[Charlie Huston's] action scenes are unparalleled in crime fiction and his dialogue is so hip and dead-on that Elmore Leonard should be getting nervous. Publishers Weekly (starred review), on Half the Blood of BrooklynIt's like this: a series of bullet-riddled bad breaks has seen rogue Vampyre and terminal tough guy Joe Pitt go from PI for hire to Clan-connected enforcer to dead man walking in a New York minute. And after burning all his bridges, the only one left to cross leads to the Bronx, where Joe's brass knuckles and straight razor can't keep him from running afoul of a sadistic old bloodsucker with a bad bark and a worse bite. Even if every Clan in Manhattan is hollering for Joe's head on a stick, it's got to be better than trying to survive in the outer-borough wilderness.So it's a no-brainer when Clan boss Dexter Predo comes looking to make a deal. All Joe has to do to win back breathing privileges on his old turf is infiltrate an upstart Clan whose plan to cure the Vyrus could expose the secret Vampyre world to mortal eyes and set off a panic-driven massacre. Not cool. But Joe's all over it. To save the Undead future, he just has to wade neck-deep through all the archenemies, former friends, and assorted heavy hitters he's crossed in the past. No sweat? Maybe not, but definitely more blood than he's ever seen or hungered for. And maybe even some tears over the horror and heartbreaking truth about the evil men do no matter who or what they are.Praise for Charlie Huston and his Joe Pitt novelsIn conceiving his world (a New York City divided by vampire clans, each with different reasons to hate Pitt), Huston gives a fading genre a fresh afterlife. [Grade:] A. Entertainment Weekly [Huston] creates a world that is at once supernatural and totally familiar, imaginative, and utterly convincing. The Philadelphia InquirerFrom the Trade Paperback edition.
In this fascinatingly flawed fourth episode in the bloody horror-noir chronicles of New York vampire PI Joe Pitt (after 2007's Half the Blood Of Brooklyn), relations between the city's vampire clans are unraveling. The Cure is researching antidotes to the ravenous vampire-creating Vyrus, while the better-nourished Coalition seeks the Cure's downfall and the Society plays both sides. Dodging death threats and brokering shaky deals, Pitt shuttles among all three until he learns the Coalition's secret, a revelation so volatile that it may lead to all-out war. Huston supplies terse dialogue and convincing gore in expertly pitched prose, but the beautifully cinematic nastiness doesn't quite mask a key difficulty: Pitt's enemies set their hate aside too easily at his appearance, and their rational behavior is at odds with the emotional intensity (and sheer implausibility) of the climax. Newcomers may find the relationships difficult to parse, but those familiar with the series should be enthralled. (Sept.)
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Showing 1-2 of the 2 most recent reviews
1 . Another great by Charlie Huston
Posted February 04, 2010 by Erin , Southern CAOnce again, I couldn't wait to start reading this next book in the Joe Pitt Series. And once again, I could not put it down.
2 . Falls flat
Posted January 15, 2010 by Jabberwock , Savannah, GAI wanted to like this book, I really did. I loved the previous books in the series, but this one just seemed to be a sad attempt at a bridge between what has happened in the the story so far and the end. The entire thing felt forced and did nothing to add to the story or characters. As much as I enjoy Charlie Huston's work and as much as I love the Joe Pitt books, this one just wasn't very good.
September 29, 2008
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Excerpt from Every Last Drop by Charlie Huston
RIPE FOR THE TAKING.
That's all I can think as I watch them.
The crowd pouring out of the Stadium, tens of thousands cramming out onto River and the Concourse, flooding the street under the 4-train tracks as the trains screech in and out overhead, more people packing the cars sardine tight, tripping up the steps, cascading down into the tunnels, mashing into Stan the Man's, northbound traffic making for the Cross Bronx Expressway and the Triborough stalled out from all the people wandering the street. Drunk and half drunk, ecstatic from a win or enraged from a loss, a blue-and-white pinstriped mass of thousands.
All of them full up.
Each of them enough to keep some sad son of a bitch on his feet for weeks. For months if he has some self-control and knows how to go about his business. Most of them strangers to the South Bronx, never seen more of it than this one subway station or the parking lot and the Stadium itself. Each one full to their pumping heart with quarts of blood.
Any wonder every fucking game brings trouble?
