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Bone Music [Hardcover]

Alan Rodgers

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Book Description

December 1995
A little over sixty years ago, Robert Johnson died of poison in a little town up off the bluff in Arkansas.

In an hour, a little girl named Lisa will die of cancer.

Such different deaths — but linked, horribly and inevitably, by the crime Robert Johnson committed in the hour that he died.

That Crime was Judgment Day: Robert Johnson sang Judgment Day, the song to end the world, as he lay dying in that shack up off the Mississippi River bluff — and nothing anywhere in the world has been right since.

Because the Kings of Hoodoo died to save the world from Robert Johnson’s folly, and when they died the secret order that underlay our lives died with them.

Those Kings ruled the hearts and minds of everyone along the Mississippi lowlands — all the way north to Chicago. They didn’t rule so you could see, but they ruled all the same, guiding each of us from deep inside. (You and I know these Hoodoo wizards as great Blues singers, dead and buried. But they were not dead — only hidden from the world.)

Without the Wizard Kings to guide us, the land and all the world have gone astray — and the day’s at hand when even this new decrepit order will leak away, to leave us in a world of chaos and destruction.


There was a notion, long ago, that the Great American Novel would be a book that defined us as a people — a Nibelungenlied for America; an Odyssey for Main Street. Bone Music reaches out to embrace America exactly that way: down inside the apocalyptic is an author trying to name his people by their secret name.

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 302 pages
  • Publisher: Longmeadow Pr (December 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0681100869
  • ISBN-13: 978-0681100862
  • Product Dimensions: 23.6 x 15.7 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 635 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,222,526 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Startling originality, a strong and rhythmic narrative voice, compelling characters and delightfully quirky metaphysics make this a noteworthy hardcover debut for Rodgers, author of New Life for the Dead and other paperback horror novels. In this apocalyptic tale rich in the mythos of the African-inspired religion of Santeria, the singing at his death by blues musician Robert Johnson of the legendary, forbidden song Judgment Day cracks the Eye of the World, allowing the forces of evil entree to the earth. Assorted blues singers, including Leadbelly, Ma Rainey, and even Elvis; mythic figures such as John Henry and Saint Peter; more mundane heroes and heroines such as musician Dan Alvarez and Lisa Henderson, a young girl who dies and returns to life?all have pivotal roles to play in saving the world. Well-realized settings range from contemporary New York City to Missouri and Mississippi in 1938; heaven and hell both come down to earth in modern New Orleans. Through colloquial prose that's strong and perfectly pitched, Rodgers combines elements of horror (sometimes graphic), fantasy and magical realism into a unique novel that's not only an occult standout but a captivating memoir of an important slice of American culture.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.


...He captures the beauty and the horror of the old bluesmen, the terror and majesty of Heaven and Hell... -- Billie Sue Mosiman, author of Widow

...Rodgers’s Bone Music mixes suspense, horror, and magic to create a nerve-wracking and unique tale of music and terror. -- Matthew J. Costello, author of The Seventh Guest

...blends the hellish and horrific in perfect harmony. ...terror-filled trek across an entirely original yet hauntingly historic American dreamscape... -- Joseph A. Citro, author of Deus-X

Alan Rodgers . . . uses simple and beautiful words to tell this complex and horrific story. Really weird! Don’t die until you’ve read Bone Music. -- Brian Lumley, author of Necroscope

The highest praise one writer can give another is to say ‘I wish I’d written that book...’ -- George Alec Effinger, author of When Gravity Fails --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wild modern fantasy/horror with a blues soundtrack Oct. 20 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Well, I first read this book about 5 years ago, when I came across it in the bookstore I managed. I was intrigued, and it was on sale, so I figured what the heck. It is, by far, one of my most favourite books, as it blends a modern fantasy borrowing heavily from catholocism, voodoo, santeria, and incorporates the mystic legends behind the Delta Blues. It's the story of Robert Johnson (real life blues legend) who, with his dying breath, endangers all of the world by breaking the Eye of the World. As the story progresses, Robert and several others band together to try to save the world from becoming Hell. Add to it a bunch of musical legends, including Elvis, and you've got a great book.
4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The VooDoo will grab you and won't let go! Feb. 1 2001
By Kevin Steller - Published on Amazon.com
I picked up this booked based on the cover, as crazy as that sounds. While I do not know much about blues music and the mytique that surrounds New Orleans and Memphis, I was totally immersed in this amazing tale. You will find yourself reading it cover to cover before you realize it. Enjoy!

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