Beat On The Brat by Nigel Bird

Beat On The Brat by Nigel BirdMr. Bird has been a very busy bee of late. In addition to the recently released Pulp Ink collection which he co-edited, he also has a relatively new short story collection of his own, Beat On The Brat, out in the wild.

Featuring nine entries – seven short stories, a poem, and a little haiku just to mess with you – Beat On The Brat is a wonderfully diverse collection. Though I enjoyed them all, these two really resonated with me:

“Back in Black” is a beautifully layered recounting of Johnny Sullivan’s return to his hometown for his mother’s funeral. Things are a little more complicated than simply the loss of his mum, however, as it is also Johnny’s first time back since being sent up for child molestation. Things go about as well for Johnny as you’d expect, but you know an author has some serious skills going on if he can make you actually feel sympathy for a child molester.

“Snow-Angel” graphically demonstrates something I fully believe: all practical jokes and other forms of messing with people done in the name of “good fun, no harm intended” in fact comes from a much darker, mean-spirited place. In “Snow Angels,” a group of punks’ snowball ambush on a complete stranger spins horribly out of control, with devastating consequences for a Good Samaritan.

Other entries in the collection include Watery Grave Invitational 2010 winner “Beat on the Brat,” “Dance With Me,” “Mind Your Step,” “Sugar and Spice,” “Regret,” “Hoodwinked” and “Killer Haiku.” In each, Bird quite skillfully establishes and develops character in a way you usually only expect to find in a full-length work. Indeed, several of these stories could easily serve as the jumping-off point for a full-length novel the setting, plot structure, and characterizations are so strong.

Beat On The Brat is available on Kindle, Nook, and Smashwords.

PS – Word on the street is that there’s a voucher code on the penultimate page of Beat On The Brat which will allow you to pick up the Pulp Ink collection for only $0.99 at Smashwords.

Nigel Bird was the winner of the Watery Grave Invitational Competition in 2010 for his story “Beat on the Brat,” which was also nominated for the Best Story Online category in this year’s Spinetingler Awards. He is the author of Beat on the Brat (and other stories) and Dirty Old Town, and his short fiction has has appeared in Crimefactory, Dark Valentine, Beat to a Pulp, Pulp Metal, Crimespree, and the collections The Mammoth Book of Best Of British Crime Stories and the debut release from Snubnose Press, Speedloader. To learn more about Nigel visit his website, Sea Minor.


  • Thomas Pluck

    September 23, 2011 - 9:15 AM

    This is an excellent collection. The title story is worth the price on its own, but the rest make it a sobering look into the dark hollows of the human heart.

    • Elizabeth A. White

      September 23, 2011 - 2:37 PM

      Nigel has a very special way with getting readers to connect with a character immediately, no matter how short the story or depraved the person.

  • nigel

    September 22, 2011 - 5:08 PM

    Lovely to see such feedback. I’m so proud to have that review and I’ll make sure I keep that positivity with me.

    And coming from you – all the sweeter and all the prouder.

    • Elizabeth A. White

      September 23, 2011 - 2:35 PM

      It’s a spectacular collection, and it was entirely my pleasure to read and review it. 🙂