Green Lizard

Praise for The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway

“Possibly the best book about a geek written for geeks ever written. Sam is one of us. By the time Sam’s adventures have come to an end, your heart will have broken – but then it will swell with joy. This book is bloody lovely. Read it. 5 stars.” –SFX Magazine

“Thomas creates a charming world filled with real friendships, quirky characters, painful grief, and uplifting humor. This entertaining, romantic superhero story shows how love can heal the wounds left by heartbreak and lead the way back to redemption and happiness.” –Booklist

“Thomas’ characters are all well-drawn, especially Sam, whose sympathetic backstory makes him immensely likable. Sam’s life seems almost unbearably sad at points, but that makes it all the more meaningful when he’s finally able to take off his mask—both figuratively and literally—and be brave. A lovely and touching exploration of grief and courage, perfect for self-proclaimed geeks and those who love them.” –Kirkus

“It’s the kind of story that will have you tearing up with empathy for Sam one moment, and crying with laughter at his haphazard heroics the next. One thing’s for certain, we need more Sam Holloways – in literature and in life. 5 stars” –Culturefly

“Thomas’ warmth and compassion shine through in The Unlikely Heroics – it’s a book to make you consider the hidden drives and issues that can shape a person’s behaviour. It’s also funny, warm and ultimately full of hope.” –Western Mail

“Be aware… this book will own your heart! It’s a funny yet touching human voyage of discovery with an unlikely hero… You’ll be cheering him on!” –Peterborough Telegraph

“A funny and inspiring read.” -Woman Magazine

“A quirky story of love, loneliness and kindness.” -Candis Magazine

“A heartwarming tale of loneliness, love and the power of kindness.” -Take-A-Break

“A charming, funny, romantic meditation on the ordinary heroism it takes to survive everyday life.” –Steven Rowley, author of Lily and the Octopus 

“What a fantastic book “The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway” is. Smart, poignant, funny and hopeful. Rhys Thomas has written a belter.” -P.G.Bell, author of The Train to Impossible Places

” I loved it! Sam Holloway is a wonderful character and I’m now dreaming of spending a Christmas in Kabe’s mansion in the countryside.” -Helen Scales, author of Spirals in Time and Eye of the Shoal

“The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is a fantastically original and beautifully crafted novel from Rhys Thomas. TUHOSH is full of moments of great humour and profound sadness…  an original and moving piece of fiction that deserves to reach the largest possible audience.” –Richard Owain Roberts, author of All the Places We lived 

“This sweet novel about a broken young man trying to do good in the world was, for me, a brief, bright respite from the ugly clamour of current events. Best read with tea at your side and a cat on your lap.” -Monica Wood, author of The One-in-a-Million Boy

The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is a joy to read. Rhys Thomas has managed to take everything I like about literary fiction and put it into one book: humor, humanity, action, and redemption. If I’m being 100% honest, I’m actually a little mad at the guy. I wish I’d written this one myself.” —Matthew Norman, author of We’re All Damaged and Domestic Violets

“This novel is exceptional. But being so succinct does Thomas’ publisher no favors, so let me try for something heftier: The Secret Life of Sam Holloway swims to depths of grief unspoken, soars to heights of majesty rarely captured so fully in a novel, and leaps tall buildings in a single bound.” -Washington Independent Review of Books

“This book took me by surprise. It had a wonderful and sometimes surprising storyline, a fantastic cast of characters and a very loveable hero in Sam.” –Books and Lovely Things

“The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is a story of grief & guilt but also of friendship, generosity, love, the resilience of the human spirit.” –What Cathy Read Next

“I felt such a warm glow reading this book, something I rarely get from other books.  It is not just a book about loneliness, loss and sadness, but also about friendship, love and understanding.  Highly recommended.” -Stardust Book Reviews

“LOVED. LOVED. LOVED!! Do I need to say anymore?” –Books and Me

The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is suffused with gentle humour, it will make you smile, laugh out loud and even shed a little tear now and again, but throughout it all Sam’s inherent goodness shines through like a beacon of hope. I knew I was going to love Sam from page 5 when I read that he was a great believer in not rushing beans and observes that there is an art to everything in life, even beans. How true.” -Jaffa Reads Too 

