Charlie Huston's Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death has been well reviewed in the press-- the New York Times review for example, is worth reading. Since this book is available for the Kindle, I thought I'd mention it here briefly.
The book is a visceral experience in the truest sense of the word--the main character goes to work for a trauma-cleaning service, which involves vivid descriptions of the process of cleaning the bits of people that normally (absent a gun in the mouth, for example) stay inside them. The humor is dark, the writing vivid, sharply observed, and unflinching. If you like hard-boiled fiction, this is a book for you, but if you have a weak stomach, you may want to stay away. Or at least not read it while you're eating.
The main character, Web, does as little work as possible in his friend's tattoo parlor, and generally is kind of a low-life. We find out that he was formerly a teacher, which at first seems an unbelievably large leap. Of course, as the book develops and peels away layers of the onion, we find out how he got from there to here. Of course, there's a girl, there's trouble of various kinds, there's taut noir adventure as well as the aforementioned black comedy along with worthy challenges for Web, and that's about all I'm going to say. I don't want to spoil the book--the bottom line, it's a great read, and even those well versed in hard-boiled fiction will find something new here.
Three more carnivals! - I haven’t posted here for a month, but the carnivals keep rolling out like clockwork. On Dec. 21st I hosted a carnival at my own blog I’ll Never Forget The...