Thursday 27 September 2012

Trust in Linwood Barclay's “Eyes”

Well today is when Linwood Barclay’s tremendous thriller TRUST YOUR EYES is released from Orion Publishing, and we have other big news about this rip-roaring novel.

When I read an exceptional crime / thriller, I am known for my excitability, and when I put this book down, it felt like I had been mainlining espresso into my aorta. I have followed Linwood Barclay’s work since his breakout novel NO TIME FOR GOODBYE, and as much as I found last years THE ACCIDENT captivating, little prepared me for the intensity and elegance of TRUST YOUR EYES. During the reading experience, I found myself laughing, touched, puzzled, horrified and even as a reader who sees well beyond ‘technical miss-direction’ in a narrative, this book got me every time.

We have published a feature review at Shots today to celebrate the launch of Trust Your Eyes and it is one of my lengthier peices, though there are no plot spoilers, it does contain considerable detail, and analysis, so you have been warned - it is located here. This feature has been edited down by our Editor Mike Stotter, and an even more lengthy review and analysis with an interview with Linwood is featured later this week at Jeff Peirce’s The Rap Sheet.

After reading the last word, I sat in total silence - then I re-read the prologue, and then understood the significance of what I considered Barclay’s theme in Trust Your Eyes. The windows that we open in our lives to show people who we are, may have less significance than what we don’t show people; because most of the time we place curtains over these windows in order to protect ourselves from what fate, circumstance and the decisions we’ve made have shaped who we are. Many times these glimpses can be very ugly, that’s why the view from the window should be guarded. Revealing one’s inner self sometimes allows us to understand how we became who we are.

Added to the UK release of TRUST YOUR EYES comes this news from Hollywood’s Variety

Warner Bros. is entrusting Canadian author Linwood Barclay's novel "Trust Your Eyes" to an unlikely on-the-lot favorite son -- "Hangover" helmer Todd Phillips, who's agreed to direct his first thriller for the studio.

Phillips' production banner Green Hat Films has a first-look deal at WB, which won the book in a bidding war. Studio has been supportive of Phillips' decision to branch out into other genres after a string of hit comedies, including "Due Date" and the "Hangover" trilogy.

Phillips will produce and Jon Silk will co-produce. Barclay will exec produce with Scott Budnick and Mark O'Connor of Green Hat. WB exec Niija Kuykendall will oversee for the studio.-

Described as a cross between Alfred Hitchcock's "Rear Window" and Barry Levinson's "Rain Man," story follows a schizophrenic, map-obsessed savant who witnesses a murder online on Manhattan's Lower East Side. He insists that his older brother investigate, and the siblings cross paths with a politically connected ex-cop and his ice pick-wielding henchwoman.

APA's Steven Fisher negotiated the film deal, while Helen Heller repped the book deal.

We’re blessed that Barclay has another book out early 2013 in the UK entitled ‘NEVER SAW IT COMING’, [available as an eBook in the US currently]; it’s a coda to his breakthrough ‘NO TIME FOR GOODBYE’ and the novella ‘CLOUDED VISION’, because this week, his work just enriched my life.

And remember, for those of you attending Bouchercon in Cleveland next week, Linwood Barclay will be there, to sign copies of Trust Your Eyes. Also joining Linwood will be his Editor at Orion Publishing Bill Massey and his agent Helen Heller, two of the top professionals in contemporary publishing.

The Shots team this year will be represented by Mike Stotter, Kirstie Long and I on the adventure that is Bouchercon.

In case this post has not wetted your appetite for this elegant thriller, here’s a book video and this is an excerpt read by the author – you’ll be hearing a great deal about this novel, because you need to trust your eyes.

 Photo (c) Ali Karim from The Orion Publishing Party 2008 London, England
 'Shots Editors Mike Stotter and Ali Karim congratulate Linwood Barclay following the Richard and Judy Book Club Selection for NO TIME FOR GOODBYE'

Mons Kallentoft's Travelling Road Show

© Tobias Lundqvist

Today's guest blog is by Mons KallentoftHis debut novel Pesetas was awarded the Swedish Writers Union’s Award for Best Debut Novel, the Katapult Prize.  He is most widely known for his crime series about Police Inspector Malin Fors, which takes place in the Swedish town of Linköping, Kallentoft's place of birth.  The series consists of six books and the first one, “Midwinter Sacrifice”, has been translated into more than fifteen languages.
He has also won several prizes, such as the Gourmand World Cookbook Award (2005), the Hagdahl Prize (2008) and Primo Espana (2009).

The last few years I have been on the road a lot, travelling from country to country, from festival to festival, talking about my books and my heroine Malin Fors.

I love these trips.

I love meeting readers, fellow writers and the nice intelligent people in the book business.  I like to give interviews to interested journalists, not yet completely tired of us Scandinavian crime writers.

What I don’t like are all the flights, the loneliness of hotel rooms, and the sadness when I hear my children’s voices on the telephone: ’When are you coming home, Daddy?’


Or the day after that.

I usually hit a bar after those phone calls.  A cold beer or something much stronger.  If I am in France, I reward myself with a too-expensive Burgundy.  I did that recently in Edinburgh as well, in the rather dull fine dining restaurant at The Balmoral Hotel.  I drank a homesick bottle of burgundy on my own and thought; what am I doing here?

Apart from that, I had a nice time in Edinburgh.

Many of my British colleagues are manic jokers; they can´t open their mouths without cracking a joke, it seems.  I am not much of a comedian and while I certainly love my colleagues’ company and the entertainment of it all, it makes me feel like a stiff polar bear with a frozen sense of the world.  Don´t take it so bloody seriously, man, I say to myself.  Relax.  Tell a Viking joke.

One fixture on the travelling writer’s scene is R J Ellory.  A serious fellow like me, and regarded as a bit pompous by many.  I always found him nice, but when I met him outside Paris after Midwinter Sacrifice had been successful in the UK, I had the sense that he saw me as just another competitor, best ignored.

