HELLTOWN by Farrell Kaye

HELLTOWN

The Adventures of the Midnight Man
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A war hero makes his way to Hollywood, where his attempts to become a star are derailed by a world of sex and perversion.

Former spy Lucky Jordan is a threat to the post-World War II Hollywood establishment. After nearly finishing off Hitler and winning acclaim for his heroic exploits, the Jewish Jordan heads to California to seek his fortune. Upon his arrival, however, he’s pigeonholed as a stuntman, as all of Hollywood’s power players are both jealous and fearful of his leading-man looks, popularity and physical prowess. Just as it seems Lucky’s about to catch his first break, scandal erupts when he’s photographed in a compromising position with several underage girls. Disgraced, he fades away from the movie scene and uses his unique combination of talents for the benefit of Madame Mona, pleasure-provider extraordinaire. As a bodyguard and gigolo, Lucky exacts revenge on the men who set him up by sexually pleasing their wives. His life of sexual addiction is ultimately unsatisfying, however, as Lucky gets a taste for something greater when he dons the costume of the Midnight Man–the very role he was to play before his downfall–and saves the day by thwarting a group of terrorists determined to blow up a movie premiere. Soon after, he finds himself mixed up with the outcast visionaries of Helltown, an underground movement bent on combating Hollywood’s power players by exposing the government’s secret plot to use movies as propaganda to thin out the population and pursue its own economic interests. Mixed in with the graphic sexual descriptions, Kaye sprinkles plenty of expository B-movie dialogue and some gag-inducing stream-of-consciousness poetry. And yet, somewhere beyond these faults lies a sometimes thrilling homage to pulp magazines and golden-age comic books.

Definitely not for the kids, but Helltown’s not a bad place to visit for the depraved seeking redemption.

Pub Date: March 27th, 2006
ISBN: 0-595-38146-4
Program: Kirkus Indie
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