Wednesday, December 12, 2007

"TEQUILA'S SUNRISE" by Brian Keene

At only fifty-eight pages, Brian Keene's Tequila's Sunrise is not a novella, and barely a novellette. It is exactly what Keene calls it in the book's afterword: Tequila's Sunrise is a fable. I'll get to all that, but first I'd like to talk about the physicality of the book itself.

Bloodletting Press proves once again that they're one of the Good Guys. The book screams quality all the way from the 'keen' numbering scheme to the cover-matching marker ribbon. Beyond that, Alex McVey's killer cover and mood-inducing interior illustrations put a definitive collector's item stamp on the piece.

As to the story, if you haven't read any of Brian's other works, I won't say that you won't 'get' Tequila's Sunrise, but possessing at least a cursory knowledge of Keene's overall mythos will make this book much, much more enjoyable. Telling the tale of an Aztec boy's journey up a mountain, the story turns on its ear about midway through and gives you a healthy gulp of knowledge pertaining to how all of Keene's works interact.

In a delightfully insightful afterword, Brian writes of how he was inspired by Jack Ketchum and a bottle of Tequila to tell this tale. He talks about falling in love with fables again, and deciding to tell one of his own.

Like I said, this is a collector's piece. I believe that it's sold out, so if you want one you'll be buying it on ebay. I'm lucky enough to own number 457, signed by both Keene and McVey, and I know I'll treasure it for some time to come.

Rated 4 out of 5

(Originally reviewed in "The Daily Cave" on November 20th, 2007)

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