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Dirty Old Town (And Other Stories) by [bird, nigel]
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Dirty Old Town (And Other Stories) Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Length: 102 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Details

  • File Size: 241 KB
  • Print Length: 102 pages
  • Publisher: Sea Minor (December 21, 2013)
  • Publication Date: December 21, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004LROUDG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #626,068 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Heath on February 7, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There's nine stories here, and each one offers a unique little slice of filthy life. From the downbeat last day of a tormented old janitor in "Taking a Line for a Walk" to the dark and clever humor of the Ramones-inspired "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want to Fight)", Bird displays a remarkable insight into what makes the lowlifes and losers of the world tick.
He's at his best with the stories written in first person, and fortunately that's the majority of them. It's the voice, man: it's authentic and sincere and real, shot through with remarkable bits of insightful black humor.
Like this one, from the title story, "Dirty Old Town", which starts with the narrator getting the bee-jeezus beaten out of him:
"It was like my birthday in reverse. They gave plenty and I ended up with less than I started with."
That line kills me.
At .99 cents on Kindle, this is the kind of bargain you don't wanna miss. Bird is the real deal.
Favorite stories:
"Taking a Line for a Walk"
"Dirty Old Town"
"One Hundred and Ten Percent"
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Nigel Bird walks a tightrope. He's a writer capable of great brutality, quick wit, and stunning grace, and you'll often find all three in the same story. The first story I read of his made me stand up and take notice, and everything I've read since has proven this particular pony's got a whole big bag of tricks.

Speaking of tricks, the price point of this baby's gotta be one. Nine stories from a guy at the top of his game for under a buck? I don't know what he's playing at, but I say snatch it up while the snatching is good...
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Format: Kindle Edition
Most modern noir I've read is purely centered on crime, revenge- the dirty deeds. Nigel Bird's `Dirty Old Town' takes this a step further, digging underneath the dirty deeds to the mere oil slick black soul of it. There is depth, humanity, an ironic sense of humor mimicking real life. His stories reach in and ask questions, where most noir forces the answer without taking the time to build the question. I find this incredibly refreshing and it shows Nigel's talent. I would love to read a longer work by this writer. For lovers of noir and crime this collection is a must read.
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Nigel Bird's "Dirty Old Town" is a collection of 9 dark slices of (low) life from the award winning short story writer. The stories are nicely varied in tone and structure. My favorites are the deeply sad tale of a school janitor's last day "Taking a Line for a Walk" and the humorous tale of father/son thieves "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight)".
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British crime short stories have always been a favourite of mine...but there is something a little different here. Sure there is violence, death, drugs, all the usual suspects - but Nigel's ability to crack open the doorway to the motivations of the violence and crime is what made me really like this collection. Not every story was a favourite, but there was much more great than just good.
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Bird can tell a tale about a custodian in a school and on the next page switch to a story about dark, violent murders. And each story is completely different, yet completely compelling. The author's voice carries you along, not fitting a certain style, but sounding exactly the way you'd expect the character to sound. Well done, challenging writing here. Definitely worth picking up.
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I first met Nigel Bird through participating in his fun interview weblog, DANCING WITH MYSELF. I've been keeping a stack of ebooks, his accomplished short story collection DIRTY OLD TOWN (AND OTHER STORIES) included, until I finally got my Kindle. So I've been playing catch up. My favorite story here is the title one set in a gym with the boys training for Olympic gymnastic competition. Their coach Chalky Fish takes fierce umbrage at a local dope dealer for selling the boys performance enhancement drugs, the gold brand being the slickest one. "Three Little Birds" is a tale narrated by Shrek Harper, another harassed person who has finally had it. "Sea Minor" employs a sensitive child narrator off to visit his "Gran" on the island of Skye. Dark humor is found in "Merry Christmas" where the father and son thieves pull off an interesting heist. The stories are previously published ones, and it's nice to read them all assembled into a single ebook. Bravo!
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I came to Nigel Bird's work after reading the very enjoyable collections that he helped oversee, Pulp Ink 1 and 2. I wanted to see more of his own work and I'm glad I did. These are nicely polished stories with no waste that evoke a variety of responses. By turns they are sad, funny, violent, and at times tender in a unique and curious way. What's also good is that I really can't think of an author to whom I'd compare Bird because his voice is distinctive. The only vaguely similar writer who comes to mind is Irvine Welsh.

These stories are excellent short entertainment and you simply can't get better value than $0.99. (P.S. to Nigel: I like your taste in music.)
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