Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Book: Wolf Tickets, by Ray Banks (2010/e2012)

Like that ‘e’ thing I did up there? So you lot know it’s a new eBook? Clever, innit? Let’s just say I invented that and move on. Right, the checklist ...

Title based on a suspect interpretation of prison slang by noir maestro Tom Waits? Check.

Compelling situation set up sharpish? Guy gets shafted by his girl – she even took his one of a kind Italian leather jacket, for Christ’s sake – so he sets out to track her down with the help of his old Army buddy before she gets in even worse trouble. Check.

Surprising characters leading you down, down, down? You’ve got Sean Farrell, Irishman formerly in Her Majesty’s service turned petty criminal who can’t admit how much he loves the woman who ripped him off. You’ve got his mate Jimmy Cobb, pettier criminal with dodgy musical tastes and a stubborn streak that verges on vicious. You’ve got alternating viewpoints with each thinking he’s the smart one. Check.

Scabrously funny writing? “Whoever had been in charge of The Claddagh’s interior design must’ve detonated a bag of leprechauns and called it a fucking day.” Double fucking check.

Gut-churning violence? ... hoo ... You bet your ass that’s a check.

Whiplash twists you don’t see coming and heart where you least expect it? Check.

Yep. It’s another Banks book.