A review of

Move Under Ground

by Nick Mamatas

Central question: What’s the difference between having no desire and having desire for nothingness?
Format: 185 pp., hardcover; Size: 8-1/2" x 5-1/2"; Publisher: Night Shade Books; Editor: Jason Williams; Price: $25.00; limited hardcover edition, $45.00 (sold out); Print run: 2,150; Book designer: Jeremy Lassen; Agent: Michele Rubin; Author’s primary source of income: Professional flamer (as in a vituperative online commentator); Representative sentence: “I never jolted awake before the animated ichor of their limbs—a foul discharge both solid and liquid at the same time—wrapped themselves around me, but Neal was always at my bedside on time to prod me awake or cackle and and attract my blurry gaze.”

It seems unlikely that anyone would attempt to create a pastiche of the styles of Jack Kerouac and H. P. Lovecraft, even less likely that it could be done successfully, and much less likely still that it should be anything beyond a really clever genre exercise. Yet this is exactly what Nick Mamatas accomplishes in his first novel, Move Under Ground. He forces Kerouac (as a character) into Lovecraft’s cosmos and makes it work.

We hope you enjoy this excerpt.

To read the full piece, please purchase a copy of the magazine from The McSweeney’s Store.

—Kevin Dole 2

Kevin Dole 2 lives in Ypsilanti, Michigan, birthplace of the striped referee shirt and Tucker Automobiles. His novel Tangerinephant should be published by After Birth Books sometime in 2005.

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