Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Choke On Your Lies by Anthony Neil Smith

There was this girl in college that didn't like me very much. It's been too long for me to recall the exact particulars, but she was rude. Obnoxious. She was cold. It was almost like she plotted her nastiness when it came to me. At times I imagined that she would stay up late at night thinking of things she could do just to embarrass me...causing me to cry in public.

So I waited.

Then, one night when I was staying at her apartment I talked my friends into doing a series of practical jokes. We adjusted the tube in the toilet tank so that it would spray on the unsuspecting flusher, tore the labels off her canned goods, shoved flour in her blow dryer so when she dried her dark long locks they'd turn white, and I even went so far as to put oil in her contact solution. 

Just so you know, my guilt got to me and I dumped the contact solution in the garbage and confessed my crime to the "mean girl."  That last stunt landed me in the Dean's Office with orders to never go to her apartment again.  Geesh...It was just a little fun. And it was nothing compared to the girl I read about in Choke On Your Lies by Anthony Neil Smith.

Choke On Your Lies by Anthony Neil Smith is set in the beautiful city of Minneapolis. I've never been to Minneapolis, but after seeing pictures online I have a strong desire to go there. In Minneapolis you'll find "mean girl" Octavia VanderPlatts. Octavia is the wealthy, intelligent, powerful, fat bitch that has made her money from discrimination lawsuits.  She's a genius that is comfortable with her weight and has no problem setting people up to get what she wants. And setting people us is exactly what she does in this book.

As you might be able to guess, when Octavia offers to help her long time friend, Mick Thooft, with his upcoming divorce her reasons for doing so are personal. Octavia has a bone to pick with Mick's future ex, Frances. Apparently Frances, in her mean days, refused to allow Octavia to attend their wedding for fear that Octavia would eat all the food.  Scarred by the memory, Octavia digs up dirt on Frances which helps to turn what would have been an uncomplicated divorce into something much more...uhhhh, what's the word? Deadly?

As the story unfolds you'll find a complicated mess involving forgery, black mail, swingers clubs, sex tapes, love, reconciliation, murder, and suicide. Oh! You'll also get to read about Octavia being double crossed and humiliated by one of her closest confidants. But don't worry, Octavia isn't one you can knock down very easily. She's gonna get back up, and when she does, she's gonna knock someone else down instead. 

Octavia's ability to always remain standing even when she shouldn't gives me hope that there might be a sequel. It's also one of the reasons why I like the character so much.  In real life I'm nothing like this character, but as I read the book, I couldn't help but want to be her for just a day or two. Maybe even three. I might not care to channel all of her meanness, but I think everyone would like to have some of her confidence now and again. 

So what say ye, Mr. Smith??? Care to give us another Octavia story?

Anthony Neil Smith is currently the Director of Creative Writing at Southwest Minnesota State University. He earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of Southern Mississippi’s Center for Writers in 2002.  Other novels by Dr. Smith include Psychosomatic, The Drummer, Yellow Medicine, and Hogdoggin’.  He has also published over forty short stories.  Dr. Smith is also co-creator and editor of the internet noir zine Plots With Guns. To learn more about Anthony Neil Smith you can give visit him on his website, Herman's Greasy Spoon.

You can purchase Choke On Your Lies for your Kindle for $2.99 here.

You can purchase Choke On Your Lies for your Nook for $2.99 here.


Small Town Girl said...

I'm hoping for another pretty soon I hope somebody is listening....

David Cranmer said...

Neil Smith is a sharp word spinner. I have LIES and am looking forward to reading it. If you get a chance I published Mr. Smith’s “The King of Mardi Gras” at BEAT to a PULP.

Leah Anderson said...

This sounds very intriguing! I can't wait to read it! Thanks!

Lalabowers said...

After reading your post, I really want to read this book. Unfortunately the library doesn't have a copy. Does anyone have a copy they're willing to lend?

Sara said...

Sounds like a very interesting read! Sometimes I wish I could be a little mean, but I just don't have it in me. Then again...maybe I AM mean and I just don't know it. Hmmmm. Anyway, thanks again for sharing, Sabrina :)

nigel p bird said...

the doc's on fire at the moment. i see he's just flagged up 100 kindle sales in the US for one of his other titles To The Devil My Regards.
Lalabowers, you can download the Kindle ap and get it cheaply as an ebook - don't know if that helps.

jchrz said...

Well I just purchased the book for my nook and can't wait to get started on it. I have not always been one into the means girls but you have me intrigued. I will let you know what I think. Thanks