“Goldenhand” by Garth Nix (HarperCollins, 2016)


The long-awaited (whether it’s published two weeks after the last one or two years, it will always be long-awaited) fifth installment of the Old Kingdom is out! Goldenhand is the one fans have been waiting for, featuring many old friends we’ve cared for and wondered about for some time: Sabriel, the Abhorsen; King Touchstone; Lirael, Abhorsen-in-waiting; and Nicholas Sayre; and yes maybe Chlorr of the Mask is involved somehow too.

Sabriel and Touchstone are on their first vacation in a very long time. The word from the Clayr is nothing is going on and nothing is going to be going on involving necromancers or dark beasties. Lirael, the Abhorsen-in-waiting, is holding the wall – so to speak – for the time being. Of course, it is exactly then that things take a turn for the terrible and dark. After rescuing Nick Sayre from one of those scary, dark beasties, she makes the decision to take him to the Clayr’s Glacier on a paperwing to see if she can help him with his free magic problem. It is there she will eventually meet someone who knew her mother well, and who bears a very important message for her. A message that has far reaching ramifications that will affect people on both sides of the wall.

Fans will be absolutely delighted with Goldenhand. Nix has certainly not lost his touch, as readers are plunged into the creepy world of the Old Kingdom with its gates through death and the terrifying things that reside there. The story is compelling, as readers get to see some old friends they’ve dearly missed, while new views and plots about the Old Kingdom are revealed. Goldenhand may be one of the best in the series!

Originally written on November 22, 2016 ©Alex C. Telander.

To purchase a copy of Goldenhand from Amazon, and help support BookBanter, click HERE.

“The Professional Security Manual Class 1: Urban Security” by Charles White (CreateSpace, 2015)


When you’re signing up to be your basic security guard for so and so law firm, or that high-profile business that needs overnight protection, you need to be sure you’ve got the skills and the chops to carry out the job to the letter, whether it’s impressing the guys giving you your paycheck or fellow security guards who need to know you’re the best of the best. Thankfully, there’s this handy dandy book, The Professional Security Manual Class 1: Urban Security.

Lieutenant Charles White has a lot of experience and a lot of things to say on the subject of urban security. Thankfully the editor recorded all this and then synthesized it into this useful book format with ten separate sections giving the reader a full course in urban security. The chapters cover important matters like “Surveillance and Patrol,” “Bomb Recognition,” “Advanced Firearms Instruction,” and very important, “Ghosts in the Workplace.” The book is full of important pearls of wisdom and mantras like:

– “You must secure the respect of employees by practicing martial arts in full view of everyone in the break room.”

– “The modern martial artist is forced to keep in practice with the steel stapler, an item of office equipment ideal for self defense.”

– “I have friends shoot arrows at me as I block. I stand in the middle of a ring of flaming torches, to force myself to stay in bounds.”

At the end of the book there is an important self-test in firearms and weapons, as well as a shooting gallery forcing the reader to choose quickly enemies that need to be killed, and innocents that need to be spared.

Professional Security Manual Class 1: Urban Security is an entertaining read that’s a lot of fun. Unfortunately, it ends pretty quickly, and really could be double the length for its entertainment value, plus the humorous language is great and should be more present to really make the reader laugh out loud.

Originally written on August 11, 2016 ©Alex C. Telander.

To purchase a copy of The Professional Security Manual Class 1: Urban Security from Amazon, and help support BookBanter, click HERE.