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.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

A Herculean Task

Agatha Christie’s BLACK COFFEE comes to Dublin’s Bord Gais Energy Theatre in June, running from Monday 23rd to Saturday 28th, with Jason Durr playing the role of the immortal Poirot. To wit:
A quintessential English country estate is thrown into chaos following the murder of eccentric inventor Sir Claud Amory, and the theft of his new earth-shattering formula. Arriving at the estate just moments too late, one man immediately senses a potent brew of despair, treachery, and deception amid the estate’s occupants. That man is Hercule Poirot.
  In the first play ever written by Agatha Christie we are introduced to a character who went onto become the most famous detective of all time and the only fictional character ever to receive a full-page obituary in the New York Times.
  For all the details, clickety-click here

Friday, May 23, 2014

Marigolds Are The New Black

I mentioned a couple of months ago that Mel Healy’s debut was ANOTHER CASE IN COWTOWN, a foodie PI tale set in Dublin’s Stoneybatter. PI Moss Reid returns in Mel’s sophmore offering, BLACK MARIGOLDS, with the gist running thusly:

It’s the run-up to Christmas, the city’s streets are full of pub crawlers and Christmas Jumpers, and right-wing TD Ned Power is being blackmailed. He has just been snared in a honeytrap. And if you’re dealing with a honeytrap you might as well start with the honey: a honey as young and sweet as you can get ...
  Stoneybatter’s foodie PI Moss Reid is back with more sad cases, skip traces, tasty recipes and a problem with the brussels sprouts.
  The ‘Moss Reid’ mystery series is mainly set in and around the Stoneybatter district of Dublin. BLACK MARIGOLDS is Irish author Mel Healy’s second novel featuring Moss Reid, the private investigator whose philosophy in life is to “eat, drink and investigate – in that order”.

  For all the info, clickety-click here

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Strangers Things Have Happened

Hearty congrats to Michael Russell, whose THE CITY OF STRANGERS has been shortlisted for the CWA’s Historical Dagger award. Quoth the judges:
Having already brought 1930s Dublin and Danzig vividly to life in his outstanding debut THE CITY OF SHADOWS, Russell does the same for New York in a sequel that’s even better. The unique complexity of Ireland’s divided loyalties and enmities on the eve of the Second World War is explored with unusual clarity and intelligence, and there are plenty of thrills and spills too.
  Very nice indeed. The winner will be announced on June 30th; for all the details, and the full shortlist, clickety-click here
  For more on THE CITY OF STRANGERS, clickety-click here

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bristol, Dublin, And On To The Greek Isles …

It’s been a busy few days here at CAP Towers, not least because I wasn’t actually at CAP Towers – I trundled off to Bristol for the weekend, for the annual Crimefest bash, and tremendous fun it was too. Part of the attraction, of course, is that you get to swan about for an entire weekend pretending to be a writer without having to worry about anyone muttering darkly about the emperor’s new clothes, but mainly it’s all about the people, and catching up with some very good sorts you only get to meet once a year. It was also very nice, this year, to be attending the Severn House 40th anniversary celebration, although I did feel a bit of a fraud, given that I’ve only been with Severn House for about six months. Not that you’d have known that, given the warmth of the welcome …
  I also took part in a very enjoyable panel (enjoyable for me, at least) on private eye fiction, alongside Mick Herron, James Carol and Kerry Wilkinson, and curated by the indomitable Donna Moore, who stepped in at the last minute when the original moderator, Ruth Downey, was indisposed. All told, it was a wonderful weekend, and I’m already looking forward to Crimefest 2015 …
  Back to Dublin, then, and the ‘State of Crime’ event at the Central Library, as part of the Dublin Writers Festival last night, where I took my turn hosting Arne Dahl, Sinead Crowley and Brian McGilloway. Lovely people, great writers and a terrific audience made for a very enjoyable evening indeed.
  In the midst of all that, the Publishers Weekly review for my current tome, the comic crime caper CRIME ALWAYS PAYS (Severn House), popped up, which was very nice. The gist runs as follows:
“Burke’s zany sequel to 2007’s The Big O practically requires a scorecard to keep track of the characters [as] a motley crew of misfits leave a trail of chaos and confusion from Ireland to the Greek Isles … Burke keeps adding more characters, making for a profusion of drugs, cops, grifters, guns, and shifting alliances that’s both baffling and entertaining.” – Publishers Weekly
  With which, as you can imagine, I am very pleased indeed.
  Right – back to the grindstone. Normal-ish service will resume tomorrow …

Monday, May 19, 2014

Crime Fiction At The Dublin Writers Festival

I’m very much looking forward to taking part in the Dublin Writers’ Festival this evening, when I’ll be hosting a conversation between Arne Dahl, Sinead Crowley and Brian McGilloway. To wit:
Bestselling Swedish novelist Arne Dahl joins forces with two Irish writers to consider the dark arts of the crime thriller. In such a competitive field, what makes a thriller stand out, and how do you keep the reader turning the pages?
  RTÉ correspondent-turned-crime novelist Sinead Crowley’s debut is attracting all the right buzz. CAN ANYBODY HELP ME? tells the story of a young Dublin mother whose addiction to an online forum leaves her vulnerable to a terrifying killer.
  Brian McGilloway is the New York Times bestselling author of the critically acclaimed Inspector Benedict Devlin and DS Lucy Black series. His sixth novel, HURT, was published in 2013. Earlier this year he won the Tony Doyle Award for his screenplay Little Emperors.
  Presented in association with Dublin City Public Libraries.
  The event takes place at the Central Library at 6pm on May 19th. For all the details, including how to book your free tickets, clickety-click here