A brutal, startling novel that vividly captures all the yearnings, drama and tragedy of two girls gone bad… innocent teenagers who defy society’s rules for a thrill… and end up on the main line to the gutter.

Teens Allie and Janey leave their small town home for the glamor and excitement of the big city… and find the energy, the bustle, and the hard, neon glare of downtown irresistible. They end up at the Jickey Club, drawn by the hot-jazz-filled atmosphere and the hint of danger. They should have taken the hint… because they soon fall into the dark underworld of drugs and prostitution… and may not get out alive.

“Bud Clifton” was a pseudonym for David Derek Stacton (1923-1968), an acclaimed American poet and author, under various names, of literary fiction, historical novels, and soft-core gay porn. He was a two-time recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and also received a Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. His work ranged from lurid tales like D is for Delinquent to a non-fiction book about the fall of Constantinople. His books under his own name include The Bonapartes, The Judges of the Secret Order, A Signal Victory and People of the Book: A Novel of the Thirty Years War. He died in Denmark in 1968.


“A stylistic virtuoso, matching on the typewriter the lightning flashes of such musical masters as Paganini on the violin.” The Chicago Tribune

“John Banville comes to mind as an author who so easily switches gears from fustian to fetid…it is fascinating to watch Stacton working out in the noirs the kind of novelist he would become. From the beginning, Stacton is drawn to a certain kind of person, the kind who is the ‘victim of the propulsive force of his own character.’” Los Angeles Review of Books

“The prose of David Stacton is like that of no other writer. It suggests a corridor in a dark Gothic tower, ill-lit by tapers, at one end of which a gong sounds incessantly.” Time Magazine

“The most unjustly neglected American novelist of the post-war years, David Stacton’s ambitious high style and melodrama have seen him banished. It’s time for a return to favour. Few writers have managed more fully than Stacton to bear out Gore Vidal’s maxim that writers shouldn’t ‘write what they know’ but, rather, what they imagine or suspect.’… and yet, Stacton himself can be seen to hide in plain sight behind everything he wrote.” The Guardian (London)

“His prose reveals great cultural depth and breadth. He uses language lovingly. Almost every sentence contains a striking metaphor or simile. Aphorisms sparkle from paragraph to paragraph.” Fort Worth Star-Telegram

“David Stacton is a major writer who has the approval of critics but so far lacks the consent of readers at large. In short, it’s the story of literary virtue unrewarded…his novels are enjoyable as well as admirable.” Oakland Tribune

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