SHADES (1992)

Arsenal Pulp Press
ISBN: 978-0-88978-254-9

Book Review

Shades: The Whole Story of Doctor Tin (Arsenal Pulp) is the sequel to Tom Walmsley’s cult masterpiece, Doctor Tin, which appeared in 1979 to rave reviews and stern warnings.

Walmsley was quoted in the press at that time as having said “everything he had to say about sex and violence,” but clearly the times have changed and with them so has the nature of sex and violence—hence the present text, which picks up the older story fourteen years later and contains among other things at least one actual resurrection. While there is nothing revisionist about Shades, it is a more complex, intricately worked out modulation of earlier themes. For those of you who haven’t read the original Doctor Tin, the publishers have cunningly managed to insert the whole of the earlier novel into a footnote in the new one.

Very postmodern, yes, and wonderfully appropriate in this case, where the whole story is so much more than the sum of its episodes. A very hot book: you’ll either put it down because you can’t take it, or you’ll take it because you can’t put it down.

— Geist Staff, May 29, 2014