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Illicit Fiction

Transgressive fiction beyond Palahniuk, Burroughs and Bukowski.

Please click on individual titles to check for availability. Want to know more? Ask a librarian.

Acker, Kathy
Pussy, King of the Pirates
Acker combines Treasure Island and The Story of O into a dream narrative about retired prostitutes who rally a gang of girl pirates for a treasure hunt through centuries and continents.
Book Cover Baer, Will Christopher
Kiss Me, Judas
The first in the Phineas Poe trilogy, in which Poe, an ex-cop, newly released from a psychiatric hospital, awakens after a one night stand to find himself in a bathtub full of ice, missing a kidney, and obsessed with the mysterious woman Jude who left him that way.
Book Cover Ballard, J.G.
Concrete Island
In this haunting allegory, a car wreck leaves a man injured and stranded on a freeway island, where his isolation and captivity lead to psychological and situational horror.
Book Cover Brown, Larry
The Rabbit Factory
Follow the comic and violent bad choices of a community of colorful Southern characters, including a woman cheating on her wealthy older husband, a drug-running ex-con mixed up with a crooked cop, a life-wrecking, loveable prostitute and a slew of gangsters.
Book Cover Coupland, Douglas
Hey Nostradamus!: A Novel
After three suburban school shooters kill a pregnant and secretly married classmate, who is at odds with a Christian youth group, four characters narrate the aftermath beyond the neat, news-covered backlash of heroes and villains.
Book Cover Hempel, Amy
The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel
In short stories like “Three Popes Walk into a Bar” and “The Lady Will Have the Slug Louie,” Hempel describes complex characters in grim situations with trademark minimalism
Book Cover Murakami, Haruki
After Dark
This novel of nocturnal Tokyo connects three stories, including a jazz trombonist distracting a student studying in a diner; the student’s mysteriously sleeping fashion model sister; and a prostitute whose businessman client beat her up.
Book Cover Welsh, Irvine
The Bedroom Secrets of the Master Chefs
A restaurant inspector in search of his father finds life-ravaging clues in a celebrity chef’s memoir. As he drinks and beds his way from Edinburgh to San Francisco, he struggles with his rival and opposite, a colleague whose own circumstances will force him to make a decision.

Updated: 7/10/2007