The News

The Four Marys longlisted for Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize


The Four Marys, a collection of provocative novellas by Jean Rafferty, has been longlisted for this year's Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize, which celebrates great British fiction by showcasing the breadth and vibrancy of British writing today.

The longlist of fifteen books has been chosen by the judges as "they display the flair, range and literary rigour abounding in British writing today and should, the judges believe, be widely read." The final eight winners of the Prize will be announced on Thursday 18 June at the Jerwood Space, London. Each winning author will receive a prize of £5,000 and each title will feature in a summer promotion by WH Smith Travel.

Announcing the longlist, chair of judges India Knight said: "It is absolutely thrilling to have found such brilliant books, across such a wide variety of genres, and from authors that live and write all over the country. These are fantastic writers who deserve to be household names."

The Four Marys features a quartet of contemporary folk tales exploring the complexities of motherhood. Author Marina Warner has praised the "powerful stories about the lives and deaths of women", whilst said, "The writing is starkly frank in creating atmosphere and realism."

The Storm is coming...

The Storm launch event takes place at Blackwells South Bridge, Edinburgh. 6.30pm, Thursday 7 May. 


Rising Scottish crime fiction talent Neil Broadfoot is back with The Storm, the eagerly awaited sequel to his critically acclaimed and Deanston-nominated debut novel, Falling Fast.

Hailed by Sunday Times bestselling author James Oswald as “a great read [with] cracking pace and a satisfyingly twisty plot”, The Storm plunges crime reporter Doug McGregor and DS Susie Drummond into a murky world of corruption, cover-ups and decades-old secrets after Doug’s editor is brutally assassinated in front of him.

Ranging from the heart of Edinburgh’s rapidly changing newspaper industry to the Kingdom of Fife and the Isle of Skye, The Storm is “a gripping page turner with prose like a sniper’s bullet” that “keeps you guessing to the very end” as it addresses the state of the press and asks if the truth can ever come at too high a price.

Neil will be launching The Storm with CWA New Blood Dagger and 2011 Crime Novel of the Year nominee Craig Robertson, who is also a former journalist, at Blackwells South Bridge, Edinburgh, on 7 May from 6:30pm.

Neil said: “With the unbelievable success of Falling Fast, the pressure was on to deliver a worthy follow-up with The Storm. The early reviews – especially from a best-selling author like James and other writers on the Scottish noir scene – and the reaction from audiences at book festivals like Aye Write! seem to show that I’ve done that and I can’t wait to plunge readers back into another adventure with Susie, Doug, Third Degree Burns and the new characters I’ve created.

“As a former journalist, I’ve seen first-hand the way the industry is changing in response to the digital age – and it’s not always for the better. Given the massive stories that are being covered at the moment, this provided a perfect dramatic backdrop for The Storm, and allowed me to reflect on some of these changes and ask where next for the press while delivering a typically violent and dark mystery that readers will enjoy.   

“Being a writer is all I’ve ever wanted to do, so this really is a dream come true. To see The Storm on the shelves next to Falling Fast, and being able to take my work to book festivals and meet readers who enjoy the books, is just indescribable.

The Storm is coming, and I can’t wait for readers to experience it!” 

Cult thriller to launch at Aye Write Book Festival


Graham Lironi will be launching his fiendishly clever new thriller Oh Marina Girl on the opening night of this year's Aye Write Book Festival (17-25 April).

The opening night activities, taking place at Glasgow's Mitchell Library, will be headlined by Irvine Welsh - which is fitting given that Graham has been described as the natural heir to the popular and controversial writer.

Oh Marina Girl, published on 9 April, is a labyrinthine mystery already described as having "all the makings of a cult classic" by Alistair Braidwood in his ScotsWhayHae blog. Meanwhile, crime writer Douglas Skelton found Oh Marina Girl to be "the most fun you can have with cult content without actually shaving your head and holing up in a compound in Idaho". 

The novel introduces us to the claustrophobic editor of a newspaper's letters page. He receives a note from a kidnapper informing him that "intolerance will not be tolerated" and that a hostage will be executed unless the editor arranges for a letter to be published on the front page of the next morning's paper.

So begins the narrator’s tale, within which we encounter strange characters – such as Chris The Crossword Compiler and Mark Twain (or at least his namesake) – and hear of an enigmatic organisation of moral vigilantes called The Amino. But who is the kidnapper? And why would he/she wish to pass a death sentence on the narrator?

Graham Lironi has been described as the "bad boy of Scottish fiction" by The List magazine. His first two novels, The Bowels of Christ and Candyfloss Martyrs, won plaudits for their uncompromising style and provocative subject matters.

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