Hey everyone, a very warm welcome to my little blog for the 5th day of #Fahrenbruary. If you are not really sure why you’re here or what the hell a Fahrenbruary is, then here’s a couple of handy links to help explain:
Fahrenbruary? What’s that all about then (via me, The Beardy Book Blogger)
#Fahrenbruary: Fahrenheit – The Anatomy Of A Transatlantic Love Cult (via It’s An Indie Book Blog aka Matt Keyes)
Ok, now that that’s all sorted, below I present to you a Question and Answer session with the brilliant Ian Patrick, author of the Sam Batford books Rubicon and Stoned Love. You can find out more about these superb thrillers in the Q&A and via the links at the end.
Welcome to #Fahrenbruary Day 4.
Today I am very, very chuffed to bring to you a guest post written especially for #Fahrenbruary by Ian Patrick, author of those two books you can see up there. If you’ve missed my reviews of those books then you can check them out here:
In the piece below, Ian describes how his experiences as a (ex)serving police officer influenced his writing, and of the challenge of writing for a character as corrupt as Sam Batford and his boss Mike Hall.
Tomorrow I’ll be presenting a Q&A with Ian.
Enjoy, and over to you Ian 🖤
Detective Sergeant Sam Batford has been lying low at a remote safe house in the highlands of Scotland. He’s doing his best not to attract the attention of the enemies he made, on both sides of the law, during his last under-cover operation but Batford knows he’s just killing time until he’s called to account.
Inevitably the sharks begin to circle and as Batford is called back to front-line action in London he’s thrown into a deadly game of cat and mouse where it seems everyone is out to get him.
After having to endure a frustrating resolution to their previous undercover operation together DCI Klara Winter from the National Crime Agency is determined to prove that Batford has crossed the line into criminality and finally bring him to face justice.
All Sam Batford wants is to outwit his enemies long enough to stay alive and come out ahead of the game.
Way Heeeeeyyyyyy everyone. Welcome to #Fahrenbruary.
Today I thought that I would re-share my review of Ian Patrick’s Rubicon. This was one of the very first Fahrenheit books I ever read, so I thought it should be the one to kick things off. This was from my early days as a new blogger and as such it is a lot shorter than my usual reviews 😆
Tomorrow I shall be sharing my brand new review of the follow-up ‘Stoned Love‘. In the coming days I’ll also have a Q&A with Ian and will be sharing a piece he has written about his experiences in the Police Service and how they influenced the creation of his books (links will follow after posting).
Author: Ian Patrick
Publisher: Fahrenheit Press
Where to buy: Fahrenheit Press
Smashing down the door to the dilapidated apartment the two cops stop suddenly at a strange object lying bloody and unconscious on the floor:
Cop 1: ‘Ello, ‘ello, ‘ello, what ‘ave we ‘ere then?
Cop 2: It appears to be a blurb, sir:
“Two cops, both on different sides of the law – both with the same gangland boss in their sights.
Sam Batford is an undercover officer with the Metropolitan Police who will stop at nothing to get his hands on fearsome crime-lord Vincenzo Guardino’s drug supply.
DCI Klara Winter runs a team on the National Crime Agency, she’s also chasing down Guardino, but unlike Sam Batford she’s determined to bring the gangster to justice and get his drugs off the streets.
Set in a time of austerity and police cuts where opportunities for corruption are rife, Rubicon is a tense, dark thriller that is definitely not for the faint hearted.”
If, like me, you had no idea what a Rubicon is, and thought it might’ve been an ice lolly from the 1970s, a type of antiquated filing system, or a colourful puzzle cube, then here is a wee explanation:
“Julius Caesar’s crossing the Rubicon river was an event in 49 BC that precipitated the Roman Civil War, which ultimately led to Caesar’s becoming dictator for life and the rise of the imperial era of Rome. … Today, the phrase “crossing the Rubicon” is an idiom that means to pass a point of no return.”
There, has that helped? Good. In fact, it is an incredibly pertinent and rather clever title. That Ian, it’s almost like he chose it on purpose. Authors, tch, clever sods.
Truly, this is a brilliant, heartfelt, passionate, personal and just amazing post as to what Fahrenheit, Fahrenheit 13 and #Fahrenbruary means to him. Without Matt this little idea I had last year would never have become the behemoth that it has become. I owe him an eternal gratitude.
