Review: Dead Moon by Keith Crawford


Humanity will be extinguished in less than seven days.

Wing Commander Jude Styles is a Starfighter Pilot trying to get pregnant before the world ends. Her wingman, Hamid Ashkami, just wants to block the spam

messages he is receiving from someone claiming to be his dead ex-husband.

Instead, they are locked in a media tour, shown off as the heroes that stopped the alien invasion by destroying the massive mothership known as the “Dead Moon”, persuading the masses that all will be fine if they keep calm and carry on.

Trapped telling the same lies, driven over the edge by post-traumatic stress and the constant flow of alcohol, it is only a matter of time before Jude and Hamid break down – and the fragments of the Dead Moon have already begun to fall from the sky.

Yes, I’m first on the tour. Thanks for that Kelly. And thanks to the author for a copy of this book.

The Rosie Synopsis

Earth has survived an attack by aliens, but there’s only a week left before humanity is wiped out by the remains of the alien spaceship falling into the planet. Wing Commander Judith Styles and her wing man Hamid Ashkami are the only survivors of the final attack on the spaceship. The Navy and government are parading the pair around as heroes to keep the peoples’ mind off impending death. After a round of interviews, the pair take a day off and end up stealing a speeder, going to the Yorkshire Dales where they get into a fight with locals. They head south to London with new information that might help in a final attempt to save humanity.

The Good

The story revolves around the friendship between Judith and Hamid, who both have difficult pasts and even more difficult presents, even if no one has a future. Even as the story develops, their relationship develops from a strong foundation. Judith and Hamid’s friendship is at the heart of this story and it is a wonderful thing. The representation of PTSD is nuanced and accurate, while the depiction of comradeship in the armed forces feels authentic, which, given the author had PTSD and is ex-Navy, isn’t surprising.

I think the depiction of the future is entertainingly awful. Really, I hope it doesn’t come to that. We do not need fascism, thanks, or a return to the Empire. I think the inversion of current prejudices regarding sexuality and gender is meant to be a pointed comment about the stupidity of bigotry.

The action keeps going right to the end. There’s knife edge moments of danger and chases. Lots of explosions and near death escapes. The calm ending, with the truth coming out and Jude leading the children to refuge, is a relief after the high tension.

I really liked the epilogue; it puts things in perspective.

The Not-So-Good

I can’t tell if the author was being sarcastic about some stuff.

The Verdict

Action and adventure in the near future, with an engaging couple of characters surviving car chases and explosions. And tanks.

Author Bio

Dr Keith Crawford is a retired naval officer, disabled veteran and qualified barrister with a PhD in Law and Economics. After years of crazy adventures, from speedboats and aircraft to theatre and lecturing at Sciences Po, my French wife and I decided it was time to properly settle in Paris and have babies. Being the good feminist I try to be, I quit my job to look after the kids, support my wife’s career and write books. Each time I get offered a job my wife says “stop looking at jobs and get back to writing books.” Which shows, with marriage as with everything else, it is better to be lucky than good! Dead Moon is my second novel. The first, Vile, a science-fantasy about toxic-patriarchy, the evils of aristocracy and swordfights, is available on Amazon.

Twitter hand: @keithcrawford77

Instagram Handle: keithcrawford77


  1. Hi Rosie – Dead Moon is about to win a prize (which is nice!) and I’d like to include this quote from you on the back: “Judith and Hamid’s friendship is at the heart of this story and it is a wonderful thing. The representation of PTSD is nuanced and accurate, while the depiction of comradeship in the armed forces feels authentic.”

    Let me know as soon as you can, as we’re having to respond and reprint in response to this lovely surprise. And thanks again for reading and reviewing Dead Moon.

    1. R Cawkwell says:

      Hi Keith, congratulations on the award! Yes of course you can use the quote.


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