I ve giving One Word Kill by Mark Lawrence six stars Oh You think I can t do that Well, yes, I can Even if you don t see them up there Because while a five start book is a good solid read, one that I truly enjoy, there are some books and stories that are than that They are the stories that stay with you for a lifetime.My six star stories are likely different from yours A story gets six stars when it doesn t waste a word It opens the door, I enter the tale, and for that time, I m in that world It s a story that works perfectly for me Other examples of my six star stories would be Smith of Wooton Major by J R R Tolkien Or the Ugly Little Boy by Isaac Asimov These stories have nothing in common, except that they worked perfectly for me.Anyone who has read my books may have guessed that I have a few things that utterly fascinate me The information we carry in our blood The nature of memory The possibility of myriad futures The absolute wonder of suddenly seeing the world from a different perspective The stories we tell ourselves to make sense of the world.Now it would be a spoiler if I told you which of those fascinations One Word Kill dances with But I will say that it treads the measure perfectly It s not a very long book, especially by today s standards But it s the perfect length for the tale it tells.Buy it Read it The usual Caveat Mark Lawrence is someone I know as a fellow writer and consider a long distance friend, even though we ve never met face to face I got this story from him for free I also have to admit that it took me awhile to figure out how to get the file to open on my phone, and then I misplaced it on my phone for several months and didn t even read it until he asked me if I d liked it, and reminded me that I d told him I d managed to put it on my phone The wonders of modern technology I don t particularly enjoy reading things on a tiny screen But a serendipitous 14 hour power failure left me with my luckily fully charged phone as my only toy I started reading, grumbling over how small the font was, and soon forgot entirely about that as I was pulled into the world and the tale.So My usual spoiler free review Go find it and read it I think you ll love it I now need to get several real copies of this book, because I know people who will love receiving them from me. In January 1986, Fifteen Year Old Boy Genius Nick Hayes Discovers He S Dying And It Isn T Even The Strangest Thing To Happen To Him That Week.Nick And His Dungeons Dragons Playing Friends Are Used To Living In Their Imaginations But When A New Girl, Mia, Joins The Group And Reality Becomes Weirder Than The Fantasy World They Visit In Their Weekly Games, None Of Them Are Prepared For What Comes Next A Strange Yet Curiously Familiar Man Is Following Nick, With Abilities That Just Shouldn T Exist And This Man Bears A Cryptic Message Mia S In Grave Danger, Though She Doesn T Know It Yet She Needs Nick S Help Now.He Finds Himself In A Race Against Time To Unravel An Impossible Mystery And Save The Girl And All That Stands In His Way Is A Probably Terminal Disease, A Knife Wielding Maniac And The Laws Of Physics.Challenge Accepted. When you are SAD go to the BOOKSTORE and purchase this BOOK which is a fast and fun read about time travel, quantum mechanics, Dungeons Dragons and planning a heist with your best friends because a sketchy and secretive man from the future essentially told you soFull disclosure though the ending is a heartbreaker. 4 5 Full review on my Blog The Dacian She WolfI would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to receive this ARC in exchange of an honest review All you need to know about this book is that if you re not a quantum mechanics genius or at least decent in maths or physics or at least a spaceship engineer like meself I am absolutely joking, of course, I struggle with addition on a daily basis, don t take me seriously this book is going to make you feel dumb on a superior level I felt highly dumb reading through this book, but I approve of my dumbness because the book enlightened me in a very small portion because I am hopeless Nerdiness is a great word to describe the structure of the book Some maths enthusiast teenagers gather to talk about time travel and play Dungeons and Dragons in the 80s Come on, it sticks to it The characters are lovable And I mean it I think it is one of the most important aspects of the book They are just so cool and witty and cute and smooshy Love em all And the cutest of them all is Nick Maybe it s the fact that the story is narrated from his point of view and we have this way access to his thoughts which are brilliant I might add , but I feel like if we were to be in any other of our characters minds, it would ve been equally great Even though it s short only 200 and so pages , this book is eventful It s actually so packed with events that one hardly can get past a chapter without something notable even happen Which, in my opinion, it is good Great actually.All is there left to say is this a great, readable book cancer can suck it GEEK POWER Thanks for putting up with my shit today, read the book I snagged this book so fast when it was on the Kindle First list I mean the wonderful Mark Lawrence was kind enough to offer me a chance to read it awhile back but I don t do pdf or mobi downloads Anyhoo I loved this book and it s set in the freaking 80 s I mean, I was born in the 70 s but the 80 s and 90 s rocked Well, mostlyI don t usually like time travel books but there are a few that I love and this is one of them Demus explained that when you come back through time you come back just as James Cameron predicted in Terminator Buck naked One Word Kill is about a bunch of cool friends that sit around playing D D I never had those kind of cool friends to play that with SighMoving onOne of the characters has cancer and it did make me cringe a bit as I still have some PTSD from my own cancer treatment But I digress