I must confess the Hercule Poirot is not one of my favourite detectives. Not even close. But that’s personal opinion. What I enjoy most Poirot’s cases or I must say, Agatha Christie’s writing is the how the cases unfold in the end after reaching the climax. This book has a brilliant ending, that’s all. No spoilers. I enjoy her writing which never fails to create a tension on the reader to get to the end of it. And Then There Were None is the best case scenario.
Rebus is back. And he’s not getting old, age seem just a number for him and his creator, Ian Rankin. He’s 21 books old now. Rather Be The Devil is the new entitlement released on November, 3rd. When I heard earlier this year that Ian Rankin has rejected to my request for an interview with for a third time in three years, I thought, ‘Oh Boy! Either I am a pretty bad interviewer or he’s upto something really good. Probably a new Rebus novel. I’ll take that gladly, sir.’
Rebus is into his retirement for almost a couple of years now. But curiosity is a disease and when one’s neurone start sending the type of electrical signals, the giant awakens. Mind gets to work and pulls bits and pieces out of the back of itself. It happens to humans, generally. Nonetheless, Rebus breathe and lives to the extent you can almost smell the cigarette he’s been smoking, but not this time, anyway.
So now you know the process, Rebus mind draws his conscious attention to a cold case from 1970s involving a murder of a female socialite in one of the Edinburgh’s luxurious hotels. An unturned stone for over forty years, and no one was found guilty. Lacking hobbies in his sixties, Rebus, starts up a personal investigation with series of meetings with some old frenemies like Big Ger Cafferty and an ex-cop. Things have already begin to turn nasty in Edinburgh when both DI Siobhan Clarke and Malcolm Fox come across each other once again despite their lack of communication over time to look into those nastier things themselves. Local crime boss and entrepreneur is hurt. Money problems, shell companies, skeletons in the closet and a dangerous mobster hovering over the city of Edinburgh.
To me, horror feels more real than any other genre. I have always preferred real and true, no matter how dirty or uncomfortable. The situations in horror, life or death, kill or die, save them or save myself are the closest we come to seeing who we truly are in the deepest places of our psychic and physical being and this is what produces that oh so well-known adrenaline pump that hooks people to the horror book or screen, not allowing them to look away. Living those moments over and over has the power to give us a true glimpse into the mirror and sometimes, ironically enough, that is the most frightening thing of all.
Q. Briefly, what led up to the last book? Also, please describe the book in one sentence.
When Blaire goes to help the children of St. Sebastian orphanage, it will be her that soon needs the help.
Soon after completing my first book, The Secret Keepers. I found myself watching an inordinate amount of documentaries and I came across one on orphanages in other countries and what I learned was frightening. I don’t much care for jump scare horror, I prefer horror that chills one to the core that makes you question, not what’s in the closet but what’s in the mirror. This documentary on the deplorable conditions of the facilities and the failing health of the children haunted me, how could things like this still be happening all around us? And while I was intrigued, I was not yet fully inspired to write the book, writing the book still hadn’t occurred to me. It wasn’t until one evening after watching this documentary when I woke in the middle of the night and there they were, those children who were severely malnourished and abused among other things, all standing by my bedside looking down on me. When I woke the next morning, I knew that I had to tell their story.
Q. What was the time frame for writing your last book?
There were four years between my last book, The Secret Keepers and my new book, The Unwanted. Writing my outline takes approx. two weeks, then another six weeks to write my rough draft, a couple of months for my first edit and a couple more months for further edits and that is if I am working on my book full time but once you add “life” in, the timeframe can get lengthy.
Q. How much research do you do?
It depends on what I am writing. Many things I write from personal experience. My new book that I am currently working on, The Sandman (working title), is requiring me to do a bit more research than usual and I have purchased several books on the underlying subjects and plan on talking to a couple of health professionals in order to make sure that my characters are authentic.
Q. Do you aim for a set amount of words/pages per day?
I measure more in hours per day than word count. I try to write for at least two hours a day, but I always wish that I could write more.
Q. What is the easiest thing about writing?
The easiest thing about writing a book is coming up with the idea. We all have tons of great ideas for books, right? The issues come AFTER we have the great idea.
