Blacklisted by the police. Being sued by a client. And broke. Things can’t get any worse for Brighton’s No.1 Private Detective, Joe Grabarz, in this blistering debut novel from award-winning writer Tom Trott.
That’s when his best friend’s body washes up on the beach.
Could it really have been ten years? What happened? How could his life have ended like this? He needs answers.
But with the city in the grips of organised crime, and struggling to deal with an influx of legal highs, who cares about just another dead drug dealer? Joe, that’s who. After all, you can’t
#FavFive with Tom Trott
What’s your favourite book cover by another author and why?
I’m a huge fan of “dime store novels” and their covers; the brazen designs often using the image of a barely clothed woman or a man with a gun to foist everything from The Hound of the Baskervilles to Wuthering Heights on unsuspecting readers, (the ultimate version is, of course, a barely clothed woman holding a gun herself, such as the ones used for many paperback editions of The Thin Man). But my favourite cover has to be a popular choice: the first edition of The Great Gatsby. It’s a work of art in itself, something I would hang on my wall. It encapsulates the feel of the novel in a way that many covers fail to do. Most have to focus, like the dime store novels, on selling the book above aesthetically complimenting it. I think all authors dream of a cover that captures their story as a work of art, and The Great Gatsby is a book you really can judge by its cover.
What is your favourite time to read? Like a lot of people, reading is the last thing I do before I go to sleep. I’ve always found that I start reading with a messy head and finish with a clean one; there is something about the level of concentration required, about the private universe you enter, that is conducive to relaxation and clarity. However, when I had a day job that I really hated, I used to get up twenty minutes early and give myself time after breakfast to relax with a coffee and read a chapter before I had to leave for work. I always found this helped me get out of bed, and improved my mood, because I wasn’t getting up for that miserable job, I was getting up to enjoy a book. It allowed me to own my mornings, and not feel I had surrendered them to someone else. Do you have a favourite snack to nibble whilst reading? Never. That would leave crumbs in the book, and I couldn’t stand that. I do like to theme a drink though, preferably a cocktail. Maybe a Martini or just cocoa with Poirot, or a whisky and soda with Marlowe, but that would only be on special
Do you have a favourite snack to nibble whilst reading?
Never. That would leave crumbs in the book, and I couldn’t stand that. I do like to theme a drink though, preferably a cocktail. Maybe a Martini or just cocoa with Poirot, or a whisky and soda with Marlowe, but that would only be on special occasions, of course, otherwise my liver would be in a terrible state.
Who is your favourite character that has stayed with you long after the book ended?
I’m going to be controversial here and choose a character from a graphic novel because the character of Rorschach from Watchmen has always stuck with me. He sees morality in black and white and judges any compromise as an unforgivable betrayal of principle. But what fascinates me the most is that Alan Moore refuses to have the character ultimately break this rule, as many writers would do, and instead keeps Rorschach committed to his view of the world, even when the alternative to compromise is not just his own destruction, but the devastation of the entire planet.
What is your favourite book quote?
I think the opening of The Big Sleep has to be my favourite quote. It’s character, atmosphere, plot, and personality, all wrapped up into a few sentences. “It was about eleven o’clock in the morning, mid-October, with the sun not shining and a look of hard wet rain in the clearness of the foothills. I was wearing my powder-blue suit, with dark blue shirt, tie and display handkerchief, black brogues, black wool socks with dark blue clocks on them. I was neat, clean, shaved and sober, and I didn’t care who knew it. I was everything the well-dressed private detective ought to be. I was calling on four million dollars.”
You can purchase Tom Trott’s ‘You Can’t Make Old Friend’s’ here: Amazon UK
Thank you, Tom, for being on the blog today. Come back again soon.
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