Praise for Declan Burke: “Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “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.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Best Things In Life Are Free … Books

Friendlier than Jehovah’s Witness dolphins, yon good folk at Hodder Headline Ireland. This week they’re offering you – yes, YOU! – the chance to win one of three copies of Twenty Major’s opus THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX PARK, about which the HHI blurb elves have this to say:
When Twenty gets an early morning wake-up call from Detective Larry O’Rourke it seems like any other day. But when he discovers that his friend, record-shop owner Tom O’Farrell, has been murdered and that his dying act was scrawl the number ‘60’ in blood on his chest and dial Twenty’s number into his phone, he begins to think something might be out of the ordinary. Meanwhile, time is running out for the people of Dublin. A plan has been hatched that is more sinister than seeing your granny tongue-kiss with an 18 year old and it all seems to centre around ‘Folkapalooza’, a massive free concert due to take place in the Phoenix Park. Soon Twenty and his pals from Ron’s bar find themselves plummeted into the crazy world of concert promotions, assassins, iPod-based defence systems, mad taxi drivers, office espionage and devious minds. A combination that will test their friendships, and their ability to cope with hangovers, to the limit. What does the number ‘60’ signify? Who is the ginger albino and who is he working for? Can Twenty, Jimmy the Bollix, Stinking Pete, Dirty Dave and the rest solve the puzzle before it’s too late or will Dublin succumb to the dastardly mastermind behind it all?
To be in with a chance of winning a copy, just answer the following question:
Is Twenty Major’s blog a front for:
(a) a prototype Irish neo-con vigilante group;
(b) Barry Egan’s fourteenth bid for world domination;
(c) the evil genius-style ramblings of an idiot savant dyslexic who can’t even spell the word ‘cnut’ properly?
Answers via the comment box, please, leaving an email contact address (please use (at) rather than @), before noon on Tuesday, April 29. Et bon chance, mes amis


colman said...

c- colman.keane at

Gerard Brennan said...

Due to the Bateman comparisons I'm very interested in this one. And I'll break a habit and answer (a) to this one. Seems the most dashing in my opinion.



Donna said...

Oh my goodness, I want this book sooooo much. After flirting briefly with a), dismissing b)because I don't really know who Barry Egan is, I'm going to plump for c)
donnaem at

Anonymous said...

Definitely, without a shadow of a doubt, all three. But if pushed, I'll go with (c).

comp at tripswitch dot com

Chanchan said...

All three of the above.Definitely

Keith Rawson said...

Is Twenty Major’s blog a front for:
(a) a prototype Irish neo-con vigilante group


peckerhead said...

All of the above.
lordpeckerhead at

Anonymous said...

c michaelliddy at

Josh Schrank said...

I'll go with "a" as after reading his blog I really really want to go blow something up..

Mick said...

well i know for a fact he can spell cnut the correct way, who is barry egan the cnut?

so i deduce the answer as A.
his mob consists of b*st*rdface and his savage cat!
micknail at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

He's definately all 3 but if i have to choose then i go with a greenandi at

Mack said...

Twenty Major's blog is most interesting and I've added it to my reader and, since he says that he is a "kind, considerate, gentle person who always sees the good in the world", I do feel bad saying that the answer is

C the evil genius-style ramblings of an idiot savant dyslexic

I deserve this book because, as a Yank, I need to be exposed to people who can use the word cunt freely.

Mack said...

Drat, I forgot to include my email address in my effort to be clever.

The answer is C
My email is malundy(at)

Declan Burke said...

Entries, entries everywhere, and not a bribe to drink. Josh Schrank, where are you when we need you most, eh? Cheers, Dec

terry said...

it has to be c.

Josh Schrank said...

My dear Grand Vizier,

One must account for physics in all that they do, no? It would appear (and yes, this even suprised me) that when one turns a bottle sideways the liquid within flows out, emptying the bottle. It is with great sadness, and not a little longing, that I must report the last bottle was uncorked the evening before last. So, until the replacement case arrives at the market, I've naught to offer you except a bottle of Miller High Life (the king of the bottled beers). This however, I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy let alone try to bribe an outstanding fellow such as yourself, so it would appear that the blog is in a state of temporary prohibition. My most humblest apologies to you and your readers.

That being said, if it is currently in the running, please remove my name from the hat for this fine book. I liked the cover art enough that I went out and purchased it last night. And with that... I hear something calling my name....

"showwie offisher, but I am NOT as think as you drunk I am..."

Josh Schrank said...

Rest easy GV, the Tao has returned to its center. I stopped by the spirits store on the way home from work and there on the counter, with my name on it, was a wonderful case of Glenfiddich. However, do you think the proprietor would let me have it? No such luck to my wallet I'm afraid. He guided me by the elbow back to the whiskeys and beamed proudly when about a half dozen cases of 18 year old Jameson came into view. Knowing that I wasn't getting out of there before agreeing to buy at least one bottle, I settled on a half a case of Jameson and a half a case of Glenfiddich. Then he tallied the total. You Irish are bloody well proud of your whiskey I see! I swear I could have almost filled up a tank of petro for what I paid for the Jameson. Ah well, I'll grudgingly admit it is rather good stuff even if I had to leave one of the boys behind for collateral.

So, blog readers be at ease and start commenting again, there's enough whiskey for everyone. Now... Jayne from John Connolly's forum has become determined to "make a man" out of me by making me drink Guinness. I'll stock it for company, but no way in hades I'll pour that sludge down my gullet. You know.. I do believe I'm rambling. My apologies and um.. I need more ice I think.

Declan Burke said...

Erm, Josh? No offence, man, but you don't ... drink, do you? Cheers, Dec

Josh Schrank said...

GV, no offense taken at all. "Drink" is what you do with water or coffee, maybe even orange juice. "Partake in the elixir of life" is what you do with a good whiskey. Oh, and um... yes.

Don Anderson said...

Daer Ganrd Veizir:

c; But Tewtny Mjoar is NOT dsyxeilc, you CNUT!

Don Anderson said...

And my cntaoct, you ntuetr, is

Fiona said...

It's likely to possibly be a. Or perhaps c. Because I really can't believe that Barry Egan is

.../(I was almost going to be libelous, but I wasn't sure who'd be sued, GV, so I stopped. Right there. I'm certain you're relieved.)

As a total change of topic, can alien life-forms sue for libel?

I have nothing with which to bribe you this week, other than a glowing tribute to your adorable fairy princess. How clever she was in her first audio-visual presentation. :D Which parent does she take after?