Sin Soracco, author of Edge City, lives mostly in the Mission District of San Francisco and along the outer edges of madness on the Lower Russian River in Sonoma Country, California.
Edge City, from the author of Low Bite, takes place in an every-noir-city (a thinly veiled portrait of San Francisco’s North Beach) and its newest resident is Reno, an angry fledgling just hatched out of prison. Getting out is like a weird dream, and the streets of the City are a muddle of sensations pooling around her.
First there’s the bustle—everybody busy with mysterious businesses—an amplifying racket of choices. Staggering out onto the late night streets of the City, Reno ends up at the infamous Istanbul Club: dim lights, Arabic music and the sensual Su’ad dancing. Music, booze, babes and drugs: what more could a felonious girl want?
She encounters Huntington, the poisonous charmer who lives above the Club—perverse and powerful in the way only the wealthy can be. Eddie, the underage bartender, is happy to chemically enhance every waking moment. Slowmotion, the sound light technician, huge and darkly mysterious, has connections to people and places that Reno didn’t even know exist. Slowmotion’s elegant friend, Poppy, offers mental transport to realms beyond Xanadu; in her little valise there’s everything necessary for any trip, including the hallucinogenic “Teeth of Idi Amin.”
The owner of the club, handsome gambler Sinclair, hires Reno to waitress. Grumbling, drinking, snarling and swearing, Reno bangs her way through everyone else’s complicated plans, entangling herself in a byzantine labyrinth of betrayal, revenge, general mayhem, and yes, good times.
“Brilliant…Edge City is truly an extraordinary book in every way: story, people, atmosphere, writing.”
—Hubert Selby, Jr., author of Last Exit to Brooklyn
“Sin Soracco cooks! Her writing is beyond hip—it struts and whistles down the last dark mile. Edge City, like her Low Bite, is the bad girl’s version of Mean Streets, an unbeatable double-feature for the fearless.”
—Barry Gifford, author of Wild at Heart
"Dark and sultry . . . an illuminating view of hell as a nightclub that never closes."
—New York Times
“Meandering through pools of booze and moments of tawdry sex and petty larceny, Soracco's dense, bravura narrative is a triumph of (hard-boiled) style.”
"There are a number of writers today who are using the noir genre in creative and original ways, but there are fewer who have a truly original voice. Sin Soracco’s Edge City is one of those rare originals.”
—Glenn Harper, International Noir blog
Low Bite: Sin Soracco’s prison novel about survival, dignity, friendship and insubordination. The view from inside a women’s prison isn’t a pretty one, and Morgan, the narrator, knows that as well as anyone. White, female, 26, convicted of night time breaking and entering with force, she works in the prison law library, giving legal counsel of more-or-mostly-less usefulness to other convicts. More useful is the hootch stash she keeps behind the law books.
And she has plenty of enemies--like Johnson, the lesbian-hating warden, and Alex, the “pretty little dude” lawyer who doesn’t like her free legal advice. Then there’s Rosalie and Birdeye--serious rustlers whose loyalty lasts about as long as their cigarettes hold out. And then there’s China: Latina, female, 22, holding US citizenship through marriage, convicted of conspiracy to commit murder--a dangerous woman who is safer in prison than she is on the streets. They’re all trying to get through without getting caught or going straight, but there’s just one catch--a bloodstained bank account that everybody wants, including some players on the outside.
Low Bite: an underground classic reprinted at last and the first title in the new imprint from The Green Arcade.
“Vicious, funny, cunning, ruthless, explicit...a tough original look at inside loves and larcenies.”
"Where else can you find the grittiness of girls-behind-bars mixed with intelligence, brilliant prose, and emotional ferocity? Sin Soracco sets the standard for prison writing. Hardboiled and with brains!"
--Peter Maravelis, editor San Francisco Noir 1 and 2
“Tells a gripping story concerning a group of women in a California prison: their crimes, their relationships, their hopes and dreams.”
“Sin Soracco is the original Black Lizard. Low Bite will take a chunk out of your leg if not your heart. Read it, it will devour you.”
--Barry Gifford, author Port Tropique, Founder Black Lizard Books
For a calendar of speaking events, please click here
- "marilyn is gone"
“Marilyn is gone”Gate – gate -- paragate – parasamgate –bodhi svaha!Wednesday morning I heard Marilyn Buck had joined the ancestors. I lit a candle to light the path and set out a large wine glass of clear water for sustenance along the way.
- We'll be posting here soon!
Watch this space for blog postings from Sin Soracco and Patrick Marks.
Reviews and Mentions
Low Bite as a top Novella Pick for 2011
by Jedidiah Ayres
Ransom Notes: The BN Mystery Blog
This tale of life behind bars in a women’s prison is raw and unsentimental, but few books this year gave me as much pure pleasure. A narrative thread about a scam and a murder emerges, but the real appeal here is the anecdotal structure – all this color, humor and savagery crammed into 130 pages? Yup.
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Ransom Notes: Barnes & Noble Blog
The dialogue alone drips with the effortless, affectationless authenticity of someone in the know, (Soracco does know of what she speaks), and it's a true pleasure to listen. In the interview with the former convict and inmate that is included in the re-issue of her novel, Soracco recalls conversations with editors and publishers and their questions about where the ideas for her characters came from, "These are bits and pieces of my friends. Even the villains."
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