Archive for the ‘The Art of Ventriloquism by AJ Kirby’ Category

From Saturday, the excellent new venue the Hyde Park Book Club will be selling copies of some of my selected paperback titles for just five quid. Yup five quid. There will be copies of Bully, Paint this town Red, and The Art of Ventriloquism up for sale. To find out more about HPBC, please go here.

hpbc

New cover imageMy crime fiction collection The Art of Ventriloquism has been re-issued with a new cover (see right) and under a new ISBN (ISBN: 1516984293 and ISBN-13: 978-1516984299) and can be purchased from here. The content of the collection remains the same. As does the blurb;

The Art of Ventriloquism and other stories

“I’ll never forget the first thing he said to me, the way he curled all his thorny knowledge into that one barbed comment stopped me in my tracks.”

Welcome to The Art of Ventriloquism: a baker’s dozen of short, sharp, shocking crime fictions from the bloodied pen of the author AJ Kirby. The rap-sheet of crimes contained within this volume are varied: from white collar to red-collared, grizzly murder. The style ranges from the hard-boiled to the comic, and all the stops between.

Back cover blurbThe crimes in The Art of Ventriloquism take place in restaurants, opera houses, space stations, prisons, old folks’ homes, on farms, in the back of limousines, and on the salesroom floor. They’re modern morality stories, and here Kirby has become a ventriloquist, channeling the voices of the dispossessed, the victims, those who live on the margins of society… Darkly amusing and ironic – reminiscent of Roald Dahl at his peak – these tales will amuse and delight in equal measure.

Praise for some of the stories:

Jodie Foster & the art of ventriloquism

George Polley, Author: “It’s chilling; reminds me of a short story by Ray Bradbury that was so chilling that I still remember it as if I’d just put it down. A fine piece of writing.”

Too Many Cooks

Judge of the ‘An Ink’ writing contest: “This is a fine story, written in what might be called “the grand manner”. As opposed to certain modern writers whose sentences are clipped and snappy, this author often conveys his meaning in lengthy, convoluted sentences. But they flow, and they work.”

The Ninth Circle

Stephen Hunt, SF Crow’s Nest: “an intriguing story… which brings to mind the film Event Horizon. This tale becomes progressively darker, obscure and depressing until its culmination in a terrible event.”

 

 

Cover mageCouldn’t make the Big Bookend Festival in Leeds at the weekend in order to watch me in ‘The Conversation’ with Richard Smyth or to pick up any of the signed, discounted COLLECTOR’S EDITION copies of my novels? Well never fear because I have a limited number of books STILL AVAILABLE for purchase at an AMAZON BUSTING price of £7 INCLUDING P&P (to UK destinations).

If you’d like to take advantage of this incredible offer, please email me (andrewkirby (92) @ btinternet.com) and I’ll provide purchase information. Payments can be made by Credit or Debit card or by Paypal.

The books on offer are Bully, When Elephants Walk Through the Gorbals, The Art of Ventriloquism, and Paint this Town Red.

Triskaidekaphobia. That means the fear of the number 13. And, with Halloween less than 13 hours away here in the UK, here are 13 horrific things to help you get through the night, a baker’s dozen of frights.

First up, for all of you who fear the number thirteen, here’s me answering 13 questions on all things horror on the Horror Sleaze Trash website. And here’s three other horror writers I’d recommend: Ralph Robert Moore, Ron Malfi, and of course, the master, Stephen King. So that’s four.

Five is a review of my horror novella Sharkways by the writer Anna L Stephens (here). Six is me interviewed on the Ginger Nuts of Horror website, and seven is a link to The Horror Anthology of Horror Anthologies, of which I am a part. Eight, nine and ten are these excellent horror and dark fiction publishers: Wild Wolf Publishing, TWB Press, and Damnation Books.

Eleven is a list of the 50 scariest horror films of all time, twelve is my guest blog on the Legend Press website about everything-phobia

dANCINGSo, pumpkins at the ready. Here’s the latest in my scary story a day campaign on the build up to Halloween. THE DANCING QUEEN’S LAST DANCE: http://thenightlight.co.uk/2011/05/the-dancing-queens-last-dance/# And this is your bonus, number 13.

And if you can’t wait to read more, you can read more stories by AJ Kirby here: http://andykirbythewriter.20m.com/custom_1.html

Or why not check out my creature feature, Paint this town Red, here. Or dare to open The Black Book here. Or try my supernatural tale of revenge from beyond the grave, Bully, which was an Amazon horror number 1, here.

And don’t forget that if you play with fire, you’ll get burned. The Haunting of Annie Nicol has been described as “the perfect ghost story” and is available here.

The road to hell begins in the mind… So watch out at Halloween. Sharkways is a novella which can be read in one sitting, and will scare the pants off you. “The ascent from the midway point is fantastic, and fuses some great, tangible imagery with some haunting psychological terror. (…) Kirby ratchets the tension up to ten and delivers a gratifying finale…” Horror Novel Reviews.

