When magic and monsters came back into the world, the world turned to the one man who could save them Dave Hooper. But this book isn't about that jerk. It's about the stuff happened when he wasn't paying attention.
John Birmingham grew up in Ipswich, Queensland and was educated at St Edmunds Christian Brother's College in Ipswich and the University of Queensland in Brisbane. His only stint of full time employment was as a researcher at the Defence Department. After this he returned to Queensland to study law but he did not complete his legal studies, choosing instead to pursue a career as a writer. He currently lives in Brisbane.
While a law student he was one of the last people arrested under the state's Anti Street March legislation. Birmingham was convicted of displaying a sheet of paper with the words 'Free Speech' written on it in very small type. The local newspaper carried a photograph of him being frogmarched off to a waiting police paddy wagon.
Birmingham has a degree in international relations.
A bunch of short-stories/fan-fic set it the "Dave vs the Monsters" universe from John Birmingham. My faves, besides the ones written by John Birmingham himself, was one as a mock-documentary of the "wars" that ensued, and one from the perspective of an aboriginal australian when the monsters show up.
Generally amusing, with a few diamonds in the rough, but got to be a bit of a slog towards to the end. It's a rich universe though, and its always pleasing to see folks as engaged and Mr. Birmingham is with his audience and fans.
I love the Dave universe, and I'm quite sad that John Birmingham seems to have given up on it just as we were about to meet a rather eclectic group of Champions. I had high hopes for this, even if it was just going to be a bunch of short stories.
Unfortunately, most of the stories in this book aren't very good. The first (Demons of Butte Crack County) was one of the better ones, but after what is basically a prologue, it's done and that's that.
The vast majority of the stores are first person "I was at this place and the monsters attacked and I was super scared and a bunch of people died and I ran away or hid and that's the end of my story". They just didn't make for very compelling reading.
And the editor, if there was one, wasn't paying attention. I'll just assume there wasn't one, because that's the only explanation for the atrocious tense, grammatical, and basic editing errors.
Unfortunately I only rate this a 3/5. I love the Dave vs Monsters series, and this book is also **FREE**, so how did this not rate 5stars?? Well there were some good stories: the first and the last were stand outs!! There were lots of okay stories. There were several stories that started strong, and ended in 2-3 pages, and I was left wanting more. But unfortunately there were also a few stories that mercifully only went for 2-3 pages. They were bad.
But I love the whole concept, I love that JB has self published a book of fan-fiction, and I do hope there is more... Maybe I'll even have a crack, so then people can review my work and say how mercifully short it was...
The demons of Butte Crack County by Birmingham et al. I think there were 22 stories and I was disappointed by the number of typos and missing words - nearly each story had errors. Some of the stories had me fearful of the monsters and some, not. If you're looking for a collection of monster stories, then this is for you.