Apr 252011

To Demonia and Back Again

The beautiful and feisty half-cyborg secret agent Lila Black is back for a visit to the demon realm. She goes to the land of the dead and Hell too but the last is not a place.

The Quantum Bomb opened up connections with the realms of elves, demons, fairies, elementals and the dead. At least the denizens of the first three all knew about earth before but now the humans know about them too.

Most of the characters from book one are back. And we also get to know some interesting new one like Thingumajig, the entertaining but irritating red imp. Lila also gets to explore Demonias social scene since Zal spend most of his time trapped in Zoomenon. Lila has barely landed in Demonia when the assassination attempts commence.  The violence gets fairly graphics but entertaining.

The tone is darker than in book one; Lila’s trauma starts to catch up with her; her parents believing she is dead, the spirit of a dead elf necromancer she is sharing her body with; She has issues with accepting her new self when she need her strength the most. This shows more depth to her character. I think overall that the characters in this book have more depth than in the first book.

The demonic society with their violence and absolute truthfulness to themselves is creative and something I enjoyed immensely. Lila also learns that there is more to the universe than the realms she knows of, seems the other races have kept the humans in the dark.

The narration gets a bit shattered since it jumps back and forth between mainly Lila, Zal and Malachi. This gets rather frustrating at times.

Selling Out is Lila Black dancing with Demons and other minor acts of violence. It is well written, fast paced fun fantasy with a spice of science and steampunk.

Book Information

Selling Out (Quantum Gravity 2) by Justina Robson – Gollancz (2007) – Bought from Amazon UK | US

Book two of the Quantum Gravity series sees Lila Black drawn into the intoxicatingly dangerous demon realm. Capricious, in love with beauty, demons are best left to themselves. This is not easy when they can’t resist tampering with humans.

Justina Robson’s new series is a joyful melding of science fiction and fantasy brought together in the figure of the dangerously lovely Lila Black, a 21-year-old secret agent who’s had much of her body replaced with weapon-and-armor-heavy intelligent metal and who isn’t sure where her mind ends and her installed AI begins. Lila’s world is one where demons, elves, and elementals live alongside people. And somehow Lila and the other agents of the security agency have to provide security for all and stay alive themselves.


Mar 162011

The Walking Dead meets Lila Black

The Quantum Gravity worlds are close to disaster, the dead walks again and the veil between the worlds are so thin that you may pass on by mistake. Lila and her bike are back and so are her husbands, the demon Teazle has turned into the Angel of Dead and the Elven Zal is not quite the same after returning from the Sisters either.

Lila Black is a feisty heroine half machine and half human but all attitude that makes these books so enjoyable to read. This is the final book in the Quantum Gravity series so you expect a lot of answers and Down to the Bone delivers. I certainly enjoyed that we got down to so much of the lore and unveiled the real play while keeping a pretty fast pace. We also get to see the story from the point of view of Zal and Teazle beside Lila a bit more than in the previous books.

One thing that attracts me as a reader science fiction to these stories is the coherent science of the universe. There is magic but it follows rules much like science does. The worlds are all different and each world has their own powers and natures all following ‘scientific’ rules.

This was a great read with good pacing that becomes breathtaking towards the end. I warmly recommend this read.


Title: Down to the Bone
Series: Quantum Gravity 5
Author: Justina Robson
Hardback: 344 pages
Publisher: Gollancz (2011)
Copy: Brought myself
Order by: Amazon US | UK

Lila Black faces her greatest challange yet as she takes herself, her dead lover and the AI in her head into death’s realm.

The Quantum Gravity series, set in a world where our reality mixes with other dimensions that are the homes to Faeries, elementals and demons, is unique in modern SF – a series that is willing to incorporate legend, myth and magic while maintaining a rigorous approach to scientific and pyschological reality.

And in Lila Black Justina Robson has created an enduringly strong yet quirkily human and flawed heroine.

Lila Black, half robot, all attitude, returns in her fifth all-action adventure.


Mar 032011

Lila Black, Sex, Elves and Rock’n’Roll . . .

This new-to-me series (I have in fact finished all five books now) takes place in a fantasy world that works according to scientific principles where a quantum bomb unraveled reality and put earth in contact with other dimensions that already knew all about us. Alfheim, Demonia and Fae being the more accessible. Earth still doesn’t know much about the other worlds but have intelligence agencies working on it. One such agent is Lila Black, our intrepid and formidable protagonist.

Lila is not exactly peachy after being turned into half a machine after a supposedly safe recon mission into Alfheim. Her new mission is to be the body guard of a sexy elven rock star Zal of the band No Show. He is not exactly as she expected and then she gets locked in a Game with him. But before it gets too steamy things derail a bit and she has to enter Alfheim again in pursuit of answers.

I really like this multi verse of unpredictable Fey, mysterious Elves and haughty Demons. Lila’s journey through Alfheim peels layer after layer of our preconceptions of what is really going on and shows us the greater game but the ending is still a great surprise.

The characters are also great. Lila is slightly flawed, damaged psychologically from being maimed and being turned into a machine but with a lot of spirit and tenacity she prevails. Her battle mode also helps. Zal is a bit of the mysterious dangerous but charming stranger and I do enjoy the Game they play a lot. Lila also has a thing for motorcycles I enjoyed immensely. What a ride! This is something that we return to in later books too.

Keeping it Real is is a bit like a more steamy Buffy with cyborg enhancements, gunfights and wonderful one liners (they have those on Buffy too). It was a fast read too. Justina Robson and Lila Black are guilty pleasures I warmly recommend.


Title: Keeping it Real
Series: Quantum Gravity book 1
Author: Justina Robson
Genre: Scientific Fantasy
Paperback: 279 pages
Publisher: Gollancz 2006
Order from: Amazon US | UK


The Quantum Bomb of 2015 changed everything. The fabric between the dimensions was ttorn and now, six years later, the people of earth exist in uneasy company with the inhabitants of, amongst others, the elven, elemental, and demonic realms. Magic is real and can be even more dangerous than technology. Elves are alien, erotic and very dangerous. Elementals are a law unto themselves and demons are best left well to themselves.

Special agent Lila Black, 21, used to be pretty, but now she’s not so sure.

Torn apart two years ago, her body is now half restless carbon and metal alloy. A machine she’s barely in control of. When it goes into combat mode, enough weapons for a small army springing from within itself, at the merest provocation. And then there’s her AI. And Lila has never known where she ends and it begins.

As for her heart . . . well ever since being drawn into a Game by the elf she’s been assigned to protect, she’s not even sure she can trust that anymore either.