Fagin’s Boy (Oliver & Jack #1)fagins-boy

Five years after Fagin was hanged in Newgate, Oliver Twist, at the age of seventeen, is a young man of good breeding, and fine manners, living a quiet life in a corner of London. When Oliver loses his protector and guardian, he is able, with the help of Mr. Brownlow’s friends, to find employment in a well-respected haberdashery in Soho.

However, in the midst of these changes, Jack Dawkins, also known as the Artful Dodger, arrives in London, freshly returned from being deported. Olovers’ own inability to let go of his past, as well as his renewed and intimate acquaintance with Jack, take him back to the life he thought he’d left behind.

My review: 
I was pleasantly surprised to find the book so authentic to Dickens, the Victorian times and the original story and characters. Continuation stories of classics are a tricky business but Pilz managed it very well.
You can recognise the characters and the times of Oliver Twist well enough, but there is enough creativity and thought put into this to make it a very accomplished work in its own right.
I have a love and hate relationship with the era, so dark and hopeless at times, yet so full of life and adventure, full of dodgy characters and threats, yet, a time where there is hope for change for the better.
You can’t help feeling for Oliver and his fortune, and you can’t help liking Jack. This is a very plausible and authentic work, clearly a labour of love with a lot of research and attention for detail.
The thought of Oliver being gay has occured to me before. Pilz manages to integrate this effortlessly into the story without this being a gay takeover of the story. Subtle, tasteful and with great sensitivity this is of great historical value and not simple hijacking of a story and making it something else.
A real treasure find for this reader. I’m deligted to learn that there is a sequel to this.

Christina E. Pilz

Born in Waco, The United States

Charles Dickens, Sarah Waters, Michael Faber, Susan Dexter, Ellen Kush

I was was born in Waco, Texas in 1962. After living on a variety of air force bases, in 1972 my Dad retired and the family moved to Boulder, Colorado. There amidst the clear, dry air of the high plains, as the moss started to grow beneath my feet, my love for historical fiction began with a classroom reading of “Little House on the Prairie” by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

I attended a variety of community colleges (Tacoma Community College) and state universities (UNC-Greeley, CU-Boulder, CU-Denver), and finally found my career in technical writing, which, between layoffs, I have been doing for 18 years. During that time, my love for historical fiction and old fashioned objects, ideas, and eras has never waned.

In addition to writing, my interests include road trips around the U.S. and frequent flights to England, where I eat fish and chips, drink hard cider, and listen to the voices in the pub around me. I also love coffee shops, mountain sunsets, prairie storms, and the smell of lavender. I am a staunch supporter of the Oxford comma.