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Noir Lord

Heard of the drug Lingo? Oh, boy, are you missing out. It’ll get you higher than Amy Winehouse while simultaneously ramping up your verbal IQ.

As with any designer drug, there are a few problems. There’s the homicidal-rage side effect, plus you may need to deal with a female police detective addicted to speed and rough sex. Also, it’s only available in a fictional New England rust-belt metropolis called Quinsigamond, the setting for Jack O’Connell’s five underworld novels, including the Lingo-literate Box Nine. (Writer James Ellroy hailed that book as “hyper-real noir,” admiring how it “chronicles a grotesque romance about genocide, language, bibliomania, doubt, obsession, worms, epidermis, and sanctuary!”)

O’Connell makes his first-ever visit to the Valley to read from his new novel, The Resurrectionist. The author, often referred to as the “cyberpunk Dashiell Hammett,” says, “How could I not be delighted with such a tag, as Hammett was certainly an early influence? And I was a great fan of cyberpunk in its 1980s heyday – William Gibson’s Neuromancer knocked me over when I first read it.” About The Resurrectionist, O’Connell adds, “I hope the reader finds it a straight-up ripping yarn – a thriller, a suspenser, an edge-of-the-seat page-turner.”

Tue., April 22, 7 p.m., 2008


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