Therefore, it is an honour to be able to post his lovely words about my novel here.
I am very, very proud of The Book of Thoth, because with this book, I had set myself a challenge, and I have enjoyed working on it immensely. Not that I didn't find working on I Am a Muse satisfactory, but my mindset whilst working on my first book was completely different.
In addition, with The Book of Thoth, I worked very closely with typesetter and designer Matt ArtPix to make the book look interesting. We loved researching the Egyptian symbols for each section; I was thrilled to see my little map, initially drawn in pencil and colour pens, become a "proper" illustration and make it into the book. And Matt got what I wanted to do with the cover straight away: get as far away from the usual Tim Burtonesque "Gothic" cover, add a touch of minimalism and Art Deco and express the contents of the book in a more subtle way...
You can find the original post HERE, and I am thrilled to say that Simon had been talking about the superb actress Eva Green just before he moved on to my book...
[... ]And when not watching creepy supernatural tales (and nice middle-class people baking cakes in a tent!) I’ve been reading Carya Gish's ‘The Book of Thoth’.
In many ways this fits nicely with Penny Dreadful: it’s a supernatural period piece. Set both in the 21st century and in 1925, it has at its starting point a couple of archetypes: it’s a tale of ghosts set in a creepy half-abandoned mansion and it’s about the effects of time and a man with a surname of Chronos. So the background scenery is familiar, but in the foreground Carya creates characters you care for and a set of events you simply need to follow through to their conclusions.
In some ways she reminds me of Storm Constantine. Storm Constantine’s more ‘real world fantasies’ such as ‘Stalking Tender Prey’ or ‘Thin Air’ walk the fine line between conventional modern world beliefs (ghosts and gods etc) and classic gothic tales of emotional distress. I’ve always argued that mainstream entertainment is about Sex and Violence, whilst gothic tales are about Love and Death. The Book of Thoth is a Love and Death book.
The main protagonists are all male, and well-crafted and believable as they may be, it’s interesting to note that the most intriguing characters are three women that can be seen as a good, a bad and a neutral force, or representations of the past and the future and the present. I doubt Carya wrote this with any of these specific subtexts in mind but the fact they exist does give the book an added sense of depth and meaning.
Oh and without giving away too much of the plot, I love the fact that I spent the first half of the book smugly expecting it to end with a revelation as to what was happening, only to be hit by the revelation a lot earlier than I expected. Thus the book becomes not so much about the supernatural but how people deal with it. [...]