Tours of the Black Clock: A Novel

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9780743265706: Tours of the Black Clock: A Novel
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Cutting a terrifying path from a Pennsylvania farm to the Europe of the 1930s, Banning Jainlight becomes the private pornographer of the world's most evil man. In a Vienna window, he glimpses the face of a lost erotic dream, and from there travels to the Twentieth Century's darkest corner to confront its shocked and secret conscience. One of Steve Erickson's most acclaimed novels, Tours of the Black Clock crosses the intersections of passion and power and gazes into a clock with no face, where memory is the gravity of time and all the numbers fall like rain.

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About the Author:

Steve Erickson is the author of six other acclaimed novels -- including Days Between Stations and Tours of the Black Clock -- as well as two books about American politics and popular culture. The editor of the literary magazine Black Clock, he also writes about film for Los Angeles and teaches at CalArts.

From Publishers Weekly:

With the surreal effects of William Burroughs, Erickson spells out a nightmarish vision of the seedy underbelly of the Twentieth Centurya phrase that's portentously capitalized throughout this wildly uneven phantasmagoria. Its anti-hero, Banning Jainlight, raised on a Pennsylvania ranch, has sex with an Indian housemaid who turns out to be his real mother; so he throws his father out of a window and escapes to sleazy New York where he churns out porn novels. His Austrian mentor bids him to Vienna, where he ends up as Hitler's secret pornographer, writing tawdry scenes to slake the Fuhrer's obsession with a real-life niece. Jainlight's first-person spiela torrent of drunken poetry, erotic longing and cynicismis intertwined with the stories of Dania, a Russian dancer living with her half-mad father inside a revolving crater in Sudan, and of Zeno, an old ferryman who shuttles tourists to an anonymous Chinatown. Suddenly it's 1967 and our shy pornographer is holed up with Hitler in a dank Italian prison, plotting escape. Erickson ( Rubicon Beach ) overextends himself here, but before this powerful, haunting fantasy falls apart it insinuates itself into the reader's mind through its reckless confrontation with evil.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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