Garcia, Eric 1972-
GARCIA, Eric 1972-
PERSONAL: Born 1972, in Miami, FL; married; wife's name, Sabrina; children: Bailey (daughter). Education: Attended Cornell University and University of Southern California.
CAREER: Has worked variously as an instructor and screenwriter.
Anonymous Rex: A Detective Story, Random House (New York, NY), 2000.
Casual Rex, Villard (New York, NY), 2001.
Matchstick Men, Villard (New York, NY), 2002.
Writer of scripts for movies and television series, including Babylon 5 and Walker, Texas Ranger.
ADAPTATIONS: Anonymous Rex was recorded as an audiobook by Publishing Mills Audio, and was optioned for a film adaptation.
WORK IN PROGRESS: Hot and Sweaty Rex, a sequel to Anonymous Rex and Casual Rex.
SIDELIGHTS: In 2000 Eric Garcia made a splash with his debut novel Anonymous Rex: A Detective Story. The main characters are miniature dinosaurs in latex human costumes. Readers follow the activities of Vincent Rubio, a tough velociraptor, as he investigates a case of arson. Why dinosaurs? Garcia recounted in an online interview at the Anonymous Rex Web site the genesis of Rubio. While flipping channels on his television, Garcia ran across a special on dinosaurs and the various theories for their disappearance. "It was amazing to me how few of these scientists—incredibly learned, intelligent, well-spoken men and women—could agree with one another, and showed not more than a little contempt for the others' viewpoints. So I decided I'd come up with a different theory altogether, since there were so many out there already." In Garcia's world, dinosaurs work in all walks of life, disguising themselves as humans to keep their existence secret. Rubio is the typical hard-boiled detective, who suffers from an addiction—in this case to the herb basil; he becomes romantically involved with a beautiful woman, and solves a knotty case.
Anonymous Rex caught the attention of reviewers, who particularly mentioned the work's humor. An Entertainment Weekly critic, who called the novel "awesomely funny" and at the same time a "good mystery," predicted that it could become a cult classic. "At odd moments the narrative veers into shtick, but while it's going on you're mostly going to be dazzled by Garcia's energy and chutzpah," declared a Publishers Weekly critic. Remarking on the "screw-ball details that make the story," Booklist reviewer Stephanie Zvirin judged the book a "hoot." "Apart from showing off a splendidly warped imagination, Garcia provides a solid mystery," praised Jennifer Wulff in People. "Dino-mite detective yarn," she punned. Writing in Library Journal, A. J. Anderson maintained that although the book would appeal to those people who enjoy anthropomorphic characters and absurd humor, it would probably "jar the sensibilities of hardcore detective fiction buffs who take their mysteries seriously."
Garcia followed Anonymous Rex with a prequel, Casual Rex, and a stand-alone novel, Matchstick Men.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, July, 1999, Stephanie Zvirin, review of Anonymous Rex, p. 1927.
Entertainment Weekly, September 10, 1999, p. 146.
Library Journal, July, 1999, A. J. Anderson, review of Anonymous Rex, p. 141.
New York Times Book Review, April 8, 2001, Scott Veale, review of Anonymous Rex, p. 28.
People, September 13, 1999, Jennifer Wulff, "Pages," p. 51.
Publishers Weekly, July 5, 1999, review of Anonymous Rex, p. 62.
Village Voice, September 28, 1999, David Bowman, "Eric Garcia's Jurassic Noir," p. 57.
Anonymous Rex Web site,http://www.anonymousrex.com (December 10, 1999).
Casual Rex Web site,http://www.casualrex.com (November 4, 2002).
SF Site,http://www.sfsite.com/ (November 4, 2002).*