CP18: 2020: THE DIRTY SOUTH

In stark contrast, the next Parker novel, The Dirty South, will have no supernatural elements whatever...

“I’ve had to go back to Every Dead Thing because the next book is set in the immediate aftermath of that novel. Reading it now all I can see is my 28-year-old self who was the sum of all these influences. I was very much in thrall to James Lee Burke in my first novels, probably my first decade, to his descriptions of landscape, because it awoke something in me. Gradually you undo yourself of those influences.

“There’s a temptation to reverse engineer your career and say, well, there was this great plan, but Every Dead Thing was a rejected book, it was rejected at the halfway stage by almost everybody, and although hugely frustrating and hurtful, it was a very liberating moment, because if you have nobody telling you, we’ll publish it if you do this, if you only have an agent telling you, actually, you’ve kind of screwed yourself up here because they’ve all read it and they don’t want it but I like it and you need to follow this path and see where it’s going.

“That’s the moment when the supernatural elements began to appear. I didn’t really know it wasn’t typical; for me it seemed a natural thing to do, take two genres that I loved and meld them together. And it’s been said to me that I damaged my career commercially by mixing genres like that, but I made decisions that were creative, not commercial, and I’m content with those decisions and with the level of readership I have. And I can do things like The Book of Lost Things, like He.”

Excerpts from John Connolly: The Charlie Parker saga reaches a culmination
An interview with Declan Hughes published in The Irish Times 20/04/2019
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