Battle Without Honor or Humanity, Vol. 1

D. Harlan Wilson. Raw Dog Screaming
(rawdogscreaming.com), $12.95 trade paper (126p) ISBN 978-1-935738-76-3
In this volume of testosterone-fueled and intentionally disorienting short fiction, Wilson (Primordial) invokes not a dialogue with the reader but a bare-knuckle fistfight. The dizzying journey through a violent capitalist nightmare is braved without aid of plot. Immediacy is prioritized over comprehension; personality is elevated above characters. As frantic and sharp-edged as an unexpected drug dream, these tales and their subjects are at once fascinating and horrifying. In the hilarious and ultraviolent “Presidency,” Wilson makes physical what is usually metaphorical in American politics, putting gun-wielding bodybuilders in charge of a bloody and broken political landscape. In the title story, he delivers a few clarifications of his intentions, with style and subtlety. Some books that feel like drugs are smooth and shocking. This one is made of the bad drugs, and it delivers a rough, crunchy high. There is no resolution, only the lingering threat that Wilson intends to do all this again. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/14/2015
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