on Aug. 21, 2015 :
Despite this being so short, I think it's the best 2 bucks I've ever spent.
A good deal from Smashwords.com
I'm not sure what it says about me, that I enjoyed this book through and through.
And that I didn't even hate Curt. I felt sorry for him, because in some fucked up manner, I could almost relate.
Or at least understand.
Nothing excuses the things he's done, in prison or outside of it. And I really don't like excusing people with the "if you kick a dog..." bullshit.
Because I've been kicked. I've been down. The system has not been in my favor. But then again, maybe I haven't been kicked hard enough.
And despite everything, I couldn't help but feel sad and sorry for what he's been through. Nobody's ever given him a chance. Nobody cares about cons in America. No matter what their offense was. The point is not to rehabilitate, but to punish. And that's what he got.
Who was there to show this man compassion? To teach him it's ok to be himself, that wanting certain things is ok, that making mistakes is ok. When nobody gives a shit about you, why would you give a shit about anybody?
Instead, minor offenses turned into a life of crime. In his case, he was definitely the product of a faulty, corrupt system.
The tone of this story was spot on.
I could feel the anger, the urgency, the confusion.
The pace was hectic, and it didn't stop until the dramatic climax.
I think that early on, we get a sense of Curt's inclinations, even though he doesn't want to admit it.
He keeps saying, "I'm straight, it's just for control/release".
And then he gets a lot more than he bargained for.
The ending wasn't a complete surprise to me. I pretty much figured out it was going to be this way, because what other way was there, really?
But what surprised me about it, is how ok it felt. Almost like a happy ending.
Curt was at peace with himself. He wasn't so angry anymore. He felt like he could connect with his fellow men. He got a long stretch, but I don't think it's going to be too bad for him...
All in all, this work is more than the sum of its parts, which as the title implies - is rape.
It is graphic though, but that's the point.
[originally written for goodreads]
(reviewed the day of purchase)
on April 16, 2014 :
How To Rape A Straight Guy has to be one of the strangest books that I've read, which is saying a lot, because I read a lot of off-the-wall stuff.
The weird thing was, there was a point where I thought this would be a DNF for me. The narrator, Curt, is not a person I liked. I didn't like the way he talked, I didn't like that he was a total asshole to pretty much everyone, and I didn't like that he wasn't gay, but found enjoyment is, literally, raping straight guys. It was really hard to imagine how Curt could possibly redeem himself. I kept reading mostly because he found himself in a gigantic mess that hooked me hard, and in the middle of the mess he discovers an odd and unfamiliar compassion for others.
So. Good characterization, an interesting conflict, and character growth. All the elements of a good book, and at the conclusion I felt that I'd invested my time in a satisfying read.
This will be nothing like you expect, but sometimes one of the most charming things about reading is learning about someone who is very different from yourself.
(reviewed 33 days after purchase)