Valerian war eine britische Rock-Ikone der 1960er Jahre, die Leadsängerin der gleichnamigen Band Valerian. Sie hatte sich damals unter tragischen Umständen das Leben genommen, ihr Kind war verschwunden, entführt und getötet, wie viele Leute mutmaßen.
Und jetzt steht plötzlich ein mysteriöser Klient, »the Colonel«, auf der Matte und beauftragt den Vinyl-Detective, das Kind zu finden. Eigentlich nicht sein Job, aber im Hintergrund gibt es eine wertvolle LP als Lockmittel.
Zusammen mit seiner Crew – seiner Freundin Nevada, Kumpel Tinkler und der unwahrscheinlichen Taxifahrerin Clean Head – macht er sich an die Arbeit und gräbt sich tief in die Popgeschichte der Sixties, trifft einen Ex-Gitarristen von Frank Zappa und andere wunderliche Menschen aus der großen Ära des Rocks.
Drogen sind natürlich auch im Spiel, damals wie heute. Das macht die Sache entschieden ungemütlich. Hinzu kommt, dass an dem Schicksal des verschwundenen Kindes nicht nur nette Menschen interessiert sind…
The novel is published in English by Titan Books. Here’s the English-language synopsis for THE RUN OUT GROOVE…
His first adventure consisted of the search for a rare record; his second begins with the discovery of one. When a mint copy of the final album by “Valerian” — England’s great lost rock band of the 1960s — surfaces in a charity shop, all hell breaks loose.
Finding this record triggers a chain of events culminating in our hero learning the true fate of the singer Valerian, who died under equivocal circumstances just after — or was it just before? — the abduction of her two-year-old son.
Along the way, the Vinyl Detective finds himself marked for death, at the wrong end of a shotgun, and unknowingly dosed with LSD as a prelude to being burned alive. And then there’s the grave robbing…
But he does find out what happened to the missing child, and it wasn’t what anyone expected — or wanted — to hear.
Surhkamp has also published the first novel in the series, as MURDER SWING.
All of the Vinyl Detective novels are published in the UK and in North America by Titan Books, and the series currently stands at four novels: WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX, THE RUN-OUT GROOVE, VICTORY DISC, and FLIP BACK.
Here are just a few of the reviews that the series has received so far…
‘This charming mystery feels as companionable as a leisurely afternoon trawling the vintage shops with a good friend.’ — Kirkus on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘… fast-paced, lighthearted adventure… marvelously inventive and endlessly fascinating…’ — Publishers Weekly on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘Author Cartmel has combined the tropes of the several genres into a surprising, refreshing story centered around old-fashioned records… the story delivers multiple chuckles per chapter… Based on this volume, the series will be a hit.’ — New York Journal of Books on WRITTEN IN DEAD WAX
‘Part of the fun of the series is the obsessiveness of record collectors, the contradictions between the mundane places in which they hunt their treasures — charity shops, church bazaars — and the sophisticated sound systems they have set up to play what they find… the Vinyl Detective is proving to be a very amenable companion to have on a treasure hunt. This is one vinyl nerd you won’t mind spending time with.’ — Kirkus on THE RUN-OUT GROOVE
‘… entertaining second record-spinning mystery… Cartmel treats music and records seriously, plays his strange characters for laughs, and provides a bit of danger and some unexpected twists in this affectionate nod to the vagaries of rock stardom.’ — Publishers Weekly
‘THE RUN-OUT GROOVE does a fantastic job of making its fictional history of music so fascinating and authentic that you’ll forget it isn’t all true… This a follow-up every bit the equal of its highly memorable predecessor, presenting a mystery you’ll be eager to solve and characters whose company you won’t want to leave. Written with infectious charm, the Vinyl Detective has more than proven he’s no one-hit-wonder.’ (9/10) — Alternative Magazine Online on THE RUN-OUT GROOVE
‘Polished, fast-paced and a ton of fun, this is a fantastic read that is easy to get lost in… more polished… keeps the story rolling forward at an incredible speed – and also makes it very hard to put down… Cartmel has created an intoxicating mix of adventure, humour and mystery to lose yourself in… a truly engaging and enjoyable read. THE RUN-OUT GROOVE surpasses even the opening novel in the series for polish and fun.’ — The Crime Review on THE RUN-OUT GROOVE
‘… effectively integrates the lead’s unusual specialty of searching out rare records into an intricately constructed plot… the clever resolution of the story lines is impressive. Fair-play fans, even those without an interest in music, will be pleased.’ — Publishers Weekly on VICTORY DISC
‘Cartmel at his best… an exciting and atmospheric mystery and a good addition to the Vinyl Detective’s casebook.’ — Blue Book Balloon on VICTORY DISC
‘This book was such a blast! It was a great addition to this hilarious series and I’m so impressed at how entertaining these books are.’ — Divine World of Books on VICTORY DISC