“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 14, 2009

CRIME ALWAYS PAYS on Crime Always Pays: In Which It All Gets Even More Self-Referential Than Usual

Rafe McGregor has been kind enough to post a review of CRIME ALWAYS PAYS, the forthcoming opus from your humble host, which will be available at a Kindle near you in the very near future. The gist runs thusly:
“CRIME ALWAYS PAYS is excellent, even better than THE BIG O. It has a great plot, cool characters, and there isn’t a single word wasted. This is really fine writing, masterful to the point where if I’d received the MS anonymously, I’d have assumed it came from one of the big bestsellers like Connelly, Crais, Rankin, or Child.”
  For the rest, clickety-click here ...
  CRIME ALWAYS PAYS, for those of you who aren’t this blog’s three regular readers, is the sequel to THE BIG O, in which most of the characters from THE BIG O take off on a variety of trans-Europe road-trips, fetching up in the Greek islands for fun, frolics and the occasional Bellini. Join Karen, Ray, Madge, Doyle, Rossi, Sleeps, Frank, Melody and Sleeps for another screwball noir romp in which the money is just a McGuffin with extra cheese! Or, don’t!! You – yes, YOU! – decide.
  Rafe was also kind enough to descend into a mild form of existential angst over the fact that CRIME ALWAYS PAYS – as all three regular readers will be aware – was dropped by its intended publisher, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. I should say at this point that the decision wasn’t as simple as the book not being good enough to publish – it was all a bit complicated, actually – although my brand of existential angst, when I first heard the news, was fairly raw.
  But at this point, I’m pretty much okay with it. That’s partly because I’ve spent the last few days formatting the story for Kindle, which is also a good opportunity to give the story one last proof-edit, and I’m as happy as I’m likely to get that the story stands up. It’s not perfect by any means, and at this stage – which is probably the 14th or 15th time I’ve read it through – I’m wondering why anyone else would want to read it.
  On the basis that some people might want to read it, however, I’ve been every bit as diligent on the Kindle proof-edit as if it was for a conventional publishing. No reason I shouldn’t be, of course: when it comes down it, for yours truly, the story is sacred and everything else is just detail. Apart from the fact that most people don’t have access to Kindle – a rather relevant factor, it has to be said – the format is virtually irrelevant. It matters not a whit whether the book is published electronically, on paper between cardboard, uploaded to the web, or scratched onto papyrus. As with the sob story about the book being dropped by its publisher initially, nothing bar what people think of the story itself will have any lasting value.
  I’m hopeful that the Kindle publishing will lead to a more conventional publishing, not because, as Rafe suggests, there’s more money to be made that way – the writer’s royalties aren’t that different when you publish to Kindle – but because more people are likely read it, in 2009, as an ordinary book. But if that doesn’t happen, then it doesn’t happen, and I’ll be as proud of CRIME ALWAYS PAYS, as a story, as if it had appeared as a conventional book.
  Meanwhile, and speaking of proper books, here’s a review by Garbhan Downey of Adrian McKinty’s FIFTY GRAND that’s worth checking out; and Ali Karim casts an eye over John Connolly’s THE LOVERS.

12 comments:

bookwitch said...

2 Sleeps? For the price of one?

Declan Burke said...

So good I namechecked him twice, ma'am ... and I do thank you for your attention to detail. At least someone's paying attention ...

Cheers, Dec

Michael Malone said...

well, Declan I just started following you. So that's you up to 4. Keep up the good work, dude.

Declan Burke said...

Ta, Michael, much obliged. Welcome aboard ...

Cheers, Dec

Persia said...

Hi Declan,

You have at least five "official" followers and a gazillion lurkers.:-) So take heart.

Also, if you're going to "self-publish" on Amazon's Kindle, then you might as well do so on Scribd.com. Scribd basically accepts PDFs, which is accessible to just about everyone these days. Scribd is quite legitimate. Simon & Schuster even offers its books through Scribd.

Best wishes,

bookwitch said...

Persia, you are diluting the lovely exclusiveness of this! I and the other two were really enjoying being the sole followers of this charming Irish, erm, writer.

David Baynham said...

Hi Declan, Sorry to hear about "Crime Always Pays". Loved "The Big O". Just got a Kindle for a gift, so will look forward to reading CAP as one of my first Kindle books. This is probably going to become more common in publishing. Unfortunately, because I still prefer the book. You can't exactly pass it on to another reader.

djbaynham(at)aol.com

Alan Griffiths said...

Hi Dec, good luck with your Kindle venture. Being a fan of your writing I hope that CAP is eventually published in a traditional book format. I've not yet become an owner of an iphone but understand that you can view Kindle downloads via that format? That would be something that I may look at.
Cheers.

Declan Burke said...

Persia - ta for that, I'll investigate further. And welcome ...

David - I like the Kindle in theory, but I'll be sticking with conventional books myself for a while. I can't see the benefit, to be honest, until the e-books start offering multi-platform - music, movies, etc. Hope you enjoy the book.

Alan - afraid I don't know about the Kindle / iPhone crossover. It would certainly make sense, but then I'm not Jeff Bezos.

Cheers, Dec

Declan Burke said...

Ms Witch - I know it was cosy with just the four of us, but I'm told by those who know such things that the point of a blog is to meet tons of new people. Maybe I'll start up a new blog, just for us ...

Cheers, Dec

David Baynham said...

Dec, Please let us know when "Crime Always Pays" is available on Kindle, since I fortunately have one now.

bhenshaw said...

Declan,
I was sorry to see that Crime Always Pays will be vailable only on the Kindle. I have resisted getting one because here in the US at least the Kindle can not read library books which come mainly in Adobe Digital Editions format or MobiPocket format. Any chance that you might be able to publish it in Adobe Digital Editions or PDF format also? Loved your 1st two books and really want to read this one as well. Oh... and there are probably many more than 3, 4, or 5 readers of your blog... most of us have just lurked for a long time.
Bill in Seattle