Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Rebellion, Religious Oppression and Abuse of Power: The novels of Simon Dillon

And today's guest is Simon Dillon.


My name is Simon Dillon. I write novels for children and adults in multiple genres, including thrillers, science-fiction and adventure, with occasional forays into teen romantic drama (well, one foray to be precise – my latest novel Love vs Honour).

From the above description I may sound like a jack of all trades, but the truth is I have recurrent themes that crop up in my work, even though the treatment of said themes is tailored to the genre and intended readership.

So what are my recurrent themes? Abuse of power and religious oppression are certainly two mainstays. My most successful novel to date, Children of the Folded Valley, is about a man looking back on his childhood growing in a mysterious cult, seemingly in a parallel dimension bordering our own.

These themes are echoed in my most recent novel, Love vs Honour, which on the surface may appear to be a teenage romance, but it takes a number of dark and unexpected turns that I think are just as likely to make the novel appeal to adults. It concerns relationship between teenagers of different fundamentalist faith backgrounds, and their parent appeasing subterfuge as each pretends to convert to the others religion.

George goes to Mars (and its sequel George goes to Titan, along with the upcoming final part of the trilogy, George goes to Neptune) also to a lesser extent deals with oppressive religious systems, and those who set themselves up as gods. The simple premise of the first novel – poverty stricken boy inherits all rights to sell land on the planet Mars – is merely the start of several thrilling adventures that will appeal to all ages.

Abuse of power, and themes of distrust in political powers of all persuasions crop up in another adventure story I wrote entitled Dr Gribbles and the Beast of Blackthorn Lodge. The first chapter features a haunted house, monster and mad scientist, and then novel builds from there.

In a different vein, Uncle Flynn, a treasure hunt adventure, features themes of overcoming fear and the dangers of mollycoddling.

Returning to novels for adults, The Birds Began to Sing is a gripping thriller about a mysterious writing competition that takes many sinister, possibly supernatural turns. Yet again abuse of power is a background theme, although primarily it concerns the power of the written word.

It is worth mentioning a theme that crops up in virtually all my books: rebellion/uprising against corrupt and/or oppressive systems and/or people; whether religious, political or even just school bullies. Sometimes these confrontations take place on a small, personal level (the afore-mentioned bullies in stories like Dr Gribbles and the Beast of Blackthorn Lodge, or perhaps the confrontations of Love vs Honour), or on a larger, more obvious scale (George goes to Mars, Children of the Folded Valley, etc).

Of course, this makes my novels sound terribly heavy and tough, but they aren’t. There is humour too, often quite dark humour, throughout all these stories.

Finally, I should add that many of my novels are set in and round where I live in the South West of England. Since moving here in 2006, I have derived a great deal of inspiration from my surroundings, and certain locations (particularly places on Dartmoor such as Wistman’s Wood) crop up again and again in my work.

All my novels are available on Amazon at a mere 99 pence per download. Print copies are also available from Lulu or, in the case of Love vs Honour, Amazon Create Space. For more information on any of these titles, check out my blog, www.simondillonbooks.wordpress.com, which also features regular book articles and film reviews.

I hope you enjoy my stories.


And with that, I bid you adieu and hope you have a great week. I'll see you all on Friday.

1 comment:

Nick Wilford said...

Nice to make Simon's acquaintance. It's interesting to see how his overarching themes manifest themselves across different genres. And it sounds like there's something for everyone!