“This book broke me. For approximately the last third (and for about ten further minutes after putting it down) I sat gripping it tightly with tears streaming down my face.  I’m still suffering from the emotional hangover hours later! I can’t recommend this book enough.  Book groups, fans of superhero narratives, those who like humour and/or pathos, romance, action, emotion.  Buy it, read it and come talk to me about it!” –Bookshine and Readbows

“I have to admit I didn’t want Sam’s story to end. Quirky, endearing and ever so beautiful! Five stars from me!” -Rae Reads

“I loved every wonderful word of this funny, moving and wise book –  Sam Holloway may not be a superhero in the traditional sense but in these cynical times, he’s the superhero we all need.” -Hair Past A Freckle

“It is a novel of loneliness, grief and love and the ability that we have in all of us to reconcile the past events, move on and find happiness. It is a novel that I loved, that made me laugh and smile and brought a tear to my eyes, whilst introducing to the most wonderful character, Sam Holloway. It is a novel that will stay with me for a long time.” –My Bookish Blog Spot

“I defy you not to fall in love with a superhero called the Phantasm whose utility belt includes a selection of chocolate bars and some fizzy drinks?!  The Phantasm is the most un co-ordinated, clumsy, kind hearted superhero that you will ever meet.” –Years of Reading

“Beautiful, moving and very truthful portrayal of loss, loneliness, awkwardness, second chances and the redeeming power of love, friendship and the kindness of people who refuse to give up on you, no matter what. It will stay with me for a long while” – A Little Book Problem

“I fell in love with Sam’s story; I wept for him,  I consoled him, I championed him, I cheered for him, I adored him. A story that will make you smile amongst the tears and will leave you with a sense of hope and belief.” –Krafti Reader

“It’s hard not to fall in love with Sam. I knew I liked him from the first page and soon fell in love with his unique personality and his way of looking at things.” -Over the Rainbow Book Blog

“I adored Sam. He’s a character you instantly sympathise with and can’t help but cheer on. The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is a warm, witty, beautiful book about love, loneliness, grief and finding a new way in life.” Ronnie Turner

“The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway’ just goes to show that kindness should never, ever be underestimated, and it doesn’t matter whether you choose to dress up as a superhero, dress up as yourself, or even be anonymous, to embark on being kind. You just need to do it. A warm-hearted, spirited read which made me think, as well as melt a few of the icicles around my heart while it was at it. A pleasure to read. Everyone should have a hero like Sam.” –The Writing Garnet 

“If you’re looking for something a little different, something quirky, say, or even geeky, with a superhero for our times, where there’s quiet courage and genuine pathos, a tragic backstory, the hope of a hesitant heart, romance, kindness and humour, then you need to read The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway. You laugh, you cry, you get mad, you get goosebumps; you wince, you sigh, you gasp with pain, you cringe with embarrassment; you feel like hugging or punching someone, and you just plain feel for Sam. Grab yourself some cherry Coke and a Toffee Crisp, suit up and geek out with The Unlikely Heroics. Because this superhero needs YOU.” Nut Press

“This is a beautiful tale of a young man dealing with his grief, on the power of loneliness, the power of kindness, the power of just one person coming into your life and helping you to move on from your past… Not all superhero’s wear capes. Some just wear clothes from Tesco, almost burn the house down with a pizza in the oven and sits in the pub with his friends with a pint with a dash of lemonade.” –coreyreads

“It’s rare that a book as beautiful as this on the outside is matched by the content within. But Sam Holloway is an unforgettable character, impossible not to cheer along every step of the way as he battles to overcome personal adversity and, of course, a tough final nemesis. Laugh-out-loud funny at times, but also filled to the brim with heart, The Unlikely Heroics is a delightful take on the overwhelming power that comes with being kind.” –Ben Veal Writes

“The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway is all kinds of beautiful things. It’s a story about the need for hope, of needing to belong, and that change and growth is possible, even in the most unlikely of circumstances. It’s a love story, it’s a story of self love, and of learning to love others. It is, quite simply, a beautiful and quirky read. And as you can probably tell, I loved it.” –Brew and Books Review

“(An) accomplished novel – one which will cut you to the heart and remind you of what’s most important in life. It’s also a brilliant portrayal of true friendship – in all its messiness and confusion. Read this book – I can’t recommend it highly enough.” –Created to Read

