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There are many guilty pleasures in this life, and one of the best has to be reading Mick Farren. There's really no one else who mixes pulp fiction with a rock'n'roll charm in quite the same way. It's no wonder that he's drifted into the dark, gothic world of the vampire novel - though, as always, giving it something indefinably Farren.

The Time Of Feasting is the first novel in an ongoing series of novels about the 1000 year-old vampire Renquist, and his dealings with the complex net of relationships that are a vampire nest and the even more complex task of living in a human world. Farren's vampires are a mix of Catholic conspiracy theories and Von Danikenesque alien intervention in prehistoric Earth, all tossed up with a dose of Lovecraft and a dash of pulp thriller. It's a heady, almost addictive mix, with a fast pace and a definite beat.

The modern world, New York. Renquist's nest is fractured, as a recently turned Goth rock star tries to seize control. It's a difficult time for the nest, as the eponymous Time of Feasting has arrived. No longer able to subsist on stolen blood bags, the vampires need to feed on living human blood. Normally that's the cue for a holiday in Cambodia (or whatever trouble spot has the highest body count), but this time Renquist has a plan for riding things out in the heart of the city. It's a plan that's unlikely to work, with the young vampires leaving a trail of death, and an ex-priest and a cynical cop ready to shine the bright light of day on the vampire nest. Not even the armadillos will help Renquist now...

This is pulp fiction at its most unpretentious, poking fun at several different genres while keeping the reader on the edge of their seat. Renquist is the ideal outsider, and his struggles to return order to his life power Farren's dynamic prose.

A fun read, if a tad blood-thirsty at times...

(and as an aside - Mick Farren is blogging...)

Comments

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dfordoom
Oct. 24th, 2004 06:56 am (UTC)
Vampire novels are a guilty pleasure of mine. I've seen Farren's books around, but had no idea if they were worth buying. Next time I see one I'll grab it!
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