Tony is a handsome young boxer forced into a life of crime after suffering a vicious blow in the ring.
Seduced by the glitz and glamour of London and mentored by charismatic gang lord Don March he rises rapidly up the crime ladder until he spies an opportunity to start a semi-legit Natural Highs business.
Bankrolled by an eccentric British dandy and accompanied by a cast of starry misfits including a 3ft tall blue-haired money man, an Etonian drug mule, two dominatrix debt collectors, a dodgy lawyer and a host of demi-celebs, Tony carves out a roll for himself in a city where money creates its’ own morality.
All seems to be going well until in the shadows, a Bollywood mobster threatens to derail their plans.
Chaos ensues, of course it does – wonderful, beautiful, visceral chaos.
The deft wit of Hammett meets the vivid poetics of Chandler: Crack Apple and Pop is slick smart and razor sharp. A gritty and sometimes metafictive slice of London noir.
A city of artful dodgers, yardie gangsters, kinky aristos, cocaine dusted starlets and social thrill seekers where everyone’s hustling and everyone’s getting high.
Whether it’s law, finance, the music biz, or the boxing ring: money is king. And only the ones prepared to risk everything will survive…
GUEST POST FROM THE AUTHOR
What is Sonic Scatterscript?
A lot of people have asked me what is sonic scatterscript.
Basically, it’s a literary idea I came up with as a poet, that points to a focus on sound and rhythm. Best described with an example: “She was a wiggle and giggle chick with a slut bomb bounce.” The sentence has a very obvious rhythm. It starts out like a waltz: one two three, one two three. Then it ends on three stressed beats, rat tat tat, for percussive emphasis. Initially it feels like a hot cutie waltzing down the street, her hips swaying from side to side, and then it ends with a Cha Cha Cha. The rhythm mimics every dip of her hips, every swivel and giggle of the character. I also use assonance and consonance to tighten up the phrase, make the groove stick in your mind like a melody. Even more than diction, rhythm and melody give the line a “street” feel in tune with contemporary forms of speech like slang, rap, hip hop, punk poetry. I am as focused on the music of the language as I am on its meaning. I’ve illustrated the technique with a short story and hope you enjoy it.
The Day Trippers
She had rose – pink cushiony lips. Hot talking banana shaped hips and a smile that shamed the sun’s orange heart. He wore a classic black Fedora hat perched over slicked back pompadour hair. Waltzing down the street on happy, Fred Astaire dancing feet. Jazzed up in a honey- mouthed wool silk suit. His laugh so tender it made spring blossoms quiver.
She packed a teal satin negligee – sheer thigh -high nylons clip-on suspenders and midnight panties for their naked rendezvous. He bought a vintage bottle of Dom Pérignon, a tub of medium sized Vaseline and a chest of unanswered questions. In the lobby he took off his wedding ring carrying guilt and deception in a double- locked knapsack. There were bad stars above them sliding drunkenly across slanted skies. Glitter shit.
She whizzed in like punk sauce. Triple wham! Butt cheek slam. He glided towards her. Smooth operator.
Never mind the bollox! They had no need for small talk. A push-up pull-down mattress and in the left drawer a copy of the Gideon bible and a motel directory. In the right drawer a mini freshen-up kit. Lemon scented and a multi-purpose pack of toothpicks. His kidney shaped Crayola-coloured violet eyes red lined. Her big-brown kitten-kohl eyes zipped with fever. They both wanted it. Sonic! Hot slaughter! Electric pleasure!
Then when it was over, and they said au revoir in suburban gridlock he moseyed on home. Drank a six pack. Swing-beating to Coltrane all night long. Hiding from the day chasing hidden ants in strawberry milk. She play acting the days away until the next mouthful of magic boom boom.
A FREE SHORT STORY FROM THE AUTHOR!!
Horizontal Vertical By Saira Viola
A low swung smile on her heart shaped face . Half naked- topless in bordello -red panties . Her left leg slung at a ninety-degree angle across a black scrunched cocktail dress . Her right leg straddling the arm of an easy- fit budget sofa upholstered in an aggressive shade of convict orange. On the floor beside her an open tub of vaginal jelly three fingers of blow and a dinky gold-plated cocaine spoon. It was noon. The sun vomiting diluted rays of insipid light into the room. A slit of dust on the coffee table and a shit- strewn kitty litter box sat by the back wall . It stunk of broken promises . KikiLoveheart aka Mizz WhipKink aka Maddie Summers aka Sweet Cheeks 69. Gig artiste and professional freelancer . Eking out a piece meal existence :
Daytime nurse – afternoon phone sex operator night time glamour escort and weekend stripper . Forced to juggle four jobs just to live in a cramped foul- smelling roach -ridden walk up. She Stared ruefully at her purple jazz- berry mirrored Jimmy Choo’s. She felt like a Penthouse pin up in those heels. They elongated her calf muscles popped her pelvis and kinked her hips. Strutting the sidewalk never felt so good. Kiki blinked-yawned and slowly got up . Barefoot .Tip toeing to the refrigerator she took out a cold bottle of sparkling San Pellegrino and rolled it against her forehead .
