Andrew Battershill’s second novel, MARRY, BANG, KILL made the Globe and Mail’s Top 100 for 2018. The novel has also been optioned for film rights by St. John’s Take the Shot Productions, the company that produced the award-nominated series The Republic of Doyle for CBC and Frontier Season for Netflix.
Battershill first captured CanLit’s attention in 2015 with Pillow, his raging Giller-nominated debut novel about a pugilist turning to crime. Now, he’s garnering attention for his sophomore release.
MARRY, BANG, KILL follows Tommy Marlo, a thief with a guilty conscience who mugs people for their laptops. That is, until he rips off the teenage daughter of a member from a murderous biker gang and ends up on the run. Add in a tired, feminist assassin and a drug-addicted retired cop who plays it dirty and you get a novel hybrid of literary and genre fiction.
In an interview with CBC Books, Battershill declared that his intention “to play with having multiple characters, who are all roaming around and have competing interests.”
It’s not gone unnoticed. Reviewers have been enamoured with Battershill’s wit and energy and are remarking that he in the forefront of changes in contemporary storytelling that challenge approaches to formula, plot and voice. Toronto Life describes MARRY, BANG, KILL as a “witty crime thriller in the vein of Elmore Leonard and Patrick deWitt.” Publishers Weekly calls it “a surprisingly heartfelt story tucked inside a superbly oddball crime thriller.” The Fiddlehead dubs it “broken and sad but grotesquely beautiful.”
It’s clear that Andrew Battershill has a passion for his characters, no matter how lovely, abject, or strange they seem. Says the Fiddlehead, “[t]he reader gets the sense that the author has a complete novel-sized backstory for every single person who wafts through the novel.”
Recognizing Battershill’s unerring sense of pacing, Canadian Literature concludes, “The novel moves as swiftly as today’s path from university to underemployment, with the same biting blend of pathos and bathos.”
Find out for yourself what everyone is so excited about.