The return of Nick Madrid!

foiled-againNews reached Fedora of some light-hearted crime shenanigans courtesy of Independent publisher Ostara publishing, who are playing it strictly for laughs with their Autumn crime releases, with new editions of two Nick Madrid ‘escapades’ by novelist, critic and doyen of the literary festival scene, Peter Guttridge.

The adventures of the yoga-practising, accident-prone, self-depreciating journalist Nick Madrid combine a deep affection for the worst excesses of Fleet Street with outrageously farcical situations and the delivery of a stand-up comedian. In Foiled Again the plot ranges from an accidental death during an international fencing competition to the uncovering of a piece of shady family history from the 1930s and the rise of the fascist Blackshirt movement. Along the way, there’s a rather revolting art exhibition called ‘The Shock of the Poo’, a nightclub for sadomasochists, a coven of Sylvia Plath fanatics, Russian Mafiosi, Colombian drug lords and the vexed question of why Madrid is such an unusual surname in Burnley …

cast-adriftCast Adrift reflects one of the author’s other areas of expertise, Hollywood, in a merciless satire on movie-making, specifically the making of a low-budget (a very low-budget) pirate movie, which is also a musical, on location somewhere suspiciously near the Caribbean. When the main cast of characters get involved with real, modern-day pirates and the sole survivor of a desert island survivalist TV game show, there seems little chance of anyone sticking to the script – assuming there ever was one. The late Reginald Hill described Peter Guttridge’s early comic crime novels as‘fast-moving, laugh-a-line frolics’ and the Nick Madrid novels became famous for their trade-mark trait of having the hapless hero always falling foul of the local wildlife wherever the story was set.

Foiled Again and Cast Adrift are now available as Ostara Crime paperbacks and eBooks. Full details of all titles can be found on

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14 Responses to The return of Nick Madrid!

  1. Colin says:

    Thanks for highlighting these, Sergio. They seem like a fun read.

  2. Margot Kinberg says:

    Oh, this is good news, Sergio Thanks for letting us know. Goodness knows we can all use a laugh.

  3. Todd Mason says:

    Cool. This kind of farce can go sideways easily, and I suspect someone as adept as the writer you describe here won’t stumble into the kind of easy-laughs pitfall as did a low-budget recursive Australian horror comedy film upon my recent view, where it depended in part on a production assistant and a caterer needing to stand in for the stars of a no-budget film within the film, the male PA already having more than a little crush on the female caterer, and the PA required to be nude and accidentally expressing his excitement…you know, as opposed to him wearing an undergarment or at least a modesty sheath and everyone kind of expecting that kind of reaction from a non-pro performer in that kind of circumstance (in the film, the crew have a Bad Laugh and the caterer storms off in a huff). Hell, veteran actors have had similar problems, though understandably, usually underpaid co-stars have made objections (I think of an interview with Roberts Blossom years ago in PSYCHOTRONIC VIDEO, where the actress he was working with was not charmed, as he did his best to think dampening thoughts while they set up and blocked their bedroom scenes).

  4. tracybham says:

    These sound very good, especially Cast Adrift. I have not tried this author before.

  5. Sergio – Drug lords, mob killers, fanatics and fascists – sounds like a barrel of laughs. But seriously, I think I might like this writer. Thanks.

  6. I like Nick Madrid’s character description. Thanks for spotlighting Peter Guttridge’s novels, Sergio.

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