Monday, August 6, 2012
Book Review: Choke Hold
I try not to use too much in the way of vulgarity in my reviews. So the first word of this one isn’t an attempt at writing the extended, guttural exclamation of the F-word I actually said when I closed the book. Christa Faust is one of a very small number of authors I buy pretty much everything from, no questions asked. And when she wrote a sequel to her hardboiled tale of porn and human trafficking, Money Shot, there was no doubt I’d be reading it. For various reasons, it took me MUCH longer to get to than I originally expected. But now I have, and now I need to take a shower…for like a week. And maybe watch some Sesame Street or something to feel better about…well, anything at all.
Choke Hold doesn’t quite start with a bang. It takes a page or two before the bodies start piling up. But no worries, the bloody trail of pages never lets up after that. The world of mixed martial arts (MMA) is at the center of this tale. But two men beating the ever-lovin’ crap out of each other in a cage isn’t nearly the nastiest stuff going on here. Faust doesn’t let you relax for a moment, as she twists the knife time and again. It’s even more gut wrenching that reading the Walking Dead, where every time you start to really like somebody, their brains get blown all over the wall. Angel Dare is certainly not someone I’d ever want to meet. It seems like everyone she comes in contact with has a very, very bad end.
This is not a book for wimps. This is blood and bile and bullets. It’s brutal, ugly, rough, and relentless. Christa Faust is about as cruel to her characters as anyone I’ve ever read (including Greg Rucka, and he’s a sadistic bastard). By the end I was nearly begging for just one good thing, just one ray of light. If you think you’re tough enough, step up and read it. It's worth the effort and the black eye.
Author: Christa Faust
Publisher: Hard Case Crime