The Actionary Rides Again!
The second book in the fantastical To Hell and Back series – a trilogy that does for autism what Flowers for Algernon did for intellectual disability.
“Hughes continues to carve out a unique place for himself in the fantasy-mystery realm.
A droll narrative voice, dry humor and an alternative universe that’s accessible
without exposition make this a winner.”
– Publishers Weekly
File Under: Fantasy [ Everything’s Meta | Britney’s Peers | Dance With The Devil | The Demonic Duo ]
The Second Book in the To Hell and Back Series
Chesney Arnstruther, high-functioning autistic actuary turned crime-fighting superhero, is adjusting to the idea that reality is a book being written – and rewritten – by a deity who wants to explore the concepts of good and evil. His quest for the truth takes him into a discarded draft to meet up with the historical Jesus – or Joshua Josephson, as the Messiah calls himself – when Chesney brings him into the current draft and puts him on TV.
Meanwhile, he’s (literally) digging up the evidence of a decades-old murder that threatens the power of the corrupt cabal that runs his city. And he has a new problem: contact with Joshua Josephson has “healed” his autism, and Chesney is not at all sure he likes being “normal.”
“Costume Not Included is a great book and one of the must-reads in modern fantasy and superhero fiction this year.”
– Larry at 42 Webs
“Part mystery, part comic book, part religious treatise, and part crime drama, Hughes manages to work in entertaining twists and character confrontations on a regular basis without overloading his story.”
– Sacramento & San Francisco Book Review
The name I answer to is Matt Hughes. I write fantasy and suspense fiction. To keep the two genres separate, I now use my full name, Matthew Hughes, for fantasy, and the shorter form for the crime stuff.
I was born sixty years ago in Liverpool, England, but my family moved to Canada when I was five. I've made my living as a writer all of my adult life, first as a journalist, then as a staff speechwriter to the Canadian Ministers of Justice and Environment, and - from 1979 until a few years back - as a freelance corporate and political speechwriter in British Columbia.
I am a former director of the Federation of British Columbia Writers and I used to belong to Mensa Canada, but these days I'm conserving my energies to write fiction.
I'm a university drop-out from a working poor background. Before getting into newspapers, I worked in a factory that made school desks, drove a grocery delivery truck, was night janitor in a GM dealership, and did a short stint as an orderly in a private mental hospital. As a teenager, I served a year as a volunteer with the Company of Young Canadians (something like VISTA in the US). I've been married to a very patient woman since the late 1960s, and I have three grown sons.
I have of late taken up the secondary occupation of housesitter, so that I can afford to keep on writing fiction yet still eat every day. These days, I'm in Northern Ireland but any snail-mail address of mine must be considered temporary. I'm always interested to hear from people who've read my work.