“Declan Burke is his own genre. The Lammisters dazzles, beguiles and transcends. Virtuoso from start to finish.” – Eoin McNamee “This bourbon-smooth riot of jazz-age excess, high satire and Wodehouse flamboyance is a pitch-perfect bullseye of comic brilliance.” – Irish Independent Books of the Year 2019 “This rapid-fire novel deserves a place on any bookshelf that grants asylum to PG Wodehouse, Flann O’Brien or Kyril Bonfiglioli.” – Eoin Colfer, Guardian Best Books of the Year 2019 “The funniest book of the year.” – Sunday Independent “Declan Burke is one funny bastard. The Lammisters ... conducts a forensic analysis on the anatomy of a story.” – Liz Nugent “Burke’s exuberant prose takes centre stage … He plays with language like a jazz soloist stretching the boundaries of musical theory.” – Totally Dublin “A mega-meta smorgasbord of inventive language ... linguistic verve not just on every page but every line.Irish Times “Above all, The Lammisters gives the impression of a writer enjoying himself. And so, dear reader, should you.” – Sunday Times “A triumph of absurdity, which burlesques the literary canon from Shakespeare, Pope and Austen to Flann O’Brien … The Lammisters is very clever indeed.” – The Guardian

Saturday, November 7, 2009

“Ya Wanna Do It Here Or Down The Station, Punk?”: C.J. Box

Yep, it’s rubber-hose time, folks: a rapid-fire Q&A for those shifty-looking usual suspects ...

What crime novel would you most like to have written?
THE LAST GOOD KISS by James Crumley. I read it ages ago as a fledgling novelist and suddenly lights went on. I’ve talked to a surprising number of other writers over the years who’ve said the same thing.

What fictional character would you most like to have been?
Shane. As in the Jack Schaefer western novel.

Who do you read for guilty pleasures?
Thomas McGuane, Charlie Huston, John Sandford, Michael Connelly, Ken Bruen, Denise Mina, Megan Abbott. I’d also list Cormac McCarthy, but his writing makes me feel too guilty.

Most satisfying writing moment?
Starting the last third of the novel after everything else is in place and the horrifying and exhilarating sprint to the finish is about to begin.

The best Irish crime novel is …?
… an impossible question to answer. Books that have bowled me over include THE GUARDS by Ken Bruen and DEAD I WELL MAY BE by Adrian McKinty. I can’t wait to read THE BIG O, by some Burke fellow.

What Irish crime novel would make a great movie?
THE GUARDS, although I don’t know how the hell they’d make it. In order to get it right, all the movie-goers would have to agree to arrive drunk and continue to drink heavily (and quietly) throughout the film.

Worst / best thing about being a writer?
Best thing, seriously, is hearing from readers who claim that up until recently they were non-readers but now they’ve seen the light. Worst thing (or one of the worst) is when someone sidles up at a cocktail party and says, “If I had the time, I’d write a novel myself.” As if any writer HAS EVER HAD THE TIME.

The pitch for your next book is …?
“Imagine looking up at a wind turbine and seeing a body lashed to one of the enormous rotating blades…”

Who are you reading right now?
T. Jefferson Parker. He’s a friend and fly-fishing partner of mine, and his new one is fantastic.

God appears and says you can only write OR read. Which would it be?
Read. Although I’d be pretty put out about it.

The three best words to describe your own writing are …?
You are there.

CJ Box’s THREE WEEKS TO SAY GOODBYE is published on December 1


Lewis Peters said...

Does the debut novel by Stuart Neville "The Twelve" figure at all in your pantheon of Irish work (admittedly he's from NI but I though it was brilliant)?

Declan Burke said...

Lewis - I'm going to take a wild guess and say this is your first visit ... welcome aboard. Just do a search in the top-left, you'll find plenty of references to Stuart Neville. And we're very much a post-Good Friday blog: NI or ROI, we don't mind just so long as you write a good book.

Cheers, Dec