$100-A-Week-Motel by Dan Denton (Punk Hostage Press)

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Dan Denton’s “$100-A-Week Motel” is a hallelujah chorus of proletariat madness, and a fine, sweet madness it is. In this modest motel, the circus comes to town, love is possible, sudden heroes wait to punch the time clock and ashtrays overflow with twice smoked twisted butts. There is a cheap bible hiding inside the table at the bedside of every room of this motel that among others, contains the outlaw gospels according to Charles Bukowski, F.A. Nettelbeck, and Fred Voss; the poetic catechism of ordinary saints. And if you press your ear to it, spirituals of the divinely real can be heard inside an earful of peeling paint. Come, let Dan Denton take you to his burning river where you can meet the practitioners of a sincere and wounded faith found only in the lobby of this $100 a Week Motel. ~ S.A. Griffin, from his foreword. Author of “Dreams Gone Mad With Hope” and editor of “Outlaw Bible of American Poetry.”

Publisher ‏ : ‎ Punk Hostage Press (January 12, 2021)
Language ‏ : ‎ English
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 170 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1940213126
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1940213125
Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 9.1 ounces
Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6 x 0.43 x 9 inches

5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect audacity and dirty realism
Reviewed in the United States on June 25, 2021
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This book is literally the best book I’ve read in at least a decade. You feel his real balance of living and recklessness written in every word. It transforms you unapologetically into the darkest places you know you’ve survived and humbles you for it at the same time. If a fraction of the human world could wrap their heads around the hard work and thankless nights, trials and errors, and dirty poetic tales that Dan captures, it would not only help them appreciate a little more of the everyday struggle, but equally capivate them escaping it. Tell it like it is soul like Bukowski, I was mesmerized by his punk stout-heartedness from the first page. I highly recommend to anyone with gravel in their gut and spit in their eye. Home is where beauty comes in even the dirtiest of places.

5.0 out of 5 stars This is an author to keep your eye on.
Reviewed in the United States on August 6, 2021
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Simple to digest but elegant in a way. Maybe it’s the care he gives his (extremely interesting) characters, the poetic voice thriving in all that is the daily life, both light and grim. Here’s a way out before you move a muscle. It’s inspiring without being dopey, which I sincerely appreciate.

5.0 out of 5 stars Buy this book
Reviewed in the United States on February 24, 2021
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John Steinbeck allegedly said, “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.”
Dan Denton definitely does not want to contribute to that problem. Dan’s characters know they are exploited, and have long ago given up any hope of millionaire status. In $100-A-Week-Motel (Punk Hostage Press, 2021) Denton tells stories of the down and out, those who have trickled to the bottom of the economy, while any money they used to have, or could have had, has floated up to the top. Dan’s descriptions are wonderfully written in crisp, creative, real-life language, the language of the working poor. And what does the existence of a category called “working poor” tell you about late stage capitalism? Dan’s characters are in a struggle to survive, and when you get right down to it, aren’t we all? Buy this book.

Ed Werstein
Milwaukee, WI

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