It's the sort of book that turns you into a raving evangelist for it, that makes you call your friends at odd hours of the night telling them to find an all-night bookstore, find it NOW, put down the phone, you'll wait. When I first read it, I finished it, put it down, slid my feet into my sandals and drove to the book store at about ninety to buy the sequel, The Scar. I think what I said to James was "Book...dude...gotta...sequel..." and then I was out the door. (James takes this sort of thing in stride.)
It is dense, unwieldy, crude, and baroque. It is a termite mount of roiling adjectives. The plot doesn't actually lurch to life until after page 200, but you don't care--you've been wallowing in filth and marvels and your suspension of disbelief got kicked down the stairs and eaten by wild dogs.
It is something that I wish to god I'd written, and am pretty sure I couldn't have, but which makes me want to try.
I mention this because in my recent re-reading of books I've loved, I finally got my copy back from a loan, and have been re-reading it.
It's an indication of how weird this book is that I had nightmares last night lifted straight out of it. My sleeping brain, which embroiders everything with oddity, couldn't improve on slake-moths and Torque. It was not a restful night.
So, this is my plug. Read this book. It makes my fucked up nightmares look pedestrian.