Dan Darling, author of contemporary fantasy, detective novel, Archaeopteryx will be visiting various locations in New Mexico this May to discuss his debut novel, and sign copies of his book.
University of NM: May 10th
Bookworks: May 15th
Coas (Las Cruces): May 19th
Collected Works (Santa Fe): TBC
John Stick, zoo keeperand giant, just wants to sit alone in a dark room with his pet tarantula. However, when ten thousand birds fall dead from the New Mexican sky, the woman he loves, an ornithologist with severe facial deformity, begs him to decipher the cause. He grudgingly agrees, a decision that plunges him into a tangle of weirdness as old as the American Southwest.
Stick’s investigation reveals that the birds’ mass death is an offshoot of a much larger conflict. On one side, the Good Friends, an underground railroad for undocumented immigrants, wants Stick to oust the man they believe responsible for killing the birds and persecuting immigrants. This same man leads The Minutemen Militia, which covets Stick’s expertise in handling their genetically mutated immigrant-tracking monsters. Meanwhile, a beautiful animal theologian tries to seduce Stick into believing his existence is key to balancing an off-kilter universe. Shady characters whisper of chupacabras loose in the desert. The exsanguinated corpses of strange beasts begin to turn up, some of them Stick’s close pals. At the center of it all lurks an enigmatic antagonist who, so they say, has harnessed the power of God in an ancient hot springs and is using it to herald doomsday.
Stick’s journey upends his stable life, shakes apart his fragile relationships, and sets him on a collision course with his family’s secret ancestry. Ultimately, as chupacabra-like monsters, Minutemen, and Good Friends head toward a final showdown, Stick must make a hard choice about his own identity and values.
About Dan Darling
Dan Darling is a native of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Before becoming a writer, he was a comet, rocketing around the world in long, haphazard, parabolas. While traveling through twenty countries and many states, Dan made a living as a circus performer, bartender, café manager, IRS agent, graphic designer, and magician. In his prime, he spoke Swedish, Spanish, and Mandarin and has studied half a dozen other languages. Dan received his BA in English from the College of Wooster and his Master of Fine Arts at the University of New Mexico.
Gravity having reined him in, Dan settled in Minnesota, where he labors over novels that fuse the language of noire detective fiction with the imagination of magical realism. His greatest influences are Haruki Murakami, Salman Rushdie, and Raymond Chandler. Besides working on novels, he teaches writing and literature at Normandale Community College and is an avid bowler. He lives in the Twin Cities with his wife and daughter.
Archaeopteryx is the first novel of a trilogy about Albuquerque. The next novel, The Twelve Labors of the Chupacabra Hunter, will emerge in the near future.
For more news about Dan, including information on public readings, interviews, and more, visit www.dandarling.net.