David Loogan is leading a new and quietly anonymous life in a new town. But his solitude is broken when he finds himself drawn into a friendship with Tom Kristoll, the melancholy publisher of the crime magazine Gray Streets - and into an affair with Laura, Tom's sleek blond wife.
When Tom offers him a job as an editor, Loogan sees no harm in accepting. What he doesn't realise is that the stories in Gray Streets tend to follow a simple formula:
PLANS GO WRONG. BAD THINGS HAPPEN. PEOPLE DIE.
Then one night David's new boss phones him in a panic, asking him to come to his house immediately. And bring a shovel...
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Bad Things Happen is a very smart, well-written roller coaster ride that is always threatening to hurl the reader out into roaring empty space. Go along for the thrill ride! - James Patterson
Bad Things Happen is a tense read that keeps you tightly in its grip until the very last page. Harry Dolan has written an incredibly rich, smart read reminiscent of A Simple Plan or Presumed Innocent - not to mention that it's just a damn good story. Readers are in for a breathless ride - Karin Slaughter
Great f***ing book, man. I was totally hooked. I hope you write a dozen more, and that's just next year - Stephen King
Thriller-writing of the highest order - Daily Mail
You better believe [Dolan] has a gift for storytelling...The narrative comes with startling developments and nicely tricky reversals. - New York Times Book Review
If I say that the novel is as well plotted as Agatha Christie at her best, I don't mean to make it sound old-fashioned; it's not. Even more than Christie, this novel reminded me of Patricia Highsmith. It's witty, sophisticated, suspenseful and endless fun -- a novel to be savoured...and the best first novel I've read this year. - Washington Post
Dolan gets everything right in his debut, a suspense novel that breathes new life into familiar themes. Pitch-perfect prose and sophisticated characterisations drive the noirish plot, which offers plenty of unexpected twists. Fans of Peter Abrahams and Scott Turow will find a lot to like...the talent Dolan displays suggests he has a bright future. - Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
Harry Dolan has written a wonderfully moody and atmospheric story ... a tightly plotted, sophisticated, and engrossing debut novel. Dolan has a fine ear for good dialogue and an uncanny sense of how people think and act, and why they do what they do. This is a winner - Nelson DeMille
From the astringent first sentence - 'The shovel has to meet certain requirements' - Bad Things Happen by Harry Dolan builds like a thunderhead into an atmosphere of darkness, dread, and impending doom. It is a hypnotically readable novel, with richly wrought characters, a corkscrew plot, and dialog worthy of Elmore Leonard. What a breathtaking debut. - Douglas Preston, author of The Monster of Florence and Blasphemy
tasty tale...Dolan's neatly symmetrical plot is tight, his dialogue is crisp, and his humor wry. (Rarely have suspects been so archly articulate.) A twisty whodunit with a thriller's pace... - Booklist, Starred Review
Harry Dolan graduated from Colgate University, where he majored in philosophy and studied fiction-writing with the novelist Frederick Busch. He earned a master's degree in philosophy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and worked for several years as a freelance editor.
Dolan, who grew up in Rome, New York, now lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan, with his partner, Linda Randolph.