Read on and enjoy 🖤
Last July, the very first sentence I wrote for my very first blog post read: Let me begin… … by saying this is all the fault of a man I’ve never met. That man is Chris McVeigh, founding father of Fahrenheit. As it’s the start of #Fahrenburay today, I wanted to share a few thoughts […]
Break out the bunting, pop open the bubbly water, take off all of your clothes and run out into the street proclaiming to EVERYONE, wherever you may be in the world, that the month long celebration of the punk rock publishers Fahrenheit Press and Fahrenheit 13 is underway!
Now, there’s a slim chance that you may not know what the flipping blimey I am going on about here. You may have stumbled upon this post after turning the blogging equivalent of the wrong corner whilst blog surfing. You may have seen this on Twitter and, distracted by a cat chasing a mouse on a very small scooter, accidentally clicked on the link and…. piff paff poof… here you are. You may, of course, have clicked on the link on purpose and are genuinely intrigued as to what a Fahrenbruary actually is and what it will entail.
Well, whatever your reasons I warmly welcome you to my blog and I thank you for taking the time to read this and discover what Fahrenbury is and how it all came about 😊
The smell is terrible, but as you slowly approach the charred corpse in the centre of the circle, your sense of smell is overwhelmed by the sight in front of you. The mangled, twisted figure appears to defy all laws of nature. It is hard to imagine that it was ever alive in the first place. As the forensic team poke and prod about in the ashes, you hear a call as one of the white suited officials calls you over. They point to the corpse and you struggle to see what they are getting excited about.
Then you see it. Like one of those magic eye pictures that only come together when you look at them in a certain way, the image in front of you slowly coalesces into something familiar.
You look across to your colleague who looks as confused as you feel.
As the crime scene official carefully removes the loose ashes with a fine brush, underneath are revealed markings, carefully cut deep into the flesh of the corpse.
There’s no doubt about it it. You reach for your notebook and scribble down the words that are now clearly apparent in front of you.
Looking at your notes your worst fears are confirmed.
The killer has written a…. blurb:
A serial killer is burning people alive in the Lake District’s prehistoric stone circles. He leaves no clues and the police are helpless. When his name is found carved into the charred remains of the third victim, disgraced detective Washington Poe is brought back from suspension and into an investigation he wants no part of . . .
Reluctantly partnered with the brilliant, but socially awkward, civilian analyst, Tilly Bradshaw, the mismatched pair uncover a trail that only he is meant to see. The elusive killer has a plan and for some reason Poe is part of it.
As the body count rises, Poe discovers he has far more invested in the case than he could have possibly imagined. And in a shocking finale that will shatter everything he’s ever believed about himself, Poe will learn that there are things far worse than being burned alive …
When I agreed to review Deep Dirty Truth for this blog tour I couldn’t wait to get started. My gibber glands were excitedly secreting gibber juice at a rate I have never experienced before. I was seriously in danger of over gibbering and passing out with all the anticipation.
But there was a problem.
I discovered that I just didn’t have the time to read and review this book. What was I thinking in accepting this tour? What was I going to? I couldn’t let Karen Sullivan, The Lovely Steph® and Anne Cater down.
My gibber glands went into reverse and I suffered what can only be described as ‘reverse gibberage’ and I despaired.
For days I wailed, and, after a cleansing saline flushing of my gibber-pipes, I wondered what I could do to fulfil my responsibility. Eventually I came to the inevitable conclusion: I would have to ask someone else to review this book and post their review as a guest post.
I started to ask around the bloggersphere for someone who could do this book justice. Someone who could get right into the deep dirty truth of what this book was all about. To my utter and crushing disappointment no one answered me. Not one person. Eventually I got to the very end of my contacts, and then I got to the very end of my emergency contacts. No one. After going through all of my emergency emergency contacts, and then exhausting everyone down my street, even flagging down a coach-load of pensioners on an outing to a matinee showing of the Chippendales, I came to the inevitable conclusion…
… I would have to ask him.
I went to the little box mounted on my bedroom wall; the one protected by super toughened, military grade glass, took out the special diamond tipped ultrasonic hammer, sent a silent prayer to the Lord, Freddie, and switched it on. The little thrum vibrating down the handle from the hammer head tickled my hand as I raised it to the glass and struck it.
