Peril has been described as urban noir, a quirky crime thriller, a journey into the darker side of human nature. Since the launch in March 2011 over 15,000 people have downloaded this novel from Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, Sony and Apple.

Gerard Mayes is in a bind. He's committed most of the seven deadly sins and is trying to avoid paying the price.

I balance on the precipice of life.

Friends and family have turned their backs on me and walked into the shadowland.

Police and thieves are shouting Jump, Ger. Do it.

Ladies, don't let your man read this book. You don't want him getting ideas on how to misbehave.

Fellas, keep your copy well hidden.

Buy from your favourite e-store here

Publishing an e-book on Smashwords and Amazon gives an author access to a global readership. Here are the reflections of some who have read Peril.

Reviews for Peril on and

Reviews for Peril on Goodreads

5.0 out of 5 stars Top-rate dark humor, November 5, 2012
I was surprised I liked this as much as I did; I don't always enjoy darker stuff. But this was hilarious. Hilarious in an awful way--the train wreck you can't help watching through cracks in your fingers. A cringe-worthy but oddly compelling main character and strong writing.

3.0 out of 5 stars Shifty and shady, November 3, 2012
The main character of this story by Ruby Barnes leaves one with a bad taste in the mouth. The man is entirely self-centered; yes, more so than most people.

{{{Spoiler Alert}}}

He is married but determines his affair with his wife's best friend, while sordid and not quite kosher, is still okay.

He comes and goes at work according to whether he wants to go or not.

When he has an encounter with one of the homeless and the results are bad, he manages to convince himself it might not have happened.

But then he is accosted by the homeless man's twin brother and things take a nasty turn for the worse. One thing leads to another until the wall he has built comes tumbling down around him.

The writing is well done and the plots creative. I give this story 3.5 stars.

4.0 out of 5 stars Great premise and execution, October 2, 2012

Ruby Barnes does a great job with Peril. He pulls off the almost impossible task of getting the reader to cheer on a protagonist who is an utterly despicable character. As Ger gets deeper and deeper into the hole he has created for himself, I found myself wanting him to come out on top! It kept me turning the pages right up to the satisfying, and appropriate, conclusion.

5.0 out of 5 stars The Perils of being an Anti-Hero., 18 Sep 2012
From the cover, not what I expected. After the initial murder scene, a little slow...
In theory I shouldn't have liked this book quite so much, but I thoroughly enjoyed it on a number of levels. No... I loved it, absolutely loved it.
Serious crime thriller yes, but only on one level; Peril is so much more.
The cover and description makes this novel looks rather serious, and it is, but the laughs are there in bucket-loads. Barnes style reminds me in parts of Mark Haddon; that dry black humour, which when mixed thoroughly with some great descriptive observations, adds a dark, glittery poignancy to the narrative.
Had a good chuckle at the useless male protagonist trying to change the bed linen; in fact read this bit out loud to my other half who wanted to know what I was laughing at. (He recognised himself immediately.)
So, back to the serious story, there are some great action scenes and a surprisingly likable character in Ger Mayes. Surprisingly, because in truth Ger Mayes is a total waste of space. Somehow though, there is sufficient character depth in there by way of redemption to get us all rooting for him. There are some great emotive passages, cleverly disguised with the same, self depreciating humour.
Mayes manages to get himself into all sorts of bother with the ladies and some local misfits which escalates into a nightmare of affairs, drugs and debt. It's all cleverly woven together and it`s down to the author's skill that the reader fully engages with the central character, for despite his faults (and he has quite a few!) one can't help but hope he makes it in the end...but does he?

4.0 out of 5 stars A darned good read, 6 Aug 2012
  Amazon Verified Purchase 
Gerard (call me Ger) Mayes fancies himself with the ladies; in fact he embarks upon an affair with his wife's best friend. In a drunken brawl, he kills a Romanian beggar and the man's twin brother demands money in recompense. He also demands an illegal act from Ger, or he will supply evidence of the killing to the Garda. Ger is, to my mind, an unpleasant, selfish and amoral individual but his tale is compelling reading.

