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Asphyxia Paperback – May 21, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
This thriller has twists and turns along the way, a bit of dark humor, along with some tragedy in the Detective's personal life. There is some erotica mingled in the storyline at one point.
I can't say enough for the authors development of the characters. They are quite entertaining to the reader even though people are dying. There are things going on behind the scenes only the readers know for a while which is always intriguing. I will certainly continue reading Hudson's work and I highly recommend this book.
Obstensibly, this is the story of a detective who is investigating a series of asphyxiation murders. The targets are beautiful young women. However, the decective does very little investigation. He attends a couple of autopsies, but we don't get to see any of the sleuthing that is the usual hallmark of the genre. If he investigates anything about the women's lives of what they have in common, readers never find out. Instead we have a bit of "Keystone Kops" style detecting courtesy of a computer dating magnate and his IT man (they determine that the young women were all clients and try to determine who the killer is before the news gets out and wrecks their bottom line). The detective spends most of his time worried about his personal life and none of his interactions seem particularly authentic. And the way the author wraps up the plotline about his personal life left me scratching my head.
Despite the fact that the author introduces us to a woman who is, presumably, a future victim of the killer, there is no real suspense or thrills here. There are too many characters and their charactization is shoddy. We don't care about the detective, we don't care about the dead women, we don't care about the rich man, we don't care about the coroner, we don't care about the potential victim -- every time I thought I'd run out of people to not care about, Hudson introduced another character. The tension in their lives (cheating spouses, angry bosses, drunk drivers, etc) never comes into focus.
It seems as if the investigation portion of the novel is so uneven because Hudson might not understand that much about investigation and killing, a serious issue in a serial killer procedural. At one point, we're told by a supposed expert that the reason why the killer creates such elaborate asphyxiation scenarios for his victims is because he mistakenly believes it will heighten their sexual pleasure. Given the amount of sexual and physical abuse the victims sustain and the fact that we're told he repeatedly revives them prior to finally letting them die, I think it is far more likely that the killer was a sadism, determined to bring his victims pain -- not pleasure. Errors like this can be quite jarring and made me feel like I was reading an underresearched book.
Detective Bannon is one of my favorite characters. This is an irreverent, page turning thriller about catching a killer, but darn if I still have to laugh at some of his takes on things!
Also, When one has to go back to check names of characters, it's generally not a good thing, I think. And the end was a quick tie up that just about anybody can see coming, not that that's bad, but the "end" was about a full page after the climax. Then the rest was ads for other books.....so like 83% to 100% was buy my other books.
Overall, the story is different, it's low cost, and it's a nice diversion for a few hours into a, at least for me, a unique aspect of humanity.
I would have rated in higher but a few things. The end feels rushed; in fact, the killer is not named and there does not seem to be any real lead-up or clues to this person being "it". Editing and formatting were not as good as standard print fiction, though I've seen worse in Kindle books. Some things seemed unrealistic and just serving a gratuitous function (beyond the standard leeway normally given for mystery fiction).