Author Biography - Trevor Hoyle
worked as an actor, an advertising copywriter and a lecturer in
creative writing, before becoming a full-time writer, mainly of
novels and short stories. He also wrote and presented a weekly arts
programme and documentaries for Granada TV. Since the mid-seventies
he has published a wide range of fiction from mainstream novels
(for John Calder) to speculative fiction, including The
Last Gasp, which was a Doubleday Book Club Selection in the
US and is now under option in Hollywood.
More recently he has written for radio, winning the Radio Times
Drama Award with his first play GIGO.
The actor in the title role of his play Randle's Scandals won the
Sony Award in 1993. Other prizes include the winning British entry
in the "Transatlantic Review" short story competition and the Ray
Mort Northern Novel Award.
In 2003 his novel Rule of Night, originally published in 1975, was reissued by Pomona to critical
acclaim, named as Time Out's Book of the Week and receiving a five-star rating in The Big Issue
and reviews in the Guardian and City Life. Currently he is working on a novel The Kingdom of
Darkness and compiling a collection of short stories titled Hard Shoulders/Soft Verges.
Trevor Hoyle, most noted for his works of science fiction, is author
of speculative novels, such as Vail,
Last Gasp, and The
Man Who Travelled on Motorways. In the late 1970s he gained
recognition for his "Q" series, featuring Christian Queghan, a scientific
investigator possessing the ability to journey through time as well
as to hypothetical worlds. Seeking
the Mythical Future depicts Queghan placed into a parallel universe
where humans and dinosaurs are contemporaries and where those unwilling
to conform to rigidly policed thoughts and beliefs are thrown into
Psychological Concentration Camps. In Through the Eye of Time, a
group of scientists attempting to duplicate the human brain have
chosen that of Adolf Hitler as their prototype. Investigating the
research, Queghan unveils an alternate universe in which Germany
(as opposed to the United States) developed the first atomic bomb.
Queghan's quest becomes to enter this other reality in an attempt
to avert the threat it poses to the known reality. The third volume,
The Gods Look Down, tells of Queghan working with another scientist
on decoding texts from ancient history. Upon realizing that his
colleague is seeking to alter history using the results of the research,
Queghan draws upon his ability to pass into alternate realities
in an attempt to stop him.
is a black comedy set in a dreary, futuristic Britain. The work
tells of how the title character loses both his wife and daughter
in a highway accident and later arrives in London, where he is drawn
into a sinister, scheming world. Populated by the off-beat, the
bizarre, and the morally corrupt, the city defies conventional urban
activity. While Vail seeks to sustain his belief in a larger order
of things through much of the work, he is ultimately engulfed by
the growing anarchy surrounding him. British Book News contributor
Martin Seymour-Smith found Vail reminiscent of anti-utopian works
such as George Orwell's novel 1984, the motion picture A Clockwork
Orange by Stanley Kubrick, and, most of all, the novel We, a critique
of the former Soviet Union by Yevgeny Ivanovich Zamyatin. "The popular
reflexes of blitz patriotism and cheque-book journalists' voyeurism
jump off the page," commented Times Literary Supplement contributor
Neville Shack, concluding that "the extremism of all this serves
a comedy which is even blacker than ... diesel."
Last Gasp, British marine biologist Gavin Chase uncovers a potential
global disaster in which the world is being drained of its oxygen
supply as forests and oceanic microscopic plant life, the main suppliers
of the planet's oxygen, dwindle away. When Chase and two other scientists
attempt to notify the government and scientific community, they
stumble upon a secret Russian-American plan to launch an "environmental
war" in which three quarters of the earth's population would be
exterminated in order to provide oxygen for the remaining population.
Comparing Hoyle's writing to that of Aldous Huxley, Washington Post
reviewer Carol Van Strum commented that "The Last Gasp reads more
like a documentary thriller than science fiction." She also noted
that it was a "landmark in the emerging field of eco-fiction."
Man Who Travelled on Motorways, the narrator, a literary anti-hero,
falls victim to a series of psychoses while driving through the
commonplace landscapes of Manchester, London, and South Lancashire,
in England. His condition generates memory distortion and triggers
vivid fantasies. The novel also incorporates sex scenes, in which
the narrator exploits women to satisfy his personal needs, and elements
of science fiction, such as a character described in the book as
residing in "a different spacetime continuum." Terming the work
"an experimental `mainstream' novel," Science Fiction & Fantasy
Book Review contributor Richard Mathews found it to be "strongly
written, cautiously experimental, with an impressive characterization
of the narrator."
Hoyle told CA: "Much of my full-length fiction has been concerned with `speculative' subjects,
such as the precarious ecology of the planet and its eventual, possible demise due to mankind's
greed and short-sightedness (e.g.: The Last Gasp)."
- Rule of Night
[reissue] Pomona 2003
Virgin Publishing 1999
Needle Calder Publications 1994.
- K.I.D.S. Berkley Books 1990
John Calder 1984.
Last Gasp Crown Publishing [US] 1983
Paperback: HarperCollins Publishing Group: 1990
- The Stigma Sphere 1980
- Earth Cult Granada 1979 Zebra Books [US] 1979
Man Who Travelled on Motorways Calder Publications 1979
- Rock Fix Futura Publications 1977
the Mythical Future Panther Books 1977
- The Gods Look Down Panther Books 1977
- Through the Eye of Time Panther Books 1977
- Rule of Night Futura Publications 1975
- The Hard Game New English Library 1973
- The Adulterer New English Library 1972
Relatively Constant Copywriter Northern Writers 1972
- Books Authored with Pseudonym:
- Bullet Train. Joseph Rance (Trevor Hoyle) William Morrow 1980
Hardback: Souvenir Press: 1980.
Paperback: Dell Publishing: 1981.
TV and Radio Scripts:
- Blake's 7: Ultraworld. BBC TV
- Whatever Happened to the Heroes Granada TV
- The Birthday Party BBC Radio 4
- Conflagration BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4 (winner Radio Times Drama Award)
- The Dying Art of Letter Writing BBC Radio 4
Scandals BBC Radio 4 (winner Sony Best Actor Award)
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