“Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “A sheer pleasure.” – Tana French. “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. “The effortless cool of Elmore Leonard at his peak.” – Ray Banks. “A fine writer at the top of his game.” – Lee Child.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Norn Iron In The Soul

Over at the ever-illuminating Detectives Beyond Borders, Peter Rozovsky hosts a debate on ‘the great post-Troubles Northern Irish novel’, which I unfortunately missed out on because I was away from the desk all day yesterday and on the proverbial batter last night. It’s a dirty job, etc. The general gist of the conversation is that said novel has yet to be written, with Adrian McKinty observing that, when it is, it’s more likely to be written by a woman than a man on the basis that they’re more pragmatic and clear-sighted when it comes to de-romanticizing. Koff. Anyhoos, no one mentioned David Park’s THE TRUTH COMMISSIONER, which is a very brave stab at writing ‘the great post-Troubles Northern Irish novel’, using as it does the model of the South African truth and reconciliation forum in a Northern Irish context. Lamented last week by Boyd Tonkin in The Independent on the basis that it didn’t make the Booker Prize long-list, THE TRUTH COMMISSIONER takes a look at the Troubles from a variety of perspectives, including that of the British establishment, and is well worth reading if it’s a fictional take on the post-Troubles landscape you’re after.

8 comments:

adrian mckinty said...

Dec

I'm laid up for a few days, so I'll be getting it from the St Kilda library and reading it over the weekend. Thanks for the tip.

Adrian...

Gerard Brennan said...

My sis bought me a copy of this for my birthday, so I'll be cracking it open very soon. Then I'll be able to mention it in further debates.

So many books...

gb

adrian mckinty said...

oh happy birthday. you kept that quiet. you didn't turn the big 30 by any chance did you?

Gerard Brennan said...

Heh, cheers man. It was a couple of weeks ago, and I'm just a sprightly 29.

gb

Conduit said...

I keep hearing good things about this book. I might have to make the TBR pile just a little bigger.

Colin said...

I believe that I Predict A Riot is the first great post Troubles novel, but none of you f****** believe it. If I'm not going to bang my own drum, who else will? And it's a Lambeg drum.
Bateman

Declan Burke said...

Colin - You're not only entitled to vote for yourself, it's positively encouraged. Vote early, vote often, I say. Although you'll frighten all the southerners banging a Lambeg, squire. Stuart - when are we likely to see Ghosts of Belfast? Cheers, Dec

Conduit said...

Dec - August 2009 has been mentioned, but that's only an estimate. It certainly won't be any sooner than that.