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Already Dead: A California Gothic
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Already Dead: A California Gothic Paperback - 1998

by Denis Johnson

Nelson Fairchild has a thriving marijuana business in California's lush redwood country. But he may lose land, cash, and crop in a divorce settlement. Needing quick cash, Nelson agreed to smuggle $90,000 worth of cocaine through customs for drug dealer Harry Lally. But Nelson chickened out and flushed the powder. Now, Lally wants him dead. This is award-winning writer Denis Johnson's biggest and most complex novel yet.


From the publisher

A contemporary noir, Already Dead is the tangled story of Nelson Fairchild Jr., disenfranchised scion to a northern California land fortune. A relentless failure, Nelson has botched nearly every scheme he's attempted to pull off. Now his future lies in a potentially profitable marijuana patch hidden in the lush old-growth redwoods on the family land.

Nelson has some serious problems. His marriage has fallen apart, and he may lose his land, cash and crop in the divorce. What's more, in need of some quick cash, he had foolishly agreed to smuggle $90,000 worth of cocaine through customs for Harry Lally, a major player in a drug syndicate. Chickening out just before bringing the drugs through, he flushed the powder. Now Lally wants him dead, and two goons are hot on his trail. Desperate, terrified and alone, for Nelson, there may be only one way out.

This is Denis Johnson's biggest and most complex book to date, and it perfectly showcases his signature themes of fate, redemption and the unraveling of the fabric of today's society. Already Dead, with its masterful narrative of overlapping and entwined stories, will further fuel the acclaim that surrounds one of today's most fascinating writers.

First line

"Van Ness felt a gladness and wonder as he drove past the small isolated towns along U.S. 101 in Northern California, a certain interest, a yearning, because he sensed they were places a person could disappear into."

From the rear cover

A contemporary noir, Already Dead is the tangled story of Nelson Fairchild Jr., disenfranchised scion to a northern California land fortune. A relentless failure, Nelson has botched nearly every scheme he's attempted to pull off. Now his future lies in a potentially profitable marijuana patch hidden in the lush old-growth redwoods on the family land.

Nelson has some serious problems. His marriage has fallen apart, and he may lose his land, cash and crop in the divorce. What's more, in need of some quick cash, he had foolishly agreed to smuggle $90,000 worth of cocaine through customs for Harry Lally, a major player in a drug syndicate. Chickening out just before bringing the drugs through, he flushed the powder. Now Lally wants him dead, and two goons are hot on his trail. Desperate, terrified and alone, for Nelson, there may be only one way out.

This is Denis Johnson's biggest and most complex book to date, and it perfectly showcases his signature themes of fate, redemption and the unraveling of the fabric of today's society. Already Dead, with its masterful narrative of overlapping and entwined stories, will further fuel the acclaim that surrounds one of today's most fascinating writers.

Details

  • Title Already Dead: A California Gothic
  • Author Denis Johnson
  • Binding Paperback
  • Edition 1st, First Editi
  • Pages 448
  • Volumes 1
  • Language ENG
  • Publisher Harper Perennial, New York
  • Date 1998-05-19
  • ISBN 9780060929091 / 006092909X
  • Weight 0.73 lbs (0.33 kg)
  • Dimensions 8.02 x 5.44 x 1.08 in (20.37 x 13.82 x 2.74 cm)
  • Themes
    • Cultural Region: Western U.S.
    • Cultural Region: West Coast
    • Geographic Orientation: California
  • Library of Congress subjects Adventure fiction, Drug traffic
  • Dewey Decimal Code FIC

Media reviews

Citations

  • New York Times, 07/05/1998, Page 20
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Already Dead: A California Gothic
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by Johnson, Denis

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Already Dead : A California Gothic

by Johnson, Denis

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