First review of “The Ash Angels”

The first review of “The Ash Angels” has come in, and it’s really freakin’ great. Here’s an excerpt:

“Rogers has taken his incredible main character — Felix Renn — and expanded the story, bringing a more emotional and descriptively dark side of his writing style out for all to see. The pace is fast, the writing tight, but most important of all (to me) — this piece is pitch black in humor and style.”

Paperback Horror
Read the full review

Thanks to Colum at Paperback Horror for the wonderful review. And I promise, that Felix Renn novel is coming. I’m currently in training — writer training, that is, which means I’m working on some Felix Renn short stories to gear myself up for the main event. In fact, I just finished one the other day, and I’m currently thinking about where I should submit it. Once I get another story or two finished, I’ll be ready to tackle the novel. Cue the Rocky music.

Life as a Writer

Andy Burns from BIFF BAM POP interviewed me about the Black Lands, Felix Renn, and life as a writer, while Mary Rajotte from the Toronto Writing Examiner did a great two-part article on the upcoming release of “The Ash Angels” and my participation in some upcoming events.

“The Ash Angels” now available for pre-order

I just received word that “The Ash Angels” is now available for pre-order from Burning Effigy Press. Also, for a limited time, you can pick up “Temporary Monsters” and “The Ash Angels” together and save $1 on the chapbooks, and a $1 on shipping.

Of course, if you’re in the Toronto area this weekend, why not stop by the Burning Effigy Press table at Word on the Street and pick up your copies in person? I’ll be signing from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and for those of you who do show up, I may be inclined to reveal a few secrets about the next Felix Renn chapbook… or maybe even the first Felix Renn novel… or the second Black Lands series I’m currently plotting out…

With “The Ash Angels” coming out soon, I’m feeling very generous, so be sure to swing by and take advantage of it!

“The Ash Angels” cover, synopsis, blurbs

It’s a cold winter’s night and private investigator Felix Renn is still haunted by his experience in the Black Lands – that dark dimension populated by dangerous supernatural entities.

After discovering a strange mark on the snow-covered ground, Felix finds himself thrust into a deadly race against time to protect the city from a paranormal plague that preys on all the dark secrets of the human soul.

But what is Felix to do when the next victim is himself?

Advance praise for The Ash Angels:

“With The Ash Angels, the second Felix Renn tale, Ian Rogers again delivers on a fast-paced entertaining story that gleefully mashes up all-things-supernatural with his hardboiled PI. In this installment, Renn – who is unable to shake the icy touch of the Black Lands or the lingering feelings he has for his ex-wife – delves into darker and more personal territory, all of which gives The Ash Angels a true sense of unease.”

– Paul Tremblay, author of In The Mean Time

“Wry and stylishly bizarre, Rogers hits the mark dead on with The Ash Angels. Hardcase investigator Felix Renn has entered the weird and wild urban fantasy front; I hope he’s on the job for years to come.”

– Laird Barron, author of Occultation

“Rogers continues to demonstrate the skill with pacing that distinguished Renn’s previous outing, Temporary Monsters, and Renn’s voice is pitch-perfect, an evocation of the classic, hardboiled detective that skirts the edge of parody without ever falling into it. With The Ash Angels, however, Rogers takes Renn to new places, deepening the character’s emotional life in unexpected ways that demonstrate Rogers’ ambition and abilities as a writer. It’s that rare thing; a sequel that makes you eager for what comes next.”

– John Langan, author of House of Windows

The Ash Angels will be making its debut one week from today at Toronto’s Word on the Street book and magazine festival. I will be signing at the Burning Effigy Press table from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. I hope to see you there!

Three Is The Number

Welcome to TheBlackLands.com, the official website of the Felix Renn/Black Lands stories!

So what are the Black Lands, and who is Felix Renn?

In short, the Black Lands is a supernatural dimension discovered in the 1940s. This alternate reality provides the backdrop for a series of stories written by yours truly, about the ways in which the world has been affected by its proximity to this dark world and the entities that reside there.

Felix Renn is a private detective based in Toronto whose cases tend to involve the supernatural. In addition to being what I hope are entertaining supernatural mysteries, these stories also allow me to explore the ways in which the people in this world deal with living next door to the Black Lands.

The idea for this website came to me after I realized that “Temporary Monsters,” the first Felix Renn story, wasn’t just a passing fancy. I wrote TM in 2008, and even then I knew I had come up with something special. Something that had the potential to be a series. When TM came out in September of 2009, the reviews were extremely positive. The only real criticism I received was that I didn’t spend enough time developing the characters or exploring the world of the Black Lands. The readers wanted more, and that’s a complaint I don’t mind hearing.

To date, I’ve sold two more stories featuring Felix Renn. I have several more in the works, including a number of novels. I’m also planning a second series of stories that will follow a different character, as well as a number of standalone tales set in the Black Lands universe.

Since these stories are separate from the rest of my work, it made sense that they should have a website of their own. Of course, creating a website for a total of three stories (only one of which is currently available) might seem a bit presumptuous on my part. The truth is I wanted the site to start out small so I could watch it grow over time, much like the stories themselves. I decided to wait until I sold three Felix Renn/Black Lands stories, then I’d get to work on the website.

So while it’s true that there isn’t much to look at right now, I promise that will change very soon. The second Felix Renn story, “The Ash Angels,” will be published by Burning Effigy Press in one month, and if things continue as planned, I expect to be well into the writing of the first Felix Renn novel by that time.

Until then, be sure to check out the FAQ and the history of the Black Lands. There are pages for Felix Renn and the PIA. I have plans for more exclusive content, including free stories, contests, deleted scenes, and all sorts of other groovy surprises. Stay tuned.

I hope you enjoy your stay in the Black Lands!

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What are the Black Lands?

The Black Lands is a dimension filled with supernatural creatures that lies next to our own world. This alternate reality is the setting for a series of stories by Ian Rogers.

To find out more about the Black Lands, read the history.