I suppose it’s really about time I said something about Halfhead, you know, what with it being published tomorrow. Well, I say ‘published’, what I mean is that it’s the official publication date, which means the book itself’s probably been on sale for about a week or so already. But tomorrow is it’s official birthday, so cake and party hats for everyone. You know, the big pointy ones, where the elastic’s never big enough to around your chin and ends up either snapping and putting your eye out, or getting wedged under your nose. Making you look a bit like a pig with a silly hat on.
But I digress. Yes, Halfhead. Tomorrow. Stuff.
I’m expecting a bit of a backlash about this book, much like the one I got when Sawbones came out last year: “How dare you write about anywhere other than Aberdeen!!!” “How dare you write about anyone other than Logan!!!” “How dare you be so damn sexy in a built up zone, between the hours of eight and six!!!” You know, the usual.
So let’s get all our nuns in the box and make with the info. Halfhead is a thriller, not a book about spaceships and aliens and anal probes. What it does have are explosions, full-frontal nudity, conspiracies, serial killers, and onomatopoeic weapons*.
I even got a lovely blurb from that lovely tri-genre-straddling master of Horror, Sci-Fi, and crime fiction: Michael Marshall (AKA: Michael Marshall Smith, AKA M.M. Smith) “Slick, gruesome and brutally intelligent, this is bare knuckles thriller-writing.” Which means I’m going to owe him a hell of a lot of pints next time I see him.
It also, believe it or not, has a kind of theme going through it. I won’t say what it is, because I tend to think themes are a bit wanky. But it’s only a little theme. More frottage than full-on onanism.
I think I’ll steer clear of the whole ‘theme’ thing when I visit Shetland at the end of the week to do my first Halfhead-related event though. Don’t want all the islanders avoiding me, now do I?
Oh, and speaking of Shetland, I have some rather unlikely news. BBC Radio Shetland** is handing over the airwaves to Mr Allan Guthrie and myself for nearly a whole hour on Friday evening (18:10 – 19:00). We’ll be spinning the platters that matter, the songs for thongs, the tunes that … droon. Or something.
I plan on calling everyone ‘hep cats’, that should ensure my swift promotion to a regular slot on Radio 2.
* Which I have to admit are some of my favourite bits of the book: Whompers and Thrummers being the cream of the onomatopoeic crop. What do they do? Well, Whompers go ‘WHOMP! when you pull the trigger, and make stuff explode, and Thrummers go ‘THRRRRRRRRRMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM…’ and tear stuff apart into its component molecules. Which would be super useful if you’ve ever tried to get baked on grease off of a roasting dish. Or a double-glazing salesman off your front step.
** Yeah, they’re having to keep it quiet on the BBC website, because they don’t want the studio mobbed with screaming women. Probably all wanting us to shut the fuck up and play some Scottish country music instead.