Award-winning film composer Larson (The Dewey Decimal System, 2011) returns with another episode in the life of a man dubbed “Dewey Decimal.”
This time the amnesiac hero (he’s a veteran and a bagman, too) has to deal with the fallout from killing dirty District Attorney Daniel Rosenblatt, his old employer. Have no doubt, Dewey is a seriously weird dude, obsessed with Purell, the systematic organization of the books back at the crib (The New York Public Library, where he resides), nursing the limp that came from having his kneecap blown off, and generally trying to survive in a world that’s been unraveled from manifold disasters. “Lest you’ve already diagnosed me as a hopeless psychopath, irredeemable, I do have a Code,” Dewey protests. “Which sets me apart from the bulk of the animals in this town and elsewhere.” Back at his old boss’ office six weeks later (Dewey broke in looking for evidence), he runs across a wealth of blackmail material that brings him into the orbit of two disparate groups vying for position: on the one hand, boss Kwon-Man Seok and the town’s Korean community (lucky Dewey, who believes he was the subject of invasive government experiments, speaks Korean) and on the other, the Cyna-corps stormtroopers, a corporation that has taken vertical integration all the way from janitorial services to military-murderers-for-hire. As is the case with Charlie Huston’s vampire books, the plot is secondary to the whiplash prose, teeth-gnashing dialogue and post-civilization concepts that make a crazy (amateur) librarian in a pitch-black world a hell of a lot of fun for a few hours.
A good time for fans of the likes of Charlie Huston and Charles Stross.