Or worse.

It was with sadness and some amusement that I read about his sock-puppeting.

Why do it?
It is not just a thing you do.

His books have not received much attention here in Sweden.  But his sock-puppeting made quite a stir.

This is another sad thing.  Good books don´t always travel well.  Mistakes always do.
I read A Quiet Belief in Angels and thought it was a good novel, daring within the genre, risk-taking as few crime novels are.

I am writing this in bed in Stockholm, thinking about the time I was on Polish morning television.  The guest before me was R2D2 of Star Wars fame.  I was tired, hungover, and a bit high on pain medication for my bad back and simply not in the mood for a translated conversation with a robot in Polish.  My handler was not happy after the show: ’You didn’t smile’, was the verdict.

But I am smiling now.  At the memory of the aggressive little robot.

A big wide killer of a smile.

Tomorrow the travelling road show that is me goes to Gothenburg, to the annual book fair.  It is the big party of the Swedish book industry, and can best be described as one long hangover for everybody.  It is great fun, and in Sweden, I am considered something of a man about town, so I am a fish in the right water there.

After that, I am scheduled to go to Rome, then to Canada, then to . . .

I don’t know where yet.  But there will be more of those nice, funny people to meet.  And more of those dreaded phone calls.

I realise I am a lucky man.  I get to live in many worlds.  Both a stranger and not.

Tuesday 25 September 2012

Gary Phillips in BIG WATER

At Shots, we’re big followers of award-winning crime writer and graphic novel writer Gary Phillips, as we first met Gary when he visited London’s Crimescene Event as a guest of honour with actor Richard Widmark in 2002

We’re excited about his new venture BIG WATER, which he’s working with Gilda Haas, via Kickstarter. We also support worthy enterprises that use Crime / Thriller Fiction as a springboard to influence our world for the better.

This Video Explains the concept of BIG WATER –

The Team is halfway there to get this graphic novel out, and apart from a great story from LA’s coolest dude Gary Phillips it also address an important issue, often neglected by the media, and something that will become important to all of us in the future – the control of water.

If the video does not play on your PC, you may need to upgrade your browser or click Here 

Water –– who owns it, who controls it –– that's the world's biggest environmental struggle. Water, an essential life force that makes up 60% of our bodies and 70% of the planet, is being commodified, corporatized, and stolen from the people.

In BIG WATER we’re using the medium of the graphic novel to tell an entertaining and informative tale about the fight to keep the water flowing, written by mystery writer Gary Phillips [The RinseThe Warlord of Willow Ridge].

BIG WATER takes place in the fictional Southeast L.A. town of Bell Park, where local activists, led by home town organizer Melinda Cruz, are fighting to keep their water out of private hands.  Meanwhile across town, the Double Six designer water label, where Melinda’s kid brother Jaime is a sales rep, is backing the privatization play so as to take over Bell Park’s historic aquifer.

BIG WATER is brought to you by Dr. Pop, your friendly neighborhood website that breaks down complicated issues about the economy, democracy, and the city in simple and intriguing ways. 

Gary's script has been written, and we are now raising money to:

1.  Hire the talented Mani Magalhães (Bicycle Cop Dave, Brand & Reese, Vincent Price Presents) to produce the sequential illustrations.
2. Publish the book.
3. Get BIG WATER into the hands of the eager masses.

More information Here


For information about the work of Gary Phillips Click Here [from last month’s Publishers Weekly Special Feature] and Click here for information about his work from PM Press.

We do hope you get involved in BIG WATER and support this venture.

Photo Top © 2011 Ali Karim of Shots Editor Mike Stotter taking over as Gary Phillips Security Man at Bouchercon in St Louis

Monday 24 September 2012

Sakey’s Scar Tissue

The Shots team would like you to support the efforts of bestselling writer Marcus Sakey as he supports a charity close to his heart, one that battles childhood cancer. Marcus Sakey is releasing an eBook entitled Scar Tissue to raise funds for the Team Julian Foundation. Marcus spoke candidly about this venture with Joe Konrath here

The Team Julian Foundation, a not-for-profit that raises research funds for childhood cancer, is teaming up with an acclaimed thriller novelist to raise money through e-book sales. The foundation was started by The Boivin family in memory of their son Julian who was diagnosed with an incurable brain tumor at the age of 4. Marcus Sakey, television host and author living in Chicago, is a personal friend of Brad and Nettie Boivin, and together, they are using the growing popularity of e-books to raise money for a worthy cause.

Marcus Sakey published his first book in 2007, but his friendship with the Boivin’s and their son Julian started long before his writing success. Seeing first-hand how the popularity of e-books and independent publishing is changing the publishing industry, decided to use his readership to raise money for the cause. He collected seven short stories and published the e-anthology, Scar Tissue. During the month of September, Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month, 100% of the proceeds will go directly to the Team Julian Foundation. After that, he will contribute 50% of the proceeds.

Sakey knew Julian since he was born and he was a sweet, happy-go-lucky kid. But Julian’s life changed dramatically one terrible morning in 2010 when he woke up feeling disoriented. His parents rushed him to the hospital, where Julian was diagnosed with an atypical brain stem glioma.

“One of the most terrifying nightmares a parent could ever face is learning that their child has cancer,” Nettie Boivin recalls. “What’s worse is when they’re told that a cure does not exist.”
The Boivins lost their son just 7 months later and created Team Julian shortly thereafter. Since its inception, the foundation has raised over $100K for pediatric cancer research. It is completely volunteer- based which means funds go directly to supporting research that ultimately leads to breakthroughs in cures for brain tumors and childhood cancer.
The e-book revolution has already changed the way we read, but now, it’s changing our ability to raise funds. Unlike gala dinners or organized walks, Scar Tissue will provide funds to the Team Julian foundation for years to come.

Boivin states, “Knowing Julian’s friendship with Marcus and their affinity for playing out stories of good and evil, Jules would be so proud to know his pal has joined forces to beat the ultimate bad guy - pediatric cancer.”

