Paul D. Brazill’s Snapshots is a bunch of short stories full of menace, casual violence, crackpot last lines, and laugh out loud turns of phrases. It’s not a long read – you could finish it in an hour, but they’re all little gems. I’m not sure Brazill particularly cares about plot other than to use it as a framing device to draw character sketches and make you laugh, but how can you not carry on reading when he serves up characterizations such as “a crumpled tissue of a taxi driver.”? 

The deadpan nature of Brazill’s writing never fails to curve your lips upwards. Example –

“Plus ca change,” I said, as I slowly let out a fart. 

“Aye,” said the taxi driver, winding down the window. 

It shouldn’t make you smirk, but you can imagine the disdain on the taxi driver’s face at the liberty taken. But he’s a Brit, so he won’t say anything. 

The collection is not full of fart jokes, but there are plenty of such weary exchanges to send you on to the next page. 

The only downside is the repeat of a joke in a couple of stories, but apart from that, Paul D Brazill mixes Get Carter with a bit of Frankie Howard tittering. 

Good stuff. 

This collection is now called Gumshoe and Other Brit Grit Yarns and is available at and The beast is FREE on 18 and 19 December 2015. Get involved.