A Good Looking Corpse

A couple of months ago I read a book called LA Rotten by Jeff Klima. It stars an unlikely hero/anti-hero called Tom Tanner who works as a crime scene clean-up guy. He's not terribly long out of prison and he's essentially numb, freezing his feelings and better impulses in order to survive. He doesn't want to think about either the reason why he went to prison or his future now that he is out.

LA Rotten was an interesting book and I really liked Tom, despite the fact that he's kind of a terrible person. I was disappointed to see that Mr. Klima didn't have any more fiction available but then I got an email asking me if I'd like an advance review copy of Mr. Klima's latest book, called A Good Looking Corpse. Naturally I leapt like a starving panther at the opportunity.

(I strongly suggest that you read LA Rotten before starting the new one. While I'm sure the second novel can stand on its own, the first will be completely and totally spoiled by the time you finish A Good Looking Corpse.)

The new novel picks up not too long after the previous one ends. Tom is working on the cleanup of a suicide, that of an actor who flung himself from a tall building. Nothing too unusual but then someone sidles up to him to tell him that the actor was murdered. And then claims the actor was murdered just to get Tom to the clean up site. And thus begins an even twistier adventure than in LA Rotten.

There's very little that Tom can trust, including his own impulses. He's currently clean but always feels the siren call of his former addiction. He and girlfriend Ivy are settling in together, but he doesn't know how to handle the intimacy and reacts claustrophobicly. And then there are his revenge fantasies, inspired by an incident in LA Rotten. What's a boy to do?

You know how people are always saying such and such film or book is a roller-coaster ride? A Good Looking Corpse is what you would get if you went on a roller-coaster that went through a constantly changing labyrinth. Whenever Tom thinks he has everything figured out he gets a piece of information that turns everything upside down, sideways or inside out. While the book is billed as a mystery, I would call it more of a thriller and it certainly is thrilling. It gave me anxiety, as well as constantly making me say What? What just happened? My recommendation is that you read book one right now and order A Good Looking Corpse so you can read it as soon as humanly possible.

I looked and looked and looked and was unable to find an excerpt online. I even wrote to the publisher and asked but no luck. So you will just have to take my word for it and rush out to get the book(s).

(Purchasing anything via these links will net us a commission from Amazon, which helps keep the site up and running.)

Bonus Treat:
This week's bonus treat is a really lovely fairy tale that also sort of gently pokes fun of your more traditional stories. Called Red as Blood and White as Bone and written by Theodora Goss, it features a young lady who works in the kitchens of a palace. She is a huge fan of fairy tales and her work is wretched and boring, so when she finds a bedraggled, nude woman in the middle of a storm, she realizes that this woman must be a princess undergoing some trials and travails. So she invites her into the castle and chaos ensues as the older scripts like to say. The story is free on the tor.com website. http://www.tor.com/2016/05/04/red-as-blood-and-white-as-bone/