Q. What motivates you to write?
I don’t know that it’s a motivation so much as a compulsion. Naturally, I am always composing stories and filling my head with little facts and characters and I have to get them out. I have to tell their stories or they will drive me nuts. I am a writer because it is an inevitable extension of my being. Some people decide to be writers because they want to write; I was never given the option.
If you are familiar with Patterson’s style of writing you can rightly expect the chapters being short in format and plot be fast paced to create a sense of thrill among its readers. The idea behind this genre is all about the reader to keep guessing of what will happen next. The novel starts with a prelude though without any mention that takes the reader back in 2014 when FIFA World Cup was held in Brazil where Jack Morgan head of the renowned investigation service PRIVATE is in charge of security of that event. Two years after, Rio is hosting Olympics and Jack Morgan’s Private is again the head of security along with support of Rio’s Police. One thing, I like to compliment the authors on using the real time frame, the FIFA World Cup & the Rio Olympics. It clearly shows a sense of connecting to the reader, a very realistic approach and they have chosen the right moment to release the book.
James Patterson is a machine when comes to writing and publishing books. For almost half a year, one or the other from his books is on New York Times Bestseller List. People read him. His books are fast paced and you can manage to read one of them while traveling to your work in day or two (assuming the distance between your work and where you live is nearly 2 hours) or if you want to accomplish reading in shorter period of time frame and some of his books are able to satisfy the demands of voracious readers. I mean the usual: the P/PC balance between the plot and its characters.
I haven’t ready of his book in a long time. It has been almost two years since I read any of his title and the last one I remember reading is I, Alex Cross.Few years back in the post, Mistress by James Patterson & David Ellis, I admitted that Mr. Patterson’s books are worth reading only when they are written solo and not co-authored along with anyone. At that time, I met some disappointments with his Private Series. Then I came across Alex Cross series which undoubtedly are good books though I haven’t explored it very much in-depth.
Here is a complete list of books written by James Patterson that have been or are releasing this year:
NYPD RED 4 | 4 Feb ’16
PRIVATE PARIS | 21 Mar ’16
15th AFFAIR | 7 Mar ’16
CROSS KILLS | 7 June ’16
ZOO 2 | 7 June ’16
THE GAMES | 27 June ’16
HUMANS, BOW DOWN | 1 August ’16
Recently with release of his new book, The Games which is a part of Private seriesand is co-authored by Mark Sullivan, I am going to try again and see if his co-authored books show some signs improvement lately. By improvement I mean the obvious: plot and characters.
The Calling is the first novel featuring DCI John Luther. Yes, the same Luther you saw on telly as I did, played by Idris Elba. There are so many DC’s and DCI’s the modern British Crime Fiction has produced, so why bother about this one? As usually, he is tortured and that is interesting. Aren’t all?
DCI John Luther has a clearance rate of cases which is extraordinary as it is portrayed by Neil Cross in the telly series too, in the first few episodes. If you have watched the series or/are planning to, you can still read the book. The consequences of this book are what followed by the television series. It’s a prequel.
The plot is simple, John Luther is hunting for a brutal murderer and baby kidnapper who intends to do what he has done again. Now, the most extraordinary thing is there in this simplicity and the credit goes to the author of the book, Neil Cross. The opening scene is do dramatised and there a few more to grab, I feel as if it was a real crime scene in front of me. Every detail is spectacularly written, and very rare in crime fiction novels do you find such generous reception. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Luther- The Calling by Neil Cross”→
Shashank Gupta’s debut work Pimp is a psychological thriller, an engaging plot that is full of events. From the first page of this book, it starts to show signs of how a book under the category of a thriller should be developed.
The protagonist who at the age of sixty, whose mind with considerable amount of wit is driven by desire and goes on to explore as one might refer to the sin of the flesh. Some might refer this to darkness of the human mind, I completely believe it’s just a part of it not entirelythe darkness. The plot revolves around the protagonist and his stepmother, his passion of love and chaos.
There is a unique kind of mystery created by Shashank Gupta in this book. One doesn’t get to read this type of mystery or thrilling experience that grabs attention one’s mind completely. The narration is as uncommon as the mysteriousness and the dialogue between the characters are tenderly written for the reader to read. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: Pimp by Shashank Gupta”→