The story is told as a first person narrative, mainly by Ger, though occasionally through the voices of other characters, a device which allows the reader to know things about them that Ger doesn't know. Ruby Barnes is a writer of consummate skill and he handles the story with its twists and turns very well. A darned good read.

A gripping read for the dog days of summer by Cate Carson, Minneapolis Book Club on August 2nd 2012

Heading into the dogs days of summer in Minneapolis, I feel somewhat distracted, and also somewhat obsessed with enjoying this waning season. It’s the time of year when I feel compelled to soak up every minute I can of sunshine; shorter days and cooler weather approach too quickly. The days devoted to pleasure will soon end, and it will be back to the grind of study and work. I need a very compelling book for this transition. 

Set in Dublin, Ireland, with a Scottish protagonist name Gerard Mayes, Peril, by Ruby Barnes answers this need. This story will grab your attention, and refuse to let it go. Gerard, or Ger as his friends call him, is astonishingly self-centered and dense, yet he apparently exudes some level of charisma to his friends. 

The story revolves around Ger and his wife’s angling for an aunt’s inheritance, and around Ger’s short temper causing him to beat a crippled man to death. His selfishness and lack of foresight cause him to fall into dangerous schemes, schemes that may lead to others’ deaths, if not his own. 

Although Ger is the center of the book, the author also presents the story from the perspective of others, including his wife and several friends. Though some of the transitions were initially a little confusing, this tactic did lend depth to the story. The story is very witty and the author’s use of language to contrast and compare the characters’ perceptions to reality is masterful. It’s an amazingly nuanced and layered story, in stark contrast to its simple and obtuse main character. 

July 26 2012 Michael Wayne rated it 5 of 5 stars false

Ger Mayes is despicable, so despicable that you can't help but to pay attention to his every move.
Well done Mr. Barnes

5.0 out of 5 stars Very good :)  
30 Jun 2012 by 
I am still not sure if I liked Ger or not, I suppose he is a man's man but the story was great, I loved the twists and turns and I kept thinking "how is he going to get out of this". I won't give it away but this is well worth reading :)

John J, Gaynard's review of 24th June 2012

In line with my reviewing policy of only giving a write-up to books I have enjoyed, I now have great pleasure in introducing Ruby Barnes's Peril, a novel which could also have been titled, "The Power of Positive Thinking for Feckless Scots Bent on Raising Levels of Dissatisfaction Among Irish Wives, Mistresses, Relatives, Beggars and Rail Customers Who Have the Temerity to Make Complaints".

Ger Mayes is a loveable ne'er do well from North of that Border uniting Scotland and England. Married to an upright modern Irish woman who, needless to say, indulges in quickies with her personal trainer, Ger is paid what seems to be a reasonable salary by the complaints office of Irish Railways. His minimal investment of time, and low respect for his customers, makes Ger a poster boy for the most negative, biased sorts of comments made by Dubliners about immigrant labor. Ger's only self-questioning comes from the wonder and anger generated when he does not get promoted over the heads of some, admittedly obnoxious, colleagues who do, however, respect reasonable standards of productivity, putting in an hour of work and a full five hours of gossip and back-biting on the days when they're in the office--and not taking their statutory sick days off.

Although Ger is more than a bit of a wine and food snob--and should know that after two or three glasses his taste-buds will have had as much as they can reasonably enjoy--when out with the lads he has a habit of drinking himself into that state of mindlessness where his head stops working but his feet keep walking. One night, in a city of Dublin that could pass for the capital of the Chechen Republic under attack by the Russians, he wanders befuddled and lost, finding it impossible to suss his way to the train station and back home to the outer suburbs, where he can reconnect with the middle-class way of life as it developed in late 20th and early 21st century Ireland: memorization of suburban railway time tables, calculating which train will get him into work just after time and out of work just before time, formal dinners where he can whimsically analyze--in the company of mortgaged-up-to-the-hilt neighbors--the merits of different types of pasta, tomato sauce, red wine, white wine and Indian or other take-away dishes while ogling and caressing the knees of his wife's best friend.