Buy Scar Tissue from : AmazonB&N

More information available from –

Shots would like to thank Dana Kaye of Kaye Publicity for alerting us about this venture

Friday 21 September 2012

The Relentless American

I’ve enjoyed Simon Kernick’s crime and thrillers for over a decade now, being energized by his early police procedurals featuring corrupt cop [turned hit-man] Dennis Milne. Simon debuted with ‘The Business of Dying’ in 1991, and followed up his furious London-based police action with The Murder Exchange, A Good Day to Die and The Crime Trade. I always wonder where the time went, as I recall vividly going to my first Bouchercon in 2003 with Simon in Las Vegas. We also went, with Sarah Weinman to the very first Harrogate crime writing festival in the same year. We found time to record a lengthy interview with Paul Johnston at the last Dead-on-Deansgate Crime Convention, meet up and interviewed Lawrence Block when he was presented with the Diamond Dagger Award by the British Crime Writers Association. We even went to a waste oil recycling plant in the East End of London. Our visit to this industrial plant was integral to the plot of one of his novels. During the visit, the hard-man of crime fiction felt somewhat queasy due to the pervading stench produced in the chemical process.

Simon changed writing direction radically in 2007 turning his hand away from the police procedural into thriller territory, with Relentless, a novel printed on solidified adrenaline. It was greeted to great acclaim winning the Richard and Judy Award in 2007, other winners in the crime and thriller category have been R J Ellory [A Quiet Belief in Angels], Linwood Barclay [No Time for Goodbye], Gregg Hurwitz [You’re Next] among others. The Richard and Judy Award in the UK is akin to the Oprah Winfrey Book Club awards.

So while at Harrogate earlier this year I got talking to Simon asking when would his thrillers finally surface in US; as several of my American colleagues were asking when they could access these titles, so I asked Simon to let us know -

Relentless, which is released on ebook in the US on September 18th at a special introductory price of $2.99, is my fifth novel, and my first one published in the States for seven years. I’ve recently signed a four book deal with Simon & Schuster, which will see Relentless and The Last Ten Seconds out in ebook this year, before my latest, Siege, is released in paperback next spring.

And I’ve got to say, after all this time it’s good to be back. I’ve still got a lot of readers and friends in the US from the time when my early books were published, and I’m looking forward to renewing acquaintances. I’ve also had a huge amount of encouragement from American writers like Harlan Coben and Lee Child, who’ve said some really nice things about my work, so I’m hoping to reach a lot more people with the books this time round.
Relentless is a good great one to be starting with too, as it was my breakout book. To date it’s sold over 400,000 copies in the UK, and 300,000 more copies overseas. It’s a high-octane, twisting and turning, thriller about an ordinary suburban man, Tom Meron, who suddenly finds himself on the run from a group of ruthless killers. With his wife missing, and wanted for murder, Tom only has hours to find out why he’s being targeted before his luck runs out.
Take a look at it. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Following Relentless, he continued his thriller theme with Severed which was based upon a nightmare Kernick suffered, which he detailed here. Long known for his late nights and drinking, one night when Mike Stotter, Micheal Marshall, Simon Kernick and I were drinking late at the opening party on Thursday at Crimefest 2008; at 4am Friday Morning, the Shots Editor-in–Chief Mike Stotter asked if [when Simon had the nightmare that lead to the plot of Relentless] he had wet his bed? We all roared laughing, especially Simon, as he has very good sense of humour, something he deploys to bring relief to the unbearable tension he ratchets up in this thriller novels. 

Though full of life and fun, Simon Kernick takes his writing very seriously, and is on the board at The Crime Writers Association and always working hard promoting literacy.

I urge you to explore the threatening world of Simon Kernick’s thrillers now that they are available in the US in eBook editions.

More information is available here

Top Photo of Richard and Judy Award Winners Linwood Barclay and Simon Kernick at Theakston’s Crime Writing Festival Harrogate  © 2011 A Karim 

Bottom Photo of Simon Kernick being interviewed by ITV3 at Theakston's Old Peculiar Crime Writing Festival 2011

Thursday 20 September 2012

A Dark Place to Die with Ed Chatterton

Today's guest blog is an interview of author Ed Chatterton by Nick Quantrill.  

Ed Chatterton has worked at various points as an illustrator, written for children and set up his own design company. Nick Quantrill talks to Ed about his first adult novel, “A Dark Place To Die”, a slice of ‘Brit Grit’ set in Liverpool and Australia.

NQ – Congratulation on a great crime debut, Ed. In your own words, what’s “A Dark Place To Die” all about?

EC – Thanks for the compliment, Nick. ‘A Dark Place To Die’ focuses on Menno Koopman, an ex-Liverpool cop with Dutch ancestry and freshly-retired to Australia, who is sucked back into his old world when a burnt body is discovered amongst Antony Gormley’s iron men sculptures on a Liverpool beach. The victim turns out to be connected on a personal level with Koopman and he returns to his home city to conduct his own investigation. The killing on the beach is the start of a story about a large scale drug deal gone wrong between Liverpool and an organised gang operating out of Australia’s Gold Coast. The violence escalates in unexpected and savage ways as Koopman, and his protege, DI Frank Keane, dig deeper into the case.

NQ – Although it’s your first crime novel, it’s certainly not your first appearance in print, is it?

EC – No, I have been writing children’s fiction for almost twenty years. Mostly that’s been for upper primary levels with a few YA novels in there too. ‘A Dark Place To Die’ is actually my 32nd book as a writer. There have been a couple of forays into crime fiction before within the world of children’s books. Two other YA novels: ‘The Brain Finds A Leg’ (Little Hare) and ‘Michigan Moorcroft RIP’ (Scholastic), although surreally comedic, were essentially crime books. I started out as an illustrator - which is something I still do - and I have probably illustrated around 140 books in total.

NQ – Why did you want to write a crime novel? Have you always been a big reader of the genre?

