Thursday, 23 September 2010

Culture Night Buzz

I'm very much looking forward to tomorrow's Derry Library event in which I'll interview Stuart Neville and Eoin McNamee. I just wanted to post a quick thank you to Dec Burke for blogging about it and to Jenni Doherty of Guildhall Press for the many Facebook shout-outs as well as the rest of you good folk from my Facebook friends page who shared the love. I also wanted to share this link to Radio Foyle's Sarah Brett show in which Michael Bradley asked me a bunch of interesting crime fiction-related questions and I attempted to supply him with worthy answers. Did I succeed? Click the link and decide for yourself. My bit starts about 47 mins into the show.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Guess Who's Back...

The Demon Dog is returning to Belfast.

Once again, David Torrans of No Alibis will play host to James Ellroy.

The details:

No Alibis Bookstore are very pleased to announce the return to Belfast of James Ellroy, and to invite you to spend an evening with the man on Thursday 7th October at 7:00PM to celebrate the launch of his latest book, THE HILLIKER CURSE. This event will take place at the Belfast Waterfront Studio. Tickets are now available, priced £8 each.

James Ellroy was born in Los Angeles in 1948. He is the author of the acclaimed 'LA Quartet': The Black Dahlia, The Big Nowhere, LA Confidential and White Jazz. His most recent novel, Blood's a Rover, completes the magisterial 'Underworld USA Trilogy' - the first two volumes of which (American Tabloid and The Cold Six Thousand) were both Sunday Times bestsellers.

America's greatest living crime writer gives us a raw, brutally candid memoir - as high intensity and as riveting as any of his novels - about his obsessive search for 'atonement in women'. The year was 1958. Jean Hilliker had divorced her fast-buck hustler husband and resurrected her maiden name. Her son, James, was ten years old. He hated and lusted for his mother and 'summoned her dead'. She was murdered three months later. "The Hilliker Curse" is a predator's confession, a treatise on guilt and the power of malediction, and above all a cri de cuur. Ellroy unsparingly describes his shattered childhood, his delinquent teens, his writing life, his love affairs and marriages, his nervous breakdown and the beginning of a relationship with an extraordinary woman who may just be the long-sought Her. A layered narrative of time and place, emotion and insight, sexuality and spiritual quest, "The Hilliker Curse" is a brilliant, soul-baring revelation of self. It is unlike any memoir you have ever read.

Anyone who attended the BLOOD'S A ROVER lanuch last year will tell you that this is an event not to be missed. Book your spot now by emailing David, or calling the shop on 9031 9607.

And to keep you going until then, courtesy of No Alibis TV, you can check out the man in action.

And yeah, I get the half-assed irony of using my blog to show a clip of the this rascal in which he dismisses "...the internet invaders." What are you going to do, like?

Monday, 20 September 2010

Night of Crime at Derry Central Library

Yes, I'm still alive. It's just been an insanely busy couple of months, but I thought I should break the silence with this bit of news from the Libraries NI website:

Thanks to the City’s first ever Culture Night, Libraries NI, in partnership with Derry City Council, is inviting fans of crime thrillers along to Derry Central Library’s ‘Night of Crime’ event.

Culture Night Derry takes place on Friday 24th September, which will see the city being joined by twenty towns, cities and counties across Ireland, who will come together to celebrate cultural activity. There’s also an international dimension with Culture Nights also taking place in Leuven in Belgium and in New York.

Over half a million people are expected to explore and engage with culture on the evening of 24th September and at this Derry Central Library event, fans of crime thrillers will be able to enjoy readings by two renowned local authors of crime fiction, Eoin McNamee and Stuart Neville, who read from their work from 8pm to 9.30pm. This will be followed by an open discussion, led by Gerard Brennan of the blog Crime Scene NI, about the emerging crime writing scene in Northern Ireland.

Trisha Ward, Business Manager with Libraries NI explains:
“Culture Night is a night of entertainment, discovery and adventure and Derry Central Library is proud to be involved. Arts and cultural organisation, including libraries, will open their doors with hundreds of free events, tours, talks and performances for you, your family and friends to enjoy – and Libraries NI is delighted to be working with Derry City council to make this ‘A Night of Crime’ event, featuring respected crime thriller novelists and bloggers, a success.”

Eoin McNamee, is originally from Kilkeel, County Down and saw his first book, the novella The Last of Deeds, shortlisted for the Irish Times Literature Prize. In his new novel, Orchid Blue, due out in November, he returns to the territory of his acclaimed Booker longlisted The Blue Tango. The evening will include readings from this book as well as from the crime fiction titles McNamee has published under the name John Creed.

Stuart Neville burst onto the crime writing scene in 2009 with his Belfast set novel The Twelve. The sequel to that award- winning debut, Collusion, has just been published. Both books confront in an unsparing manner post-ceasefire Northern Ireland.

Gerard Brennan, of the Crime Scene NI blog, will also be in the library to chair the event and to stimulate discussion. He has edited Requiems for the Departed, published earlier this year, an anthology of short stories inspired by tales from Irish mythology. His work is due to appear in the Mammoth Book of best British Crime 2010

Eugene Martin, Branch Library Manager of Derry Central Library , said:
“We are certainly very excited to welcome two well established writers, Eoin McNamee and Stuart Neville, to the Foyle Street Library along with Gerard Brennan, who runs the Crime Scene NI blog. Eoin and Stuart will talk about their books, what inspires them and what drives them to write crime fiction. There will also be a general discussion of the recent explosion in the writing and following of crime fiction. Crime thriller enthusiasts must come along to what should be an enjoyable evening.”

The Night of Crime event will be held on Culture Night (Sept 24th) at Derry’s Central Library at 8pm. For more information, please call into the Foyle Street library, telephone 028 7127 2300 or email For details of all events taking place in Derry Central and Belfast Central Libraries to mark Culture Nights, go to the Libraries NI website at

For details of the full programme of events for Derry’s Culture Night visit