Ger stumbles into a fight with a Romanian beggar, kills the man and flees the scene. The next day, unsurprisingly, the murder does not trouble his conscience. Its consequences only begin to concern him when he realizes he didn't dispose of the murder weapon so that it couldn't be found. His worries are compounded when it turns out that another member of the beggar clan saw him do it. The only one of the ten commandments that Ger respects is the eleventh one, "Thou shan't get caught", but, when he does get found out, every problem becomes an opportunity, in line with his innate approach to life, that of the devil-may-care chancer. Any event that would render a less hedonistic man catatonic with fright becomes something to flip to his advantage in his only serious quest: how to satisfy every one of his five senses, every day, in every way.

The Head of the Beggar clan sets his people on Ger's tail. They take him to some weird and wonderful places as they inform him how they will exact retribution. One of those places is a mansion in the middle of the Phoenix Park occupied by a gang of people who wander the streets of Dublin in search of ill-gotten gain (this is NOT the Irish National Police Force, which occupies a totally different mansion in the Park).

Although the main plot of the book has nothing to do with how Irish Complaints Offices' resort to Soviet style methods to keep their more recalcitrant employees mouthing sweet nothings to dissatisfied customers, or ass-licking around the coffee machine, there are very some very funny scenes when Ger is put on obligatory sick leave for questioning his non-promotion and told to report to a psychiatrist on a near-daily basis to prove that his behavior is normal. This interferes with him spending afternoons in the sack of his anorexic mistress.

I began to read this in a hot and humid hotel room in an African city, feeling nostalgic for a few words describing the ould sod. But Ruby Barnes's belly-laugh provoking, high-wire act of dissecting the pretensions of modern-day Ireland, and showing what it takes to thrive, namely the "Ger Attitude", replaced the desire for the fickle charms of Kathleen ni Houlihan with the commonsense thought that I should stay where I was. I read the final electronic page of this fine comic novel of Ireland, laid the Kindle beside me and began to hum that age-old song of wisdom, McAlpine's Fusiliers, "Oh Mother Dear, I'm over here and I'm never coming back....."

Nevertheless, a few days later, I found myself on a flying visit to Dublin. The city was in the midst of a four-day heatwave, with nary a beggar, dead, alive, or in the Phoenix Park to be seen. Whose view of Dublin was the right one? That of Ruby Barnes's main characters in Peril, or the one of my own eyes and the Irish Tourist Board? I decided to download to my Kindle another Ruby Barnes novel. I recommend you do the same.

Five Star masterpiece, June 19, 2012 by Antoinette Lee "Book worm" 
Ruby Barnes's novel "Peril," is a good book. My goodness, I enjoyed this book. It had it all, drama, mystery, love gone bad, crime, etc. The main character is despicable, however you are drawn to him. You dislike him, feel sorry for him at times but he gives you a inside look into the seedy side of Ireland.

Something a bit different, 19 Jun 2012 by LondonReader
Love him or hate him Ger Mayes is a great character. If there's any trouble going he'll find it and fall straight in. As the story unfolds - and it's a great plot with lots of twists - you can't help hoping he's going to wise up and save himself.
Well written with totally believable characters and some nice dark humour.
Well worth the read.

's review
May 29, 12
This entire book played out like a film noire in my head, for some reason. It starts in medias res, then slowly develops it's characters and plot before going headstrong into the book's pinnacle. It's probably because of the beginning slowness of the story line, as well as the lack of descriptive visual traits of the characters that made me a little apprehensive of giving this five stars, but the thriller did just as it promised, it thrilled. I was surprised with how the book started to shock and hurl me throughout the next chapters, as the suspense built up. This story is definitely unique in it's plot, and I love the different twists and turns it makes.


 Gerard Mayes is a terrible person in a terrible mess. He's on the verge of being fired and really doesn't care; he's really just counting the days until Aunt Mary dies and leaves his wife a sizeable inheritance; and he's playing a balancing act with his wife, mistress, and possible future mistress. And now, he's being blackmailed by a gang of drug dealers. And the fun is just beginning...

