cover image The Great Lover

The Great Lover

Michael Cisco, Chômu (Ingram, dist.), $17.50 trade paper (446p) ISBN 978-1-907681-06-6

The latest phantasmagorical offering from Cisco (The Narrator) is a fusion of dark fantasy, literary fiction, and existential horror that revolves around the eponymous character of the sewerman, an undead tramp in search of capital-L Love who can enter into women's dreams. As he pines for a blind woman named Vera, he also helps a disgraced academic turned prophet to establish a "ptochocratic" cult that wants to create its own reality underground and battle a soul-sucking plague of white noise. The surreal narrative is something like a 400-page T.S. Eliot poem: otherworldly, lyrical, deeply philosophical, and supersaturated with extraordinary imagery and ideas (like the Prosthetic Libido, a golem-like device constructed to house a scientist's unwanted desire). Fans of stylish and thematically sophisticated weird fiction should seek out this mad testament to Cisco's visionary genius. (Apr.)