“I jumped at the chance of reading it and am most certainly glad I did. Wonderful feel-good fiction that we all need from time to time… Sam captured my heart in every little way and I championed him right on throughout the story. You know how sometimes a character just instantly comes to life for you? Well this is what happened for me.”  –Gem’s Quiet Corner

“This was a unique and heart-warming read that left a smile on my face.” –Kate’s Book Spot

“A terrific read. A rollercoaster of emotions centred on the highs and lows of our unlikely hero Sam. Thoroughly enjoyed the ride.” –Andrew Westwell, Dean of Research, Cardiff University School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Research

“Author Rhys Thomas captures this love dichotomy beautifully, and humorously, in ‘The Secret Life of Sam Holloway.’ (US title.) Sam Holloway may aspire to be a superhero but what he is, at the most basic level, is human. And in capturing that humanity, ‘The Secret Life of Sam Holloway’ becomes a tender and memorable book.”

Praise for The Suicide Club

‘Rhys Thomas shakes concepts of “normality” to the core. It is a challenge indeed for an author to capture authentic teenage dialogue and [this is] compelling subject matter.’ –Independent on Sunday

‘My young reader was so moved she cried again while telling me about it, insisting I read it myself. I did. It truly is a distressing tale of adolescent angst, manipulation, deep despair and that dreadful feeling of “what’s it all about” that most teenagers suffer. A very impressive first novel.’ -Bookseller 

‘A riveting and often moving read…The narrator’s voice compels the narrative – he’s a hugely likeable character…this is the best of its type that I’ve read in a long while. I’ll be very interested to see what Thomas writes next.’ -John Boyne, author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

“Like the title suggests, this is a dark book – but only in as much as it explores the darker side of the teenage psyche. It’s also about love, friendship and betrayal and is an utterly absorbing read. I really enjoyed it.” –Andy Robb, Top 10 UKYA Books

“We can’t understand why this book isn’t bigger.” –Whippersnapper

‘Quite one of the best books we have read in about 10 years. Amazing. Truly. Nigh on perfect. This book has been crafted, not just written.’ –Annika Joy, The Pink Paper

‘After reading this, many will eagerly anticipate Rhys Thomas’ next novel with intrigue and curiosity.’ -Bait Magazine

‘A raw, compelling slice of teenage angst taken to the limits… All teenagers wonder what life is about and if it’s worth it. This novel so captures that disillusionment, it’s painful. Very highly recommended.’ -Lovereading

‘Rhys Thomas gets under the skin of emo lifestylers in The Suicide Club. Its mixture of comedy and tragedy conveys the pain and anguish of troubled adolescents.’ -Metro ‘Debut Novels to Try’

‘Rhys Thomas’s outstanding debut novel, The Suicide Club, fits rather neatly into the great pantheon of cool teenage fiction. The sparkling first person narrative recalls Catcher in the Rye; its exploration of the childhood/adulthood cusp has a hint of Absolute Beginners; and the post-therapy retrospective story structure is reminiscent of A Clockwork Orange. But this is no by-numbers amalgam of previous writings – The Suicide Club stands up as a novel in its own right.’ -Babylon Wales

‘A definite recommendation, and I think that a lot of adults would also really enjoy it.’ -Bookbag

‘A fizzy first person narration from 15-year-old emo Richard Harper, a precocious teenager seeking affirmation of his uniqueness. It hints at The Catcher in the Rye of course, but brilliantly crafted nonetheless.’ -Rachel Trezise, author of Sixteen Shades of Crazy and Dylan Thomas Prize Winner

Praise for On The Third Day

‘A gripping story of how ordinary people confront grief and despair and yet continue in a world without hope… Thomas effectively details the breakdown of established codes of behaviour and the depths of depravity to which humanity can sink.’’ –The Guardian

‘Thomas does a fine job of getting under the skin of his characters – 4 stars’ -SFX

‘A page-turner of a world-gone-mad book that manages to be simultaneously heart-warming, heart-stopping, Kafkaesque, philosophical, biblical and allegorical.’ –Western Mail

‘Beautifully done and certainly feasible. I believe (Thomas) is a talent worth watching.’ –The Bookseller

‘Thomas explores some promising premises… a brooding atmosphere of fear permeates his novel in a constant drizzle of menace.’ – Yorkshire Post