“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, January 2, 2009

DARK TIMES IN THE CITY: 2009’s TBR Pile Starts Here

Depressing news at the start of the year, folks – I’m sure you’ve already caught the news that Donald Westlake (right, with Benny Blanco standing) has died. I’m probably only one of thousands of would-be scribblers who were influenced by THE HUNTER, and Point Blank, with Lee Marvin as Parker, remains one of my favourite movies. Peter Rozovsky has penned a rather nice tribute – or tributes – to Westlake’s career right around here.
  But, in the spirit of unbridled optimism currently funnelling through CAP Towers, I’m going to look ahead to the year coming, and the rather splendid array of Irish crime fiction novels on their way down the pike. To wit:
TAFKAC Bateman, MYSTERY MAN
John Connolly, THE LOVERS
Alan Glynn, WINTERLAND
Declan Hughes, ALL THE DEAD VOICES
Gene Kerrigan, DARK TIMES IN THE CITY
Brian McGilloway, BLEED A RIVER DEEP
Adrian McKinty, FIFTY GRAND
Stuart Neville, THE TWELVE
  On top of that little lot, there’s Ken Bruen’s collaboration with Reed Farrel Coleman, TOWER, to look forward to, and a veritable dawn chorus of little birdies assures me that Arlene Hunt, Alex Barclay and Tana French are currently wearing their fingers down to the third knuckle as they craft their latest offerings. And, if all the planets align, and Pluto flies up Uranus, etc., there might even be a follow-up to THE BIG O for your perusal.
  I’m sure there’ll be more novels to come, although the bad news for Benny Blanco fans is that Benny is back in John Banville mode. Which means we should see a new Banville novel sometime around September, 2012. Hurrah!
  Over to you, folks – who have I forgotten / left out / maliciously deleted from the list because he or she is so good he or she shames us all?

7 comments:

adrian mckinty said...

I've heard that the new Benjamin Black is an absolute scorcher. Its called (and this is a scoop for you Dec) THE BIG SHEEP and is about a 1950's Dublin coroner on the trail of a serial killer who frightens his victims to death by literally dressing in sheep's clothing. There's a subplot about a scandal in the church and of course a romantic interest (of a sort) in that the coroner falls for one of the first girls attacked - a young Czech evacuee with secrets of her own. Unfortunately she's dead so he has to find excuses to keep her in the cooler and not let them dig her two yards down.

Gonna be a big hit mark my words.

Gerard Brennan said...

Adrian - A chilling thought.

gb

Declan Burke said...

Adrian - The Big Sheep was just a working title. It's actually called Baaaaaaad Day at Blackrock.

Cheers, Dec

Anonymous said...

There wont be a working title. If it is due in September he won't begin it until August, but the words will just flow.

Kerrie said...

I’ve been running an activity at http://paradise-mysteries.blogspot.com/2008/12/your-best-crime-fiction-reads-in-2008.html that will go for another couple of days yet, inviting readers to pick their best 10 crime fiction reads in 2008. So far over 350 titles suggested by 35 readers. Making the lists up will be fun. Please accept my invitation to participate.

adrian mckinty said...

Dec, really. Couldnt you at least have said "The Long Goodbaaaa"? You must be hungover or something.

Declan Burke said...

Or "Playbaaaaack".