In Ruby Barnes' novel "Peril", he has created a character who most readers will love to hate. Gerard is every woman's nightmare. An unfaithful husband and an all-around goof-off, he has a talent for landing himself in a mess. When he is attacked by a beggar wielding a crutch, he defends himself. Not a crime in itself, but Gerard panics, dumps the body, and runs. Unfortunately, he has been seen. From this point on, whenever there is a decision to make, Gerard always makes the wrong decision. While not a lovable character, he is certainly unforgettable.

This is the first of Barnes' novels for me, and I wasn't sure what to expect. What a happy surprise! For all of Gerard's faults, I found myself rooting for him. The good news is that "Peril" has now been released in paperback. It's way too good to be an e-reader secret.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author, Ruby Barnes (...) > . I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 (...) : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising." 

Review by Archie Standwood on Feb. 04, 2012
Gerard is finding himself in a heap of trouble. A drunken evening, and he gets confused about which way is home. The river looks different, odd even-is he in the right place? Then he’s attacked by, of all things, a mugger-and while trying to defend himself, remembers that someone else had been beaten to death in that area earlier. Looks like he could well be the next victim! This mugger is not out for just what’s in that wallet (good thing, cause Gerard’s is empty); looks like he’s out for serious blood. Before very long, it’s not just the attacker who’s out for blood, it’s the potential victim, Gerard himself. And soon he is victim no longer-and now what?? Maybe Gerard Mayes would have been better off-much better off-if he’d stayed at home in the brittle confines of Port Glasgow, Scotland, with the rough and ready, instead of moving to Dublin, Ireland-where he ended up drunken, and a murderer.
Gerard is certainly no one’s idea of perfection. A bit of a lout, he’s extra-maritally active, he lacks the Puritan work ethic, as he himself admits, he’s a murderer-and now he’s being heavily blackmailed, because of that very murder (which was only partially unintentional, let him tell you). What’s a man to do when he finds himself boxed into a situation like this?
Author Ruby Barnes, who so excelled in his novel “The Baptist,” once again demonstrates that he has his ear to the ground and attuned to the rhythms of life, this time in modern-day Dublin. Gerard, his protagonist (I certainly can’t term him “hero”) is sometimes likable, often not-but he’s surprisingly self-analytical and open about his own failings, faults, and foibles-also a surprise. I can recommend this for lovers of modern suspense.

Review by Mrs.Scholey Jan 17, 2012
I enjoyed this book. I felt it had the right amount of humour, wit and intrigue to keep me reading. Not a book that I normally would have gravitated towards, but it was a nice change of pace for me.

Horrible Detestable Character- Awesome Story! by KLM January 12, 2012
I would love to "meet" some of the characters I read about. Ger is one of those characters but not for the usual reasons. I cannot remember ever reading an entire book and detesting the main character this much. He is the guy you want to get hit by a car, mugged on a subway, stricken by a terminal illness... you get the picture. Yet, through all of the elaborate schemes and lies, it is impossible to stop reading the story. Maybe I finished reading just to find out if karma works- whatever. One of the most engrossing stories I have ever read. Any author that makes me commit to a character I wish disaster upon is superb. THE BAPTIST is my next kindle purchase.

Excellent Irish Bloke Book by Jersey Exile "Jersey Exile" (Liberty Lake, WA USA) December 24, 2011
Part way through reading "Peril," I thought that Ruby Barnes had written a surprisingly good "bloke book" for a woman. OK, now I get it. Ruby Barnes is an Irishman, and quite an author. This book has movie option written all over it, and I would certainly look forward to it hitting the big screen.
The protagonist, Ger Mayes, is a middle-class Scot married to Jo, an Irish woman, and so they live in Ireland. Ger also has a mistress - Jo's friend Renee, a best friend in gay drug-enthusiast, Tom, and a civil service job he hates. On the short side of middle age, Ger drinks too much, womanizes too much, and has too little money to support his "needs." When he drunkenly murders a Romanian beggar who'd assaulted him, Ger finds himself caught in a web of deceit, drugs, and death, all of which land him directly in the sights of the Irish police, drug dealers, and a corrupt legal system. Let's call this Irish noir. Ger's never quite sure what he's gotten himself into, doesn't know how to play the game, and doesn't know who he can trust. In truth, the person he can least trust is himself. Ger Mayes is one of those smaller-than-life characters who sees himself larger as through in funhouse mirror. He foresees a big payoff, and always thinks he's just a step away. It's rather like an optical delusion.
This is a good read, suspenseful, funny, tragic, and finally just. I highly recommend "Peril."

