The Forever Gate by Isaac Hooke

IH-The-Forever-Gate Title: The Forever Gate
Author: Isaac Hooke
Published: 2013To submit your own review, click here!

I’ll admit a slightly dirty secret; I’ve never read an indie author. Until now.

Call me a snob but a lot of the reason for that was fear of less than great writing. I read classics and SF almost exclusively and I’m pretty picky about what I read. There is nothing more disappointing than working your way through a book that doesn’t pan out. (I’m one of those people that always finishes a book, no matter what. So when I’ve invested a week in a novel, I want it to be a good one.)

Like many readers I’ve tried my hand at writing and of course involved myself in a workshop or two. What’s so painful is when you are forced to read another “writer’s” work and it’s just… crap. Individuals who think they are going to make it, talk about self-publishing because the horrible industry just won’t give them a chance and “don’t you think so too?”

I guess that’s what I thought indie authors were, self-agrandizing wannabes committing literary masturbation on a public stage. (Hey, I admitted to being a literary snob.)

So imagine my surprise when I found Isaac’s “The Forever Gate” and not only was it not sludge, it was pretty darn good.

There were some minor issues. Overall I felt that it could have been a bit more polished but the writing quality improved consistantly through the first half. (There was some warming up and hitting his stride feeling to it.)

On the plus side of the colomn, the dialog is excellent. Even with “established” writers, dialog is often a weak point. Isaac’s was realistic, character specific, dialecty sounding. Very nice.

There was also some very good creativity and building of suspense. I found myself wondering many times, “What is going on?” In the good way that you get with semi-mystical, surreal science fiction.

Length wise I wouldn’t describe this work as a novel. Nor is it a novella because it’s not a stand alone piece. I think the best way to view it is as the first part of a novel. All I can say is thank goodness that “The Forever Gate II” is scheduled for release this month; I wouldn’t want to have to wait very long to find out what happens next.

Lisa K. Jan. 6, 2013

Isaac can be contacted at and his book at Amazon.

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