Glasgow, 1969. In the grip of the worst winter for years, the city is brought to its knees by a killer whose name fills the streets with fear: The Quaker. He’s taken his next victim — the third woman from the same nightclub — and dumped her in the street like rubbish. The police are left chasing a ghost, with no new leads and no hope of catching their prey. After six months, DI Duncan McCormack, a talented young detective from the Highlands, is ordered to join the investigation — with a view to shutting it down for good.
His arrival is met with anger from a group of officers on the brink of despair. Soon he learns just how difficult life can be for an outsider, for McCormack is an outcast in more ways than one. When another woman is found murdered in a tenement flat, it’s clear the case is by no means over. From ruined backstreets to the dark heart of Glasgow, McCormack follows a trail of secrets that will change the city — and his life — forever . . .
Brilliantly crafted with great depth and nuance, The Quaker is an electrifying thriller that expertly captures the gritty atmosphere of paranoia and hopelessness in a city on the verge of a great upheaval.
Liam McIlvanney is the Stuart Professor of Scottish Studies at the University of Otago, New Zealand. He is a regular contributor to the London Review of Books, and the author of two previous novels, All the Colours of the Town and Where the Dead Men Go.
Praise for Liam Mcilvanney and The Quaker:
“Intricately plotted, resourceful in its characterization, and gorgeously written.” — Toronto Star
“[Liam McIlvanney] shows a deft touch for character and setting throughout this absorbing, atmospheric read . . . The Quaker is an evocative slice of the past that’s populated with an array of intriguing characters, tough issues, and some nuanced interplay between them.” — Crime Watch
“It's Glasgow 1969 and a serial killer is bringing terror to the winter streets. The cops are on the back foot, the city is scared, and three women are dead. Another atmospheric, scary, and utterly brilliant book from Liam McIlvanney. Superb.” — Adrian McKinty, award-winning author of Rain Dogs
“Atmospheric and arresting, The Quaker reveals 1960s Glasgow in all its lurid shades.” — Val McDermid, bestselling author of the Dr. Tony Hill series
“This is a terrific novel, dark, powerful, and beautifully written. I finished it a while ago, but I’m still haunted by the characters and the place.” — Ann Cleeves, bestselling author of Shetland
Praise for Liam Mcilvanney and All the Colours of the Town:
“An authentic, atmospheric, and ambitious debut.” — Val McDermid
“All the Colours of the Town is a distinctive and striking debut. One quality that makes the novel stand out is Liam McIlvanney’s portrait of the deep-rooted tribal tensions in Glasgow and Belfast.” — Times Literary Supplement
“There’s nothing like a thriller done really well and All the Colours of the Town is a perfect example of why talented writers ought not to shy away from tackling genre novels. Noir doesn’t need to be pap; this is a smart and engrossing crime novel.” — Observer
“A bold, impressive debut [that] turns the conventions of noir fiction on the politics of devolution to find individuals compromised and nations wanting.” — Daily Telegraph
“McIlvanney has flair and assurance and executes a powerful tale with all the dexterous sensitivity and ballsy swagger the subject is due.” — Scotland on Sunday
Praise for Liam Mcilvanney and Where the Dead Men Go:
“The gritty, mean streets of Glasgow are a very familiar stomping ground for fans of modern British crime fiction, so it takes something a bit special to stand out from the pack. Where the Dead Men Go is a terrific, ultra-modern crime novel . . . Delivered in lyrical, emotive, and often piercing prose, it’s an assured and classy addition to the ranks of Scotland’s crime-writing scene.” — Independent on Sunday
“Is there no end to the procession of Scottish writers excelling at the crime genre? In his second novel, Where the Dead Men Go, Liam McIlvanney shows himself to be in the same league as his illustrious compatriots. He does so without gimmicks or frills . . . McIlvanney tells the story with clarity, terrific dialogue and convincing characters.” — The Times
“Distinctive, vivid, and very well written, Where the Dead Men Go more than lives up to the promise of its excellent predecessor.” — Guardian
“McIlvanney evokes the city’s dark underbelly with razor-like accuracy, and the novel roars off the page like a wild beast on the loose . . . Superb storytelling, a wonderful eye for character, and a passion for dialogue; it announces the arrival of a Scots poet of the thriller.” — Daily Mail
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