“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.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Bloodymarvellousland; and Gordon Burn

I mentioned during the week on ye olde Twittere that I’d finished Alan Glynn’s latest offering, BLOODLAND, suggesting that he really should have gone for broke and titled it BLOODYMARVELLOUSLAND. Which is to say, I thought it was terrific, a synthesis of the best elements of his previous offerings, THE DARK FIELDS and WINTERLAND. I’ll be reviewing said tome in due course, so I’ll say no more about it for now, except to say that it’s likely to be one of the finest crime novels published this year, and a very fine example of the classic conspiracy thriller.
  All of which is by way of a preamble to pointing you towards a nifty little piece Alan penned for The Huffington Post last week, in which he speculates on the rise of a new sub-genre, ‘pulp faction’. To wit:
In LIBRA, Don DeLillo’s imagined Oswald and Ruby are so convincing, so forensically delineated, that it almost feels like time travel. Other writers - James Ellroy, Eoin McNamee, David Peace - have done this, too, filtered real events through their fictional prisms, and to equally electrifying effect. But a different approach again was taken in 2008 by the late Gordon Burn in his stunning BORN YESTERDAY, which had the subtitle, ‘The News as a Novel’. In presenting us with the events of summer 2007, Burn makes nothing up. Rather, he conjures it all into a kaleidoscope, a surrealistic canvas of connections, a mediated meditation. With the events of summer 2011 now drifting by, it’s hard not to speculate what Burn might have done with the hacking scandal - with Murdoch, Brooks, Cameron, Sean Hoare, Milly Dowler, The Hour, the sidelined debt crisis, the sidelined famine . . . Oslo . . . Amy . . .
  For the rest of the piece, clickety-click here
  This isn’t the first time the name of Gordon Burn has popped up on these pages, by the way, and if he’s good enough for Alan Glynn and David Peace, then he’s certainly good enough for me. If anyone else out there has anything further to offer on Gordon Burn, I’m all ears.
  Meanwhile, BORN YESTERDAY was recently released as an e-book. You can find all the details here

2 comments:

Maxine said...

Looking forward to this one, based on the excellent Winterland, but is not yet available over the water (ie in England), seemingly.

Declan Burke said...

Hi Maxine - I think it's a finer book than Winterland, as good as that was. And as I understand it, the book isn't officially published until September 1st. Hope you enjoy ...

Cheers, Dec