Will Duke, Information Systems Manager, recommends Sandman Slim by Richard Kadrey.
Today is Halloween. My offering to you is a magical mashup of urban fantasy and hard-boiled detective, mixed with just about everything else.
“I wake up on a pile of smoldering garbage and leaves in the old Hollywood Forever cemetery behind the Paramount Studio lot on Melrose.”
James Stark is back on earth. From Hell. Literal Hell. Lucifer and demons and the rest of the great unwashed from down below. And that’s how the book starts: with a compelling back story.
I’ll keep this short, because the book is too good to ruin with spoilers. Our hero is hated by everyone, demons to angels, and pretty much hates them all right back. There are no good guys, only guys, and gals, and others, all of whom are set on harming our guy. While everyone tries to finish him off, Stark takes a licking and keeps on ticking. Dick Tracy, Sam Spade, Mike Hammer, Phillip Marlowe, even Harry Dresden look soft compared to Stark. Like those other well-known dicks, Stark’s got rapier sharp snark, and isn’t afraid to wield it.
Richard Kadrey has created a remarkably unique world for us. It’s a phenomenal mélange of Los Angeles, indie movie rental stores, Hell, Heaven, stolen cars and motorcycles, torso-free talking heads, dames, and gleeful mayhem. Best of all, if you like it, there are more books in the series. Settle in for a rowdy good time.