Review by April December 19, 2011
Full of sharp wit and realistic characters, this book does exactly what it sets out to do - take readers on an adventure and leave them wondering what could possibly happen next.

Typical man! by Pickles  December 4, 2011
It's nice to have a book that has more than one story going at a time. I only found that the thoughts should of been in italics so as to know how much Ger was actually thinking instead of saying. Maybe it really didn't matter, no one really listened to him anyway.
I sort of knew what was coming Ger's way toward the end, but when it actually happened, thought it put a nice finish to it all.
I have recommended this book to friends already and I caught myself saying, it is a lonnnggggg book. Enjoy!

Review by: Deb Novack on Nov. 27, 2011
An extremely well written book. The main character, Ger, reacted I think in a way that any man would. Although seemingly lazy, he seems to have high hopes for his future. Along with all the ups and downs in his life he is still part scoundrel, but I was still rooting for him. Highly recommend this book to all.
Well done Ruby Barnes!

Review by: Robin on Nov. 08, 2011
Peril is a book of one man's consequences to the choices he has made. It gives an honest look at how one man has taken a road that leads him into a life of deciet.
Ruby Barnes has taken a characters life and spins a web that keeps you reading until the very end.
Review by: Tracey Steele on Nov. 08, 2011
A well written book, with realistic characters that make you want to keep on reading.
I felt the main character, Ger, acted in a realistic way to the events that unfolded in the story. He is an unpleasant man, and yet you do find yourself rooting for him. I enjoyed the final twist.
I would definitely look out for future work by Ruby Barnes.

Majella Ryan on 8th November 2011
The first gem from Ruby Barnes - Ger is an anti-hero, the lad all the lads want to be, the guy all the girls love to hate but just can't bring themselves to. Scrape after scrape, he trundles through life with all the awareness of a rock, and yet you just can't help rooting for him....
Go on, it's only a quid or so, well worth it and you'll thank me later :)
Like nothing I've ever read before
This is the story of Ger Mayes, a roguish character with a roaming eye, and how a drunken night out leads to murder, blackmail, drugs and an increasingly bizarre situation.  As Ger struggles to get himself out of trouble he simply sinks even deeper and becomes embroiled in events that get totally out of hand.
"Peril" has some great characters and Ger is an interesting anti-hero who I found myself loving and hating at the same time.  The story is well written with a fast pace, intriguing plot twists and a good balance of dark humour and human drama.  The author knows how to make a reader sit up and pay attention and there were several unexpected developments in the tale that really resonated with me.  This story is like nothing I've ever read before but I really enjoyed it, found it very hard to put down and will definitely be looking forward to new releases by Ruby Barnes.  

  You won't want to put it down, 6 Nov 2011
  by Sparhawk
  A slow and slightly confusing start, but it keeps your interest, then the book explodes into one you can't put down. It twists and turns like a twisty turny thing.
  A fantastic read, one of those rare books that keeps you guessing.

  An unusual crime novel, November 2, 2011
  by Martin L. Davis II (Neosho, MO United States)
   I found this to be an enjoyable book. The protagonist is in turn naive, arrogant, scheming, criminal, lovable, innocent and guilty. There are enough twists to be interesting and the story line is a good one despite the fact that the reader knows what's going on most of the time. Barnes has done a fine job with this one.
  (I received this as an eBook in exchange for an honest review.)

