By K W Jeter
Noir is a science fiction novel by K W Jeter.
NOIR.....Hohoho! What a way to go! Corpses in this book aren't allowed to die, they go into debt and are kept from the grave to hang out on the dead side of what was L.A. (now the Gloss) to wait for some job so they can be buried. X shaped pupils.
One guy, McNihil, who is a detective for the ASCAP Corp. runs around nailing people who sell software and chips which link to illegal book nooks of bootleg writings. He has a primo job, liscence to kill. Once you scam someone who is scraping by with wits to feed themselves you come up against 'asp heads' who will putty your head to your hands lead you into a closet and take your brain out to run a toaster or something equally menial while a battery keeps the neurons firing just enough to tell you "you f***d up big time idiot".
McNihil has a dead wife. He quit his job for ASCAP and is trying to slum it with his sooped up head, body and black and white 'noir' eyes that see everything down to miniscule details. Everything is a 40s movie in his mind which is probably how he keeps his sanity. See everything one way and you can gloss over the emotions and pain. He gets called in to investigate some frozen ripped open at the scene of the crime lackey suit, walks away, and gets stuck with the job anyway. The corporation that owns his life basically is trying to puppet him around the Gloss/L.A. to find clues why this guy died, why his computerized 'prowler' self is nowhere to be found. You use your prowler to trade off (scarred toungues wrestle/fluid exchange) different scenerios within your own head. People go way out on the limbs with the prowlers looking for ultimate sex kicks and twist up inside their own messed up skulls on the shitty side of town. That's not even a small portion of what's happening in here. This books twists in your mind with all the gimmicks, in jokes and full on decadent garbage vacuum bag filth facials that you are left in the middle of the toilet gasping at the vaseline edges with chipped teeth. Some of the large sweeping money toss/gestures of the DZ Corporation and head rep. Harrisch are a little far fetched to be omnipotently unbelievable, other parts are so icky and detailed you feel like you swallowed a mouth full of doghair thinking it was icecream. This joker Jeter is twisted. He brought the DR. ADDER (an early book that isn't as well written, but just as screwed) out that had L.A. hookers getting their arms and legs removed for the ultimate stubby sex.
This book is up there with the best of them bleak futures out there. Only some flaws were in it that could be believable if it was as crappy as a future that the movie Blade Runner painted. Jeter did the followup books to the Blade Runner movie which are ok...(first chapter of BLADE RUNNER 2 is amazing but the book gets bogged down with same old character loved to death a little too much) but he's on his own here. The Blade Runner detective, Decker, crashed into a dump. Climbed thru to a different L.A., and found some other wise cracks in an even bleaker world.
Written on 19th August 2010 by number 6.