New fantasy from the author of The Dragon Waiting (1983) and the science-fictional Growing Up Weightless (1993), of the subgenre known as elfpunk: urban fantasy in which Elfland has somehow intruded itself into the modern world, with astonishing and often bizarre consequences. When Elfland connected to the world’s major cities, Miami was nuked, but elsewhere an uneasy accommodation was reached; in the borderlands known as Shadow, elves are mortal, and both technology and magic work erratically. Danny Holman, an emergency medical technician heading for Chicago, witnesses a gangland-style shooting, and stops to save the life of an injured woman. Impressed by his competence, the powerful and mysteriously well-connected businessman/entrepreneur Mr. Patrise offers him a job, renaming him (since Danny's birthday is on Halloween) Doc Hallownight. Mr. Patrise employs humans (like Hallow, and the magic-touched Stagger Lee) as well as elves such as Cloudhunter. Learning quickly, Hallow plunges into a dazzling swirl of beautiful women, curses, magic, elf cops, Vampires addicted to elf blood, ethereal entertainment, treachery, and gangland wars. Amid a nightmarish struggle against the foully alluring, megalomaniac elf, Whisper-Who-Dares, Hallow increasingly becomes the focus of weird plots. But can he survive Whisper's assassination attempts long enough to affect the course of events?
Rasping, succinct, tantalizing, and psychologically complex, as well as powerfully visual, this superb novel—heads up out there!—would make an equally magnificent movie.