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on 6 March 2001
In the midst of a shoot-out on an oil rig, Ally McQuade and his old English teacher Mrs Laurence commiserate about the awfulness of the school reading list and the tedious hours spent ploughing through Grassic Gibbon's "A Scots Quair". Readers educated in Scotland will sympathise. It's definitely time One Fine Day, a beautifully crafted novel from one of Scotland's best writers of modern fiction, made it onto the Higher lists instead.
Like Christopher Brookmyre's earlier books, this is a page-turner, with a satisfyingly tight plot. Brookmyre is accomplished enough in the thriller-fiction genre to play around with its cliches, and the reader's expectations, to hilarious effect. He does a lovely line in dry humour - though very occasionally, an overdose of authorial irony threatens to slip the tone into Terry Pratchett territory. Brookmyre's sharp wit comes over best through his glorious cast of Paisley-bred characters. All are recognisable, deftly drawn, and their dialogue begs to be read out loud. Has anybody bought the film rights yet?
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on 29 May 2006
I have read this book so many times that some of the pages are beginning to fall out!

Brookmyre's writing style is witty and clever, wonderfully bringing to life his characters and the situation they find themselves in. A school reunion on a converted oil rig goes disastrously wrong as a group of not-so-professional mercenaries try to take control of the rig. Despite the differences they once had on the playground, the now mature ex-students and their English teacher must band together to save themselves.

Featuring guns, bombs, rocket launchers and a laundry chute, this is one of the best books I have ever read.
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on 7 September 1999
I bought this book before departing on holiday as the first book I had bought to take, I had finshed in two days (Mark Radcliffe Showbusiness - Diary of a Rock and Roll Nobody *Superb*). I picked this book in preference to the thousands of others only due to the fact that I am friends with the authors sister. Being a Scot who has moved away from home I usually avoid Scottish books so I bought with trepidation. I needn't have worried the book was thouroughly entertaining and the Scottishness was not overplayed. The style of writing, like a number of short stories interwoven and coming together in a tumultuous ending was intensly gripping. I almost forgot that I was stuck up an Austrian Mountain surrounded by hoardes of German children, (Sound of Music meets teletubbies). The book was easy to read, the style is so natural it would make you think that you to could write a best seller. The dialogue is suberb and will make you laugh out loud. The depiction of the highland police is hilarious and probably, more worryingly, realistic. Well worth £10 of anyones money you will read this book again and again. I'm off to buy the others.
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on 8 February 2004
This is the kind of book you read in one or two sittings.
Right from the off, the tone is set with humour and violence mixed together in a way that the movies this book alludes to hardly ever achieve.
The memories of school in 1970's/80s Scotland are cringingly accurate and the characters and dialogue are spot on.
The humour comes from both the situation and from the banter of the schoolmates as they first reminisce about the old days, then as the plot unfolds, get involved in a dangerous hostage situation.
There are archetypes (and clichés) in abundance and there are very few real surprises in the plot, but none the less this is an extremely engaging and amusing read. (The kind where you chortle a lot and irritate everyone else in the room by reading out the one-liners..)
In book terms, Brookmyre is a Scottish version of Carl Hiassen but with more wit and better stories.
In movie terms this swims in the waters between Die Hard and Pulp Fiction.
(Funnier than Die Hard, less sex and drugs than Pulp Fiction)
Eminently filmable but equally easy to get horribly wrong (can you imagine it working if re-cast off the American coast ?) so probably best left alone !
Overall a very good book by an author who is consistently readable.
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on 13 August 2000
Read this novel, read all the reviews here on Amazon, then ask yourself if there isn't more going on than just McDie Hard starring a Scottish Bruce Willis. Who really are the real life models for the characters?... The beauty of this book, complete with its slightly implausible plot and sly links back to earlier Brookmyre novels, is that it is a parody. the characters are close enought to real life to be satirical, but it is affectionate and deeply good humoured in style as well as in the one liners and comic set pieces. The layers of plotting and the reverent nods of the head not just to the cinema, but right the way back to Robert Louis Stevenson give the lie to the image of Brookmyre as just a man who can tell a funny story. It's all too easy to dismiss this book as a potboiler, or an over the top pastiche, and not realise that it's underpinned by a love and respect for ordinary people, and a bitter anger at the stupidity of the world we live in that isn't just cynicism for the sake of it. Everyone who reads this book will have a favourite setpiece, but the real joy of the book is in the moments between the setpieces. Oh, even the love stories are fun, and i'm no romantic...
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on 11 August 2005
I can't recommend this book highly enough - A mixture of small town Scottish high school nostalgia and over-the-top hollywood gunplay (yes, really!), which turned out to be the funniest book I've read in ages. Many a laugh out loud moment was to be had with this.
My only criticism is that after slowly building the characters and setting the scene, the author seemed to want to get the action over as quickly as possible. Only a minor detraction from what is an action packed pageturner and a half.
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on 13 April 2006
Since starting with "Boiling a Frog" and "The Sacred Art of Stealing" I have been working my way through the Brookmyre novels and this is certainly one of the best I've read to date. The usual black humour, good writing and OTT plot are there but this has the bonus of being based on a pretty bizarre school reunion set on a converted oil rig. The characters are all eminently recognisable from everyone's school days (The Nutter, The Funny Guy, the Unattainable Girl etc etc) which just adds to the usual clever Brookmyre plot with obligatory twist. Highly recommended!
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on 1 October 2000
Not being a lover of terroist, murder or action books, I started reading One Fine Day' after borrowing it on soon became clear that what I had here was a complicated plot leading into a wonderfully comic tale.The star of it all? Not the terrorists, not Conner and not Simone....OK you've guessed it..Hector McGregor the retired policeman in his pyjamas being blown out of his rowing boat in the middle of the night by a mad man with a rocket launcher! Great Stuff!
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on 16 May 2005
"One fine day in the middle of the night" sees the former pupils of a Glasgow school gathering on an floating resort (old oil rig) for their 15 year reunion. What they don't know is that there are some extra guests in the form of a bunch of terrorists. The result is a book that moves along at a frantic pace, and is very, very funny. I found it impossible to put down - even for long enough to wipe away the tears! Thouroughly reccommended!
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on 4 November 2001
This was the first book I ever read by Brookmyre and it's the most memorable. Focusing on a school reunion on an glorified oil rig, sorry, floating holiday resort, it puts you in touch with the characters immediately. You can empathise with the villains too, thanks to Brookmyre giving you background to the characters.
There are some genuine comedy moments and you will probably have a chuckle at least a few times throughout the book.
It is quite violent at times and the language is quite strong, but it's not gratuitous. The book also has some nice twists as well, and it makes the use of the fact that you get so engrossed in each scene you forget about certain characters which actually works to the advantage.
Possibly Brookmyres best.
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