  Review by Cdnwren 22 Oct 2011
I absolutely loved this book. Well written characters kept me coming back for more!
While the main character, Ger, is a bit of a slouch, somehow I found myself rooting for him. Lots of great twists and turns, including murder, drug smuggling, infidelity and more! A book I would recommend without hesitation!

Urban Noir, 15 Oct 2011
By J H Sked "Jay" (London, UK)
This is phenomenal writing. The author has an absolute knack for sketching out characters and pulling the reader into their lives and motivations. As a result the reader finds themselves sympathising with situations and decisions that they normally wouldn't.
I'll admit to varying between 4 & 5 stars on this one, because I've never met a character I disliked so much (Bella from Twilight doesn't come close). The main character in this book, Ger, made me want to reach through the pages and slap him, repeatedly - probably because I've had the misfortune to date similar types in my own life.
My normal response to a character I completely dislike is to close the book. However, Ruby Barnes has a knack for keeping you reading simply with the quality of his writing, and for me, the other characters in the book had me hooked.
A fine look at what people will - and won't - do in extraordinary circumstances, and a great study of living, working and dying in a gritty urban world. For me, the writing trumped the flaws in Ger, who seems to suffer from TSTL (too stupid to live)syndrome and an ego that could sink the Titanic all over again.

A New Irish Voice, October 1, 2011
By JJ Toner "JJ Toner" (Co Wicklow, IE)
An engaging romp through Dublin (mostly) in the company of a young man called Ger Mayes with loose morals and a barely-controlled drink habit. Forced to commit an unspeakable crime, he is soon in thrall to a community of blackmailers. He turns to an old, rich friend for help. Unfortunately, his friend's moral compass is even more askew than his own and the two of them get deeper and deeper into the mire as they attempt to extricate themselves and line their pockets, while the body count rises.
Ruby Barnes writes with a fresh, distinctive voice. His characters are fascinating even if the motivations behind their actions are sometimes a little hard to figure out. I'm looking forward to more from this author.

A Quirky and Original Tale, September 28, 2011
By Andrew M. Newton   
"Peril" has some great characters and Ger is an interesting anti-hero who I found myself loving and hating at the same time. The story is well written with a fast pace, intriguing plot twists and a good balance of dark humour and human drama. The author knows how to make a reader sit up and pay attention and there were several unexpected developments in the tale that really resonated with me. This story is like nothing I've ever read before but I really enjoyed it, found it very hard to put down and will definitely be looking forward to new releases by Ruby Barnes.

Wanting to Punch Ger in the..., September 23, 2011
By E. L. Anderson (Minneapolis, MN USA)
I've read many reviews of this book that talk about how likeable the main character one finds oneself pulling for him despite all his flaws, etc. If I'm honest, I wanted to punch the main character in the face. Repeatedly. I wished him nothing but suffering and his comeuppance, and I nearly threw my Kindle across the room each time he didn't receive it. At times likes this I would exclaim (sadly, out loud), "I can't believe he's going to get away with this, as well!" All those scenes centreing around trains and he couldn't have been hit by one?!
It takes a special kind of writer to provoke such a visceral reaction to a fictional character. Ruby Barnes is a member of this very exclusive club. I loved the dark humour running throughout the novel, I loved the vivid sense of environment, I loved the ending and I loved that I wanted to buy a plane ticket to Dublin just to hunt down Ger--again, a fictional character--and kick him soundly in the bullocks. My only complaint, if it can even be labelled as such, is not to call it "a quirky crime novel." I think people will figure this out, much to their pleasure. I look forward to this becoming a series. Well done!

Surprising Good Read - Peril by Ruby Barnes, September 21, 2011
Extremely well written book, full of dark humor and irony. The main character is not all that likable, yet you find yourself pulling for him. In spite of his womanizing, poor judgment, and mishaps, you hope he will somehow come out on the other side. You hope he will pull off the big drug buy and get his life in order. One weird thing after another happens to this man! The ending took me by surprise.
Ruby Barnes is an author with awesome talent. I have to say well done! I would recommend this book to anyone. I couldn't stop turning the pages to see what was going to happen next! This book is WELL worth the buy. Once you read it, you will feel like you stole it; it's that good.

