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As heard on BBC Radio 4 Book at Bedtime It doesn't look like murder in a city full of death. A pandemic called 'The Sweats' is sweeping the globe. London is a city in crisis. Hospitals begin to fill with the dead and dying, but Stevie Flint is convinced that the sudden death of her boyfriend Dr Simon Sharkey was not from natural causes. As roads out of London become gridlocked with people fleeing infection, Stevie's search for Simon's killers takes her in the opposite direction, into the depths of the dying city and a race with death. A Lovely Way to Burn is the first outbreak in the Plague Times trilogy. Chilling, tense and completely compelling, it's Louise Welsh writing at the height of her powers.
John Murray General Publishing Division
Number of Pages
plague is plausible and chilling. In a city of desperate people, even the most benign places become fraught with danger, and every step of Stevie's amateur investigation is palpably tense List [Louise] Welsh develops a fantastically written mystery which keeps you hanging on to every word. She creates excelling imagery of the struggle Stevie faces ... A must read, which will leave you dreaming - or having nightmares - of apocalyptic London for weeks Irish Examiner A thrillingly dystopian mystery ... It's a fine setup, and Stevie is a strong character, a forthright blend of sales sass and reporter brass. Welsh is particularly good at describing the institutional and social disorder that accompanies the outbreak of the sweats Guardian Suspenseful and intelligent dystopian fiction. Welsh writes snappily and with filmic precision ... Her setting, vivid and initially familiar, grows increasingly alien as the crisis worsens. Welsh knows exactly how to build tension and momentum as her lone hero presses on with her quest. She also knows how to create a memorably sinister world in which nothing and no one is solid, and the shreds of comfort that remain are intangible or inanimate Sunday Business Post Louise Welsh delivers an absolute cracker of a crime thriller set against the backdrop of a country in the grip of a frightening plague ... Welsh's picture of a rapidly-disintegrating society stands comparison of some of the best in this field, including John Wyndham's timeless classic, The Day of the Triffids, and the fact that A Lovely Way to Burn is the first in a trilogy set in the Plague Times is, for me and other disaster fans, very good news indeed crimereview.co.uk Louise Welsh rarely repeats herself, a quality to celebrate in a crime novelist. A Lovely Way to Burn is a dystopian thriller set in an all-too-plausible version of contemporary London. Welsh puts her own distinctive mark on it ... this intelligent thriller creates an alarmingly convincing picture of London on the brink of disintegration; it reminds us how fragile we are Andrew Taylor, The Spectator Welsh plays brilliantly on our worst fears, and the pace never lets up. Seriously scary The Times