EC - I found that I was becoming slightly frustrated operating within the boundaries of children’s fiction. Don’t get me wrong: I’ll continue to write for children if there’s a demand, but I wanted to write about subjects that interested me (primarily violence, sex and death!) without being constrained by the age of the reader. There was also the aspect of the sophistication of the language. Although I’ve always written ‘up’ in my children’s fiction, there are concepts and language that you can only use when writing for adults. I was prodded into action by meeting another children’s writer, Phillip Gwynne, at an event. His first crime novel (‘The Build Up’) had just been published and I was incredibly envious; an underrated emotion I always think. Prompted by envy, I set about writing what turned out to be ‘A Dark Place To Die’ which I had been kicking around since 2002 when I was living in the US.

I have always been a big crime reader; from Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie as a child through to my current tastes which lean towards Elmore Leonard, George Pelecanos and Patricia Highsmith. I believe that the very best writers are working in crime fiction. Almost every feted writer I read appears flabby and self-indulgent when placed next to Leonard or Pelecanos. That doesn’t mean there aren’t terrible crime writers: there are, far too many, but if there’s a better book by a living writer than ‘Get Shorty’ then I’d like to see it. I think also that the way Pelecanos weaves his home town of Washington DC into his work, without it ever becoming claustrophobic or cloying, is masterful.

NQ – Turning back to “A Dark Place To Die”, the split location between Liverpool and Australia is very intriguing and one of the novel’s major strengths. Did the character of Menno Koopman, a Liverpudlian now settled in Australia draw heavily on your own background?

EC – Yes, probably it did although there are a number of key differences. I was at the Brisbane Writers Festival a few weeks ago appearing with the Swedish crime writer, Asa Larsson, and she made the comment that it is often in the first novel that a writer uses the most personal stuff. I agree to an extent but I think because this is not my first fiction (by a long shot) there is perhaps less than with most ‘new’ writers. I picked the name Menno Koopman from a Dutch guy I play football with as I wanted him to have a less than typical Liverpool background. I didn’t want the book(s) to be too ‘scouse’ in flavour as I think that being too much in love with your setting can be a problem if you want readers from elsewhere. The reason for the settings is the old adage of ‘write what you know’. That sentiment isn’t something I completely agree with but it helped me in this case. The contrast between the apparent paradise of Australia and the grit of Liverpool was appealing although I won’t be revisiting the Australian setting in the sequel.

NQ – And in relation to Liverpool as a setting, it seems to be one of the great British cities which is very much underrepresented in crime writing. What do you think makes it a place worth exploring?

EC - I’m an emigrant which I feel gives me a more objective view of the place and one of the things I wanted to do was not to be too ‘local’. Liverpool is a big city with a massive global history. I don’t think it thinks of itself as English and I have tried where possible to reflect that. Its history as a port - a spectacularly bloody one when you think about the emergence of the place through the slave trade - makes it a great starting point for stories which begin ‘small’ and expand. I find that the city seems to have more in common with places like New York, Boston, Dublin, Hamburg and Glasgow than other English cities, largely because of its one time importance as a port, but also because of a long-standing multi-cultural mix.

The crime rates in Liverpool are no worse than elsewhere but there is a streak of almost piratical entrepreneurship at work in the criminal psyche which makes it interesting as a writer. There’s a small reference I make in the book about the Liver Bird being an appropriate symbol for Liverpool due to it being based on a poorly-copied drawing of an eagle. The result was a new creature. There’s something very Liverpool about that.

NQ – One of the most striking things to me is that although “A Dark Place To Die” is billed as a police procedural, we don’t learn an awful lot about DI Keane and DS Harris away from their work. It’s maybe a little unusual. Was that a deliberate decision?

EC – Yes, it was. As a fan of George Pelecanos I wanted to have a series that while utilising characters who re-occur in book to book, the size of the roles they play in each book are not predetermined. So, for example, while ‘A Dark Place To Die’ has at its centre the character of Menno Koopman, the sequel shifts emphasis to Frank Keane and, to a lesser extent, Emily Harris. The third book will probably move Emily Harris to the forefront. I like this approach in the books I read so I’m hoping it will appeal to my readers. The ‘police procedural’ is a little bit of a misnomer. I deliberately didn’t get the manuscript read by anyone connected to the police force although I do have several good contacts. This was because I don’t want to get bogged down in the endless detail of bureaucracy. From a narrative point of view the ‘correct’ procedure is often the dullest. I tried to be as accurate as I could - just so long as it didn’t impede the narrative or make the characters less believable. Keane and Harris’s lack of background came from knowing a number of coppers who like to keep things very close to the chest. Koopman, being retired and having a very unusual home life, is fair game. The character of Keane will emerge more slowly; just like any relationship with a real-life copper. They don’t give too much personal information away.

NQ – On the other hand, many of the peripheral characters are so vivid and rich, maybe they have the potential to reappear in future work. I’m thinking about Gittings, the washed-up alcoholic former Merseyside police officer and Warren Eckhardt who handles the Australian side of the investigation. Again, was that deliberate or just an example of those happy accidents which occur when you’re writing?

EC – I love peripheral characters and Eckhardt is one of my favourites. It’s easy to write these kind of characters but I didn’t want to have anyone like that at the forefront. The reason is one of believability; I’m a bit sick of reading cop novels in which the main character is peppered with flaws and psychological ticks. I think you can get away with that in the more minor characters. Warren Eckhardt reappears in book two in the series but I’m afraid Gittings is no more.

NQ – The novel has been out for a while now in Australia. What kind of reception has it had?

EC – It’s had a really good reception. It was Random House Book of the Month in August and the feedback from reviewers and readers has been uniformly positive. It has also been optioned by a movie company which is pretty exciting.  One of the unexpected things has been that over here I am now seen as representing the really dark, gritty, grungy end of the crime spectrum. I appeared on a recent festival panel called ‘I Like It Confronting’ in which I was there as the representative of hard-nosed, edgy fiction.  I’m in a schizophrenic place right now with the book coming out in the UK. My feeling is that when books two and three come out I will be seen as a British crime writer, not an Australian (at festivals many people assume I’m visiting Australia).

