It’s a real pleasure to welcome you all to my stop on the blog tour for Needle Song by Russell Day today! My thanks to Emma Welton for the invitation to join. I have an extract to share with you all but first, here is what the book is all about.
Author : Russell Day
Title : Needle Song
Pages : 380
Publisher : Fahrenheit Press
Publication date : April 28, 2018
Spending the night with a beautiful woman would be a good alibi, if the body in the next room wasn’t her husband.
Doc Slidesmith has a habit of knowing things he shouldn’t. He knows the woman Chris Rudjer meets online is married. He knows the adult fun she’s looking for is likely to be short lived. And when her husband’s killed, he knows Chris Rudjer didn’t do it.
Only trouble is the police disagree and no one wants to waste time investigating an open and shut case.
No one except Doc.
Using lies, blackmail and a loaded pack of Tarot cards, Doc sets about looking for the truth – but the more truth he finds, the less he thinks his friend is going to like it.
I took a long route home, telling myself it was a nice evening for a ride and that the tension across my shoulders was stiffness from work. Funny the lies we tell only ourselves. I lived about three miles from the shop but managed to put fifteen on the clock before arriving.
The house, my father’s, was in the middle of an old terrace. Not classic, just old, one of a row, each one as bland as the next. High-density living, neighbours sleeping a brick’s width apart and not knowing each other’s names. North London in a nutshell.
Dad was sat on the stairs about a third of the way up. He didn’t claim to be stuck but his laboured breathing implied a story to be told.
“Hello,” I said. Dad took a couple of heroic gasps but decided the effort of speech was too great and weakly raised a hand, his opening move. “You alright?” I asked it as a greeting rather than an enquiry, subtle difference.
Dad decided his next move quickly and chose badly. He could have gone for the sympathy or pity play. Instead he went for martyrdom, suffering in silence. He held a hand up again and added a brave nod. A man in distress but too proud to let on. I took it at face value and walked straight past him to the kitchen, which was a minor victory to me, at least I think it was. The rules for the game dad played were as clear as those of Mornington Crescent.
The kitchen smelt stale, dad didn’t believe in opening windows and a good number of food-smeared plates and a pair of pans waited for attention. I let them wait a bit longer. I went to the front room and sat facing the over-size television, the blaring screen was the only thing the room hadn’t sucked the colour from. Dad came in and made his way to his armchair, sat in it with has much effort as he could. He’d given up on the heavy breathing, conceding a point to me. I had no doubt there’d be a counter play at some stage but I told myself I wasn’t worried. Funny the lies we tell only ourselves.
“You had any dinner?” I asked, bellowed, over the TV.
Dad walked right into it.
“Not really.” Voice just the right side of accusatory.
I nodded and, without looking away from the screen said, “Load of washing up in the sink.”
Bang, I got another point, won a few blessed minutes of peace. Dad broke the silence with a master stroke.
“Your girlfriend rang. I told her you were out.”
I nodded, left the room, went upstairs to the bathroom and stood clutching the side of the bath until my knuckles hurt. When I trusted myself to sit with dad again, I asked what she’d wanted. Without looking away from the screen, he shrugged.
“Asked for you. I told her you were out.”
I unclenched my fists with an effort and left the room again. Game, set and match to dad.
If this teaser has left you wanting more, you’re in luck as Needle Song is available to buy from the following links!
Russell Day was born in 1966 and grew up in Harlesden, NW10 – a geographic region searching for an alibi. From an early age it was clear the only things he cared about were motorcycles, tattoos and writing. At a later stage he added family life to his list of interests and now lives with his wife and two children. He’s still in London, but has moved south of the river for the milder climate.
Although he only writes crime fiction Russ doesn’t consider his work restricted. ‘As long as there have been people there has been crime, as long as there are people there will be crime.’ That attitude leaves a lot of scope for settings and characters. One of the first short stories he had published, The Second Rat and the Automatic Nun, was a double-cross story set in a world where the church had taken over policing. In his first novel, Needle Song, an amateur detective employs logic, psychology and a loaded pack of tarot cards to investigate a death.
Russ often tells people he seldom smiles due to nerve damage, sustained when his jaw was broken. In fact, this is a total fabrication and his family will tell you he’s has always been a miserable bastard.
Author links : Twitter