I’ve read a fair bit of new stuff recently- and done quite a bit of re-reading too- so here are a handful of some of the books that have tickled my fancy of late.
Nick Quantrill is best known for his slow burning, evenly paced P I novels – Broken Dreams and The Late Greats. BBYD however, is an in-your-face, Brit Grit novella that tells the story the story of Sam, who is fresh out of the slammer and trying to get his life back on an even keel. But those ties from the past still bind him. Hard hitting and involving, this shows a more visceral side to Quantrill’s writing which he carries off with aplomb.
Hawthorn is back ! In The Spider Tribe, Heath Lowrance’s pulptastic creation confronts the Iktomi, an ancient, supernatural race that grow powerful when people are consumed by hate and fear. Since the white man is currently ripping up the Black Hills, they are in full force and only Hawthorn can stop them. The Spider Tribe is another vivid and fast paced horror/western novelette from the massively talented Heath Lowrance.
Michael is a young widower who communicates with the memory of his late wife in his recurring dreams. However, after attending a Bereaved Partners’ Group meeting, he discovers that there may be more to his dreams than he realizes. The Mill is a wonderfully written novelette that proves to be both chilling and moving, and stayed in my thoughts for a long time after reading it.
When roughneck Billy Keyoe jumps in his Cadillac to flee his small town blues, he encounters a girl named Feather at the crossroads and embarks on a journey into darkness and painful self-discovery in Kevin Lynn Helmick’s brilliantly lyrical and richly painted hybrid of cinematic noir and magic realism. Superb.
K A Laity confidently grabs hold of the Modesty Blaise template and ratchets its components up to 11 with Chastity Flame. And what she gives us is a highly addictive, fast-moving, clever, sexy and funny globe-trotting, spy romp. The first in what is sure to prove to be a massively enjoyable new series.
K A Laity’s The Claddagh Icon is a classic hardboiled story of a chancer who gets in over his head when he meets a Galway femme fatale. A tightly written story that drags you along by your tie, belt and whatever else it can get its hands on. Also available in Italian.
Richard Godwin’s The Secret Hour is a lyrical hybrid of noir,crime fiction and psychological drama worthy of Hitchcock. Godwin once again masterfully digs beneath the surface of London, and its inhabitants, to reveal the darkness that the dazzle of glamour hides. Also available in Italian.
So, get stuck into that little lot, eh?