Review, Uncategorized

3. BLACK GUM By J David Osborne

First of all, let me just say the cover of this book is absolutely fucking sexy. It doesn’t just look good, it also feels good. When I first got the book, I kept touching it because it’s so soft and the print is prominent.

Anyway, book molestation aside, this is a pretty solid one. J David Osborne nails it once again, with his gritty, desiccated style, telling a story so engaging I finished it in two sittings (and that’s saying a lot as it takes me months to get through a book usually.)

Not to give away too much, this is about a man having the worst possible kind of rebound. A good man doing bad things in an act of desperation, ending up meeting the most complex, most interesting, and scariest kinds of people. It’s weird, sad, funny, and different. Imagine Mike Patton, but a book.

What I admire about it is that it respects the readers’ intelligence. There’s no tedious character introduction or in-depth description of scenes and atmosphere, because everything is already clearly established in the author’s head –it’s all raw and real, you’re right there where everything’s going on without the author boring you with minor, easily deducible details.

The only reason I’m giving it a 4.5 and not five stars is because the ending kind of fell flat. I was expecting some kind of climax but it felt so lukewarm that if there was one, I clearly missed it. Rounding it up to 5 on Goodreads though because 1) Holy shit, Danny Ames! and 2) This bit made me genuinely chuckle:

“What’s these teardrops mean?”
“Means I’m super sad.” –p.27

4.5/5

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