#CoverReveal "Hunted" by Eldon Farrell
Book Title: Hunted (Singularity, #4)
Author: Eldon Farrell
Publisher: Ascendant Ink
Release Date: June 16, 2020
My review: 5 stars!!
I've been a fan of the Singularverse and its many iterations and facets since the very first book. What drew me in? Besides the non-stop action, the Singularverse has a character I simply can't get enough of: Nathan Miller. To some, he's a villain. To some, he's a hero. To me? He's human. And that, in a nutshell, is what you see time and time again. Nathan isn't easy to understand, nor is he the kind of guy you root for. But in this series? I just can't help having a soft spot for him. So when another short story collection dropped, I was ready to DEVOUR the stories of Jason Crowley, Nate hunting evil Malachy, and a new face to the universe, young Xavier. And neither story disappointed! I was on the edge of my seat, flipping the pages, both eager to get to the end and dreading it, knowing I would have to wait for more. Each story is a unique mirror into the character's lives, giving you a better comprehension of the Singularverse as a whole. And therein lies the true mastery! Highly recommend it.
Now that you've read my review, check out the EXCLUSIVE interview with the author below!! And don't forget to pre-order your Hunted copy today!
Tell us a little bit about the Singularity series and the Singularverse.
This series is all about redemption. It is, at its core, the central theme that binds it all together. If you look at any of the main characters, they are all trying to redeem themselves, or something/someone they love. Nathan is obvious. He was an exceptional detective until a terrible accident changed everything. Now he struggles to regain what he’s lost and find a way back to the man he once was. Classic trope, I’d say.
But let’s look beyond him. Tiberius Holt wants to redeem the country he loves—wants to return it to greatness. Archer is driven to redeem his daughter. Tommy yearns for Nathan to find his way back. Throughout the series, this theme of redemption is evident if you look for it.
Having read all three books to date, I cannot help but see comic elements in them. Superheroes vs villains, corrupt and flawed “heroes”... You’re a comic fan yourself. Did you intend the Singularverse to draw similar readers as yourself?
For sure I did. I love comic books. As an art form, they are so expressive and fun. I viewed the Singularverse as an extension of that massive universe concept popular in the medium. These novels may focus on Nathan, but there is a whole world of amazing characters out there and, to some extent, the short stories show that.
I’m having the time of my life creating intriguing characters with amazing abilities, and have been told many times by readers that they love the comic elements of this series.
How would you describe Nathan Miller?
A conflicted character. There’s a scene in Singularity that, I think, speaks volumes about Nathan. On his way home, he gives money to the homeless in his neighborhood. But more than that, he stops and speaks to them. We see he actually knows them. They’re not faceless to him. He cares about them.
A reader once compared Nathan to a villain. They didn’t like him. That’s fair, but he’s not a villain. A villain is driven by different motivations than Nathan has. He’s a lost soul trying to do what he thinks is right. No doubt, he makes mistakes and commits terrible acts. But I don’t see him as the villain of this story. There is good still in him, to borrow a turn of phrase. He is just an imperfect reflection of what we all have the capacity to become.
What I love about Nate (as I affectionately call him) is that he’s so flawed. Literally the dark knight Union City needs. Where did your inspiration come for him?
For Nathan, I drew a lot of inspiration from the portrayal of Vic Mackey by Michael Chicklis in the gritty FX drama The Shield. Highly recommended viewing by the way. Both characters play by their own rules and honestly see themselves as the good guy doing what has to be done. It’s that dichotomy that makes Nathan so much fun to work with. Every action he takes is coloured by this idea. Even when he kills people, in his mind, it’s the only way to maintain order in his city. It has to be done. Turned around though, and this is what Quinn tried to accomplish in Singularity, it is an impossibility to uphold the law when you operate outside it.
In many ways, it is this notion that holds him back from finding the redemption he seeks. He’s come to view the law as ineffectual. It couldn’t protect him, so it can’t protect others. Only he can do that, his way. Such complexity within him – I love it!
