Exiles: An Outsider Anthology Is Included In The Crime StoryBundle


Exiles: An Outsider Anthology is included in the crime StoryBundle. 

The latest StoryBundle is curated by Paul O’Brien.

The blurb:

The International Crime Bundle features 9 crime titles for a price you set.

We’ve got novels from some of the best crime writers today, having picked up such awards as the Goldsboro ‘Last Laugh’ Award, Anthony, Macavity and Agatha Award, Spinetingler Book of Year, Pulp Pusher Book of the Year and a small matter of a Pulitzer-prize!

The full cast list is Vincent Zandri, Paul O’Brien, Arlene Hunt, Declan Burke, Jake Needham, Robert B. Lowe and, of course, me and the cast of Exiles: An Outsider Anthology.



Top Tips: Recommended Reads

the crooked beat 2Tony Black – The Lost Generation

Four sharp slices of life that underline Tony Black’s strong storytelling skills. The Lost Generation is the dreamlike tale of an ex-pat in Paris; Take It Outside is the raw story of an ex-con coping with life outside prison; First Day In The Job is an ‘angry young man’ story of kicking against the pricks and To Cool For School is a lowlife tragi-comedy. A handful of gems.

Gerard Brennan – Wee Danny

Gerard Brennan has followed up the splendid Brit grit novel Wee Rockets with a tough and tender coming-of-age novella that focuses on one of the aforementioned book’s most likeable characters. Wee Danny is a touching, very funny and realistic study of loyalty and friendship and I can’t wait for the next chapter in Danny’s life.

A D Garrett – Everyone Lies.

A.D. Garrett is the pseudonym for crime writer Margaret Murphy and forensics expert Professor David Barclay’s writing collaboration. This is their first novel and good stuff it is, too.

DCI Kate Simms and Professor Nick Fennimore have a history. They were both involved in a controversial failed investigation into the disappearance of Fennimore’s wife and daughter. Simms was subsequently pushed back down to the bottom of the career ladder and Fennimore retreated to the womb of work.

But Simms, on her way back up the ladder at last, needs Fennimore’s help with the case that involves a string everyone-lies-200pxof dead drug addicts. They are soon embroiled in gritty and hard hitting investigation of crime and corruption, vice and murder, which cuts through all strata of society.

Everyone Lies is a tense and engrossing mixture of social realism and fast-paced thriller which is sure to be the start of an interesting and very enjoyable series.

Nick Quantrill – The Crooked Beat

P I Joe Geraghty steps up to help out his brother who is in dire financial straits. However, Joe is soon under the radar of Hull’s underworld and subsequently digs up some of the city’s dark secrets. This is the third of Nick Quantrill’s Joe Geraghty novels and the best yet with perfect pacing and a great sense of place and history. Not a bum note in the whole book.

Blood Red Turns Dollar Green – Paul O’Brien.

Epic and intimate. Intense and involving. Paul O’Brien’s follow up to Blood Red Turns Dollar Green is even more streamlined and even faster moving than its cracking predecessor. Loose ends from the first book are tied up and new ones opened up. This is a major piece of crime fiction storytelling that breathlessly moves from character to character and backwards and forwards in time. It really would make a great TV series along the lines of Boardwalk Empire or The Sopranos and I can’t wait for part three.

Recommended Reads

Die, You Bastard Die! – Jan Kozlowski

Claire is a tough, no-nonsense paramedic who is called back to her home town to take care of her injured father. The sordid skeletons come rattling out of the closet as Claire is forced to confront her abusive childhood. Can any book live up to a title as good as Die, You Bastard, Die!? Jan Kozlowski’s blisteringly violent  rush of grindhouse Gothic actually does. A corker!

Blood Red Turns Dollar Green by Paul O’ Brien

Lenny is a ‘mark’ A long time wrestling fan who wants ‘in’. Paul O’ Brian’s fantastic debut crime  novel opens with Lenny in a more than somewhat dazed and confused state after  being involved in a car accident.  The smartly woven story then moves backwards and forwards across the US and from the early ‘70s to the late ‘60s, and then back again, until it reaches a magnificent adrenaline pumping finale. Blood Turns Dollar Green has a rich cast of characters including a supposedly mute and South African giant, and a colourful cornucopia of gangsters and low – lifes. Brilliant.

What Gets Left Behind by Mark West

Mike returns to his home town  – the scene of a childhood tragedy – and picks at the sores of the past in Mark West’s marvellously written horror  novella. West moves the story  back to the ‘80s –when the town was being stalked by a serial killer –  and then hurls it forward as Mike attempts to confront his inner demons. Full of atmosphere and aching with a sense of nostalgia and missed opportunities, What Gets Left Behind is chilling and moving story of regret.

The Storm Giants by Pearce Hansen

Everett is a man with a dark and destructive history who is living a life that approaches normality – an artist wife, a young son, a house in the country. But then The Widow steps out of the past and forces Everett to return to his old, violent ways. Pearce Hansen is a splendid writer who has created a powerful,  strange and affective kind of urban fairy tale with oodles of hardboiled action and social commentary to boot.

Find Emily by J J Toner

D I Ben Jordan returns for a second hard-hitting outing in J J Toner’s cracking Find Emily. Jordan has handed in his notice but is called in to find a missing child, the daughter of a big shot Irish businesswoman and a former American football star . Jordan know that he has  maybe 24 hours to find the missing child and Toner breathlessly drags us along with him on his frantic search that includes encounters with the IRA, a sex traffic ring, corruption and much more. Find Emily is the sort of gritty, realistic crime thriller that would be topping the best seller lists, if there were any justice in the world.

Short, Sharp Interview: Paul O’ Brien

PDB: Can you pitch BLOOD RED TURNS DOLLAR GREEN in 25 words or less?

It’s about the longest running con in US history. And the men who would do anything to keep its mechanics secret and hugely lucrative.

PDB: Which books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

I love Boardwalk Empire and Breaking Bad. American TV is going through the best two decades of its existence. Just fantastic writing coming out from over there. I also love the Coen Brothers – but not all of their stuff. I also have a dirty liking for early Cameron Crowe.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

Probably not. But, I don’t think any reader can be objective. That’s the beauty of book discussion. Someone loves a novel, someone hates. Of course the writer will appreciate the one who likes it but obsess over the one who hates it.

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

Yes. I’ve written a couple of screenplays and a ton of plays. For the last fifteen years I have been lucky enough to have my plays commissioned and/or produced by The National Theatre of Ireland, Druid Theatre, Red Kettle and The Gaeity School of Acting.

PDB: How much research goes into each book?

For this book – over twenty five years! I have watched, read and listened to hundreds of thousands of hours of video, testimony, interviews and autobiographies. I became fascinated with this world at eight years old and I’ve finally gotten the opportunity – with the right story – to put it all on the page.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you as a writer?

I think I haven’t mastered it yet. But I can certainly see the benefit of keeping it going. Facebook, Twitter etc are okay for me but I can’t get into blogging yet. I just doesn’t feel right, which to me means I’m doing it wrong. Do I write about writing? Myself? My thoughts? What?

I think once I do find that out I might be fairly good at it.

PDB: What’s on the cards in 2012?

Well, I want to get Blood Red Turns Dollar Green out and to find an audience, and at the same time write the follow-up. This story is epic in terms of geography and material, so I want to make sure I do the very best job I can with it.

If people want to get me, they can at – www.paulobrien.info | http://www.facebook.com/paulobrien.info | @tweetpaulobrien