Novel excerpt from Feverglades.
"The longer he lingered in The Brass Tyrant, the less transfixed he was by the women and the more vested he became in verifying the allure of the old liars, in gaining their approval and so inheriting their secrets. They each possessed the whittled oblique face of a church fresco icon, a chalk-white bust like a Hans Holbein cameo clamped in a locket. Yet assembled together, they resembled an Early Flemish panel-portrait executed by the Brothers van Eyk, the Ghent Altarpiece of Time-eaten Gremlins. Their rickety pisshead clan behaved in such a way that Briggs was often privately reminded of the Muppets in the mezzanine, as if Statler and Waldorf had emerged with raspy scorn from the television set to crack wise about the state of his life. He didn’t need anyone to explain to him that these men were gangsters, the fathers of criminal progeny."
"And also, there was the problem of the fallen books, a quandary to which she gave considerable thought. Although her apartment was lined with books — specifically those once belonging to her mother — these held much in the way of sentimental value and were not to be used in the sport of bug squelching. She began to purchase throwaway softcovers: cheap thrillers, Harlequin romances, hackneyed best sellers with wonderfully thick spines and filled with pages of useless chatter. These she stacked on their own separate shelf and, when one had served its lethal purpose, swept out the fire escape it went. "