Hex and violence
released 7 January 400 pages | Paperback/ebook Author Peter Mclean Publisher angry robot
What connects Raymond Chandler, Guy Ritchie, Harry Potter and Buffy The Vampire Slayer? “Not much” is probably the answer. Until now.
At first glance, Don Drake, the eponymous antihero of Peter McLean’s punchy debut novel, appears to be your classic hardboiled, whisky-soaked gumshoe. But he’s not a detective at all: he’s an occultist hitman who uses the dark arts to rub out his victims, and instead of the boulevards and speakeasies of LA, his beat is the mean streets of South London.
Harnessing the power of the Burned Man – a tiny, sewermouthed cockney fetish who summons ferocious demons while effin’ and jeffin’ like a miniature Danny Dyer – to pay off a gambling debt, Drake finds himself drawn into a gangland turf war with literally hellish consequences.
At times, the book’s hard-bitten cynicism borders on the sadistic, not least during the lengthy violent interludes. But as Drake finally discovers his moral compass and sides with the angels (specifically, a gorgeous blonde angel in kitten heels who carves her enemies up with a sword), the stage is set for a showdown between good and evil that will have you cheering for this unlikely champion, despite yourself.