Category Archives: Chris Black

Kill Me Quick is BACK TO LIFE!

Kill me quick new

My seaside noir KILL ME QUICK has been rebooted and suited by the folks at Fahrenheit 13 and Farhrenheit Press, and you can pick it up at a discount price if you buy it direct from the publishers.

The eBook is less than a quid and the paperback is less than a fiver!

Can’t fall off!

Get the eBook here and the paperback here.

Or you can grab it from the Amazons, if you’re that way inclined.

‘We’re all lying in the gutter, but some of us are staring at the spaces between the stars… 

Seatown may not have a lot going for it – apart from the Roy Orbison lookalikes and Super Seventies Special every Thursday night, of course – but it is at least the place Mark Hammonds calls home. And after a decade away, it’s the place he returns to when he has nowhere else to go.

From dead bikers to dodgy drug deals, from one downbeat bar to another, from strippers to gangsters and back again: the luckless former musician bounces from one misdeed to the next along with a litany of old acquaintances, almost as though he never left. And if only he can shake off everybody who wants to kill, maim or otherwise hurt him, maybe he could even think about staying.

After all, there’s no place like home, eh?

“Gritty, fast-paced and hilarious. The dialogue is full of sharp one liners and insightful asides, and the characters are all larger than life. An absurd story told with such finesse that even the most over-the-top scenes feel real. My guess is you’ll read it in one sitting.” – SW Lauden (author of Bad Citizen Corporation andCrosswise)

“Dark and delicious… With ‘Kill Me Quick!’ the author has provided yet another delicious plate of cool cynicism, peppered with spicy dialogue and an inky black-humour sauce. Paul D. Brazill’s Seatown backdrop is luridly drawn; the characters are a blend of hopeless, scary and hilarious, while the verbal exchanges are as sharp and dry as glass of Northumberland moonshine on the rocks. The gritty darkness of the north-east has never been so much fun. Fabulous.” – Dominic Milne (author of Act of Contrition)

“Fahrenheit 13 have done an excellent job in assembling top quality novellas in this series and Paul Brazill’s offering is no exception. They say home is where the heart is….if you’re a character in a novella by Paul D. Brazill that heart will probably soon be removed and by a gangster with vicious intent! As always with this author’s stories it’s entertaining, witty and always a fun read. A great crime caper that is a steal at the price. Five stars.” – Darren Sant (author of Dark Voices and various Radgepacket tales from the legendary Byker Books)

“A smart and insane ride through the underbelly of crime. Told with his characteristic punch, this is as gritty and as hard boiled as it gets and Brazill is a master at it. By turn humorous and captivating this will keep you guessing. A Noir novel textured with local culture and razor sharp dialogue. Highly Recommended.” – Richard Godwin (author of Wrong Crowd and Confessions of a Hitman)

“This novella is a crazy crime jukebox that takes in everything from crooners to croakers without missing a beat…. Get it. If you have anything like a sense of humour and a heart as black as the inside of a body bag, you’ll love it. Besides, best corpse disposal trick ever.” – Graham Wynd (author of Extricate and Satan’s Sorority)

“The story winds tight as Hammond’s life unravels. Brazill uses his trademark wordplay and humour to add extra layers to the experience and manages to draw out laughs from the most uncomfortable situations. There’s also a vast soundtrack…. If I were to select a song to sum up this novella, Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll would be my pick and, if they’re elements you enjoy in your noir, this is the book for you. Terrific fun.” – Nigel Bird (author of Southsiders and Dirty Old Town & Other Stories)

“An oddball crime book with pitch black humor and wordplay while the out of luck lowlifes run from one unlucky event to the next. Everything is delivered with that dry kind of understatement only the Brits have mastered… where even the strangest situations are funny even they are not funny at all.” – Miranda (booklikes.com)’

Guest blog: ERSATZ WORLD by Richard Godwin.

RICHARD GODWIN EATS THE WORLD!!!!!!!!Someone is playing computer games with mankind.

REALITY?

‘The medium is the message.’

Marshall McLuhan.

Here are some thoughts about my latest novel Ersatz World.

ERSATZ

As defined by the OED:

‘(Of a product) made or used as a substitute, typically an inferior one, for something else.

Etymology

Late 19th century from German, literally, ‘replacement.’

This is a novel about a man who thinks he is being followed, who is abducted four times by the same two men in different styles and periods of dress because they think he has some information they need. Each abduction is told in a different genre. While the novel has a Noir feel, it may be satire, it may be a thriller, it may be sci fi, or something hybrid, something else. It resists genre and portrays a world of simulations. The protagonist, a publisher, hates the digital age of publishing and believes we are being turned into code. His wife is suffering from body dysmorphia and collecting prosthetic limbs. The protagonist thinks his business partner is working with androids. His bestselling author has disappeared.  As he searches for the author the police arrest him. They think the author’s manuscript is a blueprint for a terrorist attack on London.

LIVING IN THE REPLACED WORLD

This is what he tries to do as he is accused of planning a crime, hiring two men to abduct him, plotting an incendiary attack, and having an affair with a gangster’s moll. The word Ruby occurs throughout. It may be a clue in a paranoid puzzle. It may be the name of his mistress, married to a dangerous man. The world he knew is gone, he struggles to find it.

ersatz worldSIMULATED WORLD

That is what he sees, the publisher afraid of code. He seeks the real body, the body politic beyond the code. There are different segments of reality going on in the novel, different states of truth that the protagonist has to work his way through. As he does he begins to understand his wife’s obsessive need for disembodiment, for a disembodied state of being.

He escapes his captors and then the police arrest him for murder and ask him about the code word Ruby. It may be that his wife’s emails have triggered a false positive. It is all unreal now, simulated world of spies, the age of surveillance, of voyeurism. Then there is a terrorist attack on London.

GENRE

Simulation, parody, definitions of style and approaches to a reality that cannot be defined, cannot be caught in a net, there is no genre in the novel. This is hybrid Art. It seems that the protagonist may be right after all, he may be under surveillance, but then he thinks we all are. In this passage at the beginning of the novel, as he gets up and reads the newspaper he ponders on the real:

‘He scanned the article, seeing ruins crumble, entire edifices of the world he once felt was secure becoming powder, like the dust that settled each night on his marital bed. He felt historicised, as if a resident zeitgeist were fracturing his being, splintering his identity like a piece of bone. The familiar taste of nausea flooded his mouth as he sipped his coffee, and he wondered if he lived in a state of permanent apprehension, as if some part of him knew what was about to occur. And as he stared at his reflection in the kitchen window he wondered what it was he feared, what denouement in his waning drama would be the act that shook him to his core, feeling as though some watchful conspiracy were about to embroil him in its agenda. The world was becoming unfathomable to him.

… The drive to work in Kensington was the same as it had been for weeks. Buildings and people passed by his white Volvo S80 as if on a reel of film that replayed itself over and over on a daily basis and from time to time Samuel wondered if any of it was real, as if London itself had been caught in some mirror that merely fed simulations of the city’s life to its inhabitants.’

Coming soon from  NUMBER THIRTEEN PRESS:

Ersatz World by Richard Godwin.

number 13 press