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A Ghost of a Chance [Paperback]

Peter Guttridge
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
RRP: £9.99
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Book Description

2 Jan 2005
Freelance writer Nick Madrid isn't thrilled when he is commissioned to spend a night on an allegedly haunted prehistoric barrow, and live to tell the tale. Especially when living to tell the tale isn't made an urgent priority. Then he discovers a dead man hanging upside down from a tree.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Speck Press (2 Jan 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0972577688
  • ISBN-13: 978-0972577687
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,505,775 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Peter Guttridge has read far more crime fiction than is healthy for anyone: for eleven years (until 2011) he was the crime fiction critic of the Observer. He is the author of the Brighton trilogy: City of Dreadful Night, The Last King of Brighton and The Thing Itself and two follow-up Brighton novels - The Devil's Moon and Those Who Feel Nothing. He has also written six satirical crime novels featuring the yoga-obsessed Nick Madrid and the hard-bitten but irresistible Bridget Frost. (The series runs from No Laughing Matter to Cast Adrift.) His non-fiction writing includes his definitive account of The Great Train Robbery and a forthcoming history of smuggling. His e-book original, The Belgian and the Beekeeper, is the first of three novellas featuring Sherlock Holmes and a certain foreign detective. The second novella, The French Hospital, will be published in December 2014. A stand-alone e-book original thriller, Paradise Island, was published in September 2014.

Product Description

From the Publisher

"Ghostbusters meets Ghost-bonkers...Brilliant." Peter James
New Age meets the Old Religion (Satanism) when Nick Madrid is bothered, bewildered, but not necessarily bewitched by pagans, satanists and assorted weirdos. Seances, sabbats, a horse-ride from Hell and a kick-boxing zebra all come Nick's way as he obstinately tracks a treasure once in the possession of Aleister Crowley, the Great Beast: occultist, drug-fiend and all round bad egg. (Shortlisted for the 1998 Sherlock Award for the best comic detective in US and UK fiction.) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Author

666, the number of The Beast. 667 the neighbour of The Beast
In this, my second novel, I wanted to take a traditional English village, Agatha Christie-type murder mystery, cross it with a horror/ghost story involving Satanism, add in a little New Age wackiness - and make the whole thing funny. I also wanted to set it nearer to home than my first novel, No Laughing Matter, which roamed from Montreal, to Edinburgh to Los Angeles. That's the great thing about books over film - you don't have to worry about the budget. The bad thing is that if you want to get your book filmed - and most writers do, whether they admit it or not - you gotta keep it simple. Hence, I admit, my decision to set Ghost of A Chance in Sussex and Brighton only. I live on the South Downs so researching locations came down to sitting in my back garden with a bottle of wine looking at the view. I live a few hundred yards away from an Elizabethan house where Aleister Crowley, the black magician and self proclaimed Beast of Revelations (whose number is 666) used to live. In the seventies a big rock star with an interest in black magic also lived there. So I got to thinking ... Also Brighton - the California of Britain in terms of weird ideas - provided rich comic material. I quickly found that however inventive I might be about comic situations or events, my inventions would pale beside things I heard about in real life. Take the kickboxing zebra who appears in A Ghost of A Chance. There's a (real) man in Brighton who, for reasons you and I can only guess at (unless you're he, in which case, hello), used to spend all his spare time as a zebra. He got a friend to paint his entire, naked body (and I do mean entire) in black and white stripes then he'd mooch around the town, well, being a zebra. His ambition was to get a herd of like-minded people (yeah, right), painted as zebras, up on the Downs, presumably for some kind of graze-athon. Well, as they say, you can't make this stuff up. So I created a fictional character who goes around as a zebra - but who is also a kickboxer. Yeah, well, I'd finished the bottle of wine by then. Good reading. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Laugh a minute! 4 Mar 2001
By A Customer
I read this in paperback but see there's no review for the hardback, which I assume is the same. I laughed so hard when I read this book - there's just so many weird and wonderful things in it - a guy who spends his free time as a kickboxing zebra. Nick Madrid and Bridget "Bitch of the Broadsheets" Frost are such a great double act - he's gentle and a bit soft, she's hard as nails but together they solve the mystery. I liked the Hollywood movies star (is it meant to be Al Pacino?) who does the film about Aleister Crowley convinced he's playing Oscar Wilde. Daft but wonderful.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gets Better with time!! 2 Feb 2006
By A Customer
I first read this novel just before the turn of the 20th century and thought it was prescient - and, of course, very, very funny. I've just re-read it and it just gets better with time. I don't want to go over the top but Guttridge is a combination of Nostradamus and the funniest writer you've ever met.
...Okay, that was over the top...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Like nothing I've ever read before! 11 Jan 2001
By A Customer
Ouch! I got this book because it's partly set in Brighton, which is where I live and when I read it I felt some of my beliefs were being trampled on because the author is very sarcastic about New Age things but I laughed anyway because this is a very funny book and not quite like anything I'd read before. I've read another one now and that's great too.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant blend of horror and comedy 16 Jan 2001
By A Customer
Not quite as good as the first in the series - No Laughing Matter - but this book is a really clever mixture of the stuff you get in horror stories, the daft end of New Age stuff and a lot of wisecracks. Bits were very scary, which is odd because overall it's very funny. The horse race is hilarious.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Guttridge did it again! 11 Jan 2001
By A Customer
The kick-boxing zebra did for me. The idea of a crime novel that's funny as well has always sounded a bit wet to me but this book proves me wrong - it's really, really good. I'm onto the next one.
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