NQ – And what can we expect next? Will the next novel be set solely in Liverpool?

EC - I have just completed the first draft of the second book. I wish I could give you the title but I’m still arm-wrestling with Random House about what it will be called.  My suggestions: ‘In The Belly Of The Beast’ and ‘From The Cradle To The Grave’ had a lukewarm reception . . . but we’ll come to a gentlemanly agreement soon.  What I can tell you is that the setting is Liverpool and Los Angeles and centres around the movie business (Liverpool is, after London, the most used film location in the UK). Australia doesn’t get a look in although Koopman and Eckhardt do figure. This story begins with a murder-suicide in a leafy middle-class suburb (it’s actually set in my old next-door neighbour’s house). Keane and Harris soon discover that the apparently simple case has wider implications. Without giving too much away I can say that the Liverpool end of things focuses on a movie being made in the city which has as its subject the Joseph Williamson Tunnels. These tunnels (which are real) were built by an eccentric Victorian for no apparent reason. They run for hundreds of metres under the city and range in size from narrow crawl spaces to huge arched caverns. The labyrinthine setting echoes the theme of the novel which is (cue drum roll) based on the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur. As with ‘A Dark Place To Die’, there is blood, there is sex and there is realism as the narrative unfolds in an unexpected but believable way. From dead dentists to global conspiracies in 500 pages.

A Dark Place to Die by Ed Chatterton is published 27th September (Arrow)

More information about Ed and his writing can be found on his website.

Tuesday 18 September 2012

Marshall’s Killer Move

It’s been over a decade since Michael Marshall Smith, truncated his name and entered the world of crime / thriller fiction with the worldwide bestseller THE STRAW MEN. This novel of his The Straw Men established Michael Marshall as writer of crime thrillers that saw the world slightly off kilter, almost from a parallaxed view, unsettling, disturbing and most of all - different.

He followed up this startling novel with two further novels that explored this terrifying theme, THE LONELY DEAD, and BLOOD OF ANGELS. He wrote an essay for Shots on why he had made The Straw Men into a trilogy and what compelled him to write such disturbing work.

He followed up this trilogy with two equally unsettling thrillers, THE INTRUDERS and BAD THINGS. Since then we’ve had a gap in his novels as Michael has been occupied writing for the screen, and splitting his time between California and London. He recently joined the crime fiction cabal at Orion Publishing with his novel KILLER MOVE, which has just been released in Paperback in the UK and by William Morrow in the US, and again prepare to be unsettled –

Bill Moore already has a lot, but he wants more... much more.

He's got a lucrative job selling condos in the Florida Keys, a successful wife, a good marriage, a beautiful house. He also has a five-year plan for supersuccess, but that plan has begun to drag into its sixth year without reaping its intended rewards. So now Bill's starting to mix it up—just a little—to accelerate his way into the future that he knows he deserves.

Then one morning Bill arrives at work to find a card waiting for him, with no indication who it's from or why it was sent. Its message is just one word: modified.

From that moment on, Bill's life begins to change.

At first, nothing seems very different. But when things begin to unwind rapidly, and one after another, people around Bill start to die, it becomes increasingly clear that someone somewhere has a very different plan for Bill's future.

Confused and angry, Bill begins to fight against this unseen force until he comes to a terrifying, inescapable realization: Once modified, there's no going back.

Michael came to London to launch the Paperback of Killer Move, with Mike Stotter and Ali Karim from Shots invited to join some of the London Critics for lunch and drinks. As a long term reader of Michael’s work, I am excited to see that he has a new and highly anticipated novel due in March 2013 from Orion Publishing entitled THE FORGOTTEN.

Shots Ezine thanks Angela McMahon of Orion Publishing in having organized a special competition to celebrate the return of Michael Marshall in print with a prize of a signed paperback copy of KILLER MOVE.

All you have to do is answer this simple question –

Name the title of Michael Marshall Smith’s debut novel released in 1994.
Hint - it was the winner of the August Derleth Award [1995] and Philip K. Dick Award [2000]

[a] Only Backward
[b] Only Sideways
[d] Only Forward
[e] The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch

Send your answer in an email to marking the subject line “KILLER MOVE” and please include a postal address.

The Closing date for entries is 1 / November / 2012 12:00:00 AM

Terms and Conditions for the competition are below –

Good Luck, and if you've not read Michael Marshall or Michael Marshall Smith or even M.M. Smith - you have some wonderful books and short stories ahead of you Click this link to learn more > 

Photos Top  © 2012 Ali Karim L-R Ali Karim, Jake Kerridge, Michael Marshall, Barry Forshaw, Mike Stotter and Peter Guttridge

Terms and conditions for the Michael Marshall "Killer Move" Competition
  • Closing date for entries is 1 / November / 2012 12:00:00 AM
  • All correct entries will be entered into a prize draw and the first correct answer picked at random on 2nd / November / 2012 will be declared the winner of the book.
  • The winner will be notified by email within 14 days of the promotion closing date and is required to accept their prize by email or phone call within 14 days of notification.
  • In the event of non-acceptance within the specified period, the promoter reserves the right to reallocate the prize to the next randomly drawn correct and valid entry.
  • The winner will be notified within 28 days of the closing date. No responsibility can be accepted for lost or misplaced entries
  • The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative
  • Only one entry per person
  • Incorrect or illegible answers or entries received after the entry date will not be entered into the prize draw
  • The judges decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into
  • No geographical restrictions

