From a writer who has won comparison with Thomas Pynchon and William S. Burroughs comes thirteen unnerving and often breathtaking stories populated by punks and angels, skinheads and religious assassins, streetwalkers and fetishists--people who live outside the law and and the clear light of the every day. Set in landscapes as diverse as ancient Babylon, India, and the seamy underbelly of San Francisco, these daring and innovative tales are laced with Vollman's fertile imagination. The Rainbow Stories ushers us into a world that bears an awful yet hypnotic resemblance to that of our deepest nightmares, confirming Vollman's reputation as a dark visionary of contemporary fiction.
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William T. Vollmann is the author of eight novels, three collections of stories, a memoir, and Rising Up and Rising Down, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in nonfiction. Vollman's writing has been published in The New Yorker, Harper's, The Paris Review, Esquire, Conjunctions, Granta, and many other magazines. He lives in California.From Library Journal:
These long, interlocking short stories comprise an anthropological field report from San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district, 20 years after the Summer of Love. The author's stated goal is simply to retell--"unaltered, unverified"--the stories told to him by down-and-out street people such as Brandi the prostitute, Marisa the neo-Nazi bootwoman, and Carolina the saintly wino. Much of the action takes place offstage, in trauma centers, detox wards, and autopsy labs, with extensive footnotes citing relevant textbooks of pathology and criminal justice. This is a far more coherent book than Vollmann's first novel, You Bright and Risen Angels ( LJ 5/15/87), and clearly places him in the front ranks of contemporary authors. Highly recommended, but definitely not for the squeamish.
- Edward B. St. John, Loyola Law Sch. Lib., Los Angeles
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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