Slow Death ($12.99 paperback original; May 1996; 245 pp.; 1- 85242-519-9). A dreary, noisy novel that recounts with visceral overenthusiasm the adventures of a gang of British skinheads in conflict with a sex-starved woman doctor, a London ``art star,'' and one another, as they explore the vicissitudes of ``Art and Resistance'' in a foulmouthed frontal assault on the avant-garde art scene. Its contempt for bourgeois values produces some agreeable inventions (``Neoism,'' ``the Semiotic Liberation Front,'' and ``the Journal of Immaterial Art'' constitute decent throwaway gags at least), but its blood- and sperm-soaked narrative and its characters' continual entreaties for oral sex are muted, though scarcely redeemed, by what might in another context be called elegant variation (``liquid genetics,'' indeed). This is the kind of book that gives mindless violence and sexual degradation a bad name.
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