It's the last Post! Well, the last book post. Back to business as usual tomorrow, promise. Meanwhile, here's another shameless attempt to interest you in reading, and of course backing, that glibbest and most delightful of books, Space. Tuesday Belgravia, in the last interview she conducted during the writing of Space, talks to 'hero' Ben Johnson just before the end of the book.
Hi, Ben. Thanks for taking the time to see me. How’s it been going?
Well, as you know, I’ve been labelled Dr Death the Terrorist, my new girlfriend has died in my arms, I’ve been chased across Europe by two intelligence services and a gang of psychotic hoods, MI6 is trying to kill me, I’ve just made symbiotic love to a murderous American intelligence operative and been bombed by a stealth bomber. Apart from that, a regular day at work, I guess.
You’re just about to start writing the scene where you finally meet Kenneth Spamp, AKA Bruce Tyburn at a massive underground complex under Salisbury Plain. How are you feeling about that?
Well, I’ve obviously just discovered how much fun killing people really is, so I think at least a part of me is looking forward to putting a bullet in the bastard, but I guess we have to see how that bit goes, don’t we? At the end of the day, he’s been behind this whole mess and I owe him at least a life for Kylie’s.
You were quite fond of Kylie, weren’t you?
I was and I do think it’s a bit much of Alexander to have her coughing up her last life’s blood down my shirt. It’s no way to treat a popular character.
She was quite sexy, wasn’t she?
Yes, and a bit scatty too but I found her endearing – and of course her practicality saved my skin more than once.
Did you feel guilty that you had got jiggy with gun-happy American intelligence agent Neon when Kylie died in your arms?
Well, not really, because you have that whole symbiote thing going on, so I was seeing it through Neon’s eyes and emotional responses as well, so I really felt more like a detached disgust. Which is a shame, really.
Some people have said that you really don’t develop that much as a character. What do you have to say to that?
Well, I can’t really see that myself. I’m the central character in the book, as you know, and I do think that I am shaped by the events and circumstances around me; I’m characterised in terms of responses to situations. Let ‘em go to hell, actually. I’ll kill them.
You can’t just kill everyone, you know! You used to be a doctor!
Oh yeah, Mr. Goody Two Shoes. Stuff him, too. I enjoy killing so much more than I used to enjoy patching people up. It’s simpler and quicker, for a start.
Thank you, Dr. Ben Jonson.
Actually, you know what, bitch? Take that!
Ah! I can’t believe it! You shot me!
Ha! The end!
You can read Space online on authonomy by clicking on this handy, easy to use hyperlink. And if the book makes you laugh and looks like something you'd buy and read, then you can 'Bookshelf' it and vote for it to stay in the top five books to be 'cherry-picked' for review by Harper Collins' editors at the end of the month! There are three days to go and, believe me, your vote counts right now!
Incidentally, there's a load of other fiction by new writers in the UK, US, Europe and Australia up there, so have a poke around too and see what takes your fancy!
Try Stalking the Widowmaker by Greg Horbay for instance, or MM Bennets' epic 1812. MM Trevalean's Tartare is certainly an interesting, if unsettling read and then there's Dan Holloway's Songs from the other side of the wall, a work of literary genius.