GENRE: Crime Noir
by Mark Rapacz
300 pages Publisher: New Pulp Press
$4.99 ebook; $14.95 trade paperback
Two countries: South Korea, an economic powerhouse; North Korea, a rogue nation with nuclear capabilities. Two foreigners—waeguk—from Minnesota: Ben, coming to terms with his homosexuality; Durst, dreaming of himself as a James Dean tough guy. They teach English-as-a-second-language at a private school in Seoul. The school is also the front for a drug-smuggling gang headed by its owner, Mr. Kim. Ben and Durst are drawn into the illicit trade—for the excitement and the money. When some on-the-run farmers from the North show up, followed by some less savory characters, a simple smuggling operation turns a lot more dangerous. A unique new voice in crime, Mark Rapacz takes you on an unputdownable odyssey deep into this violent Korean underworld where nothing is quite what it seems and life is as ephemeral as a knife blade glinting under neon lights.
Praise for Foreigners (Waeguk)
"Rapacz deftly flips the meaning of this crime novel's title, as the ugly Americans are the titular Foreigners here, a gaggle of punks who've come to Korea under the guise of teaching English as a second language, but learning violence and the imprecise art of drug-slinging as a third. These junior crime lords are taught some stuff the hard way, as Al Pacino explained to wannabe gangster Sean Penn in Carlito's Way: ‘You can't learn about it in school, and you can't have a late start.’ With a detailed tour of Korean back alleys and restaurants, fun and fatal culture clashes, some timely North Korean action, and some gritty, doomsayer narration from the reckless antihero, it all heads for disaster in surprising ways, and you might learn some new words here and there, too, like I did, and only a third of them might be profanity."
—David James Keaton, author of The Last Projector and Fish Bites Cop!