“Niko’s race through Hell is one of the greatest supernatural adventure stories of recent memory. . . . A damned good story” (Cory Doctorow).
Decades ago, a young rock and blues guitarist and junkie named Niko signed in blood on the dotted line and in return became the stuff of music legend. But when the love of his damned life grows mortally and mysteriously ill, he realizes he has lost more than he bargained for—and that was not part of the deal. So Niko sets out on a harrowing journey from the streets of Los Angeles through the downtown subway tunnels and across the red-lit plain of the most vividly realized hell since Dante to play the gig of his mortgaged life and win back the purloined soul of his lost love.
Mortality Bridge remixes Orpheus, Dante, Faust, the Crossroads legend, and more in a beautiful, brutal, and surprisingly funny quest across a Hieronymus Bosch landscape of myth, music, and mayhem, and across an inner terrain of addiction, damnation, and redemption. Winner of the 2011 Emperor Norton Award for best novel by a San Francisco Bay Area writer.
Dark, grotesque, and eerie, Boyett's behemoth reimagining of Orpheus' descent into the Underworld blends Faust and Dante with Greek myth. Aged rockstar Niko once made a deal with the devil in exchange for fame and fortune, but when the devil takes his lady-love's life, Niko feels cheated. He descends through the streets of modern Los Angeles, its subterranean byways, and the Cerberus-guarded gates into the depths of a monstrous Hell to find the demon at its center and try to win Jenna back. All the while, Niko is tempted by his old addictions, haunted by memories of Jenna and his beloved brother, and tortured by the shades of those he once knew. Through unusual turns of phrase, violent and bloody imagery, heartrending introspection, and mythic tone, Boyett (Elegy Beach) explores themes of betrayal, redemption, and personal sacrifice in a tortured landscape of bedlam and pandemonium.