Review: KILL CITY BLUES by Richard Kadrey (Voyager)

Adobe Photoshop PDFSandman Slim is back on Earth, Averting Apocalypse & causing mischief…

James Stark, aka Sandman Slim, has managed to get out of Hell, renounce his title as the new Lucifer, and settle back into life in LA. But he’s not out of trouble yet. Somewhere along the way he misplaced the Qomrama Om Ya, a weapon from the banished older gods who are also searching for their lost power.

The hunt leads Stark to an abandoned shopping mall – a multi-story copy of LA – infested with Lurkers and wretched bottom-feeding Sub Rosa families, squatters who have formed tight tribes to guard their tiny patches of this fake LA. Somewhere in the kill zone of the former mall is a dead man with the answers Stark needs. All Stark has to do is find the dead man, get back out alive, and outrun some angry old gods-and a few killers-on his tail.

In the fifth Sandman Slim novel, we get more of the same. In both a good and less-good way. Kadrey serves up another dose of gritty, sometimes gnarly, often amusing supernatural urban fantasy. All the hallmarks of the Sandman Slim series are on display – the interesting and inspired twists on classic urban fantasy and horror denizens and creatures. His characters are quippy and interesting, not to mention developing rather nicely. The action is well-written, and doesn’t take over from the plot (of the novel or series’ meta-plot). I still love Kadrey’s version of Hell, God, Lucifer and Samael (former Lucifer). All the characters feel very real, now, even if they are outlandish (Kasabian, for example). Continue reading

Richard Kadrey’s Sandman Slim rides again! And picks up some new jackets along the way… (Voyager)

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Anyone who’s been reading CR for the past year will know that I’m a huge fan of Richard Kadrey’s Sandman Slim series. I’ve read and thoroughly enjoyed the first four, and I am impatient to get my hands on the fifth in the series, Kill City Blues, to be published in hardcover this August in the UK (artwork above), and July in the US (artwork below).

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In addition to book five, the first four are getting released in paperback in the UK as well. Voyager has commissioned some pretty cool, retro, quite ‘LA-punk’ covers for the books. The first two, Sandman Slim and Kill the Dead, will be published June 20th…

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These will be followed by Aloha From Hell and Devil Said Bang, on July 5th and July 18th, respectively…

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If you haven’t already tried this series, I highly recommend that you do. With the new editions, I can’t think of a better time, either. Even better, if you’re a UK Kindle owner, they’re currently discounted on Amazon

This is one of my favourite series, which has also managed to maintain its high quality (something that seems rather rare, these days…). Deliciously dark, original, well-crafted, and often surprising.