book cover of The Hot Jazz Trio

The Hot Jazz Trio

(1988)
A collection of stories by

 
 
Daniel Manuel
Mr. Kotzwinkle's great appeal is inextricably bound to his speed-of-light wit and brash wordplay. He's the answer in the unlikely event that you'll get a midwinter invitation demanding a B.Y.O. hot casserole and something lively to read aloud. But once the leftover dips have been refrigerated and all the guests have left, will these characters and scenarios outlast the immediate enjoyment of the moment? Like many a delectable appetizer, ''The Hot Jazz Trio'' tantalizes but doesn't add up to a full and satisfying meal on its own. -- New York Times

Publisher's Weekly
The three stories that comprise this collection are rightfully termed ''illusions,'' for Kotzwinkle is a wizard of wordplay and his creations are spellbinding achievements. Few authors can juggle fantasy, humor, stark realism and horror as Kotzwinkle does. Thanks to his magic, the reader is transported to Paris in the 1920s, to ancient Egypt and to the American West. The wonderfully diverse cast of characters includes hobos, a pharaoh, a talking silk handkerchief and Jean Cocteau. In the longest story, ''Django Reinhardt Played the Blues,'' Loli, a magician's beautiful assistant, is abducted by a lovesick Vanishing Box during a performance. In pursuit of Loli and the Box is a group of hapless jazz musicians, who scour Paris and the world of fantasy trying to solve the mystery. ''Blues on the Nile'' is a bizarre and humorous account of a dead pharaoh who discovers that his workmen forgot to build him a boat to sail into eternity. The chilling ''Boxcar Blues'' follows two circus performers who are trying to flee from Death, racing across the country with him on their trail until the inevitable showdown. The illustrations, by Joe Servello, heighten the effect of these strange tales. Kotzwinkle's ( The Midnight Examiner ) necromantic artistry puts him in the same league as Poe and Lovecraft.

Library Journal
This slim volume of fantasy writing contains a 99-page novella, ''Django Reinhardt Played the Blues'' and two additional stories, ''Blues on the Nile (A Fragment of Papyrus)'' and ''Box Car Blues.'' The first story features LeBlanc the Magician, who teams up with Jean Cocteau and The Hot Jazz Trio to rescue his assistant from the Land of Boxes; the second tells of a heartless Pharoah sailing toward his fate in the afterlife; the third follows two circus clowns through a hobo jungle in their flight from Death. ''Django Reinhardt Played the Blues'' has a certain surrealist charm, though it fails to catch fire: the two shorter pieces are less entertaining. Thirty line drawings by Joe Servello accompany the text. These may be--if there is one--the volume's saving grace.-- William Gargan, Brooklyn Coll. Lib., CUNY

    

Used availability for William Kotzwinkle's The Hot Jazz Trio

Hardback Editions

November 1988 : USA Hardback
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Title: Hot Jazz Trio
Author(s): William Kotzwinkle
ISBN: 0-395-50096-6 / 978-0-395-50096-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: Seymour Lawrence Books
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


Paperback Editions

July 1991 : UK Paperback
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Title: Hot Jazz Trio
Author(s): William Kotzwinkle
ISBN: 0-552-99440-5 / 978-0-552-99440-8 (UK edition)
Publisher: Black Swan
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA