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The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death | [Charlie Huston]

The Mystic Arts of Erasing All Signs of Death

Webster Fillmore Goodhue has found temporary work as one of the mop-up crew for the Los Angeles County crime division. In other words, he cleans up grisly crime scenes for the cops. When the daughter of a recent Malibu suicide victim asks for his help cleaning up after her brother has gotten into a little trouble, every cell in Web's brain is telling him to turn her down. But she's very attractive, and before he knows it, he's well on his way to getting his face kicked in.
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Publisher's Summary

Webster Fillmore Goodhue has found temporary work as one of the mop-up crew for the Los Angeles County crime division. In other words, he cleans up grisly crime scenes for the cops. When the daughter of a recent Malibu suicide victim asks for his help cleaning up after her brother has gotten into a little trouble, every cell in Web's brain is telling him to turn her down. But she's very attractive, and before he knows it, he's well on his way to getting his face kicked in, facing down some gun-toting LA cowboys, and hanging on for dear life. And that's only the beginning.

©2009 Charles Huston; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"One of his generation's finest and hippest talents..." (Publishers Weekly)
"[ runaway freight that feels like a combination of William Burroughs and James Ellroy....Fiercely original...." (Stephen King)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (164 )
5 star
 (42)
4 star
 (58)
3 star
 (35)
2 star
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1 star
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Overall
3.5 (42 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
3.9 (41 )
5 star
 (15)
4 star
 (15)
3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Alan Tucson, AZ, United States 01-19-09
    Alan Tucson, AZ, United States 01-19-09 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    63
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    287
    9
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    Overall
    "Funny!"

    Do get this book if you want a modern, well-written, funny and insightful book about a man dealing with a terrible trauma. I've not finished this yet, but have already laughed out loud more than once. I am enjoying it!

    Don't get this book if words like a**h***, m*****f*****, etc. will bother you, as this book is full of such language. The use of the language is part of the books "charm" for me, as the characters are from the generation who are so used to such language that the meaning is lessened.

    Me? I recommend this book!!

    13 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bill M. Hatchel SF USA 04-23-09
    Bill M. Hatchel SF USA 04-23-09

    Techo Gecko

    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    1
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    Overall
    "Slow start reflects Webster's mood..."

    A friend recommended this book. About 1/3 of the way in, I was tempted to say "goodbye a**h***" (the main character acknowledges that he is one) and move on. But I hung in there, and boy am I glad I did! Before the mid-point, things really started to pick up and pieces began to fall into place so you could better understand characters' motivations and see the "big picture". Web's acerbic wit makes an often depressing story, downright funny at times, and much more palatable. Now I'm looking forward to checking out Huston's other books and hoping they are as good as this one...

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark United States 03-04-09
    Mark United States 03-04-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    32
    15
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    "Sarcastic, acidic, profane, loved it!"

    I loved this book and have recommended it to friends. The main character's sarcastic, acidic dialogue is a hoot! As almost every other character tells him he's a as***le. I originally didn't like the narrator, but he grew on me. I didn't care for his main character reading nearly as much as the secondary characters. I thought he did great at the secondary parts.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    rob 05-27-10
    rob 05-27-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    109
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    204
    55
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    7
    6
    Overall
    "Great characters"

    Huston has created a great cast of characters but I found the story to be somewhat lacking. It was ok but could have been so much better with the interesting characters.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Giovanni Fredericksburg, VA, USA 12-30-09
    Giovanni Fredericksburg, VA, USA 12-30-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    19
    4
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    0
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    Overall
    "Great Book"

    I really enjoyed this booked. It was very entertaining and funny. Charlie Huston does a great job of reviling the main character's past while keeping the plot moving. I would definitely recommended.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E. Anderson Los Anchorage, AK 04-03-09
    E. Anderson Los Anchorage, AK 04-03-09 Member Since 2002

    Panic Blog

    HELPFUL VOTES
    47
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    327
    20
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
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    Overall
    "The Best Book I've Heard All Year"

    This is both a fun and a thought provoking book. The writing is crisp but kudos to the reader who makes the dialogue come alive.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Conley Geneseo, IL 03-25-09
    R. Conley Geneseo, IL 03-25-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
    ratings
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    103
    16
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    Overall
    "I don't know about John Huston"

    or his two other novels. DUH!!!
    Hard to compare this to his others because they're all great. CHARLIE Huston has no bad books. The narrator is one of the best, but I will admit the story starts kind of slow and evolves in fits and starts, but I loved it. His best books aren't on Audible, go get them all and enjoy.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Winston Salem, NC, United States 10-02-10
    William Winston Salem, NC, United States 10-02-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    141
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    573
    82
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    5
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    Overall
    "Hang in there"

    Don't be tempted to give up on this book 1/3 of the way in. The characters are quirky and interesting, and eventually there is a plot, though it gets a bit heavy-handed at the end. If you are offended by foul language, then be forewarned that this book is a tsunami of obscenities.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas Randolph, VT, USA 03-05-09
    Thomas Randolph, VT, USA 03-05-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    2
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    0
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    Overall
    "New tradition hard boiled stories"

    I liked this story well enough to pass it on to some people who were living the tale. Keep up the edgy commentary on life,
    ( I like his Vamyers too)

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carolyn Glen Mills, PA, USA 04-05-09
    Carolyn Glen Mills, PA, USA 04-05-09 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
    ratings
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    194
    13
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    1
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    Overall
    "Not for Me"

    I don't mind reading gore, but not at the expense of story. This book reminded me of Madonna, going for shock value without substance. The plot had so many holes, the story required leaps of faith I was unwilling to make. Try Beat the Reaper, a much better story in a similar genre.

    6 of 10 people found this review helpful
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