Cover: The Breaking of Liam Glass - crime-satire novel

With London knife crime now on the rise, The Breaking of Liam Glass is not so much a whodunnit as a blackly comic what-they-did-after-it satire of journalists, politicians and police.

Newly published – 29 June 2017 – The Breaking of Liam Glass hit the Top Six in the Amazon best-seller list for satire and #1 for Hot New Releases

First reviews

Witty, gripping, truly beautifully written…
Noir, gritty and fast-paced…
Pops with snappy one-liners…
You will find it hard not to be seduced by this unlikely hero…  More

Buy now from Amazon UK – Amazon.com

With London knife crime now on the rise, The Breaking of Liam Glass is not so much a whodunnit as a blackly comic what-they-did-after-it satire, that resonates in a timely way.

Teenage footballer Liam Glass is stabbed on an estate next to London’s Regents Park and, with an eye to the main chance, journalist Jason Crowthorne sets out to make the most of the story and build a crusade against teenage knife-crime.

In the following 24 hours, Jason creates his campaign, hiding a scoop from rival journalists and avoiding arrest.

But other powerful figures are determined to exploit the boy’s story as much as they can, and they have fewer scruples!

Liam Glass is a darkly satirical look at the deep splits in modern communities, asking deep moral questions in a sympathetic and humorous way.

The Breaking of Liam Glass – an extraordinarily prescient novel

International award-winning film writer-director and best-selling non-fiction author Charles Harris could not have known when he started drafting this powerful novel, in 2010, that headlines like ‘Three dead in weekend of knife carnage on the streets of London’ Evening Standard would become the norm.

A darkly gripping and constantly entertaining satire of today’s media.

Harris hooks the reader from start to finish with this dazzlingly sharp and moving tapestry of modern life set at a time when phone-hacking was just a small cloud on the horizon. 

If you liked Capital, Catch 22 and Bonfire of the Vanities you’ll love The Breaking of Liam Glass.

Published by Marble City Publishing – June 2017

Paperback £11.99 ($13.99). Kindle £3.99 ($5.15)

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon.com

What readers are already saying:

Witty, gripping, truly beautifully written.
Asta Musvicaite

Noir, gritty and fast-paced, the novel feels a classic, gripping, pulp-fiction that immediately engages the reader in the investigations after Liam’s attackers. The chase is a magnificent journey across a contemporary London and its people, where their daily lives are a powerful portrait of humankind. London is shown in all her truth and dirt, without her trinkets, masks and shining lights, where her real beauty and treasures are the struggles and hopes of the protagonists. Highly recommended to true noir lovers!
I loved it 🙂
Natalie Saiph Massone

This is a well-researched, witty, insightful book, a crime story with a twist and a look into journalism and general life in one of the poorer areas of London. The world it represents has recently been brought into focus with the tragic circumstances of Grenfell Tower.   I would highly recommend this book and I look forward to Charles’ second novel.
Rita Wheeler

A sparkling story about things you suspect are true and hope are not. Be entertained by a couple of careerists, on a breakneck path. Playing fast and loose with moral scruples, their shady methods turn into dirty tricks, deceptive manipulations and fake facts. In a series of increasingly hilarious incidents, the characters lose their good senses and their moral bearings, to differing degrees, and weak souls turn into heartless scoundrels. Who can stop them? Liam Glass deserves to become a bestseller.
Lolita Fortuin, Copenhagen

The Breaking of Liam Glass by Charles Harris is a gripping read, sometimes satire and sometimes a too believable insight into the world of the tabloids, cheque book journalism and police investigations. I didn’t want to put it down right until the end.
The story revolves around Liam Glass a boy from a tower block who is brutally attacked and left in a coma. Jason is a crime reporter on a local newspaper who wants to find out what really happened to Liam, save his job from redundancy and make his name in investigative journalism but things don’t work out as he would like.
Liam Glass is marked as a satire on modern life and you will find yourself laughing at some of the absurd situations until, like me, you realise that they may not be so absurd. In fact they could be real insights into life into our modern world of tabloid journalism and cynical policing.
It’s a good read.
Wayne Harris (no relation)
Associate Editor Albedo One

In a fast paced tale set against a backdrop of local and national unrest with parallels to the current climate – could The Breaking of Liam Glass be more pertinent, I wonder?  All the themes that we love to rail about are here – hapless politicians, ruthless journalists and celebrity publicists, fake news, racism, knife crime and the future of our youth.
In local journalist, Jason Crowthorne, desperately faking it to try to make the move to the Nationals, Charles Harris has created a character akin to conman Louis Bloom, in Nightcrawler but infinitely more likeable and engaging.  Over the space of 24 hours, we see Jason’s aspirations to become a member of the national gutter press literally leave him in the gutter.  His desire to create a campaign against knife crime by capitalising on the unfortunate circumstances of the novel’s namesake, stabbing victim, teenager Liam Glass, is excruciating in a darkly comic way as we see him trying to justify his need to hit the big time and rake in the cash against his desire to help the boy and raise awareness.
I read this novel in the lead up to the UK General Election when the country was also rocked by two terrorist attacks and the terrible Grenfell Tower fire. It made the story very believable. Charles Harris describes the murky world of local politics and journalism in a very visual way, with neglected local communities easily stirred to violence and demonstration. As well as a good read, I think The Breaking of Liam Glass would also translate to the big screen very easily.
Helen Baden

After a teenager gets stabbed in North London, a local press journalist makes a series of morally dubious choices that kick off a fast-paced, snowballing portrait of all that is delightfully wrong with our tabloid press, local politics and football PR. You will find it hard not to be seduced by this unlikely hero or to chuckle inwardly in horror at the goings on around us that are sadly probably more truth than fiction.
Myrna Jelman

An unusual read but quite a page-turner nonetheless. A young man is stabbed in north London, but the story is not so much Whodunnit as How-can-a- desperate-and-unscrupulous-journalist-use-the-story-to save-his-career? It’s not terribly flattering about the newspaper business needless to say, though it has the smack of authenticity. A complex and interesting book, worth reading.
Patsy Trench

This exciting must have book by award winning writer Charles Harris is an entertaining insight into contemporary investigative journalism and even politics in England in what is a highly researched modern life crime novel. I highly recommend the purchase of this outstanding book which I believe everyone will find intriguing to read!
Spiros Kagadis

An ambitious picaresque satire of the press, local government and the police in London. Bitter, comic and exceedingly human.
Shelley Katz

Finally a British story that has crackling insight into contemporary London life of ordinary folks and which surprisingly reflects the city’s true ethnic mix. It pops with snappy one-liners that make you laugh and stop you dead with their honesty.
Somi De Souza