Skull Meat – Out Now!

My Paignton Noir novelette SKULL MEAT is available for Kindle now, via Amazon. This story is intended as a teaser for my forthcoming collection MEAT BUBBLES (& OTHER STORIES), which should be out later this summer.

Here’s the pitch:

Hired by mobster Marie Andretti to ransack the office of morbidly obese local nightclub owner ‘Swollen’ Roland Smart, Paignton private investigator Joe Rey quickly finds himself plunged into a dangerous cat and mouse game – which leaves him fighting for his life. His quest for answers – and vengeance – sees him plunge headfirst into the queasy underbelly of the grubby little seaside town he calls home. Rey is a man with a dark past, and, it seems, very little future. Welcome to Paignton Noir.

Amazon UK link

Amazon US link

SKULL MEAT grew out of a few old, unfinished pieces I found lurking on my hard-drive. The prologue, ‘Paignton Rust’, was previously published as part of the Akashic Books’ ‘Mondays Are Murder’ series a few years ago, while other excerpts were featured by A Twist of Noir and Straight From The Fridge. It is too long to publish as a short story, and too short to be a novella, so an e-book seemed like a good idea.

If anyone reading this would like a free copy (mobi or PDF) in exchange for a review, drop me a line through the contact form.

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Clawfist @ Spelk Fiction

Gordon Guthrie is wearing a signet ring bearing his dead wife’s initials.

The fingers of his clawfist — his left hand — are cracked and withered, and he twists the ring idly with the fingers of his right. He stares out of the boxy TV set at me with bloodshot eyes.

“If you are watching this video, it means I am dead.”

At the end of March I had a brand new Paignton Noir story published by the always-entertaining UK flash fiction site, Spelk. Thanks to editor Gary Duncan for having me back on the site for a 9th time!

Check out Clawfist.

The Repulsion Box @ Crime Factory

“It is nine o’clock, and the Burning Wheel is emptier than a plundered grave. The warm summer air filters through the propped-open fire exit. It carries with it the tang of raw sewage.”

I am delighted to confirm that my new story The Repulsion Box is included in Issue #19 of the excellent Australian crime fiction journal Crime Factory.

This one is a nasty little slice of Paignton Noir, and I’m happy that it has found a home in such a great publication.

The Kindle version is dirt-cheap, so please check it out!

crime-factory-19

Jailbait @ Near To The Knuckle

“I twist the screwdriver out of his neck, and it makes a sound like a sloppy kiss. To his credit, he doesn’t even flinch.”

UK webzine-turned-publisher Near To The Knuckle has been serving up essential reading for fans of short crime fiction for quite a while now, and it is always a thrill to have a new story published by Darren and Craig.

My latest short, Jailbait, went live at the weekend – I hope you enjoy it!

Jailbait Tom Leins Near to the Knuckle