April 26, 2013

Joe R. Lansdale's East Texas adventures

[I wrote this in June 2007. I'm reposting it on this blog in honour of the publication of the new Hap and Leonard book, and on the news that a series called Hap and Leonard is in pre-production. Let's hope it gets the green light!]

Do you ever have sudden enthusiasms for writers?

April 16, 2013

Robert Littell - The Company he keeps

There seems to me to be three titans in the world of espionage thrillers - John le Carre, Charles McCarry and Robert Littell. The first two of these were involved in the world of espionage in some form (though le Carre plays down his active involvement) while Littell was a close observer of the cold war as a journalist for Newsweek for many years.

After the early books le Carre went off the boil, for me, but McCarry and Littell have improved over time. McCarry has a poetic tone together with an allusive, indirect style that is reminiscent of Martin Cruz Smith. Littell, though not so poetic, can be equally indirect - almost misleading - in the way he constructs his intricate stories of failed belief and betrayal.

April 12, 2013


I've been very remiss with this blog for a while now because I've been working on other projects.
However, I'm working through Robert Littell's mega-tome, The Company, and will be coming back to it shortly. He's probably my favourite spy-novel writer and nothing in this book suggests that's going to change.

In other news, I had a successful 'free Kindle download' run of The Hard Swim, with over 2000 copies being downloaded. That's been followed with a pretty good uptake on the priced edition now the freebie offer has finished.

Also, just a quick mention of Justified yet again ... I have the final episode to watch and can't wait to see how this story-arc plays out. It will be hard to replace my weekly fix of this, though the re-start of Mad Men will go some way towards it.

And finally, I made a book trailer for The Hard Swim which is now up on YouTube ... and here:

The Hard Swim Video