6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Rancid Aluminium (Paperback)
Lock Nick Hornby and Nicholas Blincoe in a room and leave them to rough each other up a bit - the result would probably be James Hawes. This is 'Crime Ladlit', a bloke version perhaps of Lauren Henderson and Stella Duffy's (etc.) 'Tart Noir'.
It's for the boys, this novel, as was 'A White Merc with Fins'. Life is dull, with work every grinding day that passes and nothing to show for it, so crime is the answer, according to Hawes' novels. And we can vicariously share in his characters' escape - in this case, on a dodgy business trip with the Russian mafia. The plot grabs you in by your collar and refuses to let go, and the prose has some moments of shimmering transcendence. For the most part, though, we're in thriller mode, so that description, dialogue etc. are thrown up in the air and land any-old-way - the plot drives us on. Although Hawes' novel are seen as comedic, there are some dark, 'what is the point of being alive' moments, but they resolve into a life affirming desire to evade dullness.
So, if that's what you're looking for, frankly, you couldn't go wrong with a Hawes novel. And I'm not even a lad or a bloke.