“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.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Queen Crimson

Emma Louise Jordan is the latest of the Poolbeg Crimson ladies to publish a novel of ‘Romantic Suspense’, the idea being to take the best of chick lit and crime fic and create a commercial genre mash-up. Which is more or less what I tried to do with THE BIG O, and failed spectacularly to do so, very probably because I thought having a hormonally challenged flirty-something gal as one of the main characters would ‘do’ for the chick lit bit. Ah well, you live and learn.
  Anyway, Emma Louise Jordan’s novel is called BEYOND SIN, with the blurb elves wittering thusly:
The picture-perfect O’Neill family is both admired and envied, near and far. But in the week leading up to Andrea O’Neill’s high-profile society wedding, life-changing trouble is suddenly brewing and sinister cracks begin to show in the previously solid foundations of the O’Neill household.
  When the bride’s angelic sister Jessie disappears from the wedding reception and is still not found days later, the finger of blame switches from person to person as the hours before her vanishing are scrambled together in a jigsaw full of missing pieces.
  Could Jessie have been living a double life, unknown to those who love her? And could anyone hate her so much that they would make her suffer the ultimate punishment for her dreadful secret sin?
  I’m saying Yes to Jessie having double life, and Yes to someone hating her that much, but I’m guessing that some gal in the book (probably not Jessie; possibly Andrea) has the kind of smarts and hidden depths that will allow Jessie to escape the ultimate punishment. Or not, depending on how unconventional Emma Louise Jordan is about her romantic suspense.
  Is it any good? Well, they liked it over at the Irish Independent

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