- Paperback: 344 pages
- Publisher: Lazy Fascist Press (February 1, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1621051714
- ISBN-13: 978-1621051718
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 171 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #249,120 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.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Skullcrack City Paperback – February 1, 2015
|New from||Used from|
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
From the Inside Flap
WINNER OF THE WONDERLAND BOOK AWARD FOR BEST NOVEL.
Nominated for Novel of the Year in the 2015 This Is Horror Awards.
Included on the following Best of 2015 Lists: Vol. 1 Brooklyn Top 10, Entropy Top 50, Booked Top 3, Brian Keene/The Horror Show Top 10, Powell's Small Press Bestsellers, Demon Theory Solid Reads 2015, Spinetingler Top Reads, Spontaneous Combustion Top 10, Shotgun Logic Top 15, Postcards from a Dying World Top 10
"Genre-bending [...] haunting and humorous."--THE WASHINGTON POST
"Skullcrack City messes with your mind the way William Burroughs or a bellyful of hallucinogens will do. I'm a longtime fan of Johnson. A master of derangement, he's been bringing it for years. This time, though, it's different. He's burst into the clear and is taking seven-league strides across the literary landscape."--LAIRD BARRON, author of The Beautiful Thing That Awaits Us All
"It's the god-damnedest novel you're liable to read this year: dizzyingly smart, fast, funny, and horrifying, bursting at the seams with the kind of 21st-century subversive post-cyber/splatterpunk renegade ideas you've been needing even more than you knew, and strangely, deeply moving on top. [I]mmense as the plot may seem, it's all building to a grand finale of genuine Philip K. Dickian mindblow proportions. And when it pays off, it pays off like crazy. Skullcrack City is a game-changer."--FANGORIA
"Skullcrack City's blend of genres, breakneck pacing, brutality, and dashes of philosophy and social critique serve to cement Johnson as one of the most exciting voices in contemporary fiction. Skullcrack City is a smart, incredibly well-researched, and painfully plausible look at our immediate future. Jeremy Robert Johnson's work has always tested the limits of both genre and literary fiction and this novel proves that there's still new ground to tread and that he's already on it."--BOOKSLUT
"Fucking incredibly well written and really entertaining the whole time. Wholly original--it's a gem. Without question a FIVE STAR book."--BOOKED
"Jeremy Robert Johnson is a fucking wizard. The final third of the book is a masterpiece. Skullcrack City is a journey that fucks with your mind and plays with your heart. You need to pick up this book and read it for yourself."--TIFFANY SCANDAL at SUICIDE GIRLS
"Read the hell out of Skullcrack City. It's magnificent. Like The Wolf of Wall Street meets Scanners."--ROBERT BROCKWAY, author of The Unnoticeables
"Jeremy Robert Johnson is a madman. [Skullcrack City] was worth the wait...the end is both unexpected and rewarding."--WILLAMETTE WEEK
"Like James Ellroy on meth, explosive and ultraviolent. The weird and strange are heavy-duty in Skullcrack City, fostered by a solid mythology that makes the Illuminati seem tame by comparison. Readers will find this book to be an entirely different beast, imaginably raising the bar for horror-fueled nightmarish paranoid fiction."--THIS IS HORROR
"This is a mind-fuck of a novel. If you enjoyed Mr. Robot you'll love this book. I read it twice. Jeremy's best work. It's fantastic."--BRIAN KEENE, author of The Rising and The Girl on the Glider
"This book is a little bit science fiction, a little bit horror, a little bit everything really, with a dark, literary angle throughout. It's a must for fans of body horror, intricate conspiracies, David Wong/Don Coscarelli's John Dies at the End, or just plain great story-telling."--HORROR NEWS
"[T]his book is singularly original. Certainly, it takes cues from Philip K. Dick and William Burroughs. It feels like it could be put on a shelf next to Warren Ellis' Supergod, Grant Morrison's The Invisibles and The Filth, and David Wong's John Dies at the End and be perfectly at home there. Despite its bleak setting and tormented characters, this book is very, very funny. And ultimately, it is a book about hope, and love, and redemption, and the human will to adapt and survive despite insurmountable odds."--INTERNAL SHIRT
"This is a staggeringly well-written and amazing book. The scope, the skill, the story, everything about it is just fantastic. Deep and complex, yet funny. Gory and scary, yet heartwarming. It's a cyberpunk Lovecraftian gritty horror thriller screwball cult action comedy conspiracy with elements of romance and family drama...the ultimate combination of so many awesome things."--HORROR FICTION REVIEW
"This book is like nothing else you have ever read... If forced I would say it felt like a way weirder take on Carpenter's They Live if William Burroughs and Clive Barker worked on the script and Cronenberg directed."--POSTCARDS FROM A DYING WORLD
"A far-out hilarious genre-bending thriller. Like a bizarre Blade Runner for 2015. Jeremy Robert Johnson writes like a dream."--TRAUMA (Denmark)
"An absolute mind bomb of a novel...hilarious, dark, dramatic and bizarre...moves along at a breakneck pace. Like David Wong's John Dies At The End in that it seamlessly blends a streetwise mean streak and rough and tumble violence with a sharp and incisive wit all while pouring on the weird gravy..."--DIRGE MAGAZINE
