Cheeseburger Gothic

Space Rhino gonna have Space Lizard for breakfast

Posted August 8, 2014 into Books by John Birmingham

Been listening to Chris Nuttall's Ark Royal series on Audible. It's hugely enjoyable for a bit of walloping po-faced silliness. Long story short? A couple of hundred years in the future aliens attack! They wipe out all the modern space carriers Earth sends to face them, but one lumbering, iron clad behemoth captained by a disgraced drunk still stands in their way.

It's not going to challenge any of Iain M Banks' Culture novel's for literary awseome and there are times I shake my head at moments of balsa wood dialogue and exposition. But what the hell. They're great fun, which is all you want from a space opera, and I will undoubtedly read or listen to every one.

I was nonetheless part way through Vol 2 The Nelson Touch on the way back from the school run this morning when I was suddenly brought undone by the following passage:

"Beside him, wearing combat battle dress, was Major General Roger Ross, a heavy set man with a reputation for winning against impossible odds. The United States Marine Corps had sent their best and brightest to the fight... They called Ross, the Rhino."

You can imagine my distress.

I thought we had something special, Rhino. I thought I was the only one.

28 Responses to ‘Space Rhino gonna have Space Lizard for breakfast’

Blarkon reckons...

Posted August 8, 2014
Pretty sure that Space Rhino is having cronuts for breakfast. With a ridiculous cigar.

Have you read Max Barry's Lexicon yet? Why not?

My trashy technothriller this week is "Kill Decision" by Daniel Suarez. Recommended by none other than Warren Ellis. Much splody. Very technothriller. Wow.


Surtac is gonna tell you...

Posted August 10, 2014
Well of course a space lizard is going to subscribe to something called Orbital Operations. I too read Kill Decision this week, for the same reasons.
Lots of gunfire and 'splosions. Much fun. With weaver ants and swarming autonomous drones for extra scares.

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Dino not to be confused with mumbles...

Posted August 8, 2014
I could so be that disgraced drunk JB.
Method acting?
Just give me a fuckin' braek...

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Guy mumbles...

Posted August 8, 2014
I've read the first of the Ark Royal trilogy and wholly agree with JB's comments. I've also read several of Mr Nuttall's other works - currently trying a rather fun alien invasion story called "Their Darkest Hour". Nuttall has a fondness for referencing other genre writers/films/tv shows. I would guess that it's highly likely that the appearance of Mr Rhino Ross is no coincidence. He reads your books JB, just as you read his.

Rhino would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
Guy ... actually, I've read Chris' stuff for a long while now he runs in the same Baen circles that I do and he's aware of the Literary Action Hero Rhino persona and thought it would be fun to add it.

Oh, wait, you didn't know that the Rhino was a real thing, huh?

Poor boy.

Murphy mumbles...

Posted August 9, 2014
Need to get that third star, man. Like I did.

Or better yet, get promoted to suit wearing status.

Respects,
Murph
On the Outer Marches.

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Guy mutters...

Posted August 8, 2014
I've read the first of the Ark Royal trilogy and wholly agree with JB's comments. I've also read several of Mr Nuttall's other works - currently trying a rather fun alien invasion story called "Their Darkest Hour". Nuttall has a fondness for referencing other genre writers/films/tv shows. I would guess that it's highly likely that the appearance of Mr Rhino Ross is no coincidence. He reads your books JB, just as you read his.

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sibeen reckons...

Posted August 8, 2014
I'll also add my voice of approval to Lexicon, a thoroughly enjoyable read.


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Rhino swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 9, 2014
JB - you were my first ::kaff kaff:: and you'll always be special to me. It's not you, it's me. Really.

Maybe not.

If you soul search, honestly, you'll realize that you caused this. You made me into the literary action hero that the other authors would covet. Sure, you couldn't have done it if I hadn't been awesome to begin with, but still, you put me out there in the spotlight. How could you not expect other authors to act on that? Oh, I was a willing participant in the whole thing, I know that. The adulation is/was sweet, the opportunity to take the piss at Havock's expense, the hovercraft rides, the Bunnies, all of it ... sweet.

But I've, WE'VE, grown. And, let's fact it. You don't have time for me anymore. You think I haven't noticed? You are moving on to Hooper. No place for a Rhino in a world of Orcs (Oh, imagine what could have been? The MF'ing, Schwartzenegger-level of mayhem of The Rhino bringing the pain to otherworldly creatures?). But no. You are all, "Hooper this and Hooper that". Even a Rhino has feelings.

I didn't mean for it to happen this way. I should have told you. But, you aren't on FaceBook anymore and Twitter seems too perfunctory. What we have needs more than 140 characters or a hashtag.