Review By Sarah Williams
I really enjoyed this quirky crime tale. The story was fast paced and full of surprises and written with a great balance of dark humour and sorrow. I'll definitely be on the look out for more books by this author.

Enjoyable!, 12 Sep 2011
By Pam Howes "pam" (uk)
I loved this book. Had a great time reading it. Ger Mayes is the type of guy who appeals to my nature. Just the other side of being a good boy. He's an amusing character, a real lady's man, who never really sets off to do any harm, but once the ball starts rolling he can't seem to control things.I'm not doing a big spoiler here, you'll have to buy and read it for yourself. But buy it, do. You won't regret it. Looking forward to the next book by Ruby Barnes. :-)

Must read, 3 Sep 2011
By  Franz
I had little idea what to expect when I opened this book. From the teaser I suspected that it would probably be a suspense noir using Dublin as a setting and, in all honesty, there is a bit of that. But Ruby Barnes' writing style and story telling skills were a pleasant surprise. In Ger Mayes he has created complete scoundrel, with few redeeming qualities, that nonetheless steals the reader's heart. Ger is a person hopelessly self-centered who makes all the wrong moves and yet I found myself constantly hoping that he would extricate himself from the hopeless situations he instigates.
However, Ruby Barnes skills are not limited to the creation of a single, well-rounded, character. With the consummate ease of a born story teller, Mr. Barnes weaves a tale that draws the reader in. Through speech patterns and mannerisms, his characters develop distinct lives, while the threat of impending disaster locks the reader until the final page.
Mr Barnes has penned a tale that will stay with the reader long after the last word is read.

A rollicking good read, July 25, 2011
By P. Morin (Boston, MA USA)
Ruby Barnes is a very funny man, in the fine tradition of Irish storytellers..
The anti-hero of Peril, Ger Mayes, is a scoundrel, a lovable rogue, a thoroughly incompetent reprobate whose cavalcade of tribulations goes from ridiculous to hopeless. This is a rollicking good read that guarantees to entertain.
Barnes shifts POV from first person present to 3d omni toward the back end as his means of explaining all of the details that have taken place off-screen to get Mayes into his predicament with the Garda - I found this jarring, and also a bit of a cheat. Hence the one star penalty. And the ending was somewhat abrupt.
All in all, forgivable in light of Barnes' superb humor and gift of gab.

.What everyman pretends he's not, 16 Jun 2011
By Woody "woody" (UK)
He's not the standard hero, he's not the typical male lead; he's a real man; about half as clever as he thinks he is, where thinking is a reaction, not an action.
One part of me thought he's too stupid for words, whereas the other part thought - there but for the grace of God....
A clever story, well told, with a good supporting cast round a character that defies pigeon-holing.

Want a Hero You'll Hate to Love?, May 21, 2011
By Cindy C. Bennett "GeekGirl" (Salt Lake City, UT)
It's the mark of a truly great author when he can create a character that is not only flawed, but is downright unlikeable - and yet you find yourself rooting for him, sympathizing with him, and hoping he'll come out on top. Ruby Barnes has created such a character in Ger Mayes.
It's almost impossible to tell you much about the story without giving it away, just suffice it to say you must read Ger's story. This is a man who can't make a good decision, ever, and doesn't seem to learn from his mistakes, either. And yet, he has a big heart that keeps getting in his way of being completely self-absorbed, as he'd like to be. You're going to like him, and keep hoping he'll finally make that decision that should seem so obvious, to pull himself out of the tangled web he's created for himself, before he's eaten by the black widow.
A seriously good book, with great writing and prose, hard to put down once you start. A nice, amusing look into real life in Ireland, with characters who you can imagine finding in any corner of the world. You'll find yourself thinking about Ger long after you've read the last, inevitable word. I can hardly wait to see what springs from the mind of Ruby Barnes next.

