- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: PointBlank (January 9, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0809556383
- ISBN-13: 978-0809556380
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 8.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,326,949 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Secret Dead Men Paperback – January 9, 2007
In the Barren Ground
Rookie cop Tana Larsson must track a killer—but can she survive the wild and frozen dark? Learn More
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
In a nutshell, Del Farmer was murdered by The Association, which is his name for the unknown members of the Las Vegas mob, with whom he had run afoul thanks to his work as an investigative journalist. When he died, his soul was "collected" and stored inside the mind of another person effectively keeping him alive, at least in spirit if not in body. He now controls that body and devotes his time to hunting down The Association with the aim of eliminating them. Along the way he collects the souls of the dead, using their talents to draw him nearer to his goal. But while Del is concentrating on satisfying his thirst for revenge he is unaware that one of the souls he has collected is about to send his virtual world spinning out of control.
Secret Dead Men is a fast-paced story based around murder, revenge, peace of mind and peace in mind. . The obvious difference here to other murder investigation stories is that people are seeking revenge for their own murders! Author Duane Swierczynski (it's pronounced the way its spelt) has come up with a mind bending scenario for life after death and the possible fate of your soul once it has departed the body.Read more ›
So yeah, Del Farmer is a private detective, but he is also dead, murdered about a decade before the novel's 1976 setting. Upon is death, his soul was transported into the body of another, and from that point, Farmer is able to "host" the souls of others in his own "Brain Hotel". This comes in handy as Farmer, bent on taking revenge on the mysterious "Association" that offed him in real life, is able to collect the souls of folks with knowledge and facts that could help him on his quest of vengeance. Sound convoluted? You bet - but trust me, it works. Swiercynski's management of the Brain Hotel is brilliant - Sartre created a philosophy and won a Nobel Prize with less - while Swierczynski simply bends culture, religion, the spirit, and noir for fun.
Look, this is a book that is better read than reviewed. Just do it - or you'll be missing the first truly original novel of the 21st Century. Well done, Mr. S!
When I picked up this book, I literally couldn't imagine where the author would take me from one page to the next. Swierczynski creates this odd afterlife (not the kind learned at church) and forces the reader to emotionally invest into the whacky characters and their plights.
Set in Philadelphia in the seventies, I didn't understand any of his cultural allusions. However, by the end of the novel, I was fully familiar with the Brain Hotel, the soul stealing capabilities of the protagonist, and even had a new appreciation of toilets.
This is the kind of book that will make you giddy with the eccentricity of it all... and might make you a tad disappointed in the next book you pick up. But, don't fear... I think the author has another novel coming out soon.
If it's anything like "Secret Dead Men," buy it on a long weekend. You'll want to do nothing else!
I originally purchased it to get free delivery (I now have Amazon Prime) as an afterthought, not being terribly impressed by the plot descriptions or reader recommendations. It has turned out to be my favorite of Swierczynski's books. I have read all his other fiction works and while some approach the giddy, transcendent lunacy of these, they all fall short. I apologize because this is Swierczynski's first novel.
Swierczynski imagines that our perception of reality is an illusion. Consciousness and being are more liquid and changeable than we ever considered. When asked to describe it recently I thought of Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut. Billy Pilgrim had become unstuck in time. Dell runs the brain hotel with the souls he has absorbed after their body's death.
On an investigation to find the people responsible for his murder, Dell allows fellow souls of the Brain Hotel temporary control of the body they share to find the secret they all seek.
It is a deliriously giddy ride, climaxing in souls bouncing between body after body taking control of each succeeding body.
This is a work of utter genius. It may not be for everybody, but those who get it will find it unforgettable and brilliant. An amazing first novel and an act impossible to follow.
Swierczynski's subsequent books are, however, quite good!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Another winner from Duane's early work, don't miss this author!Published 13 months ago by Cheryl Fitzpatrick
What a drug induced waste of time. I don't know how I came by this book, but it descended from "OK, let's see how it goes", to" What a crock of s---".Published 24 months ago by AdventureKing
I read this after Severance Package and The Blonde, so it has a much different pace and style than I was expecting. I enjoyed it, but it wasn't the fast read that the others are. Read morePublished on December 9, 2009 by earlybird
This book is a fantastic combination of an imaginative premise, traditional mystery/crime elements, and humour. Read morePublished on July 13, 2005 by Tania Hutchison
Wow, what an incredible story. The author is brilliant in his story-telling and imaginative concepts - truly a surprise at every turn of the page. Read morePublished on July 12, 2005 by Christin K. Kuretich
This is a book that is different, fun, and unusual. I found having a little trouble keeping track of the characters at times, but enjoyed the writing, mix of characters and unique... Read morePublished on April 25, 2005 by L. J. Roberts