'Craigie's Clevedon Poems', by James Russell is out now. Check it out here: http://www.knivesforksandspoonspress.co.uk/craigie'sclevedo.html
This is what people are saying about it:
Jack Craigie (a sociologist at Glasgow University) has committed a murder and is on the run from the police. Ending up in the North Somerset town of Clevedon, he needs a cover-story to deflect suspicion, and hits upon the idea of his being a poet putting together a collection of his work. The poems in the book are those he leaves on his typewriter. He is inveigled into giving a couple of readings, he has women trouble, he eats and drinks a very great deal. He meets Modrick Facey who looks like a “two-boy man”, Peggy “the blonde bomb-site”, and finally that “very interesting and clever personality” Detective Sergeant Keith ‘Crazy’ Pavey. This blackly comic novel is to be enjoyed; and readers can take the ruminations on poetry and how it might be written as seriously as they like.
The first and greatest example of noir poetry criticism, of lyric poetry in passive-aggressive narrative disguise and anthological travesty, this is an acutely observed and sharply pointed disruption of readerly expectation. It's like Patrick Hamilton re-written by a team from QUID on the body of Poetry Review. It's the desperately funny tale of an original intelligence on the run, off the cuff, on the sauce, and off the map. Shelley once observed that 'Poets, the best of them—are a very camæleonic race': here is the final truth of it.
– Ian Patterson
Sharper and headier than a swig of 'Paddy' straight from the bottle - Craigie's misadventures are a must-read for anyone with a literary imagination and a sense of humour. I laughed until I couldn't stand.
– Helen Mort
Happy New Year,