We'd like to introduce you to Stark... Oh, and by the way, good luck...
Stark is the hero the future is waiting for - God help it - smart, cool, and with great taste in shirts. He's a trouble-shooter in The City, a lawless sprawl of Neighbourhoods which covers the country from coast to coast. Each AI-enhanced Neighbourhood is totally dedicated to fulfilling the desires of its inhabitants - whatever they may be.
Stark accepts a job from Zenda Renn, the human face of the can-do Action Centre - the Neighbourhood for people who have to be doing something all the time. She's under-supervisor of Really Hustling Things Along, in the Department of Doing Things Especially Quickly - and she's got a big problem...
Stark is forced to confront both his past and a present which has become a living death - for at the heart of Only Forward's polymorphic imagination lies a story of love lost and friendship betrayed. It takes him to places where dreams live, where they can come true, for better or for worse. Where they can kill you.
In a world where past and future, reality and nightmare meet up and have a fistfight, Stark is the only man who can make the difference. Time's running out, and there's no going back... only forward.
HarperCollins (UK) Pb ISBN 0006512666
Bantam (US) Pb ISBN 0553579703
Things are unreliable. Things break. Things fall apart. Even at 11 years old, Mark knows this all too well.
By the time he moves out of London to a wintry seaside town, things are already bad. His mother is sick, and Mark doesn't get along with his new stepfather. Although he finds an ally in an elderly neighbour, it still doesn't feel like home, and shadows are soon gathering as things slowly start to get worse
Mark knows he has to do something, but he doesn't know what. And the only people who might be able to help him...
... may not even exist.
HarperCollins Hb ISBN 978-0-00-726193-2
William Morrow (US) Hb 978-0061494161
Published in the UK under the name M. M. Smith
Luck? Don't talk to Jack Randall about luck. He didn't keep up the payment on his, and it ran out a long time ago. The good fortune box is empty. A loner veteran of a savage war, he's spent the last five years buried deep, hiding out on a Spares farm with people who can't even spell luck.
Forced to flee this last bolthole, Jack returns to the city that used to be his home. All he wants is to score a little money and disappear with the people he's trying to save. Unfortunately, he's got a talent for attracting trouble - the kind that most people would run screaming from. Jack Randall isn't most people. That's part of his problem. His escape from the Farm with six of its inmates (well, five and a half) brings him head to head with the man who destroyed everything he once held dear.
He has to make a decision: take revenge or turn away?
In a startling odyssey of fear, black comedy and the surreal, Jack Randall discovers that the choice has already been made. The demons in him take on the demons without, and all he can do is stand back and see who wins...
HarperCollins (UK) Pb ISBN 0006512674
Bantam (US) Pb ISBN 0553579010
ONE OF US
Hap Thompson - ex-criminal, ex-barman and ex-husband - has fallen on his feet at last. After years of scuffling in the shadows of crime, he's finally found something he can do better than anyone else. And it's legal. Almost.
Hap's a REMtemp, working the night hours, having people's dreams for them. For the first time in his life he's making big money - and that should have been enough. But then he's offered work caretaking memories instead of dreams.
This is not almost illegal - this is illegal in bold with a flashing light.
One night Hap takes on a bigger memory than usual and the client disappears. As Hap pursues her, he comes to realize that something terrible lies at the end of this memory, something which threatens to rewrite not just his life, but the whole of history.
Hap Thompson is the one man who can maybe bring it all together. If he can just stay alive.
HarperCollins (UK) Pb ISBN 000649997X
Bantam (US) Pb ISBN 0553580698