Walking Bones is an American love story cast in deepest noir. It's the story of a black woman named Nettie who had come to New York to be a model but grew too big and ended up as a designer. One night in a bar Nettie meets a man, a white man named Albert Press. Press is drunk. He insults her, she smashes a glass in his face. And so begins a strange, twisted kind of love affair. A lurching dance of black and white, sadist and masochist, that can only ever end in disaster. Like Chester Himes' The End Of A Primitive, this is an American tragedy that unpicks the sexuality of racism and the strange contradictions of sexual power. Urban and precise yet oddly dreamlike, Walking Bones is an important addition to the canon of noir writing of Jim Thompson, David Goodis and Horace McCoy.
Flyer to African American and Mystery stores
Bound galleys available
Review attention in women's publications, African-American press, radio interviews in New York City
Charlotte Carter lives in New York City where she works as an editor and a teacher. Her previous three books, Rhode Island Red, Coq au Vin and Drumsticks, are mysteries featuring Nanette Hayes.
Also available by Charlotte Carter
Rhode Island Red
TC $15.99, 1-85242-564-4 CUSA
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Charlotte Carter has a lifelong love of crime fiction. She was born in the Midwest but now lives in New York City with her husband and cat.From Booklist:
Carter, author of the rollicking Nanette Hayes mystery series, swims in very different waters with this erotic exploration of sexual obsession. Evoking Chester Himes' searing novel The Primitive (1955), the tale follows the relationship between two New Yorkers, former model Nettie, a statuesque black woman, and middle-aged, white publisher Albert. The two meet in a bar when Albert provokes Nettie with sexual and racial insults, and she responds by breaking a glass in his face. Albert later tracks Nettie down to apologize, and so begins an obsessive yet perversely tender relationship that is driven by racially fueled erotic need on both sides. Adding extra frisson to the sexual and racial dynamics is Nettie's friend and mentor, the nightlife-loving Rufe, a gay black man who is a kind of cross between Truman Capote and Anatole Broyard. We know, of course, that this relationship must end badly, but we are no more able to abandon reading about it than Nettie and Albert are able to abandon each other. Carter unflinchingly confronts the ugliness of sexual obsession, but she manages to generate remarkable sympathy for her characters. Bill Ott
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