September 26, 2012

Online interview

I've recently been interviewed by a couple of online blogs. The first is by the very interesting crime fiction site, Sons of Spade (as my character is called Sam, this is a title that goes down well with me!)

The site reviews new books and also carries interviews, obviously. You can find my interview here:

September 18, 2012

Is James Lee Burke the greatest crime writer alive?

Well I guess I've nailed my colours to the mast with that heading ... I am definitely a fanboy when it comes to James Lee Burke.

His latest book is Creole Belle, and continues the story of his bruised and battered cop hero, Dave Robicheaux and his friend Clete Purcel. In this instalment of their ongoing history, Dave is trying to find a girl who came to him while he was recovering from the wounds received at the end of the previous novel, The Glass Rainbow. He doesn't know at first whether the appearance of the girl was a medically-induced vision or whether she was in fact real. She leaves him an iPod with music already installed, but when others try to play the particular tracks on which she sings, they can't find them. This captures one of Burke's strengths - the ability to create an atmosphere in which reality and sur-reality intermingle. Robicheaux's consciousness is one in which the present and the historic past constantly mingle, so that his actions are always tinged with a recognition of their provenance in the past.

September 03, 2012

What makes great dialogue?

A couple of weeks ago I published something on Amazon's 'So you'd like to ... ' function. This is an opportunity for anyone to make out they're an expert on anything under the sun and then tell others what to do. Never one to pass up that kind of chance, I thought I'd put something together on dialogue, which is a feature of writing and reading that I spend a lot of time thinking about. Here's the piece - it's a bit long for a blog post, so settle down and get a cup of tea or coffee first ...