Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Invite to launch of ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN

Further to my blog posts of 8 September and 27 August, the book launch of Liam McIlvanney's debut crime thriller ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN will now be held at 5.15pm on Tuesday 29 September at the University of Otago Staff Club at 80 Union Place West (beside the Leith River).

When the public event was moved from the University Book Shop on 22 September to the University Staff Club on 29 September, it also became by invitation only. However, Abba Renshaw of Allen & Unwin has kindly extended an invitation to any interested readers of the Crime Watch blog

McIlvanney is the University of Otago Stuart Professor of Scottish Studies, having recently immigrated to New Zealand. He returns to his roots with his debut, described as "a compelling thriller set amid the murky politics of Scotland and Northern Ireland".

The publicity blurb states that in ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN: "When Glasgow journalist Gerry Conway receives a phone call promising unsavoury information about Scottish Justice Minister Peter Lyons, his instinct is that this apparent scoop won't warrant space in The Tribune. But as Conway's curiosity grows and his leads proliferate, his investigation takes him from Scotland to Belfast. Shocked by the sectarian violence of the past, and by the prejudice and hatred he encounters even now, Conway soon grows obsessed with the story of Lyons and all he represents. And as he digs deeper, he comes to understand that there is indeed a story to be uncovered; and that there are people who will go to great lengths to ensure that it remains hidden.

Compelling, vividly written and shocking, ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN is not only the story of an individual and his community - it is also a complex and thrilling inquiry into loyalty, betrayal and duty."

"An authentic, atmospheric and ambitious debut. Liam McIlvanney nails it." - Val McDermid

"Liam McIlvanney holds all the aces of a really vital young novelist … a brilliant study in the harsh, pawky affinity between those two majestic cities, Glasgow and Belfast."- Richard T Kelly, author of CRUSADERS.

"I read it almost at a sitting… smart, generous and compelling’ - Gordon Burn

"With a bravura nod at classic north of Carlisle crime writing, All The Colours of the Town swaggers onto the Larne-Stranraer ferry and brings noir home. Razor-sharp prose and laser-sharp observation makes this a brilliant fiction debut." - Eoin McNamee

As I noted on 11 August, you can read more about McIlvanney and his crime thriller debut in a reasonably substantial review in The Scotsman, and in a short interview on the Crime Squad website.

Allen & Unwin Book Publishers invite readers of Crime Watch to the launch of Faber & Faber's ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN.

Where & When:
5.15pm Tuesday 29 September
University of Otago Staff Club,
80 Union Place West (beside the Leith).

Please RSVP to Kathy Young at
or ph 03 479 5999.
Drinks and nibbles will be provided.

Hopefully some of you (Vanda etc) in the southern part of New Zealand will be able to attend. Let us know how it goes. Have any of our UK readers already read ALL THE COLOURS OF THE TOWN? What did you think?


  1. Next on the list. Expect a review next week sometime. Looking forward to it.

  2. I'm delighted they changed the launch date - I can be there now!