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Two Way Split [Paperback]

Allan Guthrie
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)

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Book Description

3 April 2006
Robin Greaves is an armed robber whose professionalism is put to the test when he discovers his wife has been sleeping with a fellow gang member. Greaves plans the ultimate revenge, but things go from bad to worse when the gang bungles a post office robbery, leaving carnage in their wake. Suddenly they are stalked by the police, sleazy private eyes and a cold-blooded killer who may be the only one not looking for a cut of the money. Allan Guthrie is one of crime fiction's toughest new writers, with an outstanding ear for dialogue, a sharp sense of humour and a breathless pace. Get gripped.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited (3 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904598692
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904598695
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 13 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,177,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I was born in Orkney in 1965 and attended Kirkwall primary school, where my P5 teacher allowed me to write during art classes, given my woeful lack of talent for visual art. I was, however, not too bad a musician, playing piano and bassoon to a half-decent standard. I became a founder member of the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland when I was twelve, and was whisked off to music school in Manchester as a fourteen-year-old.

After leaving school, I attended university in Aberdeen, where my plan to support my studies by playing piano in a posh restaurant took a nosedive when I was sacked on my second night because my hair was too long. After a year, I left Aberdeen, degreeless, and moved to Edinburgh.

Having lots of spare time on my hands, I taught myself how to program computers and spent the following twelve years working in IT. It was good while it lasted, but I started to feel the pinch and found a part-time job in a bookshop, where I was so happy I would have worked for free. For a while, at least!

Before long, I was employed full-time in the book trade, and over the nine years that followed I worked in various jobs, from stockroom supervisor to IT trainer, moving between exotic locales such as Brussels, Cork and Stirling, before giving up my day job in 2006 to work as a writer, editor and literary agent.

I'd married in 2000 and it was my wife, Donna, who was instrumental in encouraging me to take my writing seriously. After being short-listed for the CWA Debut Dagger for a book called Blithe Psychopaths in 2001 (renamed Two-way Split for later release), I started to think she might have a point. Three years and hundreds of rejection slips later, I wasn't so sure!

Eventually Two-way Split and Kiss Her Goodbye were picked up (within weeks of one another, oddly enough) by two independent presses in the United States. In 2006 Kiss Her Goodbye was nominated for an MWA Edgar Award, an Anthony Award and a Mystery Ink Gumshoe Award. Two-Way Split went on to win the Theakston's Crime Novel of the Year in 2007.

Since then I've published another three novels, most recently, Slammer, which describes the descent into hell of a young prison officer. I've also published three novellas, including Bye Bye Baby, a police thriller, initially published as an ebook original, and going on to become a Kindle top ten bestseller.

In November 2011 I co-founded Blasted Heath, a digital-only publisher, launching with original novels by Anthony Neil Smith, Ray Banks, Douglas Lindsay, Brian Pendreigh and Gary Carson.

Product Description

Review

A novel which is easily the match for any of the modern American masters of the noir genre -- The Big Issue

A novel which is easily the match for any of the modern American masters of the noir genre. -- The Big Issue

A stone cold classic...the most exciting novel I've read since Ellroy put out White Jazz all those years ago. -- Bullet Magazine

Excellent! -- George Pelecanos

Seek him out and buy his book. -- Ian Rankin

About the Author

Allan Guthrie was born in Orkney, and now lives in Edinburgh. He is married to Donna and works as a bookseller. He has published several short stories in a variety of magazines and anthologies. Allan is webmaster/editor of Noir Originals and commissioning editor for both Pulp Originals and PointBlank Press. Film and TV rights have already been sold. Kiss Her Goodbye, his second thriller, is published in April 2006.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent novel, fast paced fiction! 6 July 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Where to start...'Two-Way Split' was a complete surprise to me. I didn't know an awful lot about it when I started reading, but straight away I was pulled in. Guthrie has superb knack of setting the pace early, the story never drags. The way the story unravels, you're never sure of what will happen next, no words wasted or spent overly describing anything incidental, it is a fast paced, edge of your seat thriller.

Although it has been out for awhile, it feels as fresh as if it was written only recently. With great characters, fantastic dialogue and an excellently crafted storytelling, 'Two-Way Split' will definitely not be the only Allan Guthrie novel I'll read. In fact I'm already looking for my next fix!

If you like your crime/thrillers well written and packed to the brim with action, I can't recommend this highly enough!
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars True Grit 6 July 2011
By JanLuke
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Imagine your wife is being unfaithful, not a rare event in today's world but none the less stressful on a personal level. The man she's having an affair with is a close friend and you all work together. Add to the mix that your chosen profession is armed post office robber and you're all heading out on a job just hours after you have learned of the affair. Finally you've recently stopped taking your medication for some serious mental health issues. Today is going to be an interesting day!

Allan Guthrie's storytelling grabs you by the balls and drags you to a dark and gritty Edinburgh, an unforgiving place that in reality is only a few streets away from pavement pipers and open top buses. An underbelly littered with massage parlours, loan sharks, drug dealers and illegal weapons. A place where for the price of a kindle you can buy most anything or get your legs broken.

The characters, without exception, are fully fleshed whole people who despite being in surreal situations never lose their believability. Pearce is a great character it would have been so easy to write him as a two dimensional Bruce Willis avenging angel type but instead we get a complicated violent man with a moral code albeit slightly twisted. He doesn't know where to buy a gun and when he does he needs to be shown how to use it. The PI making a hash of climbing the scaffold. This kind of realism gives the story some gravitas. More than once I was reminded of "The Wire" in the way violence and crime sat side by side with everyday life.

