Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Big Sleep meets The Big Issue

When Ernie Politics is brutally murdered his best friend Ray Cobb sets out to discover why, no matter the cost.

There's something about Noir that both draws me in and repells me, largely because the genre is so heavily punctuated with code and convention that it's incredibly difficult to pull together a Noir story that's fitting or the genre yet original enough to merit spending the time reading it. THE LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF ERNIE POLITICS is an excellent example of why it's always important to take the risk and read it anyway.

Not only does it have an fascinating contemporary lead detective in Ray Cobb but writer Grusnick has populated the novel with well-drawn and interesting characters that not only drive the narrative but keep the reader turning the page. It's a fast read, a funny read and a genuinely enjoyable read with some great turns along the way. The homeless PI is a great twist on the genre and surely the kind of logic take on the almost nomadic gumshoe that crime writers everywhere will slap hand to head and ask themselves "how did I not see that?!"

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Short & (Bitter) Sweet

Some of the most striking, powerful, and down-trodded prose you're ever likely to read. Memorising and maniacal in equal measure. One or two shorts show the influence of Fante's work in a way that's beautifully evolutionary.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Ti Amo Bella Roma

Two incredibly powerful novellas from the most important American writer of his generation. I love John Fante, I love his prose and the guilt of Catholicism he laces throughout his work. Greater appreciation of WEST OF ROME can be found the more you encounter the man's work. Truly magnificent.

Friday, 13 September 2013

The Real Holy Bible

Lipton's THE HOLY BARBARIANS is a study of beatnik and a book of two halves. The first reads like a roman à clef journal of life in Venice West, the second a paper on beat versus the ever commercial modern America and it's origins. An odd mix of entertainment and education which manages to capture the essence of beat in an organised way that doesn't let it shatter in your hands.

Squares beware. There's little for you here.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Edge of Bollocks

Naive, simplistic and with more holes in it than a whorehouse. I don't really know where to start. The fact that the Americans KNOW the threat but don't have enough proof to take action (yeah right) or the fact that the British secret service and safety of the planet falls on the shoulders of a borderline alcoholic (and not in the fun way) reformed IRA man and two London gangsters. Clearly MI6 were on vacation. A 6 year-old with two weeks worth of playing Splinter Cell could and would do better.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

With Nails, With Humour, With Balls

WITH NAILS is unlike any "celeb" diary publication, largely because it reads better than them. It reads like a novel, has touches of the Beat writers and a fascinating picaresque glimpse into the life of 'the actor'. Grant pulls few punches, which is what makes it all the more interesting.

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap

It’s my birthday next week so to celebrate turning thirty-two years on this planet without siring offspring (with the exception of my pug, Molly) the price of my little word baby Lost Angeles is being cut from $2.95 to $0.99.  Similarly if you’ve purchased a paperback copy check into Amazon as you’ll be able to obtain a Kindle version for FREE.  Good, huh?  Yeah, I thought you’d like that.


Cut price off ends on Monday 9th September 2013.