Thursday, April 28, 2016

Chicanonautica: With Kundalini Noir to Planet Pleasure and Back

 by Ernest Hogan

When most people think of Latino or Chicano writers, they think serious social commentary, or maybe thoughtful magic realism. The sort of thing that make readers feel aware, or maybe enlightened, but not the sort of thing you can read for a long, intense blast of fun. This is not the case for Mario Acevedo, and his Felix Gomez novels. Starting with The Nymphos of Rocky Flats, and keeping up with the pulpy, B-movie style titles, they take the Chicano vampire private eye through worlds of trouble and adventure that earned the right to have National Bestselling Author on the covers. I can attest that when I worked for Borders, I saw them sell like crazy. 

So, I'm happy to announce that there's a new volume, Rescue From Planet Pleasure, and it's another wild ride through weird territory with vampires who dunk their tamales in boar's blood.
As an extra, it includes a short story, “A Rainy Night in Commerce City,” which should provide background to those who aren't familiar with the series. It's nice bit of gritty, earthbound noir with vampires.

But we're talking about a universe with kundalini noir, and Rescue From Planet Pleasure, takes you through Acevedo's brilliantly thought-out paranormal universe that is worth of the hard science fiction “nuts and bolts” school of fantasy, on an epic chase/road trip across New Mexico with a fantastic side trip to the other side of the galaxy (this universe has UFOs as well as vampires), and some alien sex that is both ingenious and mind-blowing, and will be a challenge for the special effects crew if someone tries to make it into a movie.

Yes, this is a good book for young people who don't need trigger warnings, and who find the limits of YA fiction to be cramped.

There's also ancient Chicano wisdom with appearances by Coyote, La Malinche/La Llorona, skinwalkers, and other things that you can find in wild and woolly New Mexico – I've been there a lot lately, and it can get that strange, maybe even a little stranger – Transylvania ain't got nothing on Aztlán! And the noir/realism blends into a vision of an intergalactic barrio full of cosmic dirty deals and lots of spectacular action. More than a mild-mannered “good read” – you have to hang for dear life, and it's worth it.

It's certainly not Twilight, closer to Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse series, plus there's some serious, badass Chicano in the mix. It deserves the attention of all of you out there who are hot for vampires. I know you're out there. I see the fangs gleaming in the dark.

If only I had listened to that editor that told me that sexy vampires sell . . .

Ernest Hogan is the author of High Aztech, Cortez on Jupiter, Smoking Mirror Blues, and a lot of short fiction, including “Pancho Villa's Flying Circus” that is available in both We See a Different Frontier and Lost Trails: Forgotten Tales of the Weird West, Vol.1.

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