“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, August 21, 2012

Bipolar Exploration

I thoroughly enjoyed Alex Barclay’s BLOOD LOSS when I read it a couple of months ago, and was more than happy to say so in an Irish Times review. I’m by no means the only reader to have been impressed with Barclay’s deft handling of her heroine’s bipolar condition.
  Katie Binns reviewed BLOOD LOSS for the Sunday Times’ Culture section last weekend (no link), and had this to say:
This is the third novel in the [Ren] Bryce series. Ren is an engaging character - bipolar, unmedicated and shrink-free - whose wry observations and comical musings are leavened by occasional bouts of self-doubt and relationship disasters […] Barclay’s brilliant and authoritative depiction of bipolar confronts stereotypes about the disease. She describes mania and depression like old friends […] A gripping plot, stylish dialogue, convincing characterisation and the subtlety of the relationships between the main characters combine to make BLOOD LOSS worthwhile reading. - Katie Binns
  All of which is very nice indeed, and suggests that Ren Bryce is going to be around for the long haul …

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