There is someone that comes from the future to help save the life of one of the kids You think it s the cancer patient don t you This great group of kids go through some things, good and bad, and it s just awesome I m ready for the next one Where is it Good ole Mr Lawrence can slap down another short book, ami right Or a long one, I will read it either way Overall, a great little sci fi book Happy Reading Mel Happy birthday and welcome to the ruthless world, little book One Word Kill is now out there on shelves Or on tables getting used as a coaster for the overflowing coffee mugsthough I prefer hot dark chocolate Just a friendly advice Don t use it to kill flies, it s a little small, tiny, and short for that You might find the flies are suddenly invincible 999 STARS I count it a shortcoming of Goodreads that there aren t enough stars availableWe might live in a multiverse of infinite wonder, but we are what we are, and can only care about what falls into our own orbitThe paradox of this book hooked me so bad I spent a great deal of time just staring at a blank page thinking, where to start fromThere are so many platinum points in One Word Kill that I was left trapped in a loop, with so much to say and not enough words This book was simultaneously mind blowing, level one sci fi, beautiful, and heartbreakingBasically, we re all infiniteIn truth, Mark Lawrence and Sci Fi are one of those old couples that just belong together Seriously From his fantasy world of Broken Empire I knew I the world needed a sci fi book from him I was sucked into the time loop and time traveling paradox, fell in love with the characters friendships, cheered them on when they came out, adored them when they supported eachother, and grieved their losses All of us have a shell, a skin between us and the world that we have to break each time we speak to it Sometimes I wished mine were thinner. What I need is a Lawrence book with a Martinian page count it s impressive what a bewitching tale he can weave in these few pages And I m always left needing why I binge read his other series like an addict, mind you Yes, I m an ML addict There you have itOf all the worlds, in all the universes, he walks into mineP.S Talk about making a famous quote betterthe original Casablanca quote was, of course Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine But I know that Mark Lawrence s version will probably be my new favourite quote, and one that will be sitting in my brain for a long time, at the front row I should probably go build a cottage for it so it s comfortable there I realised that just as the disease was starting to take me away from the world, I was for the first time, in a short and self absorbed kind of life, starting to really see it for what it was The beauty and the silliness, and how one piece fitted with the next, and how we all dance around each other in a kind of terror, too petrified of stepping on each other s toes to understand that we are at least for a brief time getting to dance and should be enjoying the hell out of it. Storyline You hold the twenty sided die Weigh it Seventeen, you think, it ll roll seventeen Four pairs of eyes are glued to your hand, fingers playing with the nearly ball shaped object You throw it.It s in the air Seventeen, it has to be seventeen.If it rolls seventeen, you survive Any other chanceyou die Let it be seventeen.The die hits the ground It s rolled seventeen.But you die anyway That sounds a lot like cheatinglike cheating the universe In London, January 1986, fifteen year old boy genius Nick Hayes discovers he has cancer He s dying, and it s not even the strangest thing to happen to him that week Because there s a stranger stranger following him Knowing things he shouldn t We were all of us consumed by our own imagination, victims of it, haunted by impossibles, set alight by our own visions, and by other people s We weren t the flamboyant artsy creatives, the darlings who would walk the boards beneath the hot eye of the spotlight, or dance, or paint, or even write novels We were a tribe who had always felt as if we were locked into box that we couldn t see And when DD came along, suddenly we saw both the box and the key.Nick and his Dungeons Dragons playing friends are used to living in their imaginations But when a new girl, Mia, joins the group and reality becomes weirder than the fantasy world they visit in their weekly games, none of them are prepared for what comes next We just had to swallow the madness. Right, so you re going to go all James Bond, and steal the microchip from a high security Tokyo laboratory I laughed out loud It was almost less feasible than time travel.With a time traveler whispering in his ears, he finds himself in a race against time to unravel an impossible mystery and save the girl And all that stands in his way is a probably terminal disease, a knife wielding maniac and the laws of physics.What else was there to do I d been presented with a mystery I could focus on that, or I could worry about leukaemia chewing its way through the marrow of my bones No contest really Nobody escapes that building without sacrifice, and often the sacrifice is greater than the benefit they sought.You speak one word and point at someone They die Then the scroll turns to dust. Science of the Fiction I ve been obsessed with quantum mechanics and its implications since I was 14 I d abandon my school lessons in favour of reading books and articles about it and trying to understand them step by step the teachers were no help, I guarantee you.After about two years of that routine, I was seriously told off by my parents and teachers to focus on school and postpone those extra readings to when I d entered university.Anyways, I m entering university this September of 2019 and am gradually going back to deciphering texts of quantum mechanics And this book was exactly what I needed to get in the mood Time is just a variable We make