VERY excited to be host to the first-ever ‘community’ blog! In other words, not Orenda authors but talented *other* authors who have something to say and some very fine books to promote.
First up is Michael J. Malone, talking about his totally brilliant new crime thriller Beyond the Rage!
Even though he’s a successful criminal, Glasgow villain Kenny O’Neill is angry. Not only has his high-class escort girlfriend just been attacked, but his father is reaching out to him from the past despite abandoning Kenny as a child after his mother’s suicide. Kenny is now on a dual mission to hunt down his girl’s attacker and find out the truth about his father… but instead he unravels disturbing family secrets and finds that revenge is not always sweet. An intelligent, violent thriller shot through with dark humour, Beyond the Rage enthralls and disturbs in equal measure. With an intricate plot, all-too-believable characters and perfectly pitched dialogue, this is a masterclass in psychological crime fiction writing.
Michael J. Malone, talking about Beyond the Rage (Contraband/Saraband; ISBN: 978-1908643704; ebook NOW; print 12 Feb)
“Even though he’s a successful criminal, Glasgow villain Kenny O’Neill is angry. Not only has his high-class escort girlfriend just been attacked, but his father is reaching out to him from the past – despite abandoning Kenny as a child after his mother’s suicide. Kenny is now on a dual mission to hunt down his girl’s attacker and find out the truth about his father… but instead he unravels disturbing family secrets and finds that revenge is not always sweet.”
As an aspiring author I remember one of my literary heroes say that readers are incredibly loyal to character, so best then, if you start a series to stick with it. Good advice, but when you write you have to write what you really want to, don’t you?
I started off with two books in the McBain series, then published a non-fiction book about inspirational Scots (Carnegie’s Call), next came a novel based upon the amazing true story of an innocent man in Devil’s Island (The Guillotine Choice).
Now, with Beyond the Rage I’m going back to the series. Kinda. You see, this book is about one of the characters in the McBain series, not the main man, McBain himself. His best buddy, Kenny O’Neill. (But worry not, McBain fans, he does make an appearance.)
What happened, in short, was a publisher/agent merry-go-round and the need to carry on writing. Let me explain …
My (ex)agent was amassing a series of rave rejections from most of the London publishing houses. In the vein of: stayed up till 2am to finish this, but don’t love it enough. (WTH?) … is in the top 3% of writers that come across my desk, but I have enough Scottish crime writers. (They have a bloody quota?).
All hugely soul-destroying, and while my first two were receiving this kind of feedback, I didn’t want to write a 3rd only for it to attract the same kind of ignominy.
But I still needed to write, you know?
SO, without a thought in my head other than that I sat down to write. What found its way out of my head that morning was a story about a teenager who came downstairs in the middle of the night to find his father and mother in a terrible tableau. There were pills and a bottle of whisky on top of the table, his mother was slumped over the table, dead and his father was kneeling at her feet, in the throes of his grief.
Then it occurred to me, this could be Kenny O’Neill’s story.
For those of you who haven’t read my first two crime novels, Kenny is DI McBain’s childhood friend. While McBain joined the police and became a detective, Kenny was swallowed up by the darkness on the other side of the tracks. But they kept in touch, neither of them letting their associates know that they maintained such a friendship.
And this beginning – what I originally thought might be a short story – became my road in to telling Kenny’s tale.
Some books are a trial to write, you inch forward a word at a time, while thinking that you’re wasting your life. Others are a joy. This book was of the latter variety. I had a blast writing this one. These are the fastest 100,000 words I’ve ever written. At times it felt like I was taking dictation, so smoothly did the words flow.
I’m not going to say anything else. If you want to know more, you need to read the book.
Purchase the ebook here.
Order the print book here.
We are SO ordering now!