Wednesday, 10 July 2013
Guns of Brixton (Best of British) by Paul D. Brazill
I look forward eagerly to each new release in the Byker Books Best of British series. All the novellas have been among the best work of the authors participating and Guns of Brixton is no exception. Paul D. Brazill's stories are populated by larger than life characters that come bouncing out of the page at you. He has something in common with Tarantino in that the stories he crafts are almost secondary, what makes them interesting are the characters and the dialogue. The wit is razor sharp and the gags come thick and fast. The author packs in so many musical and film references that I guarantee you won't spot them all. What all of this adds up to is a uniquely entertaining style that only he can pull off with such aplomb.
Guns of Brixton is a cleverly woven tapestry of characters that all interact with each other at some point during the story. Big Jim Lawson has an unfortunate accident involving Half-Pint Harry and a shotgun. Richard is sick to death of his wife Camilla's moaning. Lynne and Gorgeous George are bored and hungover at work. Marty and Father Tim are chewing the fat over a fry up. How will their lives intersect? And with what consequences?
So if murderous priests, jewel robbers in drag and has been gangsters are your thing you will love Guns of Brixton. However, pay attention as you read as there are a lot of characters in this novella and you will miss some of the subtler references if you don't keep up with who is doing what to whom. A great read that I highly recommend.