We get two new books from Ken Bruen this year!
Well, I already told you about PURGATORY, the next Jack Taylor book, coming out in November of this year. Check out the cover art. The synopsis I lifted from Amazon.com and below the break. From what I read of it, I didn’t see anything spoilerish but YMMV.
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Headstone (2011) by Ken Bruen is a welcome entry in the Jack Taylor series that first introduced him in The Guards (2004). Jack Taylor is an ex-cop now practicing part-time private investigator. He’s an alcoholic and yes that had something to do with his leaving the Guards. The total of his life experiences between these pages is best described as days filled with binges, black-outs, anger, sorrow and loneliness. He tries to ground himself with his books and music.
What draws me to Ken Bruen’s work is his depiction of modern Ireland, its culture, crime, politics and social injustices, church corruption especially. As the lead protagonist of this series, Jack Taylor is a world-weary, fifty-something loner who’s had to tangle with hoodlums and extremists who are often people of the privileged class.
The group of four labeling/calling themselves “Headstone” are targeting the feeble and disabled. Their background is one of wealth and privilege. The doctrine behind their ethnic cleansing is their misinterpreted, twisted understanding of Charles Darwin’s work to target the weak. A priest, Jack’s chain-smoking nemesis, is beaten and left in a coma. That incident jump starts the wave of random attacks on the frail and the vulnerable. Included/targeted in those attacks are Jack and his two side-kicks Stewart, an ex-drug dealer/ex-convict now practicing Zen and Ban Garda Ridge, a lesbian cop who married a man to move up in her career while struggling with the day-to-day grief she gets from her male colleagues in the Irish police department. Continue reading
As all Three Regular Readers will be aware, DOWN THESE GREEN STREETS is a collection of essays, interviews and short stories by Irish crime authors addressing the phenomenon that is the quality and quantity of Irish crime writing that has emerged in the past decade or so.
I like the cover. The book isn’t due out in the US it says until July 28th and the authors contributing include two of my favorite writers: Ken Bruen and Tana French. Plus a host of other writers I’d like to read. I want to read this! In digital format would have been nice but seeing that format is off the table now, I might just break down and order the paper. More details at Crime Always Pays. Update: ebook will be available in the near future according to Declan Burke via Twitter. I’ve put it on my wishlist until that day arrives.
“The Devil” (2010) written by Ken Bruen is the eighth book in the series that follows ex-Guard, Jack Taylor that started with “The Guards” in 2003.
Jack Taylor is a fifty-something, ex-cop and a “recovering Catholic” (his words) who is constantly battling his addiction to alcohol and drugs. He often works part-time as a private investigator in Galway. Bruen adds a touch of the metaphysical or otherworldly in this one. Jack Taylor vs. the Devil? Or is he? Whatever he or it is, this is the most challenging rival he’s ever met. More plot details after the break. Continue reading