Author: Greg Barth
Publisher: All Due Respect
Release Date: June 2015
After an apparently meaningless act of petty theft, hard-living good-time girl Selena is set on a violent collision course with a powerful Appalachian crime syndicate. Their response is swift and merciless, and she is raped, brutalised and left smeared across a strip club parking lot. Rather than curl up and die, Selena decides to fight back, and vows to take on the men who almost destroyed her. What she lacks in stature, she makes up for in sheer willpower, and her bullet-strewn quest for revenge takes her deep into the heart of enemy territory. Suffice to say, revenge is a dish best served extremely bloody…
Selena is a visceral pulp thriller that had me gripped from the outset. The brutal revenge storyline is undeniably gruelling, but Greg Barth oversees the carnage with a steady hand, and stitches together a series of bloodily memorable scenarios. Dark humour bubbles beneath the surface, but retribution is the name of the game here, and Selena’s quest for vengeance is rendered in queasy, unflinching detail throughout.
Violent and provocative, Selena was one of the best crime novels I read in 2015 – and represents a major feather in the cap for US indie crime publisher All Due Respect. Highly recommended.
Reviewed by Tom Leins