Bookish Bits

Image result for google images clip art piles of books

I’m aware I owe you a review from the Douglas Skelton Open Wounds book. Okay, let’s open up that can of worms (an odd phrase, I’ve always thought) – I owe many book reviews – some because they’re not very good: some because they’re utterly brilliant and my rather thin prose fails to do them justice. Some I’ve just forgotten about – that in itself tells a story. But to keep publishers happy, I’ll try to just read them all again quickly and write a review, even a short one (although then I still feel guilty!) They keep me awake at night, these unwritten reviews. And so it should transpire that I’ll sleep well if I get to the end of this review list. But I won’t, because then I’ll find something else to keep me awake at night…

I don’t want to be a spoiler, but the end of Open Wounds hit me like a sledgehammer to the back of my head, rattling my teeth in their sockets. Published by Luath Press, this is the last in a series of four books, the last of which, at least, I can’t recommend highly enough. I suspect the other three will be just as teeth rattling. Seek them out; Luath‘s a Scottish press and can probably only be found in large retailers, if you don’t live in Scotland. Forget Malcolm MacKay’s vision of hit men, sitting by the phone, great though the books are  – Skelton’s picture of Glasgow is much closer to the real thing, and deserves recognition.

I came across a Best Bloggers poll earlier, through one blogger I sporadically follow. But there were 10 categories, and (I think) 10 nominations in each category – so that’s 100 blogs. I had in my head who must be included, but there was no Crimepieces, no CrimeThrillerFella, no CleopatraLovesBooks, no NorthernCrime, no Cathy746books, no …forwinternights by Kate, no MarinaSofia, or Elena, no Keishon, no Naomi…I wondered, who are all these fashionable bloggers? Are we not included because we read (some of us, anyway) crime? I’m not having a go at anyone who was included, T, like Fiction Fan for Funniest ( a shoo-in, methinks); Margot; and Sarah Hardy, all of whom I love. I just really dislike all these awards bloggers give other bloggers – maybe because I’ve never been offered one (oh, sob, sob!) They smack of in-crowds, and cool girls – and I started blogging to get away from all that. All the bloggers I follow are, in my eyes, BRILLIANT and FUNNY and INDIVIDUAL. That’s all I van offer you, so I hope it makes you smile.

The future for crimeworm

I’ve decided to make a few changes to crimeworm – but not too many. The problem is this – I’ve been reading tons and I’ve a massive backlog of reviews. So, to get these reviews up, I’m going to be shortening my reviews. My plan is just to print the blurb, tell you what I thought of the book, and to whom it might appeal.

Another intention is to broaden the review criteria, so you won’t just find crime fiction here, but straight fiction, non-fiction, stuff old and new. But don’t worry, crime will still be my abiding passion and I will remain as true to my illicit roots as possible!

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Also, in case any of you don’t subscribe, I’m very proud to also be blogging for ShinyNewBooks, a very professional “blog” -azine – I don’t know how else to describe it. It’s out every 3 months, with a six weekly catch-up in between. In the last issue I reviewed Martin Walker’s The Dying Season  and In My House by Alex Hourston. Do pop by and have a look at, and follow them on Twitter @shinynewbooks. Every issue is packed with reviews, from fiction to non-fiction, reissues to children’s books. So you’re bound to find a few books to appeal – even something you missed and spot in an older issue, as they’re all there too for your perusal!

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I’m at this very moment in time reading the end of The Domino Killer, Neil White’s very impressive new book. I’ll be posting a blog post on it today very soon, in the new format, as part of the unofficial blog tour organised by the indefatigable Liz, who organised it simply because she loves his books – no publicist involved. That’s devotion for you. And do look out for more frequent, shorter posts from crimeworm. Finally, I’m not even going to mention the jammy sods who are in Harrogate this fine weekend. But I do plan on hitting #BloodyScotland, and will report back, so if you are also going, do let me know (if you’re a regular commentator on here and Twitter, that is. No psychopaths, thanks!)

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Right – time to finish The Domino Killer. Any comments in the near future on the changes to crimeworm  would be greatly appreciated – do you readers like them or not? That’s what I need to know. So please give me your opinions! Wishing you all a lovely weekend, and please check out my “new style” review later. (Brevity, crimeworm, brevity!)