“This sparkling debut fires volleys of one-liners . . . Romping good stuff.”—Daily Mail
“An original and highly readable debut for journalist-turned-gumshoe, Nick Madrid. But a word of warning: never let this man house-sit if you value your pets.”—Lynne Truss
“Made me laugh out loud and wince in sympathy at both the violence and the humiliation meted out to the narrator . . . enormous fun.”—Val McDermid
Tom Sharpe meets Raymond Chandler in No Laughing Matter, a humorous and brilliant debut that will keep readers on a knife’s edge of suspense until the bittersweet end.
When a naked woman flashes past Nick Madrid’s hotel window, it’s quite a surprise. For Nick’s room is on the 14th floor, and the hotel doesn’t have an outside elevator. The management is horrified when Cissie Parker lands in the swimming pool—not only is she killed, but she makes a real mess of the shallow end.
In Montreal for the Just For Laughs festival, Nick, a journalist who prefers practicing yoga to interviewing the stars, turns gumshoe to answer the question: did she fall or was she pushed? The trail leads first to the mean streets of Edinburgh and then to Los Angeles, where the truth lurks among the dark secrets of Hollywood.
Peter Guttridge is the Royal Literary Fund writing fellow at Southampton University and teaches creative writing. Between 1998 and 2002, he was the director of the Brighton Literature Festival. Since 1998, he has been the mystery reviewer for The Observer, one of Britain’s most prestigious Sunday newspapers. He lives in Sussex on the edge of the South Downs National Park.
U.K. bestseller available in the U.S. for the first time.
When a naked woman flashes past Nick Madrid's fourteenth floor hotel window it's quite a start to the Just for Laughs Festival. The management is horrified to have a celebrity death fall into their laps, that is, into their pool, and the mess in the shallow end is no treat either. But the big question is: was Cissie Parker pushed or did she fall?
Nick, a journalist easily distracted by his intense and painful yoga practices, turns gumshoe to answer the question. Madrid and his cohorts - the caddy Frank and the ciggie-smoking, platform-sole wearing Bridget - pick up the deadly breadcrumb trail, each carrying their own suspicions as to who killed Ms. Parker. The fine lines of comedy and tragedy are smeared as the killer's trail leads them from Montreal to Edinburgh to the ghastly-lights of Hollywood.