Proves an interesting point, 4 May 2011
By Bibi (London
Namely that the main character of a novel can be `unsympathetic' and still reach out to the reader in a powerful way.
Ger Mayes has a good dose of human failings and could well be described as an `anti-hero' and yet it's impossible not to engage and ultimately sympathise with his predicament. This is largely due to the intimate nature of the first person voice which puts the reader firmly in his head and under his skin.
The plot, which is imaginative and well-handled, unfurls with an ever-increasing sense of inevitability but without becoming predictable.
I was left pondering the frailties of human nature and wishing Ger hadn't taken so many wrong turnings.
Recently I've downloaded the free trial of around a dozen e-books and this is the only one I was tempted into buying. I'm glad I did.
Well worth a read.

Peril - A great read, 15 April 2011
Ruby Barnes is a great narrator. His writing is very fluid and makes for an easy read. One would not expect to empathize with the main character Ger Mayes, but I actually found myself rooting for him and hoping things would work out. This is down to how real an insight Barnes manages to give into his character. Barnes' descriptions of Ger and his inflated ego are really amusing. This is a great read, I'd highly recommend it.

A very enjoyable read., April 13, 2011
By Irene (RI, United States)
If you're looking for an everyone lives happily ever after tale, keep on looking, you won't find it here. The world seems to be crashing down around Ger in this witty, well written, engaging story. Even though much of Ger's "peril" is due to his own lack of self control I couldn't help but feel sorry for him as he dug himself in deeper and deeper from one bad situation to the next. A very enjoyable read.

Highly recommended, 11 April 2011
Ger Mayes is one of those types of guys who make some women try to tuck him beneath their wing so they can take care of him. Others will follow along and pray he gets exactly what he deserves. Whichever kind you end up being, you're sure to have a blast following this womanizing idiot as he gets himself into one bad mess after another, each one just slightly worse than the one before it. I didn't know whether to laugh, or groan and slap my forehead, thinking it a good idea to pull him by the ear in to see the shrink and glue him to the chair. It's hard to believe one man can make so many bad decisions and get into so much trouble and yet find a way to talk himself out of it. Or does he? You'll have to read PERIL for yourself to find out. Ladies, you may want to hide this one from your husbands. You wouldn't want to give them any ideas. Don't worry about the slow start in chapter one. Once Ger gets the ball rolling, he sets off an avalanche that no one can stop, not even Lady Luck herself. If you like a fast-paced thriller, PERIL is a fun ride I'm sure you'll enjoy.

The depths of a Complex Man, 1 April 2011
By G. McCullough "Gerry" (N.Ireland)    
An excellent book, with a good plot and some vivid characters. Ruby Barnes delves beneath the surface of her people, especially Ger, and allows us to see the complex, confused man he really is. He's proud of himself and his opinions, and it takes several meetings with the lame guitar player who reminds him of his dad for all the ugly attitudes to spill out. The dinner party gives us our initial insight into Ger, and into the other people present, as he encourages Renee to flirt with him, and then begins an affair with her. When Jo reports that Renee is feeling sick, the reader naturally suspects that she is pregnant, an ironically probable outcome, as Ger wallows deeper and deeper into trouble, including murder. Barnes is a smooth, professional writer, and one who has a lot to say. Highly recommended.

Peril at your feet, April 1, 2011
First time reading a book on Kindle and glad I picked Peril. Although the main character Ger is someone who everybody should dislike I found myself worryingly relating to him. I liked the author's portrayal of a simple guy who in the blink of an eye is thrown into a darkened side of Dublin and a series of events which has consequences for everyone he knows.
I look forward to reading more from Ruby Barnes.

An Honest Look at Human Nature, April 1, 2011
The main character in Peril is Ger Mayes, a man who needs different women for his different needs. He's a hedonist of sorts, and his story reminds all of us that, to some degree, we too have the same affliction. My kind of guy, Ger is not much for conventionalism, and like anyone else who isn't, he continually pays the price.

Many thanks to all the readers of Peril. If you've read it then please consider leaving a review on the website where you dowloaded the ebook, comment here or email me



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