Friday 14 September 2012

Current List of authors and titles available from The Murder Room

Boucher, Anthony      Nine Times Nine
Boucher, Anthony      Rocket to the Morgue
Boucher, Anthony      The Case of the Seven of Calvary
Boucher, Anthony      The Case of the Crumpled Knave
Cain, James M.          Double Indemnity
Cain, James M.          Mildred Pierce
Cain, James M.          Serenade
Cain, James M.          The Postman Always Rings Twice
Chase, James Hadley           Come Easy - Go Easy
Chase, James Hadley           Eve
Chase, James Hadley           Just Another Sucker
Chase, James Hadley           Mission to Sienna
Chase, James Hadley           Mission to Venice
Chase, James Hadley           More Deadly Than the Male
Chase, James Hadley           No Orchids for Miss Blandish
Chase, James Hadley           Not Safe to Be Free
Chase, James Hadley           Shock Treatment
Chase, James Hadley           What's Better Than Money
Cheyney, Peter           The Man is Dangerous
Cheyney, Peter           Poison Ivy
Cheyney, Peter           Dames Don't Care
Cheyney, Peter           Can Ladies Kill?
Cheyney, Peter           Don’t Get Me Wrong
Cheyney, Peter           You'd Be Surprised
Cheyney, Peter           Your Deal, My Lovely
Cheyney, Peter           Never a Dull Moment
Cheyney, Peter           You Can Always Duck
Cheyney, Peter           I'll Say She Does
Ellin, Stanley  The Stronghold
Ellin, Stanley  The Luxembourg Run
Ellin, Stanley  Very Old Money
Ellin, Stanley  The Speciality of the House
Ellin, Stanley  The Eighth Circle
Fleming, Joan            Two Lovers Too Many
Fleming, Joan            The Man Who Looked Back
Fleming, Joan            A Daisy-Chain for Satan
Fleming, Joan            The Deeds of Dr Deadcert
Fleming, Joan            The Gallows in my Garden
Fleming, Joan            The Good and the Bad
Fleming, Joan            He Ought to be Shot
Fleming, Joan            Maiden's Prayer
Fleming, Joan            Polly Put the Kettle On
Fleming, Joan            You Can't Believe your Eyes
Gores, Joe      Hammett
Gores, Joe      Interface
Gores, Joe      Spade and Archer
Higgins, George V.    The Friends of Eddie Coyle
Higgins, George V.    Cogan's Trade
Household, Geoffrey The Courtesy of Death
Household, Geoffrey Doom's Caravan
Household, Geoffrey Face to the Sun
Household, Geoffrey The Last Two Weeks of Georges Rivac
Household, Geoffrey Red Anger
Household, Geoffrey Summon the Bright Water
Hubbard, P. M.          The Causeway
Hubbard, P. M.          Cold Waters
Hubbard, P. M.          The Custom of the Country
Hubbard, P. M.          The Dancing Man
Hubbard, P. M.          Flush as May
Hubbard, P. M.          The Graveyard
James, Bill     You'd Better Believe It
James, Bill     The Lolita Man
James, Bill     Halo Parade
James, Bill     Protection
James, Bill     Come Clean
James, Bill     Take
Kaye, M. M.    Death in Kashmir
Kaye, M. M.    Death in Berlin
Kaye, M. M.    Death in Cyprus
Kaye, M. M.    Death in Kenya
Kaye, M. M.    Death in Zanzibar
Kaye, M. M.    Death in the Andamans
Knox, Ronald The Body in the Silo
Knox, Ronald Double Cross Purposes
Knox, Ronald The Footsteps at the Lock
Knox, Ronald Still Dead
Knox, Ronald The Three Taps
Knox, Ronald The Viaduct Murder
MacDonald, Ross      Black Money
Margaret Millar         Beast in View
Meynell, Laurence     Danger Round the Corner
Meynell, Laurence     The Frightened Man
Meynell, Laurence     Too Clever By Half
Meynell, Laurence     Death By Arrangement
Meynell, Laurence     The Thirteen Trumpeters
Meynell, Laurence     The Fairly Innocent Little Man
Price, Anthony           The Labyrinth Makers
Price, Anthony           The Alamut Ambush
Price, Anthony           Colonel Butler's Wolf
Price, Anthony           October Men
Price, Anthony           Other Paths to Glory
Price, Anthony           Our Man in Camelot
Price, Anthony           War Game
Price, Anthony           The '44 Vintage
Price, Anthony           Tomorrow's Ghost
Price, Anthony           The Hour of the Donkey
Price, Anthony           Soldier No More
Price, Anthony           The Old Vengeful
Price, Anthony           Gunner Kelly
Price, Anthony           Sion Crossing
Price, Anthony           Here Be Monsters
Price, Anthony           For the Good of the State
Price, Anthony           A New Kind of War
Price, Anthony           A Prospect of Vengeance
Price, Anthony           The Memory Trap
Thompson, Jim          The Getaway
Thompson, Jim          The Killer Inside Me
Thompson, Jim          After Dark, My Sweet
Thompson, Jim          Pop 1280
Thompson, Jim          The Grifters
Thompson, Jim          A Hell of a Woman
Thompson, Jim          A Swell-Looking Babe
Thompson, Jim          Nothing More Than Murder
Thompson, Jim          Savage Night
Household, Geoffrey Watcher in the Shadows
Household, Geoffrey A Time to Kill
Chase, James Hadley           A Can of Worms
Chase, James Hadley           A Coffin From Hong Kong
Chase, James Hadley           An Ace Up My Sleeve
Chase, James Hadley           An Ear to the Ground
Chase, James Hadley           Believe This . . . You'll Believe Anything
Chase, James Hadley           Believed Violent
Chase, James Hadley           Consider Yourself Dead
Chase, James Hadley           Do Me a Favour, Drop Dead
Chase, James Hadley           Goldfish Have No Hiding Place
Chase, James Hadley           Have a Nice Night
Chase, James Hadley           Hand Me a Fig Leaf
Chase, James Hadley           Have a Change of Scene
Chase, James Hadley           Have This One on Me
