“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.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Toronto’s Lone Ranger; and OLD DOGS For A Hard Road

It’s over a year now since I read John McFetridge’s SWAP, the third in his oeuvre after the Toronto-set DIRTY SWEET and EVERYBODY KNOWS THIS IS NOWHERE. As with the previous two, SWAP sent me into a sweaty, teeth-grinding frenzy of green-eyed monsterdom, which is always a good sign. Ken Bruen likes it too. Quoth Ken’s blurb:
“SWAP is a stunning leap forward from an already fine author. This is John channelling Elmore Leonard at the height of his game and with dialogue Tarantino would kill for. A plot that moves like Pulp Fiction but with a nice Canadian slant that keeps it fresh and different. John’s creation of the African-American characters is like Sallis at his finest. With a wicked sense of humour that is irresistible, SWAP moves Canadian mystery right to the top.”
  SWAP is published today in Canada, although it won’t hit U.S. stores – as LET IT RIDE – until next February. For what it’s worth, and bearing in mind that yon McFetridge is a good mate of mine, my advice is not to wait: SWAP is as good as the noir novel gets.
  Meanwhile, and while we’re on the subject of Ken Bruen, I’m hearing a rumour that yet another of his novels, the Busted Flush TOWER collaboration with Reed Farrel Coleman, has been optioned for the big screen, this time by the team behind the Tom Cruise flick Valkyrie. Can anyone confirm?
  Meanwhile meanwhile, and while we’re on the subject of Busted Flush and bigging-up good mates, here’s the cover for Donna Moore’s forthcoming OLD DOGS. Is it just me, or is that cover a work of art?