Category Archives: Number Thirteen Press

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

 

Get Kill Me Quick! from Barnes & Noble and Smashwords

kill me quick coverIf you’re that way inclined, you can get Kill Me Quick! as a Nook  Book or paperback from Barnes & Noble.

You can also get it from Smashwords in various formats.

And, of course,  it’s still available from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk and any other Amazon you fancy.

Here’s the blurb:

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?

Praise for Paul D. Brazill:
“If you took Ken Bruen’s candor, the best of Elmore Leonard’s dialogues, sprinkled in some Irvine Welsh, and dragged it all through the dirtiest ditch in South London, the result will be something akin to Brazill’s writing.” – Gabino Iglesias (author of Zero Saints and Gutmouth)
“Visceral, foul-mouthed and blisteringly funny, Paul D Brazill creates a sleazy underworld inhabited by dodgy London geezers, Geordie hard men and the occasional shark. Highly recommended.” – Lesley Ann Sharrock (author of The Seventh Magpie)
“A broad range of cultural strands come together in the melting pot and form a delicious stew of criminal adventure… The observations are sharp and the characters create small nuclear explosions as they collide with each other.” – Nigel Bird (author of Southsiders)
“Unashamedly entertains you while sticking two fingers right up in your stupid face.” – Ryan Bracha (author of Strangers Are just Friends You Haven’t Killed Yet)
“The brilliantly named characters, crackling dialogue and dark humour jump out.” – Keith Nixon (author of The Fix and I’m Dead Again)

Number Thirteen Press is publishing 13 crime novellas by 13 top crime authors, from November 2014

A Couple More Great Reviews For Kill Me Quick!

kill me quick coverOver at Amazon.com, SW Lauden says:

‘The dialogue in this fast-paced story is full of sharp one liners and insightful asides, and the characters are all larger than life.’

And Dominic Milne says:

‘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.’

Read the rest here.

Warren Stalley reviews Kill Me Quick!

kill me quick coverIn the fifth FIVE STAR review in its first week of publication, Warren Stalley says:

‘Mark Hammonds returns to his Northern roots in the seething coastal crime capital that is Seatown. Before long the ex New Romantic Coronet Blue band member is up to his neck in drugs, violence, music and murder. Can Mark survive another day in Seatown while hunted by Satanic bikers, London gangsters and old faces from his past? Author Paul D Brazill revisits the thriving smugglers den of Seatown bringing bold humour, fascinating and bizarre characters, swirling round a noir plot. Full marks once again to Mr Brazill for delivering another powerful and hilarious crime story. If you fancy reading more Seatown stories then I’d recommend seeking out Gumshoe by Mr Brazill which stars the hapless private eye Peter Ord. This work also leaves me curious to seek out other Number Thirteen Press crime books in the near future. Enjoy.’

Check out KILL ME QUICK! 

 

A Couple Of Top Reviews For Kill Me Quick!

kill me quick coverOver at Amazon.co.uk , Richard Godwin says:

‘Brazill’s Kill Me Quick is a smart and insane ride through the underbelly of crime’

While Mark Hammonds says:

‘Brazill peppers his landscape with enough oddballs, fruitcakes, hard cases and nutcases to keep you shouting for another shot, and it’s all shaken in with his typical mix of scabrously funny one-liners and wet-yourself-laughing dialogue.’

Check ’em out!

 

Out Now! Kill Me Quick! by Paul D. Brazill

kill me quick coverWe’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?

Praise for Paul D. Brazill:
“If you took Ken Bruen’s candor, the best of Elmore Leonard’s dialogues, sprinkled in some Irvine Welsh, and dragged it all through the dirtiest ditch in South London, the result will be something akin to Brazill’s writing.” – Gabino Iglesias (author of Zero Saints and Gutmouth)
“Visceral, foul-mouthed and blisteringly funny, Paul D Brazill creates a sleazy underworld inhabited by dodgy London geezers, Geordie hard men and the occasional shark. Highly recommended.” – Lesley Ann Sharrock (author of The Seventh Magpie)
“A broad range of cultural strands come together in the melting pot and form a delicious stew of criminal adventure… The observations are sharp and the characters create small nuclear explosions as they collide with each other.” – Nigel Bird (author of Southsiders)
“Unashamedly entertains you while sticking two fingers right up in your stupid face.” – Ryan Bracha (author of Strangers Are just Friends You Haven’t Killed Yet)
“The brilliantly named characters, crackling dialogue and dark humour jump out.” – Keith Nixon (author of The Fix and I’m Dead Again)

Number Thirteen Press is publishing 13 crime novellas by 13 top crime authors, from November 2014.

Get Kill Me Quick! from Amazon.co.uk  or Amazon.com or any other Amazon.

Nigel Bird Reviews Kill Me Quick!

kill me quick cover‘ There are encounters with mobsters, drug-dealers, bikers, lap-dancers, right-wing nutters and an annoying American tourist to enjoy. 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. ‘

Read the rest HERE.

 

Graham Wynd Reviews Kill Me Quick!

kill me quick coverThis novella is a crazy crime jukebox that takes in everything from crooners to croakers without missing a beat. The soundtrack of  Seatown touches on its once great era then follows as it slips down to the end of its rope, lurching a last drunken dance at your cousin’s wedding.’

Read the rest HERE!

 

 

Pre-order Kill Me Quick! by Paul D. Brazill

kill me quick coverKill Me Quick! is out on 13 December. Pre-order the eBook from Amazon or Amazon.co.uk. The paperback will be available soon.

Here’s the blurb:

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 the next, 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?

Praise for Paul D. Brazill:

“If you took Ken Bruen’s candor, the best of Elmore Leonard’s dialogues, sprinkled in some Irvine Welsh, and dragged it all through the dirtiest ditch in South London, the result will be something akin to Brazill’s writing.” – Gabino Iglesias (author of Zero Saints and Gutmouth)

“Visceral, foul-mouthed and blisteringly funny, Paul D Brazill creates a sleazy underworld inhabited by dodgy London geezers, Geordie hard men and the occasional shark. Highly recommended.” – Lesley Ann Sharrock (author of The Seventh Magpie)

“A broad range of cultural strands come together in the melting pot and form a delicious stew of criminal adventure… The observations are sharp and the characters create small nuclear explosions as they collide with each other.” – Nigel Bird (author of Southsiders)

“Unashamedly entertains you while sticking two fingers right up in your stupid face.” – Ryan Bracha (author of Strangers Are just Friends You Haven’t Killed Yet)

“The brilliantly named characters, crackling dialogue and dark humour jump out.” – Keith Nixon (author of The Fix and I’m Dead Again)

Number Thirteen Press is publishing 13 crime novellas by 13 top crime authors, from November 2014.