The Good Inn: A Novel

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9780062220790: The Good Inn: A Novel

From Pixies front man, Black Francis, comes a bold and visually arresting illustrated novel about art, conflict, and the origins of a certain type of cinema.

In 1907, the French battleship Iéna was destroyed when munitions it was carrying exploded, killing 120 people. A nitrocellulose-based weapon propellant had become unstable with age and self-ignited.

In 1908, La Bonne Auberge became the earliest known pornographic film. It depicted a sexual encounter between a French soldier and an innkeeper’s daughter. Like all films at the time, and for decades afterward, it was made with a highly combustible nitrocellulose-based film stock.

Loosely based on these historical events, The Good Inn follows the lone survivor of the Iéna explosion as he makes his way through the French countryside, has a sexual adventure with an innkeeper’s daughter, and even more deeply into a strange counter universe. It is a volatile world where war and art exist side by side. It is also the very real story of the people who made the first narrative pornographic film. The novel weaves together real historical facts to recreate this lost piece of history, as seen through the eyes of a shell-shocked soldier who finds himself the subject and star of the world’s first stag film. Through Soldier Boy’s journey we explore the power of memory, the simultaneously destructive and healing power of light, and how the early pioneers of stag films helped shape the film industry for generations to come.

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From the Back Cover:

From legendary Pixies front man, Black Francis, in collaboration with writer Josh Frank and renowned illustrator Steven Appleby, comes The Good Inn, a bold and visually arresting novel about art, conflict, and the origins of a certain type of cinema

In 1907, the French battleship Iéna was destroyed when a nitrocellulose-based weapon propellant it was carrying became unstable with age and self-ignited, killing 120 people. A year later, La Bonne Auberge became the earliest-known pornographic film, depicting an intimate encounter between a French soldier and an innkeeper's daughter. Like all films at the time, and for decades afterward, it was made with a highly combustible nitrocellulose-based film stock.

Loosely based on historical events, The Good Inn follows the lone survivor of the Iéna explosion as he makes his way through the French countryside. He falls into a strange love affair with an innkeeper's daughter and, even more deeply, into a volatile counteruniverse where war and art exist side by side.

But The Good Inn is also the very real story of the people who made the world's first stag film, and Francis weaves together real historical facts to re-create this lost piece of history, as seen through the eyes of a shell-shocked soldier who finds himself that film's subject and star. Through his journey we explore the power of memory, the simultaneously destructive and restorative power of light, and how the early pioneers of pornography helped shape the film industry for generations to come.

About the Author:

Black Francis (born Charles Thompson and a.k.a. Frank Black) is the founder, singer, guitarist, and primary creative force behind the acclaimed indie rock band the Pixies. Following the band's breakup in 1993, he embarked on a solo career under the name Frank Black. He re-formed the Pixies in 2004 and continues to release solo records and tour as a solo artist, having readopted the Black Francis stage name in 2007.



Josh Frank is a writer, producer, director, and composer. He is the author of Fool the World: The Oral History of the Band Called Pixies and In Heaven Everything Is Fine: The Unsolved Life of Peter Ivers and the Lost History of New Wave Theatre. Frank has worked with some of the most innovative musicians, filmmakers, producers, and artists in the entertainment industry, including Black Francis, David Lynch, Mark Vonnegut, and Harold Ramis. He has interviewed more than four hundred of America's most notable names in show business for his books and screenplays. In his spare time he runs his mini urban drive-in movie theaters in Austin, Texas, and Miami, Florida.

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