The Cutting Room by Louise Welsh
Recommended - Welsh's debut novel is a cracking read.
Rilke, auctioneer, gay, is clearing a house and comes upon a hidden collection of violent and highly disturbing photographs. He feels compelled to discover more about the deceased owner who coveted them. Big mistake. Soon he finds himself sucked into an underworld of crime, depravity and secret desire.
Louise Welsh's writing is stylish and captivating; she combines aspects of a detective story with shades of the gothic. The result is a page-turning and deliciously original debut. The Cutting Room has won the Crime Writers Association award for debut crime novels, the John Creasey Memorial Dagger, and has been longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award.
"One of the most intriguing, assured and unputdownable debuts to come out of Scotland in recent years . . . A stunning work of fiction." ― The Sunday Times
"I was hooked from page one. Rilke is not Welsh's only great creation. The huge supporting cast of misfits and outsiders . . . are equally memorable. And Glasgow becomes a character in itself: it is oppressive, foreboding - a dark place for a dark tale." ― The Guardian
"What makes The Cutting Room so gripping is the combination of suspense and character as the story unfolds through the unusual eyes of Rilke . . . His horror, like the reader's, lies in the terrible intimacy, impersonality and irreversibility of what he witnesses." ― The Herald
"In Louise Welsh crime fiction has one of its few real literary writers. The Cutting Room is a hugely commendable debut, assured and memorable. Crime fiction may have its prize-winner at last." ― Independent