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A cup of double espresso

As my FAQs put it, Moss Reid isn’t your stereotypical private eye:

He doesn’t down five pints, twelve whiskeys and a line of coke before lunchtime, then get shot by an Uzi and escape by swimming the Liffey to fight another day.

In other words, he’s not your typical run-of-the-mill manic depressive alco detective. If anything, I’ve consciously tried to avoid the kind of well-trodden cliches that Tara Sparling lists in her great blog post How to Know If You’re A Cop In A Crime Novel.

Yet the Irish pub is bound to be central to my central character’s social life and work. So, naturally enough, one or two pubs are bound to crop up in my novels here or there. OK, make that one or two dozen. OK, three dozen or…

It’s all my fault. I only realised last night that the second novel in the Moss Reid series, Black Marigolds, involves well over thirty pubs.

Show me the way to the next whisky bar…

For a start it mentions twenty pubs on Dublin’s southside, and at least a dozen on the northside: L Mulligans, Walshes, Tommy O’Gara’s, the Belfry (currently still closed), Hanlon’s, Hyne’s and Kavanagh’s, all in the centre of Stoneybatter; Bongo Ryans and Nancy Hands on Parkgate Street; the Dice Bar, the Hole in the Wall, the…

So many hostelries, in fact, that readers may get the erroneous impression that Mossie Reid has joined the ranks of Morse, Rebus and all the rest of the members of the Boozy Maverick Detectives Club for a long night week on the tiles.

Well, Moss may indeed be fond of the occasional pint of stout (or a glass of chilled Picpoul de Pinet), but all those pubs and bars? Something had to give.

Therefore while book #3 – Ghost Flight – will include the occasional tipple here and snifter there, I’ve decided to put some manners on him: a limit of three pubs max, no more than six pints in toto, and a lot more cafe society.

New blog: ‘Moss Reid’s Places’

The first two ‘Moss Reid’ mysteries had him walking to the Lilliput Stores on Arbour Hill and Wuff on Benburb Street, but there are plenty of other new places in the neighbourhood to plonk my characters in.

So I guess Moss Reid will be going through a lot more coffees – espressos, americanos, noisettes (that’s something you’ll come across in France but is virtually unknown in Ireland) and big cafetieres of piping hot Lavazza – and so will I. A tough job but someone’s gotta do it.

Some of the background research will end up in my separate blog Moss Reid’s Places. Check it out at mossreid.blogspot.ie or watch out for the latest updates from it in the bottom right-hand corner of this blog.