Also By This Author
Spanbauer has inserted his character, the Shy Hunter, into the mythology of the real Lower East Side of Manhattan. Surely many will want to follow his steps after reading In the City of Shy Hunters." Thomas McGonigle, The Washington Post
In the City of Shy Hunters
978-0-8021-3898-9 • $14.00 • Paperback • June 2002
From the author of the cult classic The Man Who Fell in Love with the Moon comes a love story and coming-of-age novel set in the gritty underworld of Manhattan's East Village.
For ten years, critics and readers have been eagerly anticipating the next novel from Tom Spanbauer, one of the most brilliant, inventive writers in America today. In the City of Shy Hunters is Spanbauer's most ambitious work to date. Set against the stark urban landscapes of Manhattan in the 1980s, the novel offers a vivid portrait of New York's fascinating demimonde of junkies and drag queens on the verge of its collapse, just as AIDS is starting to decimate the city's gay population.
In the City of Shy Hunters opens in 1983, when William Parker, Spanbauer's most memorable and winning character yet, moves from Jackson Hole to Manhattan, desperate to escape the provincialism of the small western towns in which he has spent his entire life. Impotent, afflicted with a stutter, and struggling with his sexuality, Will is shy and insecure. In New York he finds himself surrounded for the first time by people who understand and celebrate his quirks and flaws. As he slowly learns to accept himself, he becomes wrapped up in one of the most unforgettable romances in recent literature, a love affair with a volatile, six-foot-five African-American drag queen and performance artist named Rose.
But even as he grows close to Rose and the others, Will must watch as they are taken from him as AIDS grows from a rumor into a full-scale epidemic. Meanwhile, tension is also mounting between the police and the squatters in his local parkuntil a vicious riot breaks out, providing Will with an opportunity for a heroic, transcendent act that will leave readers shaken, fulfilled, and changed.