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Gaslight (A Soho Noir Thriller) by [Dawson, Mark]
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Gaslight (A Soho Noir Thriller) Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 78 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for Mark Dawson

'A brilliant debut novel from a very promising writer.' Subject

'Ultra-addictive, super-stylish - a viciously good novel.' Toby Litt.

'A talent to be watched.' Birmingham Post

'This is far and above the best small/independently published book I have ever had the pleasure of reading.' The Kindle Book Review

From the Author

Q & A with Mark Dawson

Q: Can you tell us a little about this book?

Mark: I've written a couple of novels in the Soho Noir series - THE IMPOSTER and THE BLACK MILE - and I wanted to write something quick and fun as an introduction to the longer books. This is a short story that examines the father of one of the main characters in THE IMPOSTER, plus his brother (a key character in the book). We go all the way back to 1920, just after the end of the Great War, and experience what it was like for soldiers returning home after fighting. They didn't always get a warm welcome.

Q: How do you research the period?

M: A lot of reading of contemporary fiction for the language and then trips to the newspaper archive to get a sense of the atmosphere of the time. That's one of the most enjoyable aspects of writing a book like this. Authenticity is really important to me; if you sound a bum note, a reader with knowledge of your period will be immediately turned off. I try and avoid that at all costs.

Q: Have you lived in London?

M: I have. I spent a decade there between my 20s and 30s and it's a city with a lot of stories to tell. The cobbled streets and gas lamps that feature in this book can still be found; and some of the lamps still run on gas, even to this day. It's intoxicating for a writer with an interest in that era.

Product Details

  • File Size: 259 KB
  • Print Length: 65 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Black Dog Publishing (January 4, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 4, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00HDAV7Y8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #84,460 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The opening of this SoHo Noir thriller series, really sets the tone for this London based story, that starts off
with our humble Harry Costello who is bright, insightful, and will put in place the machinery for his dirt poor
family to move up in the only area it counts....the ability to get things done, by whatever means it takes to move
his Family up the social ladder, so to speak...a must read if you are a fan of the early 20's in America....and if not...
give it a read anyway, you won't be disappointed!

Sonny
sonny@sonnyelliott.com
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This short story illustrates the lives of two Londoners just after the 1st World War. They have no sense of morality and thrive upon their misdeeds. If this is what interests you, you probably will like the book. I, however, found it disgusting. It is well written and the plot is laced with unexpected turns. Read it with this caveat.
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I thought this would be a full book, but at best it might be called it a novela or a short story. I read it in a single evening. It really seems to serve as an introduction to the author's created world and characters rather than full story. In any case, it certainly wasn't a thriller. It might suffice for a 50's TV episode, but wouldn't begin to compete with more recent material. The plot line was simple and one dimensional. There was single moment of suspense, but it wouldn't even raise your pulse. The writing was sufficient, but I'm glad I didn't pay for this.
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Mark Dawson is a good writer, but I don't think this is his best. It's a novella-- which means it needs to move quickly to get the story told in fewer words. Dawson moves it along, but I was never attracted to either of the protagonists or the storyline. It didn't make sense to me that such a violent crime would be committed for such a trivial insult. The cover also said, at first glance, that this was a contemporary setting. Yes, there are gaslights,but unless you study the cover you won't see them, and the figure on the cover looks very 21st century. Add to that the fact that that the gaslights aren't the primary focus of the novel and you have a mix-matched cover that doesn't tell you what's inside. Unintentionally deceptive.
Like I say, Dawson is a good writer, but I'm more attracted to his novels than his novellas.
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London post World War I in 1920. The culture and actions of the lower echelon of the city are illuminated in Mark Dawson's Gaslight.
Harry Costello works as a gaslight attendant after he comes back from fighting in the war. His job allows him to scout houses he can steal from with his brother George. It's after one of his jobs that the "tax collector" for the Little Italy mob boss comes to the Costello's to extort their "earnings" from them. Harry is rather quick-tempered and formulates a plan, with the help of local bartender and love interest Isabella, to remove his problem. Harry's actions catch the eye of the boss of Little Italy and earns him a job as an enforcer for the mob.
Within the text, there were issues in consistency of punctuation usage, namely in quotation marks. The narrative paints the scene relatively well, but the entire narrative is rather abbreviated in its scope of what actually takes place in comparison with the language associated with it. Events all built up to the climax that just sort of happened all too quickly and fizzled out immediately, despite its attempt to set up for subsequent installments. I found it interesting that the full title of this work includes the term noir. I can see how there are some elements of noir and an attempt was made, but by traditional standards, it's not quite there and could certainly be punched up more to more fully live up to that name.
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I am an avid fan of Dawson's Milton series and Beatrix Rose, but I just couldn't get into this one. It basically did nothing for me. Perhaps I was expecting too much. The idea of the story is interesting, but it just didn't have the grab or punch that the Milton series does. There were several editing errors which I think were more evident because the story just hadn't grabbed me. I will try another of the series to be sure, but I think I will be sticking to the Milton and Rose books.
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By JennlyT on May 27, 2016
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Maybe it was because this was the second book in a series and way too small but I just wasn't feeling it. The story really was more a moment in time that explained how two brothers beat.. and then joined the local mob.

No too much in the way of Noir either.
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The Milton series brought a situation to a close. Enjoyed them and wanted to read the next.
Gaslight seems to be just getting started and then ends. You see how the character Harry gets drawn in, and you know this can't really be good...even though Harry believes his fortune is to be made. And perhaps it wil l be made. But I'm not enticed to buy the next book to find out.
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