“TOWER goes off like a slo-mo explosion, a raging blast of white-heat light. It’s a compelling study of pathologies, and style, and friendship and fate. Fuelled by tenderness and murderous hate, it’s as tender as it is brutal, tender as a savage wound, ragged and raw. Here be monsters, crippled monsters: Nicky and Todd are the truest angels and demons of our mean streets I’ve read for some time. Be afraid.”There’s actually two covers for the book, given that there’s two authors, and what’s fascinating about what’s inside the covers is the very different styles employed for the parallel voices. It’s not the same set-up as the Ken Bruen / Jason Starr collaborations for Hard Case Crime: here you get the same tale of mutual destruction told twice, in a split narrative reminiscent of Jim Thompson, but filtered through radically diverse mind-sets. It’s a fascinating exercise that packs a hell of a wallop.
Praise for Declan Burke: “A fine writer at the top of his game.” – Lee Child. “Prose both scabrous and poetic.” – Publishers Weekly. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – The Spectator. “A sheer pleasure.” – Tana French. “A hardboiled delight.” – The Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews (starred review). “The effortless cool of Elmore Leonard at his peak.” – Ray Banks. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre, was ABSOLUTE ZERO COOL.” – Sunday Times. “The writing is a joy.” – Ken Bruen. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.
Saturday, February 28, 2009
Is it just me, or is there a distinctly ’70s vibe emanating from the cover of the Ken Bruen / Reed Farrel Coleman collaboration from Busted Flush? Pretty stark artwork for a stark and not very pretty story, it has to be said, and one that puts yours truly in mind of blaxploitation and funkadelia – neither of which, I should probably point out, feature in the novel itself. Herewith be your humble correspondent’s take on it: