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Lovegrove, James

Entry updated 12 September 2022. Tagged: Author.

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(1965-    ) UK author who also writes as Jay Amory (note play on his name) and has set crosswords for UK newspapers as Jael; his first novel, The Hope (1990) – set on a vast ocean liner as evocative of the topos of the Ship of Fools as it is of the Generation Starship or the Pocket Universe – is vigorously Equipoisal in a manner typical of his work as whole. His second novel, Escardy Gap (1996) with Peter Crowther, a Godgame gone out of control in a town driven by metaphorical puppetry and visited by an ominous Carnival [see The Encyclopedia of Fantasy under links below], also performs along genre membranes, though less convincingly.

Some of Lovegrove's later tales – like Wings (2001 chap), about a child in a world of floating Cities 500 years hence who must understand that his father's Invention cannot give him wings like all his contemporaries, or Ant God (2009), whose young protagonist has invented "Revelation Glasses" that show too much – are for Young Adult or younger readers, and follow simpler trajectories. His adult tales continue ruthlessly and at times invigoratingly to combine and metamorphosize early twenty-first-century genres. Foreigners (2000) is in part a First Contact tale, in which ambivalent Aliens seem to be offering Uplift; but it is also a fantasy about a visitation of gods. Untied Kingdom (2003) is a Dystopian vision of Near Future England bombed by former allies, its government in exile, but (perhaps) succoured by an Arthurian revival headed by an Arthur reborn as a skinhead. Worldstorm (2004) comes close to the creation of an Alternate Cosmos in its delineation of a world whose population is inherently shaped according to Inclinations based on the four elements of alchemy, while the eponymous storm shakes the planet without cease. Provender Gleed (2005) is a Satirical Alternate History in which the world is ruled by families of capitalists, the Jonbar Point being a realpolitik decision by the Renaissance Borgias and Medicis to join together. Perhaps the most ambitious of these, The Age of Ra (2009), combines Military SF tropes and Wargame-like battles with a Far Future venue where conflicts rage among the gods (mostly Egyptian) over the rule of Earth; a problem with this tale, as with some of Lovegrove's earlier expeditions, may lie in a sense of undue haste: almost, at times, as though his traversal of genres was touristic. This novel opens the Pantheon sequence [see Checklist], set in various Alternate Histories, each under the rule of a different pantheon of gods; the most impressive of these may be Age of Aztec (2012), in which the Aztec gods, aided by advanced Technology, impose a harsh rule upon the world. The Dev Harmer sequence beginning with World of Fire (2012) features an agent of Interstellar Security Solutions whose task is to defend human interest on various planets whose original inhabitants may resent our arrival (see Colonization of Other Worlds); the series at least superficially echoes the Retief books by Keith Laumer, though Harmer is modernly downloaded into prepared Clone bodies on each planet he visits. Age of Godpunk (coll of linked stories 2013) contains an amusing spoof of the Satanism tales of Dennis Wheatley. [JC]

see also: Seiun Award.

James Matthew Henry Lovegrove

born Lewes, East Sussex: 24 December 1965




Clouded World


  • The Age of Ra (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2009) [Pantheon: pb/Marek Okon]
  • The Age of Zeus (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2010) [Pantheon: pb/Marek Okon]
  • The Age of Odin (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2011) [Pantheon: pb/Marek Okon]
  • Age of Aztec (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2012) [Pantheon: pb/Marek Okon]
  • Age of Anansi (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2012) [novella: ebook: Pantheon: na/Marek Okon]
  • Age of Satan (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2013) [novella: ebook: Pantheon: na/Pye Parr]
  • Age of Gaia (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2013) [novella: ebook: Pantheon: na/Pye Parr]
    • Age of Godpunk (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2013) [omni of the above three: Pantheon: pb/Jake Murray]
  • Age of Voodoo (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2013) [Zombies: Pantheon: pb/Marek Okon]
  • Age of Shiva (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2014) [Pantheon: pb/Jake Murray]
  • Age of Heroes (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2016) [Pantheon: pb/Naj Osmani]

5 Lords of Pain

John Redlaw

  • Redlaw (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2011) [John Redlaw: pb/Clint Langley]
  • Redlaw: Red Eye (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2012) [John Redlaw: pb/Clint Langley]

Dev Harmer

  • World of Fire (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2012) [Dev Harmer: pb/Jake Murray]
  • World of Water (Oxford, Oxfordshire: Rebellion/Solaris, 2016) [Dev Harmer: pb/Jake Murray]

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