With all of that said, I can't quit you JB. I just can't.


Chaz has opinions thus...

Posted August 9, 2014

Classic!

Thanks Roger you've made my morning

Darth Greybeard would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
Oh wow. Such breakup. So embarrassment.

damian would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
On a bit of a tangent, the entry for Shiba Inu shows the strengths and weaknesses of wikipedia quite well.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan puts forth...

Posted August 9, 2014
I love this so much I can't believe it. This is so great. I have to read this book.

Yet another reason to envy the Rhino.

It will be interesting, on a purely personal level, to see if Mr. Nutall is one day inspired to base a character on a short, bald, charmingly overweight, long-winded attorney who has a preternatural way with the ladies.


Therbs swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 9, 2014
If he does write you in, make sure he includes the secret lair staffed by finalists in the "So You Wanna Be A Bond Girl" reality competition. Bond girl wannabes love secret lairs.

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Rhino would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
Mr Boylan ... you and I are members of a mutual admiration society. Which cause me discomfort as any society that would have me as a member is undoubtedly disreputable and morally ambiguous at best.

I do recommend Chris' work ... it is a lot of fun. He has improved steadily and is prolific so you never really have to wait years (hint, hint, JB) for sequels.

And, yes, I do kick some xenomorph ass.

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
I certainly think it is better work than getting into Ringo's universes. Folks there tend to die quick, painful, if glorious deaths.

Then again, at least it happens on the page, as opposed to some dark plot alley between books like that poor bastard Dan Black.

Respects,
Murph
On the Outer Marches

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Therbs would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
Galactic Rhino vs Aliens? Sounds like a character driven examination of human frailties set against the backdrop of existential despair in a conflicted universe.
Then again maybe it's just aliens getting their beans cashed by The Rhino.

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Rhino reckons...

Posted August 9, 2014
Murph. I'm in Ringo's Looking Glass books.

I live.

Despite insane odds.

I'm the opposite of Buckley.

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Rhino would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
Helllloooo Everyone. This is NOT a break-up. Not in the slightest.

This is two very manly, albeit sensitive, men talking through a very complex relationship. In public. In full view of you rabble.

Sure, JB saw, in me, a magnetic personality that would elevate his trilogy to the next level.

Sure, I saw JB as an intellectual peer that saw through to my core of awesomeness and and gave me the fame I deserved.

It was a case of mutual assured awesomeness. Birmo had me at the email that said, "I have an idea for this character..."

So, now, I'm trying to deal with Birmo moving on. It isn't easy. But, I'll deal.

I'm happy that he's found another character to focus on. Sure, Hooper is no Rhino. I'm sure that he rocks. He absolutely has to if Birmo is writing about him.

That's OK. Really.

There is no breakup here. There is an enduring love and mutual respect that transcends international bestseller lists.

Oh, as an FYI ... I not only had xenomorph for breakfast ..;. it was lunch and dinner too. Buy Chris' book damnit.

Sudragon puts forth...

Posted August 9, 2014
Do you have any good recipes for Xenomorph?

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Spanner reckons...

Posted August 9, 2014
Well it seems like someone has burnt a bridge or two here.

I for one think that its time to retire a character that was getting a little tired.

As for a replacement character...well what about a mild mannered Town Planner who turns into a super archer with a razor sharp wit dispatching his enemies with flaming arrows fired with deadly accuracy. His trusty sidekick, a rotund elderly gentleman with a grey beard, caries a quiver of spare arrows.

They could battle an Evil Marsupial who plans to take over the world with her army of genetically engineered super pussies.

Darth Greybeard would have you know...

Posted August 9, 2014
OK, as long as I don't have to clap two halves of a coconut shell together.

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Chris reckons...

Posted August 10, 2014

Thank you for the shout-out! I loved the WW books <grin>


John Birmingham mutters...

Posted August 11, 2014
D'oh, now I feel I have to write a full review, to place my snarky balsa wood comment in context.

They are hugely enjoyable reads.

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Aaron ducks in to say...

Posted August 11, 2014
I see an opportunity to repair the relationship with a space opera about invading space rhinos. Here's a start: "you don't get galactic empires like this by petting xenomorphcats" said the heavily amored rhino commander...

Peter Bradley puts forth...

Posted August 11, 2014
Aaron, beat me to it by 3 hours!

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tygertim mumbles...

Posted August 11, 2014
Hey guys it's awesome that da Rhino has new worlds to conquer! It's very badass cool when we end up getting red shirted like that.
It's so fun to be a muse...
Tygertim

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