Sure, no big secret. That's why the cops are out there. Cops keep the traffic moving in fits and starts. Cops keep the Bleacher Creatures from chewing the ears off any Sox fans stupid enough to stay through the ninth inning on a night their team came to town and won. Cops keep an eye out for pickpockets and for drunks falling under the buses and for snatch-and-grab artists.
If I gave a shit about any of that stuff I'd give them a hearty pat on the back and maybe buy a boy in blue a beer sometime.
But I don't care.
What I do care about are poachers. What I care about are starvelings. I care about the greedy and the weak, the foundering and the lost and the plain stone stupid. I care about them so much that I try to show my face around here after every night game. Just to make it plain and clear.
Clear that they should get off this turf before I come up behind them in an alley one night and put two in the back of their fucking skull before they even know I'm there.
The halt and the lame. They got no place. Not as long as I'm stuck up here.
Stand up top long after a game, well before sunrise. Stand on the 4 platform and look south and you can see it. You can see the City right there. One stop over the river.
Fucking China to me.
Coming down to the street, iron bars walling stairs and turnstiles and platforms, arching overhead, meeting the steel undercarriage of the tracks, like walking circles in a cage.
No one shits in my cage.
So after a game I make the scene. Truth to tell, figure I'd make it even if I didn't have practical concerns. Figure I'd be out there on River just to take advantage of pretty much the only time I can stick my face out of doors in the neighborhood and not pique someone's curiosity.
A white face in the South Bronx after dark, it draws a little attention. During the day, around the courthouses on One Sixty-one, you see plenty of them. Cops and lawyers and the occasional plaintiff. But they all go home come night. Closest any of them live to One Sixty-one and the Concourse might be Riverdale. More likely Jersey or Queens.
Still, during the day I could blend in real easy eating a Cuban from Havanna Sandwich Queen on one of the benches next to a statue of Moses bringing the Ten Commandments down the hill. Look at my build, my face, my black boots and black Dickies on a summer day, with my leather jacket draped over the warm stone bench, and someone might naturally think undercover. Think I'm some cop up here to testify.
But that would require I was out during the day.
Which isn't on my agenda. Ever.
Not until I develop a serious taste for dying from instantaneous eruptions of bloody pustules on my eyes.
So if I desire to take the air, my promenades must come betimes at night. And, man, there just ain't no other fucking white people in these parts after the sun goes down. And drawing eyes is not something I have much desire to do.
Who that guy?
Seen him around?
Gotta be Five-0.
Naw, see him for months. Never make a move on no one.
He ain't livin' up here.
Don't know, could be he is.
What block? What building?
Next thing you know, go down a block on a hot night: Old guys got their card table and their wives' favorite kitchen chairs out on the sidewalk to play dominoes; young guys standing around someone's leased Escalade, bass beats rippling their baggy shorts, shooting texts to the shorties looking down from a fire escape across the street; windows open, rice and beans and stewed chicken smells coming out, mothers and grandmothers and pregnant girls inside laughing and sipping sangria made from jug red and 7Up; someone catches sight of me and the party just shuts down. Hear nothing but my boots on the pavement, see nothing but sideways eyes scoping me out all the way to the end of the street until I turn the corner and they all look at one another.
Who the fuckin' white guy?
Figure a question like that can drive some people crazy. Figure some people got to know. Figure sooner or later someone gets in my face. Figure that doesn't end well.
Figure that isn't the real fucking problem anyway.
The real fucking problem is when that question circulates too far, rumors start, people tell stories, stories spread.
The river, I can't cross it, but any of these people can. And they can take questions and rumors and stories with them. And once that kind of shit is over there on the Island, no telling where it ends up. Ends up in the wrong place, maybe someone hears it. Someone hears it, maybe someone decides to look into it. Someone looks into it, maybe someone sees me. Someone finds me. And once I'm found by someone from the Island, figure my game is played out. Figure me dead.
Well, that's on the agenda, but I'm trying to see if I can't attend to that matter at a later date. More pressing business at the moment.
Places to go. People to see.
Goals. Ambitions. They keep a man going.
Any case, all the restrictions my new neighborhood puts on me, figure I'd stroll over after the games just to mix with the crowd. Just to be out. Anonymous. Free is a word you could use if you like. If you like a good laugh, that is.