We’re nearly there. Maybe you can already hear the impatient knocking at your door of so many trick or treaters. Maybe you’ve already handed out all your candy and are scarping the barrel, handing out cans of beans or whatever’s left over in the cupboard. But let this be a warning to you. Cans of beans are your means of survival. Because if the forces of darkness do take over on All Hallows’ Eve on Friday, and you’re forced to board yourself up in your cellar, how are you going to survive without your essential provisions? Well? Huh? (And in case the zombie apocalypse does happen, I wrote this guide a few years back for Itchy Leeds magazine)…

Anyway, that’s not what I really wanted you to read today. What I really wanted you to read today is this piece. Horror doesn’t have to concern monsters. The monsters can be ourselves.

Spooky doorwayAnd so, without further ado, here’s the latest installment of my story a day on the build up to Halloween. DOORWAYS. http://thrillskillsnchills.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/doorways-by-aj-kirby.html

And if you can’t wait to read more, you can read more stories by AJ Kirby here: http://andykirbythewriter.20m.com/custom_1.html

Or why not check out my creature feature, Paint this town Red, here. Or dare to open The Black Book here. Or try my supernatural tale of revenge from beyond the grave, Bully, which was an Amazon horror number 1, here.

And don’t forget that if you play with fire, you’ll get burned. The Haunting of Annie Nicol has been described as “the perfect ghost story” and is available here.

The road to hell begins in the mind… So watch out at Halloween. Sharkways is a novella which can be read in one sitting, and will scare the pants off you. “The ascent from the midway point is fantastic, and fuses some great, tangible imagery with some haunting psychological terror. (…) Kirby ratchets the tension up to ten and delivers a gratifying finale…” Horror Novel Reviews.

 

…I’m pleased to announce that the next novel in the AJ Kirby stable has been announced as the crime-thriller When Elephants Walk Through the Gorbals. So hold on tight to those reins, I’m going to be working at a canter over the next few weeks getting everything ready along with the publishers, White House Publications.

ajk1It is scheduled for publication in both paperback at the start of May (by which time these Grand National puns will be neigh good). Over the next few weeks I’ll be whetting your appetites with some teasers from the book, some trailers, and some general gumph regarding the writing of it.

The book follows The Magpie Trap, Bully, Perfect World, Paint this town Red and Sharkways into print format (where they line-up alongside my three short story collections, The Art of Ventrilquism, Trickier and Treatier, and Mix Tape.) And for now, much of the scope of the novel will remain under wraps.

But for now, I’ll tell you this: the book’s aimed at all of those folk who loved the TV series Life on Mars, and the Rebus books by Ian Rankin. It features the same grizzled detective – Jim Hunter – who starred in my 2007 novel The Magpie Trap, only in this one, Hunter’s right at the start of his career in the force, waiting for the tape to rise so he can run hell for leather after the criminals in Glasgow’s seedy underworld.

Buy from Kindle ImageTo catch up with The Magpie Trap, follow this link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Magpie-Trap-A-Novel-ebook/dp/B00CKRWDWY/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1396536297&sr=1-1&keywords=the+magpie+trap

Or if you’re more interested in reading some of my crime shorts, go here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Art-of-Ventriloquism-ebook/dp/B008VM8S0I/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1378740720&sr=1-1&keywords=the+art+of+ventriloquism

dummyAnd so, ladies and gentlemen, we reach the concluding parts of DF Lewis’s real-time review of ‘The Art of Ventriloquism’. It’s been a fun ride, and I’d like to sincerely thank Des for his work on this. I’m sure his salient and witty commentary on the text will enhance everyone’s reading of the text.

The latest episode of the review has appeared on the ‘Horror Anthology of Horror Anthologies’ website, which is fitting as the final two stories in the collection are pretty horrific. You can read the whole thing here: http://horroranthology.wordpress.com/the-art-of-ventriloquism/

And here’s a final couple of highlights:

‘The Ninth Circle’ – “The story has much strong writing and has elements of the Gavel’s kangaroo court and it poses several questions in my mind: one of which is the randomness, the sudden realisation there can be no synchronicity, no gestalt after all. And that is sufficient reason for this story’s poignant ending, a philosophical anti-natalism as a version of rough justice”

‘Politicking’ –  “POLITICKING is a grotesque John Dos Passos collage of a coda to the previous stories, one about a politician who is the Government’s Drugs Czar and is also reputed to be into drugs himself and with the fear of his own tiny genitalia as from ‘The Ninth Circle’. And there is another man with this book’s earlier self-harm as a condition of harming others, plus an Aga cooker and surveillance. A country house whodunnit to make this a crime fiction book after all. Where victims abound. You can have Horror without Victims but not a Victimless Crime… You can have women without men, but men without women is another Aga Cooker of fish. You can have leitmotifs without a gestalt, but not a gestalt without leitmotifs. A collection (or as it says on the main title page of this book: ‘anthology’) needs stories, but stories don’t necessarily need an anthology or collection or even a book to hold them. Some stories start in the head and sometimes stay there. These stories luckily escaped to the page. In the mean time…”

Overall, Des had this to say about the collection as a whole: “I loved this book. I am only regretful that I hadn’t got to one of AJK’s books before now. ”