Ray Spalding's had enough of his wife, Paula. He's left his home in Edinburgh's Southside and headed for Belfast. It's safer there. Unknown to Ray, Paula's also had enough of him. She's not going back home. Not now, not ever. Jesse Spalding wakes up one morning to find both his parents gone. And he can't tell anyone or he'll be taken into care. As time passes and bills need paying, all Jesse can rely on are his wits, his friend Archie and his dad's 1950s record collection. Southsiders is a powerful short novel that follows the spiralling fortunes of Ray and Jesse, pushing father and son to their limits while they struggle against the odds in the darker shadows of two of Britain's capital cities.
It doesn’t take long for Ray Spalding to realise that prison is nothing like an Elvis Presley movie. The warden has no intention of throwing a party and the only bands Ray encounters are gangs of hard men. When an old adversary seeks him out, Ray decides his only chance for survival is escape. Ray’s son, Jesse, is discovering that being on the run in the middle of winter is no fun. With his stamina stretched to the limits, he’s ready to surrender himself to social services. At least that way he can see his girlfriend again. Danny Boy is the man in the middle. He thinks he can break Ray from prison and reunite father and son. All he needs is an ambulance, a funeral, the help of some of his old friends and a big slice of good fortune. Southsiders: Jailhouse Rock takes you for an eventful ride on a Mystery Train where the destination is as likely to be the Heartbreak Hotel as the Promised Land.
Two Edinburgh PhD students head to the Phoenix Festival to sell legal highs. When a friend discovers that their Horn-E pills are poison, he faces a race against the clock to make sure that nobody comes to any harm. To complicate matters, the drugs were paid for with a loan from Edinburgh’s infamous Tony Fish. If they don’t have the cash to straighten their debt, there’ll be nowhere for them to hide. Jesse Garon’s obsession with Elvis Presley may be as strong ever, but as his hormones kick in he’s finding he has more in common with Jake Bugg. Jesse’s hoping that a weekend at the Phoenix Festival to see his new hero might thaw his girlfriend’s mood and allow him to take their relationship to the next level. Failing that, the Horn-E pills they’re selling on the strip might be perfect for the job. A tale of star-crossed love, tangled webs, gangsters, bloody men and a dog called Brandy.
There'll be more carryings on down Brit Grit Alley very soon, sorta kinda thing, like.
Paul D. Brazill's books include A Case Of Noir, The Last Laugh,Guns Of Brixton, Too Many Crooks, and Kill Me Quick! He was born in England and lives in Poland. He is an International Thriller Writers Inc member whose writing has been translated into Italian, German and Slovene. He has had writing published in various magazines and anthologies, including The Mammoth Books of Best British Crime.His blog is here.
We take a break from crime stories today. And bring you an insightful interview with FFO fave, Mister Tom Pitts. We sat down with FF...
LATEST FLASH FICTION
Latest Book Reviews
Out of the Gutter Online offers easy-access commenting by the popular service, Disqus. You are encouraged to let the author of any piece you enjoy (or that you take issue with) know your reaction, and you are encouraged to interact with other visitors in the comment sections.
Everyone appreciates feedback. If you contribute either fiction or nonfiction here, comment on other pieces and the authors of those pieces will comment on yours and everyone will benefit.