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Robert Howington:

PO Box 25760
Los Angeles CA, 76147

21 pp., $2.00

Howington writes like Mickey Spillane on acid, with short short stories that carry all the black and white film noir he can muster. This short collection was a fun read--car jackings, bowel movements revenged by vicious kids in Texas, wet dreams of Madonna, bad ass wannabes, killers passing the time in bars, dog murderers, rapes, uzis, and other tales so weird I'm glad Howington lives 1000 miles away from Chicago. These stories remind me of early Bukowski--fun and playful and so mean they make the kids in horror flicks look innocent.--Oberc

Nine short stories, most under 1,000 words. His themes are influenced by the crime genre, a combination of Todd Moore and Charles Bukowski. In "Old-Fashion Grilled Pound Cake," a man is shot to death outside a bar and Howington's protagonist offers the killer the last of his beer. A woman witnesses murder in "The Long Cool Drag"; she calmly remarks how it reminds her of "Miami Vice." There are guns everywhere, especially in Texas--maybe too many. I read along, patiently waiting for the author to change gears, take me somewhere else. But he keeps on, driving home one violent scene after another. Robert W. Howington knows how to write--I just wish he'd write about something more than murder in American streets.--Kurt Nimmo

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This review originally appeared in TapRoot Reviews #5,
Copyright Burning Press 1994, 1996.

Contact the editor, luigi-bob drake, at Burning Press