“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.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Killing Floor

Aifric Campbell’s two novels to date, THE SEMANTICS OF MURDER and THE LOSS ADJUSTOR, have offered intriguing variations on the conventional crime novel, and her latest, ON THE FLOOR (Serpent’s Tail), sounds as if it continues in a similar vein. Quoth the blurb elves:
In the City, everything has a price. What’s yours? At the age of twenty-eight, Dubliner Geri Molloy has put her troubled past behind her to become a major player at Steiner’s investment bank in London, earning $850k a year doing business with a reclusive hedge fund manager in Hong Kong who, in return for his patronage, likes to ask her about Kant and watch while she eats exotic Asian delicacies. For five years Geri has had it all, but in the months leading up to the outbreak of the Gulf War in 1991, her life starts to unravel. Abandoned by her corporate financier boyfriend, in the grip of a debilitating insomnia, and drinking far too much, Geri becomes entangled in a hostile takeover involving her boss, her client and her ex. With her career on the line as a consequence, and no one to turn to, she is close to losing it, in every sense. Taut and fast-paced, ON THE FLOOR is about making money and taking risks; it’s about getting away with it, and what happens when you’re no longer one step ahead; ultimately, though, it’s a reminder to never, ever underestimate the personal cost of success.
  An advance copy of ON THE FLOOR arrived at CAP Towers yesterday, sending the ARC-reading elves into a frenzy of anticipation which barely stopped short of the book itself being flittered. Looks like I’ll have to run a lottery, to see who gets the privilege of dipping into it first. And there was you thinking CAP Towers was all about hammocks, Cuban cigars and high-balls once the sun crawls over the yardarm …

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