now Consciousness makes now We live it and we can, with sufficient energy, move it about One Word Kill focuses on the Many Worlds Interpretation The author puts the science of the science fiction into words very easily and you shouldn t be worried Anything you need to know is in the book, but I m gonna tell you a little about it in simple words it s not necessary to read this but it s fascinating. I ll put in spoiler tags even though it s not a spoiler view spoiler Some quantum physicists believe that time results from two quantum particles elementary particles being entangled with each other Like when we observe a particle, we are being entangled with it and so time emerges as a result of our interaction But other physicists believe that there is no difference in a particle before and after it is observed There s simply different possibilities to how the particles entangle, and all the possibilities exist in parallel universes the Many Worlds Interpretation.Now in trying to unfiy these implications of time in quantum mechanics with that of general relativity, time ended up disappearing from equations, suggesting that time does not exist at all hide spoiler I received an uncorrected proof copy of One Word Kill in exchange for an honest review I would like to thank Mark Lawrence and 47North for approaching me to read this early Starting on the 8th January 1986, Nick a gangly 15 year old who is extremely intelligent is diagnosed with leukaemia The doctors advise that he may only have up to 5 years to live In the local hospital, he goes through Chemotherapy and shares a children s ward with many other suffering youths as they weaken and essentially fade from health and normality He has to visit the hospital weekly yet when he is not there he is living the life of a normalish geeky teenager Going to school, dealing with bullies, scared to talk to girls but what he looks forward to the most is the weekly DD meet ups he has with his best friends They can forget about the monotony and hardships real life presents and lose themselves in a fantastical adventure where their imagination is the only limitation When he is playing, even Nick forgets about what ails him It all seems pretty straightforward until intense deja vu affects the protagonist, a shadowy stranger starts stalking him, certain events that happen in their sessions are scarily close to some real life events and what s even scarier than all is that a young lady has joined the group s DD party It s no secret that in my humble opinion Mark Lawrence is one of the finest and most consistent fantasy authors currently writing By profession, Lawrence is actually a scientist so it seemed like only a matter of time before he made the foray into the science fiction genre This is completely unlike anything Lawrence has published before This isn t like any science fiction stories I ve read previously and for all the elements of time travel, parallel universes, complex mathematics and quantum mechanics, it features drug dealers, local psychopaths and the DD group trying to learn how to dance to impress the ladies It s a peculiar mix but I m happy to say it works expertly The story is presented through Nick s first person perspective and he is a very likeable character who is a joy to follow The accompanying cast is surprisingly deep and well fleshed out to say that this is quite a short book I d estimate it s approximately 90,000 words In addition to Nick, My favourite characters were Mia, the goth girl who joins the boys games, Elton, who adores his kung fu practising, and John, the cool dude who loves DD but doesn t mention it to any of his school friends Also, a character called Demus who I will say nothing about but who is hugely important and influential to the overall narrative and progression of the tale It is difficult to summarise and this probably won t be accurate enough but this is the best I can come up with This seemed like a mix of Stranger Things, Donnie Darko, the Xbox game Alan Wake mixed with the youthful antics and awkwardness seen in comedy shows The Inbetweeners and The Big Bang Theory Some of the scientific language written does come across occasionally as confusing and very hi tech and knowing Mark s profession I imagine it s all legit and accurate Although the story is complex, multi layered, unpredictable and ultimately enduring it wasn t too difficult for me to follow as Lawrence is an excellent writer The writing is sometimes intoxicating and addictive however surreal and bizarre certain events may be and I loved the humourous flow and banter between the friends Mark s prose is poetic and sometimes, in a good way, hypnotising I read One Word Kill within 24 hours and it was all I could think about to the extent where I dreamt about the shadowy character who stalks Nick The world building is admirable whether describing the suburbs in London, a friend s council flat or describing the London underground service There are lots of brilliant references to the mid 80 s such as the fact Back to the Future had just been released, kids play on their Commodore 64 s and that everyone believes Hoverboards will be the obvious invention that the future will present I really enjoyed, and I bet Mark enjoyed writing the descriptions of the DD ventures These sections are closer to what he has written before but with humour, teenagers innocence and tropes including typical creatures like orcs, vampires, mages, clerics, warriors that will probably prompt a sense of nostalgia for his readers and the target audience I regret that I ve never played DD This is not released until April 2019 but already in August 2018, this is one of the finest uncorrected proofs I have ever read I did not notice a single error which is exceptional and shows the hard work Mark, Agnes and 47North have put into this tale This works perfectly as a standalone The ending is absolutely spectacular and wraps everything up perfectly