Apologies for not getting this up sooner, as promised. I was swept away by the drunken revelry that is the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. I'm slowly recovering from the weekend, just in time to head off to New York on Thursday, where I will be covering a number of PEN World Voices events, so watch this space for updates.
In the meantime, I am very pleased to offer a rare Monday edition of the giveaway. Writing for the Los Angeles Times, Richard Rayner said of Elegy for April,
... the writing has an elegance and nimbleness that surpass almost all other genre fiction. "The mist was laden with the doughy smells of yeast and hops from Guinness's brewery. It was the middle of the afternoon, and what there was of daylight had already begun to dim." Black evokes Dublin — which he knows inside out — with an almost bitter love, and his feeling for the city's class and religious divisions and its urgent, albeit repressed, sexual atmospheres helps his characters spring from the page: "Bill Latimer came into the room chuffing like a steam engine, his hand already out, smiling his broad, cold smile. He was large and heavy, not fat, with a wide, bony face, and thick, brown, wavy hair; he was much favored, it was said, by women voters."
I am happy to offer two copies of Benjamin Black's Elegy for April, courtesy of our pals at Holt, to a lucky pair of TEV readers. It's been a while, so to refresh, just drop me an email, subject line "BLACK APRIL" and be sure to include your full mailing address, please. I will take all entries until Wednesday, April 28 at 9 p.m. PST and then the Random Number Generator will have its way with you. Until then ...