I’m very excited to be bring you my review of Dead & Talking by Des Burkinshaw along with a fab giveaway (see bottom of the post).
Title: Dead & Talking by Des Burkinshaw
Date Published: 10th March 2019
If a ghost appeared from nowhere, rescued you from suicide and then ordered you to start solving crimes to help dead people, what would you do?
When it happens to Porter Norton, he just wants to put his head in his hands and have nothing to do with it. But now he has to atone for the family curse that has seen all the men die at their own hands for five generations.
The Gliss, the sarcastic spirit that rescues him, says he can now and see and hear the Dead – if he’s close to their remains. Porter has to use his unwelcome gift to clear up past injustices. Or else.
Forced to investigate the murder of a WW1 British Tommy executed for spying in 1917, he begins to suspect the case has links to his own family history. Along the way, Porter enlists the help of a bickering group of misfits, who struggle to stay involved – because only fools believe in the supernatural, don’t they?
Full of pop culture references, banter and twists, the story takes us from present-day London and Flanders to scenes from World War 1.
As Porter, The Gliss, and friends, get deeper into the explosive case, they discover their own lives and sanity are at stake. An evil from WW1 pursues them all.
Porter Norton is at the end of his tether. He’s lost his girlfriend, he’s about to lose his job and career as a solicitor and the worst thing a girl died because of his mistake. Unable to take it any more he attempts suicide, only to be saved by a ghostly robot called The Gliss.
He tells him that he’s invoked an ancient curse which means he has to make up for the hurt that his family has caused over the years. First is investigating the death of a young soldier Max Cartwright but someone or something doesn’t want the truth coming out and will stop at nothing to make sure that doesn’t happen.
Dead & Talking is an absolute gem of a novel! It doesn’t specifically fit into any genre which I really enjoy when an author shakes it up a bit. There’s mystery, ghostly happenings, historical scenes and sarcasm by the bucket load.
I found each and everyone of the characters memorable from Porter’s strait laced solicitor Namita, to Porter’s new friend Feng, the sceptic ghost hunter even Porter’s very unlikeable sister Cherry. I also loved the back and forth between The Gliss and Porter, genuinely had me chuckling out loud.
There is also some good historical research in the book too, it really gets across grim realities of the first world war.
Also just a little warning, there are some complex and emotional issues discussed during the book, like rape and suicide that some people may find upsetting.
There was one very minor character who really annoyed me and I felt that he was just put into the novel to be vile but of course that’s just my opinion.
Dead & Talking is a book packed with action, ghostly goings on that had me fascinated from beginning to end.
About The Author:
Born in the middle of the Summer of Love on a pre-fab council estate in Luton, teenage bitterness and a chance viewing of the Watergate movie, All the President’s Men, made him vow to become a journalist and bring down the government.
First he had to pay for his journalism course, so he became a civil servant. Literally the day he had enough for his fees, he packed it in.
Twelve years on from watching the film, he was a journalist at The Times and had a big hand in bringing down John Major’s government. News ambitions sated, he packed that in too.
Several years of working for Channel 4, ITV and the BBC as a senior producer saw him working across the world, but he eventually got fed up with asking bands how the new album was coming along, and packed it in.
He set up his own production company magnificent! in 2002 and simultaneously worked on the BBC Live Events team for another 10 years. But then six years of work on the Olympics came along, so he packed the BBC in. Again.
Des has jammed with many of his heroes from Paul McCartney to Brian Wilson, Queen to Nancy Sinatra. He has interviewed many A-listers, including David Bowie, Michael Caine, John Cleese and even Noam Chomsky.
He has directed/produced a fairly long list of people – Muse, Coldplay, Michael Jackson, Jay-Z, produced BBC3’s Glastonbury coverage for a couple of years, made films about leprosy in India, comedy shorts with Miranda Hart and Lenny Henry and played guitar for Chas and Dave at the Hackney Empire.
He has made 300+ short films for the Queen, MI5, the BBC, Sky, Discovery, EMI, the British Academy and dozens of authorities, charities and private sector firms. His most recent publication was a series of interviews with leading academics like Mary Beard on the state of the humanities which was published as a standalone magazine by the British Academy.
Fed up with travelling and determined to be a half-decent dad, he now works in London as often as he can. He runs the Young Directors Film School making movies with young people and is about to head up the Digital Film and Video MA at Tileyard. An avid musician and producer, he releases his third album as Romano Chorizo (he plays drums, bass, piano, guitar and really bad sax).
He hates to be pigeon-holed, thinks creativity is a learned state of mind and wishes they would teach people memory and learning techniques at school.
Dead & Talking is his first novel, the first in a series of Porter & The Gliss investigations.
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Giveaway to Win 3 x Signed Copies of Dead & Talking (Open INT)
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.