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September 9, 2010 / schulerbooks

“Kill The Dead” with Richard Kadrey at Eastwood on October 12th!

Since he busted out of Downtown (that is, Hell) six months ago, Stark has been busting his ass to stay above water. He’s got monsters on one side of him, monster-hunting feds on the other, and has to take murder jobs from both sides to make the green. He’s still got his key, the black blade, and his Hellion hoodoo, but the scar magic he’s been relying on to keep his edge seems to be petering out on him now that he’s back in the world, which isn’t good news for a paid killer. And then, at the end of the day, he’s got a damned talking head for a roommate, an immortal french alchemist thief for a mentor, a fallen (and now missing) angel for a doctor, the decent owner of a sleazy tiki bar for a chef, and any number of questionable allies, old enemies, and stupid idiots trying to take on THE Sandman Slim. (Just no girlfriends, darn it)

And then there’s Lucifer. Lucifer, ruler of Hell, whose continued existance is in doubt now that there’s a serious rebellion brewing Downtown. Lucifer, who has an INTERESTING working relationship with his favorite former arena star, to say the least. Lucifer, who may or may not be Stark’s real father, regardless of what Stark’s doctor said…

Lucifer, who is in Los Angeles to act as a technical advisor for a biopic of his own life, and needs Stark to provide him with bodyguarding services.

Yes, you read that right – the Devil is going to Hollywood to see that his side of the story is finally told right. The telling involves a director who’s sold his soul, a french porn star turned “serious actress” as Eve (there’s less words in this role than in her last adult movie, but oh well), and a high budget. The gig requires snappy dressing, heightened paranoia, and being nice to the great and powerful magical families of the region – most of whom need to be thrown through a window, in Stark’s considerable opinion. But how hard could that be?

Not too hard, maybe, but then someone tries to snatch his boss at gunpoint. Then zombies attack his favorite bar. Then he makes an interesting discovery about someone he just met, in regards to zombies and other, more steamy matters. Suddenly it seems like the disparate jobs he’s been working, and some of the background noise he’s been hearing, is pointing to something a lot larger that’s rumbling apart right under his boots. A deadly combination of vampire thrill killers, decaying Sub Rosa gentry, the war on supernatural terror, and a full-on zombie apocalypse is about to go BOOM, right in the middle of the Devil’s own picture show.

Suddenly, all the monsters of Hollywood seem like small potatoes indeed…

The second installment of Sandman Slim is packed with the same bloody action, dark magic, and bad-ass attitude as the first, and is a worthy successor to the intricate world that Kadrey created with that novel. The considerable number of plot threads shatter and take on newer, sharper points, here, and by the time it’s over many things we’ve come to rely on have changed – not always for the better.

Kill the Dead is a fast and engrossing read that never fails to amaze with its vast array of darkly dangerous, and wickedly amusing, delights. If you like your urban fantasy black but funny, replete with zingers and a fresh, new take on the oldest story of the world, you should grab Kill the Dead when it drops, October 1st.

And while you’re at it, you should also stop by the Eastwood Town Center Schuler Books and Music on Tuesday, October 12th, at 7pm, so you can meet the author of this excellent book! Yes, Fanged Fiction is pleased to present the one and only Richard Kadrey in our store for an evening of fun. (Hopefully no one will be decapitated and put to work minding a video store)

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