The glass shattered, revealing behind it a safe, the combination to which was itself locked away in a safe deposit box in Hong Kong. I had arranged to have it couriered to me earlier, so armed with the code I opened the safe. Inside was a little toughened titanium box, locked with a key that was itself locked away in a safe guarded by a highly venomous Black Mamba snake that only one person in the world could safely wrangle. That person, RIP, sent me the key by secure courier and with it I opened the box.
Inside was a number. A phone number.
I dialled it with sweating hands and a terrible sense of dread and trepidation.
It was engaged.
Of course it was. That is because I was dialling the only other person I knew who loves, er, I mean, admires, Steph Broadribb as much as me:
The Beardy Book Blogger.
May your lord have mercy on your reading souls.
But first, a word from the blurb:
“A price on her head, and just 48 hours to expose the truth, and save her family…
Single-mother bounty hunter Lori Anderson has finally got her family back together, but her new-found happiness is shattered when she’s snatched by the Miami Mob, who they want her dead. But rather than a bullet, they offer her a job: find the Mob’s ‘numbers man’ – Carlton North – who’s in protective custody after being forced to turn federal witness against them. If Lori succeeds, they’ll wipe the slate clean and the price on her head – and those of her family – will be removed. If she fails, they die.
With only 48 hours before North is due to appear in court, Lori sets across Florida, racing against the clock to find him, and save her family…”
This is a brilliant post by Fahrenheit author Aidan Thorn. Not only does he extoll the virtues of the novella, but he’s fully behind my idea for #Fahrenbruary. Wonderfull stuff. Look out for more on this real soon.
If you’re a reader of these pages I imagine you like your entertainment dripping in noir and with the spirit of punk running right through its core. So, I probably don’t need to introduce you to Fahrenheit Press and its hard-boiled and experimental imprint, Fahrenheit 13. But you may not be aware of the levels of dedication Fahrenheit readers have for what this wonderful small press is doing. Next month is February, and I know I didn’t need to tell you that because if you’re like me you’ll dread its arrival every year. It’s just far enough away from Christmas that it feels like a distant memory and the green shoots of spring and summer feel like they’ll never arrive. But this year the fans of Fahrenheit Press have decided to brighten things up with a celebration of dark, disturbing, funny, experimental, engaging, sad, heartfelt and just plain brilliant…
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The trees of the forest sigh as they move in the breeze. They appear to whisper to you as the branches rustle against each other creating a sinister susurration that sends a shiver down your spine. A twig snaps somewhere deep within the forest as you slowly become aware of a presence surrounding you. Terror begins to mount inside you as you become more and more disoriented as the darkness falls. Why, why did you have to stop the car to have a wee in the woods at this hour? You knew, just knew, that having that second glass of Pepsi Max was a bad idea. You spin around as you swear that you hear a voice behind you. But there is no one there. Where is the car? You have no idea from which direction you came in from now; everywhere looks exactly the same; the shapes and shadows blurring into one. Suddenly you hear a tapping.
tap. tap. tap. taptap. tap.
What the hell is that? Where is it coming from? It sounds like it is coming from behind you. No, now it’s ahead of you… no, to your left… is it getting closer?
tap. tap. tap. taptap. tap.
Now it is clear and coming from all around you. You begin to panic, all thoughts of your wee-wee are gone (as is the wee as it travels down your leg), as you race through the trees, the branches swiping at your face, stinging your cheeks, getting caught on your clothes. Still the tapping continues, closer than ever, keeping up with your retreat.
Finally you burst out of the trees and onto the road. Your car sits a few metres up the road. Your relief is short lived though for as you approach your car you notice that it has been vandalised. The windscreen is shattered, the wipers are broken and the seats inside are all torn and ripped apart. Standing back you notice that the car is covered in scratches. Still reeling with fear, and with sodden trousers, you stand and stare aghast at the damage. Then you notice something odd. There is something familiar about those scratches.
You stand further back and stare at the markings on your car.
They appear to form words.
They appear to form… a blurb:
On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished in the dark Wentshire Forest Pass, when his father, Sorrel, stopped the car to investigate a mysterious knocking sound. No trace of the child, nor his remains, have ever been found. Alfie Marsden was declared officially dead in 1995.
Elusive online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the disappearance, interviewing six witnesses, including Sorrel and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened that fateful night. Journeying through the trees of the Wentshire Forest – a place synonymous with strange sightings, and tales of hidden folk who dwell there, he talks to a company that tried and failed to build a development in the forest, and a psychic who claims to know what happened to the little boy…