Seven Stories Press has sent me the new compendium of Barry Gifford's Sailor and Lula Stories, Sailor and Lula - the complete novels. Life is short and my reading list long (currently on my third Mary Roach in a row - currently thinking up pot puns for that review, which will be shortly) and so I don't actively seek out amazing anymore. The wheel of karma brings it to me. My sister bought me Sailor's Holiday (the 3rd book in the series) as a Christmas request from me. It opens up with child sacrifice, migrates to pimps harvested for their organs and encounters with conjectured afterlife. Amplified from the original Wild at Heart, (the first book) and yet with the Gifford flavor all along; life's mundane moments inherently contain enough reflectivity for him to provide insights. This especially evident in his Memories from a Sinking Ship which collects the absences in his childhood and turn them into a series of vignettes told by a dark Jean Shepherd (no you'll shoot your eye out! here) on the streets of Chicago, in the wet snow and broiling sun, managing to imply his father's underworld connections intriguingly.
Wild at Heart, in contrast to Sailor's Holiday, was a disappointment, presumably owing to the mind-meld David Lynch had with him (he went on to write Lost Highway - tit-for-tat within the mind meld, in my opinion) and hence for the first time in my life reading the book after the movie was not an enriching experience. It was reverse verbatim the movie it was stinkingly faithful, and tells the tale as if it were being read to you. (yes blah blah portrayal, mise-en scene, etc. blah, blah) so while I was expecting hidden stuff, there wasn't any. At the time for me, it was all in the other book (the 3rd really).
But that's what's good; it was the third book. I had no idea that there was a second (Perdita Durango) or for that matter 4 more after Sailor's Holiday. I got those book before the internet. book stores knew nothing. Specials order had to be placed, even if the slack-jawed attendant found the listing. We weren't swimming in a sea of cool. But now I've got 'em all. In Lula and Sailor's world I now have more. More death, voodoo, crime, humping, gun-play, humidity, tobacco, bourbon, love and satori.
Frankly, I'm figuratively shitting myself waiting to read it.