Free Radicals

Zeke Teflon. See Sharp (, $12.95 trade paper (300p) ISBN 978-1-937276-05-8

Pseudonymous nonfiction author (The Complete Manual of Pirate Radio) and musician Teflon delivers an action-filled fiction debut filled with bizarre ideas, social commentary, and a retro vibe. Sometime in the future, musician Kel Turner is hauled off to Extrasolar Penal Colony 3, a planetwide prison where the only rules forbid rebelling or attacking the guards. Among political prisoners and cultists, he eventually meets his old friend and bandmate, Chuy, and the two of them attempt to make do with their new lot in life. Teflon doesn’t try for subtlety, leading to occasionally painful exposition dumps early on and undeveloped villains later (futuristic Nazis complaining about the “New Jew Order,” etc.), but he throws in enough drunken concerts, narrow escapes, and over-the-top characters to create a solidly entertaining, if unpolished, atmosphere. The end result is reminiscent of early Mick Farren, a goofy but entertaining story that shows promise. (May)