So “New Release” as I’ve used it here is a bit misleading. This announcement would more correctly be labeled a “New Re-Release Announcement” or a “New Paperback Repackage Announcement.”
Do I even need to suggest that both “more accurate” labels lack a certain snappy lyricism? Do I need to ask that you say all three aloud to someone whose judgment you trust, one at a time, and have them tell you which phrasing sounds most attractive? Obviously not.
What might take some explaining is why we would decide to reprint Stuart Neville‘s The Ghosts of Belfast in paperback when a paperback edition already exists—why we would take the time to design a new cover and put it out in the world again.
Well, some new stuff came up.
First, we remembered that Ghosts won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller. Then we remembered that John Connolly called Neville’s Soho Crime debut “one of the best Irish novels, in any genre, of recent times” and that it was nominated for the Macavity, Barry, and Anthony awards. Then we remembered that Stuart had just finished writing a new book called Ratlines—a chilling mystery set in 1963 Dublin that will publish in January 2013.
We also remembered that we had short stories, alternate scenes, and interviews with Stuart that no one had ever seen before that we could bind into a new edition. And then we remembered that Ghosts was one of the most unique books any of us had read in a long, long time—a book that upended not only our notions of what “noir” or “hard-boiled” crime fiction could be, but what is possible in any type of fiction.We remembered how wrapped up we were in the dark, haunted mind of Northern Irish ex-hitman Gerry Fegan and Neville’s dismal portrait of a Belfast torn to shreds by corruption and civil war.
Finally, we remembered that after Ghosts, there are two more unbelievable books in the Belfast Trilogy.
Everything suddenly seemed . . . obvious. The Belfast Trilogy needed to be revived, and every person ever had to read these books. Anyone already familiar with the series needs only to be reminded of Stuart’s singular vision before running through the streets preaching the gospel of Ghosts, Collusion, and Stolen Souls.
And if this is the first you’ve heard of Neville, consider yourself fully alerted and duly warned.