Sol Yurick, author of The Warriors (1965), has died. The novel -- which in 1979 led to the classic cult film of the same name -- was inspired by Yurick's experiences working in the New York City Department of Welfare.
“Some of the children of these families were what was then called juvenile delinquents,” Mr. Yurick wrote in an introduction to an edition of “The Warriors” published in 2003. “Many of them belonged to fighting gangs. Some of these gangs numbered in the hundreds; they were veritable armies. This social phenomenon was viewed, on the one hand, as the invasion of the barbarians, only this time they came from the inside rather than from the outside.”
"Sol Yurick, Author of ‘The Warriors,’ Dies at 87
" (NYT, thanks Gil Kaufman!)
Rasputin's Bastards is David Nickle's latest book, an epic novel from one of horror's weirdest voices. During the cold war, the Soviets established City 512, a secret breeding experiment intended to create a race of psychic supermen. It worked far, far too well. The dreamwalkers of City 512 may have given lip-service to their masters, but in truth, they were occupied with their dreaming, the sleeper agents whom they could ride like loas, the succesive generations of dreamwalkers, each more powerful than the last, and their own power-struggles.
Now the cold war is long past, and the final act is upon the world. The Babushka, one of the great powers of City 512, has established a stronghold in a fishing village in the remotest northern reaches of Labrador. Her enemies are legion, and some of them don't even know what side they're on. The dreamwalkers have always had the power to trap their enemies in false identities and false memories, and the main characters of Rasputin's Bastards are never quite sure who they are, what has happened to them, what is real, and what is poisonous illusion.
Nickle's book is an enormous tale, bewilderingly complex, but with lots of twists and turns that reward close attention. It is grotesque, violent, and exciting, with a supernatural tinge that is his hallmark.
Adam Christopher's debut novel Empire State is a noir, Philip K Dick-ish science fiction superhero story about a pocket universe that's created when two battling New York superheroes open a vent through spacetime.Read the rest
Math Girls is Hiroshi Yuki's immensely popular series of fiction and manga about math geeks ("Like Glee for math nerds"), and the stories themselves are a potted education in all sorts of mathematics. The first volume of Math Girls is to be published in English shortly by Bento Books, and they've posted a brief excerpt in PDF form. The site is short on actual details (publication date, ISBN, etc), but I'm looking forward to the book becoming reality nevertheless.
If you are a fan of hardboiled fiction, you probably know about Hard Case Crime, a pulp-noir book imprint founded by the founder Juno Online Services, Charles Ardai. Recently, Titan books has become the publisher, and their slate of upcoming books looks great.
Here's an exclusive excerpt from Getting Off: A Novel of Sex & Violence, by veteran crime novelist Lawrence Block.
The fellow’s name in Kansas City was Lucas. She’d taken note of him early on, and his eyes had shown a certain degree of interest in her, but his interest mounted when she told the group how many sexual partners she’d had. It was he who’d said, “Five? That’s all? Just five?” When she’d confirmed her count, his eyes grabbed hers and held on.
And now he’d taken her to another bar, the lounge of the Hotel Phillips, a nice quiet place where they could really get to know each other. Just the two of them.
The lighting was soft, the décor soothing. A pianist played show tunes unobtrusively, and a waitress with an indeterminate accent took their order and brought their drinks. They touched glasses, sipped, and he said, “Five.”
“That really did it for you,” she said. “What, is it your lucky number?”
“Actually,” he said, “my lucky number is six.”
Read the rest