“Singularity” drew me in with its varied cast and nonstop action. As a writer, how do you keep track of so many plot points and characters?
Planning is key. I would be lost without planning ahead and my trusty spreadsheet. The filter feature of Excel makes it super easy to flip between main plots and subplots, or by character to see their last scene or their next scene. This is how I keep track of the ever expanding Singularverse.
On the heels of the previous question, what advice would you give authors dealing with multiple characters in their storyline?
The best advice I’d give authors on this, is to ask yourself if multiple characters are required. Every character introduces complexity to the writing, and also to the reading, so they need to serve a purpose. It’s not enough to include characters just because you think they are cool, or because you want them in the story. Their inclusion must move the plot along, or they need to go.
When I wrote Singularity, the original draft had an entire subplot focused on the world of the DSA and their efforts to capture augments. I had some cool characters in that arc. But, when it got axed on revision, I lost those characters. For a time anyway, Sarah Moore has definitely made her presence felt! Point is though, the story would’ve been weaker had I insisted on including the subplot.
Who is your favourite character in the Singularverse to write?
You’re going to get me in trouble here, haha! There are so many I love to write, but if I had to pick just one it would be Tommy Roquefort. From the first scene I wrote with him, he has been a consistent performer. I love his attitude and witty dialogue. An absolute joy to write.
So then, who is your least favourite to write?
Now I know you’re trying to get me in trouble!! I don’t really have a least favourite character, though you could argue it’s one of the many I’ve brought to an untimely end. I would say there have been characters that failed to resonate with some readers. I know you personally didn’t care for Alexis in Singularity. Although another reader was upset over what happened to her. So, you never know. To pick just one though, I might lean toward Quinn. I think he never fully developed the way I wanted. Could’ve been the situation, who knows? But I think I still found a unique way to salvage something redeemable in the character. There’s that word again.
The dialogue in this entire series is also hilarious. Definitely intended for comedic relief at times, I’d say, the barbs from Nate and others are cutting edge. How in the world do you keep that going through the series?
Haha! It’s nice to hear the dialogue finds the mark. Honestly, I’ve always had an ear for dialogue. I developed it years ago by studying Improve. Anyone who has ever performed in that field can tell you quick thinking is a must. To keep the skit going, you have to anticipate your partner’s reaction to everything you say. This leads to an understanding of dialogue and conflict. Two central elements of writing. Apart from that, I’ll admit I’ve always been something of a “class clown” and love to make people laugh. It provides a nice change of pace from the heavier elements of the story too.
There are interesting elements that pique the interest in the first book. Augments - people with enhanced powers; a super dark and evil Flash; a Lois Lane-like journalist... “Singularity” doesn’t fall in any one genre of a read. Was this intentional?
I don’t think any wise author would intentionally write a novel that crosses so many genre boundaries. It sure does make marketing a challenge! I set out to write the novel I wanted to read. At the time, I had false started on a couple of novels after completing my Descent series, and honestly didn’t know if I’d continue to write. I said to myself, maybe three books are all I have in me? But I’ve always written, and before I walked away, I wanted to write the book that captured my disparate interests in a coherent manner. I book I would enjoy reading. It worked, and while commercial success hasn’t been what I wanted, I still view the Singularverse as a critical success.
I’ve said it before, but the series is basically a nonstop action thriller that’s a combination smack between a James Rollins novel and The Suicide Squad. What other comparisons have you gotten from reviewers?
I’ve garnered some comparisons to the Marvel movies, which I humbly enjoy. Not sure I’d make the comparison to the Avengers, but I will take it!
How many books do you plan in total for the Singularverse?
The Singularverse will comprise three full length novels portraying the nine acts of Nathan’s story. Aside from that, I plan to collect twelve short stories set in this universe across three collections. More than anything else, the short stories are designed to show the reader important moments in these character’s lives that for whatever reason, don’t make it into the novels. Sort of like special features on a DVD release. Do people still buy DVD’s?