SHAKE HIM TILL HE RATTLES North Beach, San Francisco: It is the early 1960's and the beat scene is changing. The Narco Squad are coming down heavy. One particular narc, Lieutenant Carver, really has it in for Lee Cabiness. All Cabiness wants to do is jam on his sax, score some weed and hang with the action. He had a thing going with Jean but that's cooled off, and now she's going with that flashy pimp, Randozza. One night Cabiness's friend Furg introduces him to Clair Hubler, a slumming rich girl who wants to hire them for a private party. She's got an anti-guy vibe but you never know. But all Furg wants to do is score some junk to find out what all the excitement's about. Naturally he thinks of Sullivan, the local junkie playwright. But Sullivan has a problem Carver is using him to set up his friends. One summer in North Beach, they all collide. That's when things get crazy, real crazy. IT'S COLD OUT THERE JD Bing is out from San Quentin, just trying to get by selling encyclopedias but he's not very good at it. In fact, he's getting desperate. Kristie has just lost her airline job and is holding herself together so tight she's beginning to lose touch with reality. Grove is a quiet young man who gets by selling clever little cartoons to the papers, trying to work up his nerve to ask out Kristie. When Bing comes around their apartment building in a last ditch attempt to sell, their lives are forever changed. Because Bing has entered a world of backstabbing winos, lonely check-kiting old men, cocktail waitressing divorcees, bullying counterfeiters, impotent ex-generals and crazy street people. It's a California underground--life on the fringes. And as Bing soon finds out, he was safer in prison.
Used availability for Malcolm Braly's Shake Him Till He Rattles / It's Cold Out There
February 2006 : USA Paperback