“ABSOLUTE ZERO COOL is that rarest of things - a novel that makes you stop and think and scramble to finish at the same time. A novel of ideas as well as a first rate thriller, it sees Burke stretching the crime thriller genre until it snaps and then sewing it back together with some of the finest prose and funniest dialogue you’ll encounter this year. It’s a novel that reveals the perverse combination of anomie and lunatic optimism that all novelists feel when in the throes of creation. A brilliant x-ray revealing Greene’s shard of ice in the heart of every writer; the secret sharer in the dark cabin of the novelist’s imagination. Quite simply, one of the finest Irish novels written in a long time.” - Kevin McCarthySo there you have it. I thank you kindly, sir.
By the way, the inimitable Critical Mick reviewed PEELER over at his interweb lair recently, with the verdict running thusly:
“Speaking as both a history nerd and a book nerd, there’s nothing better than discovering a new novelist who completely satisfies both interests. Kevin McCarthy has interwoven literature and historical research, fiction and reality. PEELER is a cracking good tale - an eye-opener in many ways. Consider it personally recommended from me to you - PEELER is the first addition to Critical Mick’s list of Best Books Read in 2011.”Meanwhile, and just as my spirits were flagging out in Cyprus, I got a google alert for Eoin Colfer, which proved to be an interview with Eoin published by Kirkus Reviews. The relevant (to me, at least) gist ran thusly:
PLUGGED nails that staccato noir style that keep crime novelists and airport bookstores in business. Stylistically, where do you draw inspiration for the writing of this novel?Steady on, Tiger! Oh, you mean you want to take a photo of the books … right.
“I have been immersing myself in this style for decades and for at least one of those would not read anything but crime. If nobody died horribly, I did not want to know. Of course I loved the classics, but we have our own classics standing the test of time right now: Michael Connelly and John Connolly, Ken Bruen, Mark Billingham, Ridley Pearson, Carl Hiaasen, Declan Burke, Colin Bateman … I want to get on a shelf with these guys and take a photo.” - Eoin Colfer
Anyway, you can take it that I’m pretty damn flattered to be mentioned in such august company. Providing, of course, that Eoin wasn’t confusing me with either Declan Hughes or Edmund Burke. Which happens more often that you’d think. The latter, mostly.
The Big Question: is log-rolling the new Irish national pastime and / or only growth industry in these benighted times, and should we lobby for it to be introduced as an Olympic sport? Over to you, people …