- Title: “Die, You Bastard, Die!”
- Author: Jan Kozlowski
- Genre: Thriller/Horror/Dark Fiction
- Format: Kindle
- Source: Own Copy
- Reviewed by: Mark Matthews
- Rating: 5 out of 5
Description: Claire is a first-rate paramedic, with a heroic devotion to saving lives. She is also a survivor of unspeakable abuse, who has rebuilt herself entirely, as far from home as she could get.
But when her aged father is hospitalized, after a crippling fall, Claire is dragged back into a brutal nightmare of sexual depravity, and deepest betrayal. Where the only question left is, “How can I possibly survive?”
And the only answer is, “DIE, YOU BASTARD! DIE!”
Review: Wow. How to describe this book? It blew me away. The experience reading it was powerful. Much like the title, this book makes no apologies, and after reading it, I certainly don’t need one.
It started out as a great novel with distinct, interesting characters and intense enough action scenes. I fully trusted the author and entered into her world, ready to partake in a great thriller.
What I wasn’t ready for was a hand to shoot out of the pages and suddenly put a knife to my throat, but that was basically what happened. My eyeballs started to bleed and my heart shed tears.
This is not so much horror as it is ultra-realism. The horror isn’t what is happening in the book as much as what can happen at the hands of humans. Things we want to dismiss. This is a great piece of work, not some gratuitous bit of shock horror. I didn’t ever get that feeling that the author was smirking behind the page, just happy she grossed us out. Characters under pressure had their essence squeezed out of them, and with each bit of action and dialogue these people were brought to life. The sickness that existed in their hearts never wavered, which made the story all that more terrifying. The journey of the main character was riveting, never cliche, and never certain.
But there were moments where I looked away from the pages, thinking, if this continues, I don’t know how much more I can take. The author turns up the intensity and lets you boil for a while, but always seems to gauge where the reader is at and turns the story to a place you can continue. It demanded breaks, but commanded your attention. I became like a kid covering my face with my hands but peeking thru my fingers. This book is no escapism like some horror or dark fiction, but it is a fantastic piece of art.