Chase, James Hadley           Hit Them Where it Hurts
Chase, James Hadley           I Hold the Four Aces
Chase, James Hadley           I Would Rather Stay Poor
Chase, James Hadley           Just a Matter of Time
Chase, James Hadley           Knock, Knock! Who's There?
Chase, James Hadley           Like a Hole in the Head
Chase, James Hadley           My Laugh Comes Last
Chase, James Hadley           Not My Thing
Chase, James Hadley           One Bright Summer Morning
Chase, James Hadley           So What Happens to Me?
Chase, James Hadley           Tell it to the Birds
Chase, James Hadley           The Joker in the Pack
Chase, James Hadley           The Soft Centre
Chase, James Hadley           The Vulture is a Patient Bird
Chase, James Hadley           The Whiff of Money
Chase, James Hadley           Try This One For Size
Chase, James Hadley           Want to Stay Alive?
Chase, James Hadley           We'll Share a Double Funeral
Chase, James Hadley           Well Now, My Pretty
Chase, James Hadley           You Can Say That Again
Chase, James Hadley           You Have Yourself a Deal
Chase, James Hadley           You Must be Kidding
Chase, James Hadley           You're Dead Without Money
Cheyney, Peter           Urgent Hangman
Cheyney, Peter           Dangerous Curves
Cheyney, Peter           You Can't Keep the Change
Cheyney, Peter           It Couldn't Matter Less
Cheyney, Peter           Sorry You've Been Troubled
Cheyney, Peter           They Never Say When
Cheyney, Peter           Uneasy Terms
Cheyney, Peter           Dark Duet
Cheyney, Peter           The Stars Are Dark
Cheyney, Peter           The Dark Street
Cheyney, Peter           Sinister Errand
Cheyney, Peter           Dark Hero
Cheyney, Peter           Dark Interlude
Cheyney, Peter           Dark Wanton
Cheyney, Peter           Dark Bahama
Conan Doyle, Sir Arthur        Sherlock Holmes's Greatest Cases
Connington, J. J.       Almighty Gold
Connington, J. J.       The Boathouse Riddle
Connington, J. J.       The Case with Nine Solutions
Connington, J. J.       The Castleford Conundrum
Connington, J. J.       Commonsense Is All You Need
Connington, J. J.       The Counsellor
Connington, J. J.       The Dangerfield Talisman
Connington, J. J.       Death at Swaythling Court
Connington, J. J.       The Eye in the Museum
Connington, J. J.       For Murder Will Speak (AKA Murder Will Speak)
Connington, J. J.       The Four Defences
Connington, J. J.       The Ha-Ha Case (AKA The Brandon Case)
Connington, J. J.       In Whose Dim Shadow (AKA The Tau Cross Mystery)
Connington, J. J.       Jack-In-The-Box
Connington, J. J.       A Minor Operation
Connington, J. J.       Murder in the Maze
Connington, J. J.       Mystery at Lynden Sands
Connington, J. J.       Nemesis at Raynham Parva (AKA Grim Vengeance)
Connington, J. J.       No Past is Dead
Connington, J. J.       Nordenholt's Million
Connington, J. J.       The Sweepstake Murders
Connington, J. J.       Tom Tiddler's Island (AKA Gold Brick Island)
Connington, J. J.       Tragedy at Ravensthorpe
Connington, J. J.       Truth Comes Limping
Connington, J. J.       The Twenty-One Clues
Connington, J. J.       The Two Tickets Puzzle (AKA The Two Ticket Puzzle)
Fleming, Joan            Alas, Poor Father
Fleming, Joan            The Chill and the Kill
Fleming, Joan            Death of a Sardine
Fleming, Joan            Dirty Butter for Servants
Fleming, Joan            Every Inch a Lady
Fleming, Joan            Grim Death and the Barrow Boys
Fleming, Joan            Hell's Belle
Fleming, Joan            How to Live Dangerously
Fleming, Joan            In the Red
Fleming, Joan            Kill or Cure
Fleming, Joan            Malice Matrimonial
Fleming, Joan            The Man From Nowhere
Fleming, Joan            Midnight Hag
Fleming, Joan            Miss Bones
Fleming, Joan            No Bones About It
Fleming, Joan            Nothing is the Number When you Die
Fleming, Joan            Screams From a Penny Dreadful
Fleming, Joan            To Make an Underworld
Fleming, Joan            Too Late! Too Late! The Maiden Cried
Fleming, Joan            You Won't Let me Finish
Gores, Joe      Hammett
Gores, Joe      Interface
Gores, Joe      Space and Archer
Higgins, George V.    At End of Day
Higgins, George V.    The Digger's Game
Higgins, George V.    Outlaws
Higgins, George V.    The Patriot Game
Higgins, George V.    The Rat on Fire
Hubbard, P. M.          High Tide
Hubbard, P. M.          A Hive of Glass
Hubbard, P. M.          Kill Claudio
Hubbard, P. M.          Picture of Millie
Hubbard, P. M.          The Quiet River
Hubbard, P. M.          A Rooted Sorrow
Hubbard, P. M.          A Thirsty Evil
Hubbard, P. M.          The Tower
Hubbard, P. M.          The Whisper in the Glen
James, Bill     Club
James, Bill     Astride a Grave
James, Bill     Gospel
James, Bill     Roses, Roses
James, Bill     In Good Hands
James, Bill     The Detective is Dead
James, Bill     Top Banana
James, Bill     Panicking Ralph
James, Bill     Lovely Mover
James, Bill     Eton Crop
James, Bill     Kill Me
James, Bill     Pay Days
James, Bill     Naked at the Window
James, Bill     The Girl With the Long Back
James, Bill     Easy Streets
James, Bill     Wolves of Memory
James, Bill     Girls
James, Bill     Pix
James, Bill     In the Absence of Iles
James, Bill     Hotbed
James, Bill     I am Gold
McCloy, Helen           Dance of Death
McCloy, Helen           The Man in the Moonlight
McCloy, Helen           The Deadly Truth
McCloy, Helen           Who's Calling
McCloy, Helen           Cue for Murder
