My Rarest Books

Lantern Jack

My backlist is now in the middle of appearing as low-priced e-books, with volumes grouped under different headings. Already available are ‘Classics’ (Roofworld; Spanky) and ‘Dark Urban Novels’ (Rune; Red Bride; Disturbia; Psychoville; Soho Black) They’re being followed by ‘Fantasy’ (The Curse of Snakes; Calabash), ‘Early Collections’ (City Jitters; The Bureau of Lost Souls; Sharper […]

A New Take On Capital Crime

Drone-with-bag

After the revelation that gangsta rap videos were helping to reduce gun crime in London by teaching morons to hold guns the wrong way comes this latest twist in fighting crime. It’s been talked about for a long time but has now reached us locally. Officers from Islington, North London, recovered two drones carrying mobile […]

Could Brexit Win Over This Sceptic?

Herne Bay

Facts first. Every economist agrees that Brexit is starting to cost millions, possibly billions. The economy is slowing, house prices are falling, the pound is weaker, there’s no extra money for the NHS, no more EU grants for deprived areas, and we are inches from recession even prior to the triggering of Article 50. How does […]

We Need A Collective Noun For Film Critics

Victoria

‘An exit of film critics’? ‘A pretence of film critics’? ‘A sneer of film critics’? Judging by the latest poll of the best 100 films of the 21st century according to 177 film critics it should probably be ‘a wankfest of film critics’. Film polls are notoriously subjective, of course, but dear God in Heaven, […]

When London Went To The Dogs

steptoefilm2

It looks like London’s last greyhound stadium will be going soon. Dog racing, which proved hugely popular from the late 1920s to the 1940s, is in terminal decline, especial after a scandal in 2006 revealing that old greyhounds were being put down after becoming too old to race. Tracks in Catford, Wembley, West Ham, Clapton and […]

So You’re Going To Write A Book…

Dinner talk

No wonder they describe plays as having ‘a run’; actors often compare performing eight shows a week to training for a marathon; they exercise, diet, stop socialising and commit themselves to continual practice. Writers do it as well. A book you care about writing consumes you. It’s the job you bring home from work and […]

Trousers Down For The Last Time

Rix

Husky-voiced Brian Rix has died at 95. The master of farce was one of Britain’s most successful actor-managers, For more than three decades his farces, acted out by some of the great names in British comedy, played to packed theatres and attracted millions of TV viewers. The birth of a daughter with Down’s syndrome saw him […]

Whimsy: The Marmite Film Genre

image

There’s a certain type of Marmite movie I sneakingly love. It would have been the kind of movie I hated at 18, when I just wanted to watch cars explode and heads get cut off. It’s the whimsical movie, best exemplified by ‘Le Fabuleux Destin D’Amelie Poulin’, or as it was called in the US, […]

A Message To Millennials

Multiethnic Group of People Social Networking at Cafe

According to a series of major US surveys, teens are increasingly swearing off alcohol, cigarettes, dope and prescription painkillers. Millennials are taking their cues from their Baby Boomer folks, those born between 1946 and 1964 who are veterans of the sexual and psychedelic revolutions of the 1960s and 70s. Apparently this is to do with the new […]

Why Does Wealth Work Against Creativity?

Gracia 2016

Latvia is not a rich country. When the city of Riga needed to move its books from the old library to the new one, on the other side of its central river, the Daugava, it came up with a novel idea. The city’s residents formed a human chain over the bridge from one library to […]