Tag: Illness

Adrian Baldwin – Stanley McCloud Must Die! | Review

Title: Stanley McCloud Must Die!

Author: Adrian Baldwin

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 368

Rating: 4*/5


Adrian Baldwin - Stanley McCloud Must Die!

Adrian Baldwin – Stanley McCloud Must Die!


The first thing I have to say about this book is that it’s definitely not for the faint of heart. When Baldwin calls it “dark comedy for grown ups”, he’s not wrong. In fact, his work reminds me of what Irvine Welsh would sound like if he tried to write a sitcom, and there are definitely references to Welsh’s work here right down to a Renton reference and a Scotsman called Dougie who gets up to all sorts of shenanigans.

There is a plot here, but the plot almost comes second to the characters, although both are a lot of fun here. It’s an odd book because there are basically two different story lines taking place at the same time. The first plot follows a chap called Stanley McCloud who’s diagnosed with a terminal illness and who makes a bet with a bookmaker that he’ll live to his next birthday. The problem is that she decides to try to kill him off early so she doesn’t have to pay up.

While all of this is happening, there’s also a second plot which follows a serial killer called the Head Honcho, and that’s kind of why I wanted to read this book. One of his victims is named after me and so I wanted to find out how I died. I wasn’t disappointed. I also read this as part of Todd and Dane’s Indie Readalong, which is an initiative I’m running with a friend over on YouTube.

All in all, this was a fun book and while it started to drag a little near the end, I think that’s just a byproduct of its length. For an indie book, it’s a startlingly well-written and well-edited work that, while it might not be for the mainstream, is a great addition to the indie landscape and one which deserves more readers. Sure, there are trigger warnings for pretty much everything imaginable, but that’s hardly surprising. I mean, I’ve read Baldwin’s work before and this was more of the same. A lot of fun – but also pretty much crazy.


Adrian Baldwin

Adrian Baldwin


Click here to buy Stanley McCloud Must Die!.


Colin Dexter – The Wench is Dead | Review

Title: The Wench is Dead

Author: Colin Dexter

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 244

Rating: 8/10


Colin Dexter - The Wench is Dead

Colin Dexter – The Wench is Dead


I’m probably a little predisposed towards Colin Dexter, because I’ve read all of the Sherlock Holmes books and most of Agatha Christie’s back catalogue, and so this is the natural next step. The Wench is Dead is a little different to most of the other books, in that Morse is an invalid throughout. He got hospitalised for being a middle-aged pisshead.

Anyway, the actual mystery involved here begins to develop when Morse begins to read one of his fellow patients’ write-up of a century-old murder case. It turns out, he has a few doubts about whether the official version of events, which led to the execution of several men, was ever the case at all.

And so, in between reading ‘bluenovels when he thinks no-one is looking and trying to recover from his illness, Morse’s mind begins to unravel the problem like one of the crossword puzzles that he’s fond of.

This is one of the quickest Morse novels to read, and it was also a gripping story, and so it’s a pretty good introduction to his work. That said, I’m yet to read most of the rest of the rest of Dexter’s work, and I’m willing to bet that there’ll be a better introduction to his stuff in there somewhere. Bear with me while I look into that, for you.


Colin Dexter

Colin Dexter


Click here to buy The Wench is Dead.


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