‘Keeeeeki?’ A goopy taffy- laced little voice . It could have belonged to a third grader or a whiny half -bagged grandma but it belonged to Michael Wiesel. A squiffy- eyed Buddha -faced eight- toed high- talking sex perv. Serial fraudster bourgeois rapist and TV Judge . Presiding over his own prime time TV show. Pitting litigants in person against one another. Miserable little suburban dramas. Scripted for mass consumption. Of course it was a ratings winner and Wiesel wore his success like an electric lit billboard .His patterned argyle socks vintage Rolex silk -satin tux and two-ply cotton designer shirt screamed smug money. But his ageing blond- comb over pomaded across his jutting forehead -swollen bucket -gut and peeling-pink -skin humbled him on occasion especially at funerals country clubs and IRS meetings.
‘Keeeeeki. C’meer .I want chou to freshen up. Put on a dress or somethin’ pretty . You look like a syphilitic ghetto slut .Clean yaw self up. Dirty bitch .’ His accent pure New Yawk. Purple gums on show. He threw a couple of c notes on the floor flashing his platinum- circled pinkie .Loose -lipped pig mouth slapping her butt with another slew of insults: ‘You need a tan – lose a few pounds – I like your hair straight – classy chicks wear perfume – get bigger tits .’Twenty-Eight years old and still listening to fruitless fuck balls who reminded her that she was just a split-second vignette in THE BIG PICTURE . She switched her gaze between a mouldy slice of Kraft deli -deluxe and Wiesel’s spreading bald spot .Swirling her tongue around her index finger. Winking.
‘ Got a better idea.’
‘Hmmmm. Why don’t I text Nahhhtashhha ?And we mix it up .’ Natashaar : Twentyish . Nouveau redhead . Faux Russian accent big bazookas-shapely ass -creamy lips. Sweeter than Nutella and Kiki’s bestie . The pair of them responsible for a rash of tricks that would make even the hardest hustler blush.
‘Whaddaya have in mind?’
‘Wait and see.’
‘Do it .’
‘Okayyyyy . Make yourself more comfortable . Take off your pants.’ Kiki grabbed her phone from the dresser. Natasha would be there in a few minutes. Wiesel caught between the bastard of time and his own carnal greed. Pacing the floor like a one-eyed tiger.
‘She won’t be long . Relax .Sit down . C’mon .’She patted the seat with a fiendish glint in her eye . Then slid on thigh -scraper black velvet boots- and a black leather string bikini . Wiesel’s creeper peepers on her downy v shape mound peeping through the slit of her gusset.
Bitching to herself:
‘Ground zero of the Walmart sex trade. Punylimp dick with big dick complex. Today I’m jumping off that pyramid .’
‘Whaddaya say . Speak up ?’
‘I said you know you make me so hot for it.’
The creases on Wiesel’s face lined with dust and type 2 diabetic sweat . Everything Kiki did to make things better slam -jammed into nothing and now here she was star of her own dime -store crime story . Her mind somersaulting at freeway speed : Cancer -table sex-a black swan- yogi -tea homilies-dead- sister cancer be- yourself shaman-mantras -truck stop suicides-cancer blue-rubber covered- asses booby- trapped commitment -rib eye steak pus -filled promises-Je Je Spa Happy Ending Massage Kung Fu nuns Himalayas auto -erotic strangulation.
Squatting on a throne of debt .Kiki was tired of sleazo tricksters. Tired of renting herself out to small- souled roly poly hardballs. Tired of one bowl -easy mac frozen dinners-three-minute hustles with teenage dopers and cheapo plastic heart break. Her brain backed up with years of toxic yesterdays .Ever since her only sister had succumbed to cancer. She felt trapped in a psycho blizzard. She wanted out. Wiesel. He was the catalyst. Sprawled there. On her green linoleum five-dollar arm chair. Balancing papers on his balloon shaped stomach .Tapping his foot to an invisible beat .Kiki stiffened . The double thump of her heart jumping three seconds. She had a driving primal urge to glass him in the neck. Playing every move slowly in the dungeon of her mind . Psych out !
