“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.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Callan Out Around The World …

Charles Kelly’s (right) debut novel may be set in Arizona, but there’s a distinctly Irish strain running through his Phoenix-based tale of murder and mayhem, PAY HERE. Quoth the Point Blank blurb elves:
Decades in the desert have made reporter Michael Callan hard as a sun-bleached skull. But mutilated migrants and his ex-flame keep causing Callan trouble ... even if they’re six feet under. Mix an innocent beauty with a savage one, add an assembly of killers, thugs, and a surgeon. Stir vigorously, and you’ve got a bloody cocktail – lethal for an Irishman who doesn’t drink. This is the first novel by Charles Kelly, an award-winning reporter for the Arizona Republic. His in-depth knowledge of criminals, reporters and the issue of illegal immigration across the Arizona-Mexico border are all perfect fodder for this shocking crime fiction debut.
Meanwhile, over at Pulp Pusher, Damian Seaman grills Kelly with the really tough questions, to wit:
DS: How important is Irishness to you? How much of yourself did you put into protagonist Michael Callan?
CK: “My father was Irish. I like the Irish literary style: it’s irreverent, working-class, fatalistic, hard-nosed. Like Irish music, which I’ve listened to for years. I’m not a very hard-nosed person myself but that attitude intrigues me. So I threw all that in there. And there was my knowledge of reporting, the focus on the romance of the individual reporter. Callan wants to get the story, which means more than the text printed in the newspaper. It means understanding the issues through the worldview of the reporter. But other than that there’s not much of myself in Callan. I had Callan born in Ireland because I wanted to make him more vivid and bring the Irish theme more to life.”
We’re guessing the diddley-ayes and top-o’-the-mornin’s will be at a premium. And if all that isn’t enough Kelly for ya, here’s the man himself getting the rubber-hose treatment from the CAP elves a couple of months ago. Be warned – it’s not for the squeamish, especially the bit where Kelly squishes a couple of elves underfoot …

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