Monday, 5 February 2018

Drive rides again...

Following Chris Teague's decision to close Pendragon Press (a fine outfit that published some great works), my  BFS-award nominated novella Drive was out-of-print and homeless.  Thankfully, that situation has now been rectified by those fine folks at Near To The Knuckle (an imprint of Gritfiction Ltd), who have republished it with spanking new cover art.
This all came about because of Paul D. Brazill who not only gave me a great blurb for the original edition but also mentioned me to Craig Douglas at NTTK.  I'm doubly thrilled because this not only means Drive gets another chance to hit the road, it's with a publisher I'm pleased to be associated with.

David Moore has one night left in Gaffney and is at a party he doesn’t want to attend. Natasha Turner, at the same party, is lost for a lift home.

Meanwhile, three young men have stolen a car, and as the night darkens and the roads become deserted, David and Nat enter into a terrifying game of cat-and-mouse. . .

“Drive takes you for a journey down the darkest alleyways of human savagery.  
A fast paced, high tension thriller that delivers on all fronts....”
- Jim Mcleod, The Ginger Nuts Of Horror

"West makes the material his own, ringing numerous changes on a familiar template, while we root for the good guys and hate the bad guys.  It doesn’t come with any heavy meaning or much in the way of a subtext, but it is a crowd pleaser, a horror story set in the urban landscape and tapping into our fears of what could so easily go wrong in this setting, a finely tuned tale that delivers all the thrills it says on the tin. I loved it, and I also think it would make a splendid little film..."
- Peter Tennant, Black Static

"Drive is a gripping, tense urban noir with prose as tight as a snare drum..."
- Paul D. Brazill, Guns Of Brixton.

Drive is a 25,000 words novella, originally published by Pendragon Press in 2014 and nominated for the British Fantasy Society Best Novella Award 2015.
Peter Tennant, at Black Static, also included "Drive" in his annual 'Best In Class' round-up

Shelley Wilson, The Tuesday Book Blog
The ending was better than I could have imagined and added to the nail-biting suspense.  If you’re looking for a quick read full of suspense, thrills and mystery, then Drive is the book for you.  Highly recommended.
(read the full review here)

M R Crosby at his Stranger Designs site 
I didn't mean to sit up late in order to finish Drive, the new novella from Mark West, published by Pendragon Press. I really didn't. However, once I started to read, I found it difficult to stop. It's not often I get caught up in the moment with a book; usually I get drawn in slowly, soaking up the atmosphere. Yet here I was, quite unable to put the thing down, compelled to find out what happens next.
(read the full review here)

Matthew Fryer, at Welcome To The Hellforge 
I’ve been enjoying Mark West’s fiction for several years now, and his brand of atmospheric, uneasy horror always has me coming back for more. He is one of those authors that brings such investable humanity and resonance to his fiction that genre is rendered almost irrelevant. I was therefore delighted to discover that with this new novella from Pendragon Press, he wanders outside his usual discomfort zone into white-knuckle territory, but still manages to deliver his most terrifying piece to date.
(the full review can be read here)

Jim Mcleod's review at The Ginger Nuts Of Horror 
Many authors are limited by  style and genre, and when they write outside of their comfort zone the resulting book can feel like a letdown.  Regular readers of this website will be  aware of how I feel about Mark West's writing.  He is one of those  rare breed of horror writers that is capable of wrapping up a horror story within a framework full of heart and soul.  His stories have a deep emotional core that elevates them to a whole new level.  So what happens when Mark decides to take his writing in a new direction.....
(the full review can be read here)

James Everington, at Scattershot reviews
Mark West’s latest novella is in some ways a departure from the author’s previous work; there’s none of the supernatural horror of The Mill here. But despite its realism there are scares aplenty in Drive and its small-town English realism adds to the effect.
(the full review can be read here)

Paula Limbaugh, at Horror Novel Reviews
YES!!  A new novella by Mark West!  Okay, just to get it out of the way I’m a big fan of Mark West.  He has a way of plotting the course and leading you down the dark and twisted corridors of his mind.  Drive is another example of a top-notch tale.  Have you ever been out alone in the middle of nowhere driving?  Have you ever thought what if?  What if someone forced you off the road, what if you have a flat and a car full of men pull up, or  what if…..
(the full review can be read here)

Wayne Simmons, at
It's brilliantly executed, too: West's writing draws you into the story, his prose clean, clear and uncluttered. His characters are also great - very believable, none of them suddenly developing kung-fu skills or Hulk-like rage, dealing with the threat at hand in a very realistic way.  In short, one of the best novellas I've read in quite a while. Do yourself a favour and hit that BUY NOW button.
(read the full review here)

Kit Power, at
Fans of non-supernatural horror or jet black thrillers will find a lot to like here. Recommended for a quick, super-tense, one-sitting read.
(read the full review here)

David Price, at Amazon
Mark West really cranks up the tension by making the hero a less-than-heroic figure who is, in effect, as helpless and terrified as 'anyone' would be in this situation. Belting along in real time, it is a hard book to put down and you might just find yourself with sweaty palms when you do. The day of the novella has come and thrillers like Drive can only enhance its popularity. A great read.
(read the full review here)