It wasn’t the most original way to kill someone, but it was definitely doable. It made her body tingle .She knew that Wiesel kept at least 10 grand in his grab bag. A pre -packed emergency kit stocked with doomsday end of the world shit . Wiesel carried it everywhere he went. Bragging to anyone who’d listen that he was ready for Armageddon .It was the perfect get away bag. Ideal for two huzzies on the lam . Kiki’s murder plans immering . Something gross and a little immoral was about to happen.
‘Ding dong ding ding dong.’
‘ That’ll be Natassha .’ Kiki buzzed her up. Wiesel moistening his mouth. Moving to the bed. Panting his fairy tale sex romp through Pepto bismol coughs. Natasha bouncing into view . ‘Well hellllloooo ! How ya doing ?’Rude cute in a stylized red plaid mini. Cropped shirt-white gartered knee highs a striped tie with pigtailed hair and cheap mary jane shoes . She slow -kissed Kiki cupping her face in her hands . Wiesel unbuttoning his shirt . Revealing an expanse of silver and brown gorilla chest hair and a thatch of wispy fuzz springing from the nape of
his neck. He stank of onions and tuxedoed fraud .
‘You know what I love about your type?’ tracking the curves of Kiki’s thighs .Natasha pulled away grinning.
‘Our type ?’
‘Yeah pussy princesses. ’Kiki’s eyes narrowing .
‘What ?’ Ignoring the sarcastic inflexion in her voice . Sucking his teeth .
‘You understand that sex is just a business . I don’t have to think too hard . I fuck you. Pay you. You’re: MINE.’
His mildew eyes clinging to her ass. She had to dig her nails in her palms to stop herself from puking in his lap. In a bitter sweet tone part Marilyn Monroe part Morticia Adams she whispered:
‘Let’s try something new .’
A dangerous smile hanging on her lips .Together they cuffed Wiesel to the bed. Kiki placing a blindfold on his eyes.
‘C’mon-let’s get on with it.’ He growled .
Kiki and Natasha shared a knowing wink . Natasha banging her hips in Wiesel’s face. Toying with him while Kiki got busy .
‘You think you know our type ? Think again!’
Gagging him with a pair of sheer stockings .Deaf to his protestations . The gentle curve of her mouth promising more pain. Natasha binding his ankles with uber kinky bondage tape and leather restraints . Kiki steaming:
‘It’s you and your type. You’re the limp dick asshole who’s got your greedy cheating hands all over the city .Everybody knows you’re as crooked as hell. We’re the only ones hurtin.’Kiki marched into the kitchenette. Smashed the San Pellegrino bottle against the wall and stomped back to the bedroom . Ignoring the little yelps and spittle dribbling down Wiesel’s chin. He was thrashing around like a bottom -trawled fish gasping for air . Kiki gripped the base of the bottle.Jabbing it into his neck. Slicing open his throat . Hitting both carotid arteries and his jugular. Blood rhymes splattering the sheets. A symphony of choking strawberries. Warm . Red mulch.
They racked up the balance of the coke Kiki armed with the grab bag . ‘C’mon let’s get outta here.’
A few moments of thin silence. Kiki’s voice strangely alien eaten by the shadows in the room :
‘ Ghettosluts like me . Always end up vertical not horizontal.’
© saira viola 2018
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Saira Viola is an acclaimed novelist, poet, and song lyricist. From her early poetic experimentation with language, image and sound (a technique she has dubbed sonic scatterscript) to her novelistic ventures into the dark, absurd world of contemporary crime fiction, Viola’s work pulses with iconoclastic brio that mischievously blasts the golden calves of our times.Literary Heavyweight Benjamin Zephaniah, has praised her ‘twisted beautiful imagination, ’and polymathic genius, Heathcote Williams (RIP) her ‘hypnotic explosive’, writing style. Twice Nominated for Best of The Net 2017 Pushcart Prize Nominee 2017 Rascal Magazine. Viola’s poetry collection Flowers of War debuted at the New York Poetry Festival and published by UB Press. Novels Jukebox (Fahrenheit Press) Crack Apple and Pop (Fahrenheit Press) Viola is a regular contributor to counterculture magazines Gonzo Today and International Times.
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