McCloy, Helen           The Goblin Market
McCloy, Helen           The One That Got Away
McCloy, Helen           Through a Glass, Darkly
McCloy, Helen           Alias Basil Willing
McCloy, Helen           The Long Body
McCloy, Helen           Two-Thirds of a Ghost
McCloy, Helen           Mr Splitfoot
McCloy, Helen           Burn This
McCloy, Helen           The Pleasant Assasin and Other Cases of Dr Basil Willing
McCloy, Helen           Panic
McCloy, Helen           Before I Die
McCloy, Helen           The Imposter
McCloy, Helen           The Singing Diamonds and Other Stories
Meynell, Laurence     Don't Stop for Hooky Heffernan
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky and the Crock of Gold
Meynell, Laurence     Lost Half Hour
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky Gets the Wooden Spoon
Meynell, Laurence     Papersnake
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky and the Villainous Chauffeur
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky and the Prancing Horse
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky Goes to Blazes
Meynell, Laurence     Silver Guilt
Meynell, Laurence     The Open Door
Meynell, Laurence     The Affair at Barwold
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky Catches a Tartar
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky on Loan
Meynell, Laurence     Hooky Hooked
Meynell, Laurence     Third Time Unlucky
Meynell, Laurence     The Creaking Chair
Meynell, Laurence     The Breaking Point
Meynell, Laurence     The House in Marsh Road
Meynell, Laurence     One Step From Murder
Procter, Maurice        Rich is the Treasure
Procter, Maurice        The Pub Crawler
Procter, Maurice        Three at the Angel
Procter, Maurice        The Spearhead Death
Procter, Maurice        Devil in the Moonlight
Procter, Maurice        The Dog Man
Procter, Maurice        I Will Speak Daggers
Procter, Maurice        Hell is a City
Procter, Maurice        The Midnight Plumber
Procter, Maurice        Man in Ambush
Procter, Maurice        Killer at Large
Procter, Maurice        Devil's Due
Procter, Maurice        The Devil was Handsome
Procter, Maurice        A Body to Spare
Procter, Maurice        Moonlight Flitting
Procter, Maurice        Two Men in Twenty
Procter, Maurice        Death Has a Shadow (AKA Homicide Blonde)
Procter, Maurice        His Weight in Gold
Procter, Maurice        Rogue Running
Procter, Maurice        Exercise Hoodwink
Procter, Maurice        Hideaway
Thomas, Donald        Belladonna: A Lewis Carroll Nightmare
Thomas, Donald        The Ripper's Apprentice
Thomas, Donald        Jekyll, Alias Hyde
Thomas, Donald        The Arrest of Scotland Yard
Thomas, Donald        Dancing in the Dark
Thomas, Donald        Red Flowers for a Lady Blue
Thomas, Donald        The Secret Cases of Sherlock Holmes
Thomas, Donald        Sherlock Holmes and Running Noose
Thomas, Donald        Sherlock Holmes and the Voice From the Crypt
Thomas, Donald        Flight of the Eagle
Thomas, Donald        Dead Giveaway
Thomas, Donald (as Francis Selwyn)          Crackman on Velvet
Thomas, Donald (as Francis Selwyn)          The Hangman's Child
Thomas, Donald (as Francis Selwyn)          Sergeant Verity Presents his Compliments
Thomas, Donald (as Francis Selwyn)          Sergeant Verity and the Blood Royal
Thomas, Donald (as Francis Selwyn)          Sergeant Verity and the Imperial Diamond
Underwood, Michael Murder on Trial (1954)
Underwood, Michael Murder Made Absolute (1955)
Underwood, Michael Death on Remand (1956)
Underwood, Michael False Witness (1957)
Underwood, Michael Lawful Pursuit (1958)
Underwood, Michael Arm of the Law (1959)
Underwood, Michael Cause of Death (1960)
Underwood, Michael Death by Misadventure (1960)
Underwood, Michael Adam's Case (1961)
Underwood, Michael The Case Against Philip Quest (1962)
Underwood, Michael Girl Found Dead (1963)
Underwood, Michael The Crime of Colin Wise (1964)
Underwood, Michael The Anxious Conspirator (1965)
Underwood, Michael The Man Who Died on Friday (1967)
Underwood, Michael The Man Who Killed Too Soon (1968)
Underwood, Michael The Shadow Game (1970)
Underwood, Michael Trout in the Milk (1971)
Underwood, Michael Reward for a Defector (1973)
Underwood, Michael The Unprofessional Spy (1975)
Underwood, Michael A Pinch of Snuff (1974)
Underwood, Michael Crime upon Crime (1980)
Underwood, Michael Double Jeopardy (1981)
Underwood, Michael Goddess of Death (1982)
Underwood, Michael A Party to Murder (1983)
Underwood, Michael Death in Camera (1984)
Underwood, Michael The Hidden Man (1985)
Underwood, Michael Death at Deepwood Grange (1986)
Underwood, Michael The Injudicious Judge (1987)
Underwood, Michael The Uninvited Corpse (1987)
Underwood, Michael Dual Enigma (1988)
Underwood, Michael A Compelling Case (1989)
Underwood, Michael A Dangerous Business (1990)
Underwood, Michael Rosa's Dilemma (1990)
Underwood, Michael The Seeds of Murder (1991)
Underwood, Michael Guilty Conscience (1992)
Underwood, Michael The Juror (1975)
Underwood, Michael Menaces, Menaces (1976)
Underwood, Michael The Fatal Trip (1977)
Underwood, Michael Murder with Malice (1977)
Underwood, Michael Crooked Wood (1978)
Underwood, Michael A Crime Apart (1966)
Underwood, Michael Shem's Demise (1970)
Underwood, Michael The Silent Liars (1970)
Underwood, Michael Anything But the Truth (1978)
Underwood, Michael Smooth Justice (1979)
Underwood, Michael Victim of Circumstance (1979)
Underwood, Michael A Clear Case of Suicide (1980)
Underwood, Michael The Hand of Fate (1981)