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The Cleanup Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 394 pages
  • Publisher: Stealth 2001; First Ed Thus edition (February 1, 2001)
  • ISBN-10: 1588810127
  • ISBN-13: 978-1588810120
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,084,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By G. West on April 4, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"The Cleanup" was published in 1987 when Skipp and Spector where the whiz kids of the splatterpunk splash in horror fiction. As near as I can determine, the pair collaborated on a mere handful of novels before splitting up, stopped writing, or died - I don't know which. What a shame, because their take on time-honored horror tropes were fresh, and their prose and character development only improved with time. I believe "Cleanup" was their second published novel written while they were still honing their technique; yet for all its minor faults (this is not highbrow literature) I would rank "The Cleanup" second only to "Animals" in thoughtfulness, depth of characterization, and (of course) plain old fun.
Billy Rowe is an idealist and a failed musician. A loser with fading dreams of making the world a better place through his music. The reason for his failure is his unwillingness to compromise, to make his music more commercial in a time when the heady idealism of the sixties is but a fading memory. Billy's life takes a chilling turn one hot Big Apple night when he witnesses a murder while playing his guitar on the fire escape of his seedy apartment on Stanton Street. Someone, some thing, catapults from the shadows and literally guts a beautiful woman before his eyes. The killing itself is traumatic enough for a sensitive soul like Billy Rowe, but worse yet is the fact that the trench-coated murderer looked up from beneath his fedora and saw Billy watching. Now he fears his own life is at risk.
The murder sets off a chain of unlikely events that eventually leads Billy to a rendezvous with an angel in a coffee shop. At this point the narrative cranks into high gear, for the angel's message is both frightening and exhilarating, and appeals to Billy's idealism, his best intentions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By "ithios2" on May 22, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Simply put, this is probably the best-written horror story of the mid eighties. The wish-fulfillment fantasy, so long a boring and dreary concept in any genre, suddenly found itself alive and well with the introduction of Billy Rowe. The story deals with redemption, social angst and the question of good and evil. Rowe, a down-on-his-luck muscisian, suddenly finds himself in possession of god-like powers that allow him to "clean" the streets of his city. He does this in a variety of ways, including shaping himself into a woman and burning the word RAPIST into the forehead of one of his would-be sexual assaulters. He loses sight of his humanity, however, and the ultimate price is the forfeiture of his soul. An excellent, if brutal and oft-times gory novel, for any person seeking the ultimate in alternative horror fiction.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 27, 1997
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When a down and out man is given powers to make the world a better place by an angel, he begains to drownd him-self in his new power. Now this hero of the night must fight off the scum of the city, the police who want to catch him and his own dark thoughts which are now coming into this head
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By A Customer on February 26, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Even though this is Skipp & Spector's first, it's one of their best. You'll be begging for more, while at the same time, begging for it to stop!! I liked this one even more than "The Light at the End," if that's possible. Billy Rowe seems to be a run-of-the-mill, burned-out artist w/ talent, but little motivation. After witnessing a horrific crime, he begs for help and guidance from the spiritual world. His prayers are answered when he is granted "The Power" to clean up his life and the streets of New York. Whether he uses the power for good or evil is up to Billy and he begins to have trouble differentiating between the two as vengence drives him on.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was Skipp & Spector's first work, and although it shows that in places with uneven pacing and some awkward writing, it's still an excellent book. Nothing comes without a cost.
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