Book - Outliers

Steve Taylor-Bryant discovers the shape of things to come when he picks up the Primer book for Outliers...

Every once in a while you get something on your email or your desk and you think to yourself “really? This old chestnut again. People will just keep flogging this gifted malarkey won’t they?” Honestly, the idea of meta-humans or gifted people is nothing new. Factions within those kinds is nothing new. Secret agencies hunting these kinds is nothing new. However… Every once in a while you get something on your email or desk that takes a well trodden idea and does something exquisite with it. That is Outliers in a nutshell… Exquisite.

For all my moaning about the character type being unoriginal, there are some artists out there that really can offer something new and original to it, a twist on the boring. The Hero books by Jonathan Wood are a great example of the genre in novel form, our very own Neil Vogler has Tripler which is also very good. There are numerous comics, television series, films and games out there; but there is not a collection like this. Made up from short stories, letters, interview transcripts, artwork, secret files (complete with redactions), and magazine articles there is plenty to read and look at and every aspect of the genre is catered for. If you like the hunt by police and agencies side of it, you’re covered, if you like the conflict and action side of it, you’re covered, if, like me, you like the human element thrown into the paranormal mix then you are again very definitely covered.

The Outliers as a product is beautiful to look at, stunning even in the way it's laid out, and surely a must own for fans of the genre type and people who just like beautiful things, but it is more than that. There is some serious talent in the writing pool that put this thing together. The short stories and flash fiction are brilliant and every one of them left me wanting to read more about the characters contained within, and more by the author themselves. The layout and non-story elements are incredibly detailed and add something to the project rather than just filling pages and it really is a fantastic journey from page one to the end.

Whilst I really did love everything within it, I have to mention For a Fistful of Diamonds by A. R. Aston as a highlight. Such a complex look at the humanity within us all whilst also being a very cinematic action piece of bad guy on bad guy. It is hard to reach the reader on multiple levels and that story just edged the others for the multiple layers of enjoyment it gave me. I highly recommend you visit the guys at before they realise the gold they hold and start actually charging for this! The Primer is free at the moment.

Image - Outliers
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