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.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Review: NORTHERN HEIST by Richard O’Rawe

Previously the author of three non-fiction titles, including Blanketmen, former Provisional IRA press officer Richard O’Rawe makes his crime fiction debut with Northern Heist (Merrion Press), in which James ‘Ructions’ O’Hare sets out to pull off ‘the biggest heist in Irish history’ by knocking over Belfast’s National Bank of Ireland. Set in 2004 – the year of the Northern Bank robbery – the novel offers a driving plot teeming with colourful characters, as Ructions, as per the sub-genre’s conventions, schemes to pull off the fabled one last job. It’s a tense tale – the IRA and the newly formed PSNI are both keeping tabs on our anti-hero – but where Northern Heist really scores is in the human detail, and particularly in terms of the interaction between the professional criminals and the bank staff kidnapped to facilitate the robbery. The stakes might easily have been raised had O’Rawe delivered more of the wider political context – the likely impact of the robbery on the Good Friday Agreement, for example, receives only a brief mention – but otherwise Northern Heist is a pulsating tale of vaulting ambition and establishes Richard O’Rawe as a crime novelist to reckon with.
  For more on Richard O’Rawe, clickety-click here

No comments: