Synopses & Reviews
Welcome to Portlandtown,
where no secret is safe — not even those buried beneath six feet of Oregon mud.
Joseph Wylde isnt afraid of the past, but he knows some truths are better left unspoken. When his father-in-laws grave-digging awakens more than just ghosts, Joseph invites him into their home hoping that a booming metropolis and two curious grandtwins will be enough to keep the former marshal out of trouble. Unfortunately, the old mans past soon follows, unleashing a terrible storm on a city already knee deep in floodwaters. As the dead mysteriously begin to rise, the Wylde's must find the truth before an unspeakable evil can spread across the West and beyond.
Rob DeBorde's Portlandtown is a supernatural western, a fantastic blend of horror, magic, and zombies sure to excite even the most demanding genre fan.
"Cookbook author DeBorde's suspenseful and energetic fiction debut, a horror-western set in a vividly depicted 1887 Pacific Northwest, revitalizes pulp tropes with evocative imagery and a character-driven story. After retired marshal Jim Kleberg is discovered digging up graves in search of a man whose name he has forgotten, he reluctantly goes to Portland, Ore., to live with his daughter, Katie, who has a talent for hiding; his son-in-law, Joseph, a blind man with otherworldly senses; and their two clever children. Meanwhile, local outcast Henry Macke resurrects the corpse of the 'Hanged Man' as a zombie who goes searching for a demonic gun and vengeance against the befuddled Jim. Soon the marshal's family is battling an onslaught of zombies with the help of Faustian antihero Andre Labeau, an occultist seeking redemption. Deborde crafts an exhilarating hybrid of grit, guts, dusty cowpokes, and rotting flesh, honoring genre conventions without succumbing to cliché and anchoring black magic in realistic contexts of politics and family dynamics. The only flaw is a 'surprise' ending that screams for sequels." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Move over, Spaghetti. Rob DeBorde serves up his fantastical horror Western with a pioneering Apple Pie spirit that is all-American genre-bending fiction at its finest." Bryan Fuller, Pushing Daisies, writer/creator; Heroes,writer/producer; Star Trek: Voyager writer/co-producer
"Glorious characters, wonderful settings and frantic storytelling combine in Portlandtown. A unique and fascinating horror novel....Cowboys, the supernatural, steampunk and zombies... Portlandtown has enough to keep even the most demanding genre fan satisfied." David Moody, author of Autumn
"DeBorde's extraordinary first novel, a dark fantasy set in the Old West, tells a compelling tale of the battle between evil personified and a remarkable family with special abilities. Fans of Stephen King's "Dark Tower" series will enjoy discovering this accomplished writer." Library Journal (starred review)
"A fantastic read, a dark supernatural Western full of curses, magical powers, hoodoo men, and resurrected outlaws. Better yet, it's thrilling, compulsive reading packed with a menagerie of very cool characters. Bring on more of the Oregon Wyldes!" Christopher Golden, New York Times bestselling author of Father Gaetano's Puppet Catechism
A supernatural western a la Stephen King's Dark Tower
— a family must do battle with an outlaw and his brethren risen from the grave.
Six feet of Oregon mud would have kept its secret had the old Marshal not gone digging for what he could not remember. He thought it was a man, but the name had slipped his mind.
Joseph Wylde was not surprised the Marshal had lost a step. He was a good man, a Hero of the West according to those who knew such things, but he'd let old fears get the better of him. He would be happier in Portland, amongst those who loved him. He wouldn't have to be afraid of the past. None of them would... not anymore.That was why his son-in-law had come to take him back to Portland to live with Katie and the curious grandtwins.
Henry Macke was not afraid. He remembered what the Marshal could not and now the book was his. He would keep it, study it, would never let it go... he would do these things and more just as soon as he took care of the other thing buried on the hill. The dead man had waited more than a decade, but his legend was not so easily forgotten. He needed only for the young fool to do what came naturally in the presence of so many beautiful words: read. Thus begins Portlandtown, a tale of an extraordinary family forced to do battle with the Hanged Man and his undead horde to save the West.
About the Author
Rob Deborde's first book, Fish on a First-Name Basis (2006, St. Martins Press), reads suspiciously like an indispensible guide to everything wet and edible with nary a zombie in sight. His award-winning online show, Deep Fried, Live! with Tako the Octopus, does, however, feature undead clams and mutant prawns, and his forays into film, television, and videogames have been chock full of supernatural beasties (particularly Good Eats). Portlandtown is his first novel. DeBorde lives downriver from Portland, Oregon, with his wife, Sue, and a pug named Chloe.