“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.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

ZERO Minus One

The Big Day dawns tomorrow, said day being the launch date of ABSOLUTE ZERO COOL, and yea, verily, I’m bricking it. Hard to say why, really; at this stage, the book is what it is, and no amount of fretting is going to make it a better book. Also, anyone who turns up to the launch is very likely to be there in support mode, and anyway there’s a strict policy of no little boys allowed, lest one of them starts shouting about the emperor and his radical sartorial minimalism.
  No, it’ll all be okay on the night, once I get past the speechifying part. The idea of rambling aloud about AZC in front of a group of peers, friends and family is bowel-loosening enough, but the bit where I’ll be obliged to read some of AZC aloud? The horror, the horror …
  Anyway, there’s been a few nice snippets of promo on the interweb over the last week, quite apart from all the very generous folk who were good enough to plug the book’s publication. First up is The Sligo Champion, my hometown paper of record, who ran a short interview with yours truly, which can be found here. That’s a particularly nice buzz because, apart from having a poem published in a school magazine, my first experience of being published was in the Sligo Champion, for which I wrote up reports of junior football matches from the age of 16 onwards, a task only slightly complicated by the fact that I was generally playing in the games I wrote about.
  Meanwhile, Marshal Zeringue was good enough to ask me to submit ABSOLUTE ZERO COOL to the Page 69 Test, in which an author looks at pg 69 of his or her tome, and asks if it’s representative of the rest of the novel. A nifty notion, and you can find the results here
  Over at Pulp Pusher, the rather fine Scottish writer and sex god Tony Black was kind enough to ask me to contribute to the ongoing series, ‘Every Day I Write the Book’, in which a writer details his experience of writing over a particular week. Somehow Steven Hawking, the Blue Nile and a serial killer stalking himself across multiple parallel universes got into the mix. You can find the results here
  Elsewhere, Writing.ie is currently hosting an extract from AZC, said extract comprising what in most books would consist of the first chapter, even if AZC resolutely refuses to conform to such bourgeois concepts as ‘chapters’. If you’d like a flavour of what AZC is all about, feel free to clickety-click here
  And that’s about it. The launch, by the way, for those of you who aren’t the Three Regular Readers, takes place in the Gutter Bookshop, Cow’s Lane, Temple Bar, Dublin, at 6.30pm on Wednesday, August 10th. All are welcome, and John Connolly has agreed to give the event a scintilla of respectability by saying a few words before AZC is finally unleashed on an unsuspecting public.
  As for the book itself, well, the jacket copy runs thusly:
“A genuinely original take on noir, inventive and funny. Imagine, if you can, a cross between Flann O’Brien and Raymond Chandler.” – John Banville, author of THE SEA

Who in their right mind would want to blow up a hospital?
  “Close it down, blow it up – what’s the difference?”
  Billy Karlsson needs to get real. Literally. A hospital porter with a sideline in euthanasia, Billy is a character trapped in the purgatory of an abandoned novel. Deranged by logic, driven beyond sanity, Billy makes his final stand: if killing old people won’t cut the mustard, the whole hospital will have to go up in flames.
  Only his creator can stop him now, the author who abandoned Billy to his half-life limbo, in which Billy schemes to do whatever it takes to get himself published, or be damned . . .

“ABSOLUTE ZERO COOL is unlike anything else you’ll read this year … Laugh-out-loud funny … This is writing at its dazzling, cleverest zenith. Think John Fowles, via Paul Auster and Rolling Stone … a feat of extraordinary alchemy.” – Ken Bruen, author of AMERICAN SKIN

9 comments:

seana said...

Very much hope the jitters pass and you have a great evening, which I think in the end, you will.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

Somehow I think you'll do just fine with the speech part, based on how you presented yourself and how well spoken you were on that Ireland AM show not too long ago. Good luck and enjoy every second of it. Wish I could be there.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Best of luck and congratulations. And I bet you aren't counting me as one of the three regular readers.

michael said...

Good luck, Dec. And if anything goes wrong blame it on Billy.

Nigel said...

Have a great night with the launch and bestaluck with the book, Declan. I'm currently reading Green Streets - enjoying the sheer variety. Well done again.
Nigel

lil Gluckstern said...

Good luck. It should be great. Read page 69, and I am already laughing. I can't wait for the book. It sounds like a mind bender.

Declan Burke said...

Many thanks, folks. A little good karma goes a very long way ... Really appreciated.

Cheers, Dec

Michael Malone said...

All the best for today, Declan. Raising a glass to you and the book. (Well, a coffee mug)

Fiona said...

Enjoy yourself this evening, Dec. I'm sure it'll be a blast. :)