"Skullcrack City is one hell of a paranoia crazy train. I read the thing in one sitting. 5 out of 5 stars!"--KAFKA REVIEW
"With its sustained paranoia and freakishly malevolent entities of mass control, Skullcrack City recalls the work of Philip K. Dick. Additionally, the novel is given a contemporary punk-ish wash that brings to mind The Matrix via Warren Ellis with some Chuck Palahniuk-styling. But really, Johnson's voice and mission are entirely his own...So yes: there are drug fugues, cyberpunk-Frankensteinian creatures, capitalist monster hive-mind villains...but above all, sharp and hilarious prose and an overarching love of humanity. An off-the-beaten-track thrill ride packed with humor, intelligence and a hard-won compassion."--POP CULTURE DESTRUCTION
"There are no words for this behemoth. When you think you understand it, you discover that you've got no idea. [T]his is a book without boundaries. It isn't bizarro or crime or science fiction but it is all of those things and more, something you've never experienced before. Something you need."--SPINETINGLER MAGAZINE
"Where Skullcrack City absolutely excelerates (my word) past most everything else on the shelf, it's the pairing of two things that rarely appear between the same covers: a headlong, nearly frenetic narrative velocity and language so precise you want to stop just to be jealous, phrasing so sharp you're pretty sure it's going to Bunuel your eyeballs, let the jelly out."--STEPHEN GRAHAM JONES, author of The Least of My Scars
"This book is goddamn awesome. Reminded me of a much crazier Gun, With Occasional Music by Jonathan Lethem."--SPLATTERPUNKZINE
"Jeremy Robert Johnson is dancing to a way different drummer. He loves language, he loves the edge, and he loves us people. This is entertainment...and literature."--JACK KETCHUM, author of Off Season, The Girl Next Door, and The Woman (w/Lucky McKee)
"What makes JRJ's work stand out from his contemporaries' is the strange sense of empathy--in that regard he is not unlike David Foster Wallace's wicked and perhaps deranged younger brother. Sometimes the horror is so understated that it's deadly. JRJ has the ability to balance sheer humanity with sheer grotesquerie."--21C MAGAZINE
"The guy's a genius. Reminds me of William Gibson--the dark interest in altered states of consciousness, the unrelentingly furious forward movement, and the same kind of unlimited imagination."--BEN LOORY, author of Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day
"Johnson weaves vivid and fascinatingly grotesque tales."--BOOKGASM
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The novel centers on Doyle, a banker on a mission to bring down the banks from the inside. Fueled by the latest wonder drug Hex, a drug that makes its users see through time and space and gives them huge boners, he dives deep into the dark worlds of extreme body modification and corporate banking to uncover a plot to elevate a few to godhood by wiping out the rest of humanity.
This is really brilliant work, canonical Bizarro, and arguably should be part of the Cyberpunk canon as well. It deserves five stars for that.
I had to knock off a star for Dara, Doyle's sidekick, who frankly strikes me as a collection of tropes. I know JRJ can write women better than this, as he did in his short story States of Glass, so Dara is a bit of a disappointment.
One could say that "Skullcrack City" is an outgrowth of "The League of Zeroes," the opening short story in JRJ's first short story collection, "Angel Dust Apocalypse." But while the body modification elements of "The League of Zeroes" factor into "Skullcrack City" (it's not a novel for the squeamish), the novel is so much bigger. "The League of Zeroes" is actually the origin story for Buddy the Brain, a minor character in the novel—the two doctors from the novel appear in a limited fashion in the short story.
JRJ's writing style shifts fluidly in "Skullcrack City" as the protagonist, S.P. Doyle, changes. The Doyle we meet in the Prologue struck me as sinister. He hardly seemed like the guy we were supposed to be rooting for. But then the story proper starts and we meet the Hex-addicted Doyle. The guy is a total mess, spiraling out of control with paranoid fantasies, and it shows up in the narrative. You're not sure what's real and what's hallucination as one sentence runs head on into the next. And just when you think he can't go any further, he crashes as his paranoid fears are confirmed. But we're only a third of the way through the book.
In the middle third, the Hex is purged from his system, but Doyle struggles like a newly hatched chick as his body returns to normal and he awkwardly tries to grow into the would-be hero role. The narrative slows down to a manageable pace with periods of introspection, letting the reader catch their breath. But it's also punctuated by episodes of violence to prevent reader complacency and prod Doyle out of episodes of navel gazing.
In the final third, Doyle is forced to adapt or die. His struggle to survive forces him to shed the awkward persona and stand for something. As certainty of purpose kicks in, a calm settles over Doyle. There's a sense of purpose now. As the world teeters on the edge of insanity and terrible monstrosities, it is Doyle who's now the rational one. We recognize the guy from the Prologue as the story has come full circle.
While this is standalone novel that eliminates any chance of sequels, I'd still like to make a request for more JRJ novels. Please.