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San Francisco Noir.

San Francisco Noir Edited by Peter Maravelis Akashic, $14.95

The latest in the indie powerhouse's noir lit series crawls along the creepy underbelly of a city usually associated with light, bright pride. While mid-century L.A. noir reflected the paranoia of the upper classes, these sleuths, perps, and victims are Bernal Heights hookers, Mission building inspectors, and Chinatown militants. Marred by the sickening, sexualized violence that also attended its Brooklyn predecessor, this anthology nevertheless features strong literary voices. Michelle Tea punches perfect holes in San Francisco as paradise but pays creepy tribute to the city's beauty: "My back door opened up to a lush backyard ... horribly overgrown and almost entirely weeds ... Getting to my front door is like rappelling down the side of a cliff ... The hill hates the houses." And in a story sure to warm sightseers' hearts, a chillingly cool and maybe queer schoolgirl amusedly swindles gay Castro tourists--"soft and unaware, with pink faces ... eyes so wide they might have been exploring the far side of the moon"--before using her body as bait for a bigger kill.
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Author:Pareles, Marissa
Publication:The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Aug 30, 2005
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