I loved the setting, the protagonist, the characters including the supporting and very minor players, the thrills and spills and emotions To be honest, the very minor and possible negative that I have is that some of the terminologies threw me off balance very occasionally 47North enjoyed this book so much they asked Lawrence to turn it into a trilogy of which all the books will be released in 2019 A note to his current fans, although a few scenes are dark and gruesome this is very different to his previous works An exceptional time travel adventure featuring a gang of geeks that s cleverly composed, thrilling and will hopefully aid Lawrence s to rise to the top of the game in another genre I loved it. 3.75 stars for this mix of 1980 s Dungeons and Dragons with a British teenage cast cancer time travel multi universe aspect Final review, first posted on Fantasy Literature in a different, collaborative form, with a couple of my co reviewers at FanLit.Nick, the 15 year old narrator of the story and a math genius, who s a wizard named Nicodemus in his DD games, finds out that he has leukaemia right at the start of the story His group of DD playing friends sticks behind him, including the girl, Mia, who recently joined the group She s probably too cool for the nerdy Nick, but he s still interested in her Nick also has a couple of pretty scary enemies from his school the bully Michael Devis and the even vicious Ian Rust.One day, while Devis is picking on Nick, an older, balding man named Demus hmmm appears out of nowhere to slug Michael Devis in the mouth just as Devis is about to empty Nick s backpack into a pool of vomit Demus looks strangely familiar to Nick, and the reader figures out why pretty quickly the clues aren t exactly subtle Soon Demus is explaining time travel to Nick, setting out a rationale for it in quantum mechanics, and giving Nick puzzles to solve to make his future and, significantly, Mia s possible.Things grow ominous when Ian Rust is expelled from school and takes up with a local drug dealer to whom Mia owes a debt Demus makes things even difficult by asking for a piece of technology that doesn t exist except as a highly secured prototype in Nick s time.I found the plot intriguing I have to say I m a fan of time travel tales and strongly predisposed to approve of them Mark Lawrence s writing style is also a noticeable step up from the usual A decade seemed like forever, and it would take three of them just to reach the age my mother was right now Cancer had closed that down Like the big C, curling in on itself, my view of the future had narrowed to tunnel vision, aimed squarely at the next week, next month would I have a next year I was carrying not only the burden of my sickness but the pressure of making something worthwhile of each day now that my towering stack of them had fallen into ruin and left me clutching at each hour as it slipped between my fingers.The characters also appealed to me well, except for the psychopathic Rust, with the hole in his mind that needed to be filled with other people s pain and the plot kept me engaged and interested When all was said and done, though, the motivation for Demus trip to the past seems clearly insufficient, given the high price that Demus knows it will cost To say would get us into spoiler territory, but perhaps the next book will clarify why it was so vitally necessary As it currently stands, it was a big enough plot hole for me to knock down my rating by a star, especially when combined with too many logical questions being sidestepped with the rationale that Demus has to take certain actions simply because that s the way it happened before.Lawrence s choice of One Word Kill as the title of this novel plays out in at least a couple of ways A key point in a couple of the characters DD games is a spell named Power Word Kill Nick points out how lame he thinks this spell is because with every other bad thing that happens, there s some chance, however small, that you can escape But with Power Word Kill, there s no chance at all to escape the spell if it s cast at you That same sense of inexorable death looms over Nick personally because of that one word every human dreads to hear Cancer But perhaps there s a narrow way out for Nick after all The next book, Limited Wish, has just been released It takes the plot in some interesting new directions I received a free review copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley Thank you Back to the 80sA great book that hit all the right cords It is heart wrenching in places and nostalgia in others with likeable characters that I could not help cheer for.The book starts with the world s worst gut punch possible The story is great mixture of emotions and scifi The nostalgia of the story for me is the era the book is set in, 1985 as well as the places and landmarks It is a great reminder of how far we have come technologically since then How life was before the internet and mobile phones.I was not sure I would like this book as youngers with terminal disease is usually a turn off for me Though the story of the human coping mechanism and a little help from friends, the bonds formed, and possible the likeliest band of heroes since the Goonies This is a great read and a trip down memory lane for any one growing in the 80s London From places to peoples technology and tolerances I would definitely like to know what happens next. I absolutely loved this book A fantastic sci fi reminding me of Stranger Things and the time bending concepts of the Terminator I was a teenager through the 1980 s and I loved the sense of nostalgia Mark s story evoked It s a rollercoaster of adventure, wrapped up in nuanced characters and a tight, twisty plot This is a book that gripped me and didn t let go until the last page It s everything that I look for in a book, and like the best of reads one that has stayed with long after I finished it Highly recommended.