With love from Richard Godwin, author of Apostle Rising

REVIEW: Nigel Bird’s ‘Dirty Old Town (And Other Stories)’

From the opening story ‘Drinkin Wine’ Nigel Bird’s collection of stories grabs the bull by the horns.

His use of dialogue and pacing is exemplary and his characters live and breathe smut and crime.

Nigel Bird writes with an assured narrative voice that never bores or relents from its insistence on making the characters live and that is the sign of a great storyteller.

He maintains this throughout and the concluding story ‘Silver Street’ is both concise and brilliant.

Here is a sample from the opening story.

Any writer who writes tight narrative like this deserves to be read:

‘It was a red carpet all right. Furry and stained with wine. Wouldn’t have done a thing for me if it hadn’t been for the silver stud. Way it rattled against her teeth made me tighten my thighs.’

He knows what he’s doing and he knows how to deliver it.

I found this collection enjoyable and sharp.

Nigel Bird is edgy and has great tone in his stories.

The last story has the lines which encapsulate his ability to create a neat scar on the edge of velvet:

‘The tip took without problem. If it hadn’t been for the thickness of the scarring, nobody would have noticed anything was amiss.’

He writes with a tight control on his phrasing and characterisation, he is an immensely readable immensely enjoyable writer.

This is crime writing at its best.

It is entertaining and unpretentious.

Nigel Bird brings in menace seamlessly.

Read this collection, it is a crime not to do so.

Sea Minor’s Charity Release

Hi there.

Following a wonderful storline project at my school, the Primary 2P class teachers produced a brilliant retelling of Jack And The Beanstalk with their class.

It made sense to me to celebrate their work by creating an e-book using Sea Minor publishing (a posh way of saying I’d sort it out for them). 

The children had the opportunity of participating in the design of a real cover, collecting the blurb and seeing the potential technology can offer them.  It should also encourage some of the world’s Kindle virgins to lose their e-book cherry and that has to be a good thing.  Most importantly it values their work and allows them to share it with their families.

The class has decided that any money raised should be sent to charity and that’s just what we’ll do.  They’ll decide on Friday about which charity to work with, but it must be a children’s one as they felt very sorry for Jack in his state of poverty.

You can support by buying a copy (donwload the Kindle app first at the link if you don’t have one) at:

To see more about the work the class did pop over to:

It’s a short piece of work, but I know you won’t be disappointed by it and at 71p it’s a real bargain. 

Go do.

Over At The Blue House

Review of Dirty Old Town by Nigel Bird (From ‘Over At The Blue House’ by Rob Kitchin)

Until recently I almost exclusively read crime fiction through novels. In the last year or so, as I’ve started to dabble in writing short stories myself, I’ve discovered the short story format, especially flash fiction. And in so doing I’ve found some great writers who mostly specialize in the craft of telling perfectly formed little snippets of life, including Paul Brazill, Patti Abbott, Kieran Shea, John Mantooth and Nigel Bird. So it was great to see that Nigel Bird had collected together nine of his short stories (Drinking Wine (Spo-Dee-Oh-Dee); Taking a Line for a Walk; Dirty Old Town; Sea Minor; Sisterhood; One Hundred And Ten Per Cent; Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want To Fight Tonight); Three Little Birds; and Silver Street) and bundled them into Dirty Old Town. Some of the stories have been published in The Reader Magazine, A Twist of Noir, Beat to a Pulp, Title Fights, Static Movement and Dark Valentine.

What I like about the stories is twofold. First, how they are told – they’re conversational; like verbal storytelling captured on the page. As a result, they’re very engaging. Second, the humanity in the penning of characters. Bird doesn’t judge his characters – they are who they are: real people living ordinary lives, dealing with the crises that disrupt their hopes and ambitions. Each story is short and sweet, most with a nice wicked twist at the end. The blurb accompanying the collection says that the stories will stay with you for a while. A couple of them have certainly been rattling round my head for a few days. I did have one complaint, however – I wanted more of them! A nice collection and a taster of Bird’s storytelling. Hopefully more is on the way. You can pick up a copy via Amazon (UK or US) or Smashwords. At 71 pence or 99 cent you certainly get your money’s worth!