Thursday, January 19, 2012

Dan Henk: The Black Seas of Infinity

I heard about the debut of Dan's book on Facebook, as he is one of my friends there. I volunteered to be a reviewer. Dan was kind enough to send me a copy months ago, but I am ashamed to say that I am quite often distracted and have just NOW finished it. However, once I finally started reading, I was immediately sucked in and I read it non-stop for two days. 

“Visions of pulp era heroes fill his thoughts. Taking advanced physics, he dreams big, but harsh reality bites as he grows up, and he resigns himself to building surveillance drones for the military. After a brief probative period, he’s unexpectedly moved into the clandestine world of investigating crashed alien craft. Fascinated beyond anything he thought possible, it’s a dream come true but his lack of social skills get him fired. However, he’s seen too much – and a year later returns to pull off a bloody heist… Fleeing into the woods with the military in hot pursuit, he makes a mad scramble up the coast. It’s only then he discovers the world has grown strange. Businesses are closed. Highways deserted. The US has become fractured… Trigger happy locals and violent militias are only the beginning. Death, madness, and the unwelcome return of creatures from beyond this world await…”

This little blurb alone was enough to draw me in. "Ooooh." I believe that would be a accurate description after reading this little clip. 

The Black Seas of Infinity is written in the first-person point of view. We follow the protagonist, who has always dreamed of advanced physics, into a military job building drones and then being drafted into a covert military project. This turns out to be a dream come true for our fellow, although it is cut short as he soon finds himself at odds with the powers that be. Naturally, having worked for a secret military group means he knows too much and the story evolves into an apocalyptic journey through a crumbling of society and into the jungles of Mexico. 

I detest reviews with spoilers, so I will not write one. But I will say that this story has sort of a cliffhanger ending and leaves you clamoring for more. Rumor has it there is to be a sequel...*squee.

For fans of science fiction, this is a must-read. In addition to a captivating story, this book includes full page interior drawings that really help bring the story to life. Dan also illustrated the cover. 

At 18, I was kicked out of the house. I spent the next 8 months
homeless, sometimes sleeping in the woods. Finally getting a steady job and a
place to live, my friend flipped my beat up old car and I went through the
windshield. After a two week recovery, out of necessity I moved from Northern
Virginia to downtown Washington DC. A year and a half later, a crack head broke
into the house. A knife fight with him severed the tendon on my left hand.
After surgery and yet another move, I finally attended art school. My work made
it into galleries, political cartoons for Madcap Magazine, covers for Maximum
Rock and Roll, and numerous t-shirts and ads. I left art school early, at the
advice of my teacher, for a career in NYC. Two interviews with DC Comics made
me realize they paid very little, and only wanted me to draw superheroes.
Three years later, at the urging of a tattoo artist, I went into
the field. I have now been tattooing 11 years. I’ve been featured in a slew of
books, magazines, newspapers, and on TV in the US and Europe, both for my
tattoo work, and my traditional art. Tattooing has been very good to me. Life,
not so much. I’ve had brain cancer, and was actually in Bellevue Hospital in
ICU when the twin towers went down. Seven years later, my wife died in a hit and
But life is what you make of it. I’ve always written, writing
full novels (that I’m sure were horrible) by the 5th grade, and taking numerous
creative writing classes. I’ve put out quite a few articles over the years, and
THE BLACK SEAS OF INFINITY is my first novel, published by Anarchy Books in
2011. I’m already hard at work on a second book of short stories, hopefully to
come out sometime next year.