone to his left nipple and as it bled him out, pulsated and made grotesque, wet sounds. One was working his belly and was overlapped by another leech drinking the blood from the area around his ribcage. Tommy had the first aid trunk opened and was frantically searching for the tranquillisers.
Escaping the Crimson Sphere, written by Chris Kelso and illustrated by Justin Coons is a nightmarish fantasy about a ship navigating through the Kuiper Belt that crashes. Escaping The Crimson Sphere, a new bi-weekly serial on Pantheon Magazine, debuts on April 19th, and will be sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.
Introduction to Escaping the Crimson Sphere
by Tom Bradley
This is the second science fiction book I have read in my whole life. The first was by a husband-wife team, at least one of whom in real life served time with the French Foreign Legion, in Algeria, I think. They wrote as a single persona, with a hyphenated compound surname, which I have forgotten. I remember finding their book fantastically superb. But my mind has retained nothing about it, not the slightest detail of plot, characterization, style, theme–only that the words science fiction were printed on the spine. If I liked it so much, I have no idea why, in the multiple decades since, not a single other sci-fi book has passed before my eyes–till now.
So I can obviously by no means be called an expert on this genre. I’ve read even less (which is to say, absolutely none) of the other genres. You name it, I am virginal of it: the horror, the noir, the sundry hyphenated punk sub-classifications, the western, the nurse (is that still considered a sub-category of masturbation pulp for women?) But common sense tells me that, in order to be granted a place in the canon of any particular genre (in the modern sense of the word), a piece of writing has to adhere to set conventions. Or, if violating these restrictions, it must do so in such a way that is deliberate, and in some way respectful. Presumably all this requisite truck with specific expectations is intended to remove from the reader’s imagination the onus of establishing, with the author’s help, an idiosyncratic and unprecedented world, as is the object of what is called “serious” modern and post-modern fiction.
This book takes place in an actual zone of space that is located just beyond the boundaries of our solar system. There is a crash landing on a desert planet in that zone, where the experts tell us no planets exist. The protagonist loses his legs and encounters a malignant alien presence. Sexual violations take place. I am not versed in the Ten Commandments (or however many there are) of Space Adventure. So I have no idea how many of these regulations Chris Kelso has observed, and which he has transgressed. But, if this story appeals to a perfect ignoramus like me, it is sure to delight the cognoscenti!
The first 50 who purchase a copy of the Hades paperback FROM CreateSpace will get a free exclusive Pantheon Magazine magnet mailed to them. This is a cracking magazine, and not just because they’ve serialized my novella “Escaping the Crimson Sphere”, but because they’re showcasing some of the best young writers and artists from around the globe!