“Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Dusty Spring Fields

See, if Paul Charles' new novel The Dust Of Death had opened on the first day of spring, with a crucifixion in a field, then we’d have been able to use the ‘Dusty Spring Fields’ header we’ve been hoarding since last March. But the ornery sod has a crucified man being discovered in a Donegal church on the first day of summer, which scuppers that. Boo, etc. Anyhoo, the crucifixion sees Charles’ new detective, Inspector Starrett of the Serious Crimes Unit, enter stage left courtesy of Brandon Books. But will DI Christy Kennedy of Charles’ Camden Town novels give up the spotlight without a murmur? Questions, questions … The dust hasn’t even started to settle on Sweetwater, which was released in May and goes into paperback on July 19, but Brandon release The Dust Of Death on September 4. It’s a brave move from Charles, whose Christy Kennedy mysteries garner rave reviews as a matter of course, to wit: “With more twists than a turkey twizzler, lovers of crime fiction will gobble up this super sleuth novel” (News of the World); “A writer who treads in the classic footsteps of Morse and Maigret”(The Guardian); “If writers such as Mark Timlin and Ken Bruen could be said to be writing London noir, then Paul Charles might be said to be penning London Blanc” (The Irish Times). Will Inspector Starrett ascend to the firmament too? Only time, that notorious tittle-tattler, will tell …

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