Re: RARA-AVIS: More HB/Noir SF

From: JT Lindroos (
Date: 30 Nov 2003

>>Was it Etienne who couldn't think of much sci-fi with a hardboiled flavor?
I though Dick's DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? was definitely hardboiled. Not just violent, but tough, too. Noirish, also. <<

There are several Dick novels which work in this context, none better than A SCANNER DARKLY.

The key hb/noir novels for me are K.W. Jeter's novels DR. ADDER, GLASS HAMMER, DEATH ARMS and FAREWELL HORIZONTAL, and the series featuring Lt. Carlucci by Richard Paul Russo: DESTROYING ANGEL (the first and clearly the weakest), CARLUCCI'S EDGE (brilliant) and CARLUCCI's HEART (terrific as well). The Carlucci novels have just been reprinted in a convenient omnibus edition.

Jack Womack's AMBIENT sequence fits perfectly -- an easy starting point is RANDOM ACTS OF SENSELESS VIOLENCE, which is narrated by a 12 year old schoolgirl in a bleak near-future. It's unflinching, subtle and very human. M.J. Engh's ARSLAN, Neal Barrett, Jr.'s THROUGH DARKEST AMERICA and DAWN'S UNCERTAIN LIGHT, John Barnes' KALEIDOSCOPE CENTURY, Russell M. Griffin's TIMESERVERS and Michael Blumlein's MOVEMENT OF THE MOUNTAINS are all dark, complex & tough narratives that are worth any effort to locate and read. None are "gadget" sf and as such easy for non-sf readers.


JT Lindroos
Wit's End Publishing

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