About Me

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Australian philosopher, literary critic, legal scholar, and professional writer. Based in Newcastle, NSW. Author of FREEDOM OF RELIGION AND THE SECULAR STATE (2012), HUMANITY ENHANCED (2014), and THE MYSTERY OF MORAL AUTHORITY (2016).

Saturday, July 02, 2011

On Kong Reborn

My 2005 novel, Kong Reborn, ended up being a bit of a commercial disaster. Shortly before its publication, Byron Preiss, who owned the publishing empire that included iBooks, was killed in a car accident. Shortly thereafter the whole operation went bankrupt, and I don't understand who actually owns it now after the court proceedings in the US and some kind of buy-out. I never received all the money I was owed for the book, and I'm most unlikely ever to see another cent from it. In the circumstances, it never gained any real publicity or any decent distribution.

So ended my career as a novelist (at least to date), since I got caught up in other things about that time. My next book turned out to be 50 Voices of Disbelief. Still, there's a hardcover version of Kong Reborn in print these days, if you're interested, and it's possible to find second-hand copies of the paperback version.

I did enjoy writing the book, and I'm still quite proud of at least some aspects. Of course, there's no way to make Skull Island make scientific sense, but I had fun coming up with a lot of not-too-pseudo-scientific handwaving to explain it. I also felt privileged getting to write about such a revered icon in our modern mythology as King Kong.

I hadn't actually checked the customer reviews on Amazon for a very long time, but came across them just now while looking for something else. I'm pleased to say that they're pretty positive overall. But there is one very long and negative review that I have to point out to y'all (you'll find it at the link above, which I'll give again). Sheesh, it's just such an amazing, over-the-top rant. Go and have a look just for the hell of it.

4 comments:

David M said...

Heh. That's a little bit amazing.

Russell Blackford said...

Haha! Yeah. People can be strange.

Steven Paul Leiva said...

Russell -- you should check your rights to the book. If you have the electronic rights you should consider putting it up as an e-book yourself on Amazon, etc.

Anonymous said...

Copies of this book are still coming from somewhere, so someone must be making money on it. I just bought a new copy at a Dollar General store back in May.

I enjoyed the book, though the summary blurb on the back kind of ruined the first half of it. You can start around page 200 (the departure to Skull Island) and not have missed much. I also hoped for some summary of the comeuppance for Hemming at the end. The book ends rather abruptly.