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Psychosomatic [Kindle Edition]

Anthony Neil Smith
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Because Lydia didn't have arms or legs, she shelled out three thousand bucks to a washed up middleweight named Cap to give her ex-husband the beating of his life.

But the beating turns to murder, and the murder into lust and desperation between Lydia and an underworld clean-up man. Meanwhile, overgrown frat boy car thieves take up cop killing as a side hobby. When these paths cross, a horror show of violence unfolds as they all slide into a hell of their own design, surrounded by the neon and noise of the casino strip on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Violent, vivid, life at hyper-speed. This debut novel from the editor of Plots with Guns is a noir nightmare that asks how much is too much in a relationship, and what is the cost of leaving? Ken Bruen calls it "the darkest song I've ever read".

Product Details

  • File Size: 404 KB
  • Print Length: 186 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0809550903
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004HW7K6O
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,297 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Movie! December 28, 2005
This one screams MOVIE! Preferably by David Lynch. I read this baby cover to cover; there was no putting it down. James Ellroy brutality, Elmore Leonard dialogue, Victor Gischler humor ... that's a trifecta with an undeniable payoff. Anthony Neil Smith stomps onto the scene in this volcano of a debut. You'll have to trust me, I'm no misogynist and this one turned me on from the get-go ... pure dynamite. Not only was she and the plot believable (you just have to know people other than those living in fairytales), this baby lent a new lilt to what I sometimes think about late at night. One of my "best of" reads for the year.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Opening shot of noir from a great writer April 7, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
When I found out this was ANS's first novel I was expecting some clunkiness. God knows my first book wasn't that great. But Smith comes out of the gate strong with this one. It doesn't do anything fancy or different but it doesn't have to. It's a noir thriller, a good one, and that's enough. A cast of characters that are all unlikeable but still interesting, a plot that twists and turns ... I think you see what I mean. Apart from some of the modern touches this could've been written during the heyday of noir, maybe even been a black and white movie. Right down to the bleak ending that satisfies even if no one really gets out clean (not easy to do), this is a great intro to Smith's work and his voice.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Disagreeable Likable Characters March 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There is not character in the book who is likable in the traditional sense. Everybody is low-life scum. Yet in an amazing feat of storytelling, the author draws you in and makes you root for the two main characters. I was actually feeling sorry for them and hoping for a positive ending. In a perverted way, the two protagonists are loyal to each other and genuinely care for each other, even though they are ruthless criminals. The book is also very funny throughout despite the dark story. The author's ability to tell a story of disagreeable characters you come to care about, in a very funny and attention-grabbing way, is quite an accomplishment.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Twisted March 7, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Mr. Smith has an unparalleled talent for creating characters. Not one of the major characters in Pschosomatic is likable. Even those who seem pitiful and sympathetic when they're first introduced quickly lose their appeal (no arms, no legs--harmless, right? wrong!) There is non-stop action and non-stop conniving. Reversals of fortune abound. I too can imagine this book as a movie, however I see it directed by Quentin Tarantino. Worth the time if you're into crime fiction and aren't squeamish.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ugly and twisted in the very best ways February 16, 2012
By Merry
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
They say that if the author doesn't catch the reader by the end of the first page, they'll never catch them. Some people are more forgiving and give the author the first chapter to hook them. Psychosomatic hooks you from the first sentence.

Anthony Neil Smith starts this novel with the accelerator mashed to the floor, and doesn't let up until the last line. Not one of the characters are likable. They are petty thieves, murderers, rapists, manipulators, thugs, drug dealers, and crack whores. Smith makes no illusions about trying to redeem any of them.

From a readers point of view, it is a roller-coaster ride of a novel, with twists and turns and dives that lift your rear off the seat and hills that send your stomach to the floor. From a writers point of view, it is either suicide or pure genius. The characters are emotionally and physically handicapped. They cannot get any better than they are in the first pages. They are stunted before the story gets off the ground. And Smith pulls it off. He makes compelling characters out of the dregs of society. You're not so much rooting for them as wondering who makes it to the last page alive.

There are so many plot threads running through the story, it would be very easy to get tangled up, but Smith twists them to perfection. This story is dark and grim, but, like a train-wreck, you can't tear your eyes from it. The tension starts high and stays that way, the only relief coming with the humor at the ridiculous situations the characters get themselves into.

Bottom line: Good story, good dialogue, great characterization. This is not a story for the faint of heart. Certain images will probably stick with me for a long time. If you're looking for a light and easy afternoon read, pick something else. If you're into hard-core crime fiction, this is a book for you.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a smorgasbord of idiotic violence September 3, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
but a lot of fun to read! Schock full of violence mingled with comedy.

As a debut novel, in 2005, Anthony Smith did one hell of a job! This is very well written, fast paced intense, a definite, crazy as hell, page turner.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Psycho for sure November 1, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is the first Anthony Neil Smith book I have read and it certainly won't be the last. The story is a fast paced and hard hitting twisted crime caper
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Psycho-pulp Criminal Mania! January 16, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
This is one of those great little crime/pulp books that mix a lot of absurdity and humor with blasts of extreme violence and very disturbing events. The characters are perfectly executed (in a couple cases quite literally) and that makes the reading all the more fun. The final act stretched things just a liiiittle too far for me, but that didn't take away from what was a fast and enjoyable read. Fans of Tarantino and Coen Brothers films will dig this; cozy readers beware!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrible Characters, Great Story
It's a joyride to and through hell in Neil Smith's "Psychosomatic." Expect the worst in the characters, then expect to like them just the way Smith bakes them like meat... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Benjamin Sobieck
4.0 out of 5 stars Psychosomatic
I'm not sure what happened to the author to make him so damned cynical. Most of Anthony Neil Smith's characters are fairly unlikable. The ones in Psychosomatic are no exception. Read more
Published 5 months ago by johnchris
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit too twisted for me. But, this person can write!
As soon as I started this book it reminded me of a movie I saw called "Boxing Helena", this story is totally different but the movie also involved a quad amputee. Read more
Published 7 months ago by soleful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book!
this book was really good.Great characters and storyline.I didn't get bored since there were so many things going on that kept my interest in this book. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Sandy McRae
5.0 out of 5 stars True Pulp
This had many of the best qualities of pulp fiction -- headfirst hurdle into a story that doesn't stop, but instead speeds up as it twists and turns. Dark and violent. Read more
Published 10 months ago by George Monk
2.0 out of 5 stars I was going to give this book five stars, then I kept reading.
I was going to give this book five stars, but as I read past the first few chapters, the book began to get absurd, and it kept getting more and more absurd. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Michael McLarnon
3.0 out of 5 stars Psychosomatic
A violent crime spree headed by an armless, legless sex kitten. Small time hoods attempt to up the ante. Murder and violence ensues.
Published 10 months ago by Crystal
5.0 out of 5 stars it's good...disturbing but good
Lol this book is crazy! I have never read a book like it. Once again, non stop action with colorful characters and crazy plot twists and bizarre situations
Published 16 months ago by Merrick300
5.0 out of 5 stars great debut
Even having lost arms and legs, Lydia could not forgive her ex-husband his outright mockery: bastard brought a girl into Lydia's house and forced Lydia to watch as he'd had sex... Read more
Published 22 months ago by Ray Garraty
5.0 out of 5 stars Anti-Hero epic...
A great story about bad people doing what they do best...bad stuff. Who do you root for when everyone's a degenerate? I'm a sucker for an underdog so I was team Crabtree. Read more
Published on March 19, 2013 by Jan-Michael
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