Tuesday, February 08, 2011

The Four Stages of Cruelty

by Keith Hollihan

Reading this book did exactly what I'd hoped: it reminded me of watching the TV series Oz. Could have used some hot gay sex, though. A solid stay-up-late thriller set in a penitentiary, this story follows the intertwined fates of a lonely middle-aged female guard and a 19-year-old guy convicted of accidentally(?) killing his ex-girlfriend. The creepy old prison itself and many of the characters have hidden secrets and simmering tensions. The ending is kind of odd, in that it doesn't fully answer one of the central mysteries, but, to my surprise, I actually liked that it didn't.

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