When was the last time you read a story about murder and degradation that made you laugh out loud? When was the last time you read something that you just had to share with somebody and soon had you reading passages aloud? When was the last time you read something that was so startling that it made you think, "My God, not only am I not in Kansas anymore, I'm not even sure what planet I'm on!"
Well, welcome to the world of "Disco Bloodbath," and the crazy, maddening, terrifying, bizarre, and totally charming people who inhabit it, doing all sorts of unspeakable things to each other -- and to themselves -- all in an effort to keep ennui at bay just for one more day.
"Disco Bloodbath" is a dazzling, dizzying, amazingly vivid, and startlingly fresh look at a subculture that for several years pranced its hedonistic way across the dance floors of New York City's trendiest clubs. It is also perhaps the funniest book about a murder you will ever read. Like its author, who experienced it all and has lived to tell the tale, it's a true original.
When self-proclaimed king of club kids and party promoter extraordinaire Michael Alig was convicted in November 1996 of killing a drug dealer known as Angel, a spotlight was trained on a world few people even knew existed. Author James St. James knew that world, of course; in fact, he was one of its creators. He also knew the rules, knew them inside out, because he helped write them. And while it was a life and a lifestyle in which just about anything was acceptable so long as it wasn't boring, murder was considered a no-no. So when Alig confessed his part in the crime to St. James, our author knew that there could be no going back -- andthat this time the party really was over.
Now, in this unflinching tell-all book, James St. James leads the reader into the bizarre, almost surreal universe of abandon and gender-bending amorality, decadence, and drugs that he knew so well. And in a writing style as addictive as any drug, he details the rise and fall of Michael Alig, a kid from South Bend, Indiana, who burst on the downtown scene in the 1980s and quickly rose to the top as the mastermind of parties so outrageous that they became the stuff of legend.
Like its author and the people it depicts, this expose is outrageous and fascinating, much like seeing an accident on the side of the road that you feel compelled to stare at. Hysterically funny, heartbreakingly tragic, and wickedly decadent, "Disco Bloodbath" is both St. James's attempt at closure and a stunning literary achievement.