Friday 19 June 2009

D is for...

So here are the Ds. Again, I've not read all of them. I've tried to find review for all of them to quote bits from but for D there were two I couldn't find anything for.

Daniel Boyle
- many TV and film scriptwriting credits including Taggart, Lewis, Rebus, Val McDermid's Place of Execution and Hamish MacBeth. In 2006 he also published a PI novel called ILLUSION (through Authorhouse), featuring a Glasgow PI called John Paris who is hired to act as bodyguard for the wife of a wealthy businessman.

David Ashton - an actor (Coronation Street, Dr Who, The Last King of Scotland) who has written for television (Dalziel and Pascoe, Eastenders) and radio. James McLevy was a real-life detective from Edinburgh during the mid 19th century. He had a reputation for always getting his man, and, in the 1860s, published collections of his cases. When David Ashton discovered the stories he developed the character of McLevy and his colleagues into a radio play and subsequently novels featuring the character.
"McLevy is a sort of Victorian Morse with a heart, prowling the mean wynds and tenements of the endless fascinating city. David Ashton impeccably evokes Edinburgh so vividly that you can feel the cold in your bones and the menace of the Old Town’s steep cobbles and dark corners." - Financial Times.

David Wishart - has written 12 books (so far) in the Marcus Corvinus series, featuring a high born protagonist who investigates crimes of a sensitive nature in Imperial Rome (PARTHIAN SHOT, for example, takes place in AD 35 during the reign of the Emperor Tiberius). David Wishart is a classical scholar and the books are a mix of intriguing historical detail and the language of Sam Spade.
"This is a good, racy account of life in Roman times, with many excellent details of the intimacies of life ... Corvinius is a fast talking, wisecracking detective, who inspires confidence in the reader that nothing much will get past his shrewd eye ... This is an entertaining read, with many vivid and humorous characters who can be recognised as types universally known both in ancient Rome and today. The combination of a modern detective story with an informed and well-researched description of ancient Rome is a winner."- Crimesquad

Denise Mina - Denise Mina's Glasgow is seen through the eyes of psychologically scarred Maureen O'Donnell in Mina's Garnethill trilogy. These are very dark books, which are humanised by the wonderful character of Maureen who is deeply flawed, completely compelling, and very likeable. The trilogy is harrowing, compassionate and dark, but with bright shafts of humour. In addition, Mina writes a series featuring journalist Paddy Meehan, another unique and memorable character. The series is set in Glasgow during the 1980s and 1990s.
"What marks Mina out as one of the most remarkable writers of her generation is the quality of her prose. RESOLUTION is packed with paragraphs so finely constructed you want to fight the pull of the story to go back and read them again. It's studded with images that stick in the mind long after the book is closed ... On this evidence, Denise Mina is set to carve a niche for herself as the Crown Princess of Crime" Val Mcdermid, The Express

Dirk Robertson - Actor, musician and writer of both non-fiction and fiction. BAD DAY FOR A FAT BOY has as its premise an overweight musician who trafficks musical instruments; DEEP POWDER is about a snowboarder who discovers there's an alternative meaning to 'snow' and HIGHLAND T'ING which is a black comedy about a south Londoner who inherits a title and a fortune.

Douglas Lindsay - Barney Thomson is a really crap barber who doesn't like his colleagues, his customers - or anyone really. Added to that, he's Scotland's most misunderstood serial killer. Bizarre black comedy at its finest. In A PRAYER FOR BARNEY THOMSON, for example, Barney joins Murderers Anonymous and in THE LAST FISH SUPPER there are several strange ninety-year old men all wanting Robbie Williams haircuts. Surreal.
"Pitch-black comedy spun from the finest writing. Fantastic plot, unforgettable scenes and plenty of twisted belly laughs" - New Woman


  1. I was blown away by the Garnetthill trilogy - superb. I also loved her subsequent (one or two?) standalone(s). But I could not get on with the first Paddy Meehan book, probably I am too old and the character to young for me to be very interested have not read any more of that series.

  2. David - thanks!
    Maxine - I thought Maureen was SUCH a great character, and the Garnethill trilogy is, for me, the best of her books.