I first discovered John Connolly through a desperate and vague Christmas request (always a risky stratedgy I know, but it pays off suprisingly often) a few years ago. I'd asked, quite simply, for short stories. I received quite a few. The most impressve one though was Nocturnes, by John Connolly. Partly it wa sso impressive as it was Hardback. Plus it was a deep, beaten purple, like a bruised book, designed to look old, worn. And it was a first edition. And it was signed. So there.