I bought Two-Way Split after reading Bye Bye Baby and Killing Mum, two novellas by the same author. If you want something a little different from the norm with a dark edge then Mr Guthrie is well worth a try.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic stuff. 11 Nov 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Grey is a private detective. He and his partner are hired by Robin- a former child prodigy concert pianist who is also an armed robber - to find out if his wife is cheating on him.

Meanwhile, Pearce is fresh out of prison after doing ten years for murdering his sister's drug dealer and is working for a loan shark while living with his mother, Hilda, who works in a post office that Robin and his ex-cop partner are planing to rob.

And there's much, much more as Allan Guthrie brilliantly weaves all the convoluted strands of the story together in as wild, hilarious, brutal and touching an example of British crime fiction as you're likely to get.

Two-Way Split was- amazingly - Guthrie's first novel and was the 2007 Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel Of The Year. And you can certainly see why. Fantastic stuff.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great fun read 5 Jan 2012
By e
Format:Kindle Edition
This was a very easy fun read. He writes in a most engaging way that takes you into the story without a lot of scene setting etc.Read it twice and loved it both times
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Debut daggers 18 July 2012
By PA
Format:Kindle Edition
Hard to believe this is a debut. Tight and tense with a set of great characters and a lovely feel for Edinburgh. A robbery goes wrong and there are consequences for more than the villains and the victims in this one. I can't wait to read more of this guy's work. A steal (!!!) at twice the price.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Now see the film 28 Dec 2011
By suesieb
Format:Kindle Edition
This book would be brilliant as a film. Reminds me of The Snatch. Loved it, best book I have read for ages and I've read quite a few since getting my Kindle.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Crime Novel 20 July 2004
Format:Paperback
Every now and then I come across a book that takes me completely by surprise. I'm not sure what I was expecting when I picked up my copy of TWO-WAY SPLIT by Allan Guthrie although I had my suspicions it would involve the darker side of life. At least I was correct in that assumption. What I wasn't prepared for was the superb depiction of a group of troubled people unknowingly digging themselves deeper and deeper into terrible trouble.
Robin Greaves, his wife Carol and her lover Eddie Soutar are robbers who are planning on robbing a post office in a daring daylight raid. Their plan, in order to get the cashiers to cooperate, is to utilise the two ingredients that they believe is common in all successful robberies: hostage taking and violence. It's not a perfect plan but it's a pretty good one and should have a good possibility of success. But a few ingredients are added to the set-up that not only tips the balance towards a more precarious outcome, but also turns the story into a melange of unexpected twists and turns.
The first glimmer that all may not go smoothly comes when Greaves finds out through a private investigator that Carol and Eddie are having an affair. Understandably Robin doesn't take the news well and the simmering rage he harbours looks like it could bubble over at any moment.
Possible problem number two is the revelation that Robin has already spent some time in a mental institution. In itself this wouldn't exactly be a problem, but we also know that he hasn't been taking some sort of medication for almost five months. When going into a tense situation carrying weapons, one wouldn't think that the ideal person to be watching your back is a betrayed husband, who may not be 100% mentally stable, would one?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars DIFFERENT - NEW AUTHOR FOR ME
DIDN'T CARE FOR THE RATHER BRUSQUE STYLE OF THE STORY

DIDNT HAVE ANY DEPTH. DEFINITELY NOT MY KIND OF BOOK.
Published 4 months ago by Joyce Deirdre
5.0 out of 5 stars High class crime
Robin Greaves is having a bad day. A PI has confirmed his wife, Carol, is having an affair with his friend and colleague, Eddie Soutar. Read more
Published 6 months ago by K. Nixon
3.0 out of 5 stars Confused until half-way through.
I had to force myself to finish this book as I was totally confused until I got halfway through. Too many characters with very little descriptive information. Read more
Published 9 months ago by meand66
1.0 out of 5 stars Forced myself to finish it
I kept hoping this would develop into something sensible and use the gritty surroundings and the tortured mindset.... it didn't.
Published 9 months ago by Mr R J Neilson
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT READ
Grips from start to finish. Not an involved story but well written and makes you want to read more of Guthrie's books. Read more
Published 10 months ago by bob
3.0 out of 5 stars All's well that ends well
Good storyline but a bit muddled in places. Probably try some more of his books to see if I want to read them all. Not what I wold normally read but enjoyable all the same.
Published 14 months ago by DOUGAL
2.0 out of 5 stars So and so thriller
With a thriller so coveted with awards, I actually found the story rather mediocre. The characters didn`t captivate me, and I found the plot unengaging. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Dean Carroll
4.0 out of 5 stars good read
This was slightly confusing at first because there were so many characters but as the story progresses the different groups all have a common theme & this makes for a very... Read more
Published 17 months ago by christine brown
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Book
I have just read the screenplay adaption.A deliciously dark story about some seriously disturbed characters and a botched Post Office raid.
Published 17 months ago by B. B. Shenton
1.0 out of 5 stars Not recommended
This was a very disappointing read. I had very little empathy or interest in the main protagonists and the storyline descended into farce as the author tried hard to portray a... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Frangipan
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