Who knew the fabulous Hugh Laurie was also an author? I would've clambered on board that train ages ago if only I'd known! His crime novel The Gunseller is a wit-driven comic spoof of the genre.
I was given an excerpt of The Gunseller as a uni reading and the pdf cut off on a terrible cliffhanger after only three pages! The beginning is so dynamic, so rip-roaring that I waited weeks to source my own copy to read on. One of the highlights of the first chapter is this amazing bit of character description. It showcases Hugh Laurie's freshness as a writer. I hope you enjoy and are inspired to read on too:
Raymer, I estimated, was ten years older than me. Which was fine. Nothing wrong with that. I have good, warm, non-arm-breaking relationships with plenty of people who are ten years older than me. People who are ten years older than me are, by and large, admirable, But Raymer was also three inches taller than men four stones heavier, and at least eight however-you-measure-violence units more violent. He was uglier than a car park, with a big, hairless skull that dipped and bulged like a balloon full of spanners, and his flattened, fighter's nose, apparently drawn on his face by someone using their left hand, or perhaps even their left foot, spread out in a meandering, lopsided delta under the rough slab of his forehead.
Hugh Laurie. 1996. The Gunseller. UK: Arrow Books. p 4.