Jericho excerpt

Recoil_cropI mentioned yesterday that my short story ‘Jericho’ features in ‘Recoil’, the brand new anthology from Shotgun Honey. Well, here’s a little snippet from the beginning of the story to whet your appetite:

“Will there be a massive bang, Uncle Ryan?  Will it be like the Towering Inferno?”

Ryan sat back on his heels and wiped one sleeve across his burning forehead.  Even now, after all these years and with all his experience, he still sweated like a pig.  Partly that was the danger, of course, although he minimised that by taking every safety precaution in the book.  And a few that weren’t.  Mostly it was the sheer fiddliness of the work – the blocks of explosive to tape in place, the fuses and detonators to prepare, the wires to strip and insert.  In a place this size that could take hours, sometimes even days.  Every last minute seasoned with the thought that if he got a single detail wrong, people could die.

“No.  The whole point is it won’t be like a sodding inferno,” he said.  “That’s why I do all this preparation, so the whole thing will fold up like a house of cards.  No explosions, no fires, nobody gets hurt.  There’s just a big cloud of dust at the end.”

“Oh.  Right.”

Will sounded disappointed.  Typical bloody teenager, Ryan thought.  Always after the biggest and the best.  Couldn’t see that half the time, not having something go kaboom was the best.  Ryan knew that because he was the best – the best in the business, the best in this neck of the woods.  He’d brought down more buildings than most folk had set foot in, and all without a single mishap.  They didn’t call him The Leveller for nothing.  But Will was young; he’d learn soon enough.  Least, he would if he wanted to get on in this job.  Get it wrong and he’d be dust along with the factories, the cooling towers, the outdated blocks of flats.

Blocks like this one – the last still standing on the Castle Bromwich estate.  Forty years ago the planners had thought they were a good idea; now they couldn’t get rid of them fast enough.  Ryan had demolished another two six months ago, though he tried not to think about that…

There’s plenty more where that came from, and another 22 stories by amazing noir authors, so why not head over to Amazon and grab a copy of the book now?

Teaser…

Raise the Blade FrontLike a reluctant stripper I’m revealing a little more every few days.  Not skin, you’ll be relieved to hear, but the excerpt of ‘Raise the Blade’, which has just grown by another couple of paragraphs.

Do check it out at the dedicated page over at my website – and don’t forget to check back in another couple of days.  You may not find the full monty,  but hopefully it’ll be worth the wait!

Snippet

I’ve added a brief new excerpt from ‘Raise the Blade’ to my website, so you can get a sense of the book’s style.  I’ll be adding more to the excerpt every couple of days or so until the book is published, so do keep checking back for more.

You can find the current snippet, from the book’s prologue, here.  Given the subject matter I can’t really say ‘happy reading’, but I hope you enjoy it anyway.

Rogue excerpt

rogueI thought it was about time I shared a snippet from ‘Singing From the Same Sheet’, the story I’ve just had published in ‘Rogue’ from Near to the Knuckle.  So here you go!  Hope you enjoy it, and if you’d like to buy it, check out the links here.

Eddie Monack. They called him The Monk, behind his back. Partly the name, partly the spreading bald patch the exact same shape and size as a medieval tonsure. Mostly because he spent his Sundays singing hymns in a loud and tuneless voice in his local church, as though he was a good and holy man.

Monday mornings he was straight back to work, though, and there was nothing good or holy about what he did. ‘Looking after people’, he liked to call it, but there wasn’t much care involved. Or only the kind that cared about its own ends, about making the most money in the least amount of time. The kind that says ‘pay up and we won’t actually break your other leg’.

I’d heard the name before, and the frightened whisperings, mostly from the guy’s victims. I get to meet quite a few of those in my line of work. But the first time I really took notice was when the boss called me in.

“This Monk character. Got a bit out of hand. If you know what I mean.”

I knew. The boss has to be careful. Can’t say too much in case it gets back to him. There’d be an outcry, if people found out what we get up to. Police, the media, decent folk shocked to the core. And quite right too.  A few more details might be helpful, though. It’s always nice to know what you’re letting yourself in for. “What’s he done?”