Review of “Body Art: A Thriller” by Jordan Castillo Price and Narrated by Gomez Pugh

Body Art - A Thriller

Overall 3 Stars

Performance 3 Stars

Story 3 Stars

In all honesty I never saw the end coming. To be honest I didn’t see much coming at all for the first six chapters. The first six chapters seemed to be mostly setup of the characters and the MC. It is not until chapter seven that an actual murder is introduced, and there are only 11 chapters to the book.

Ray is a newly unemployed former tattoo parlor owner who is looking for a decent job so he can finally quit dodging bill collectors, especially the bank that gave him the loan for his failed tattoo shop.

He earns his chauffeur’s license and lands a job as driver for a wealthy older couple who live out on the island away from the city. The White’s are retired and have moved into what used to be their summer home after selling their condo. Mr. White suffers from Alzheimer’s and it is for this reason as well as needing a driver that Ray is hired.

Ray finds out that he is actually the third driver the Whites have hired in less than a year. The first two disappeared without giving notice, and Ray is needed as much for his muscle as he is for his driving skills.

Shortly after being hired and moving out to the island to live in the apartment over the garage, Ray is in bed one night when he hears odd noises coming from outside. Deciding he can’t sleep without knowing what is going on, Ray investigates the noises only to find that a reclusive neighbor has taken to building pyramids out of sticks and twine over the graves of several of the deceased people in the graveyard as an experiment. Ray finds out his name is Anton and shortly discovers that he lives on his sisters property in a guest house. The property the guest house sits on butts up against the White’s property.

A few days later Ray and Anton meet again in the daylight and strike up a conversation. When Ray goes back to Anton’s house with him Anton begins to undress him. Ray discovers that both he and Anton are gay, and Ray is very attracted to him. They end up having sex. No big shock there. That’s what happens in most books with two gay men in it.

I have to say that I did not really like this book all that much. I did finish listening to it because I wanted to find out who killed the man who was discovered dead in chapter seven. I would not read it again, though. I just honestly don’t like sex in books and the sex in this book really did not do anything to advance the plot of the book. It seemed like it was just there for the sake of being there. As if the author said to himself, “this is a book with two gay men in it so they must have sex two or three times with each other.”

The most redeeming thing I can say about this book is that I never suspected who the killer really was. I was surprised by the reveal in the next to last chapter. It would have been better, in my opinion, without the sex in it. It seems that they knew each other for like one day before jumping into bed with each other. There was no romance, no build up, no tension before they are going at it like two horny gay rabbits. This just seems so stereotypical to me. Why does it seem that gay men can’t have a relationship with each other in books without jumping right into bed with each other? I have to admit that all the gratuitous sex is why I don’t read M/M books as a habit. I had hopes this one would be better because it was a crime thriller. My hopes were dashed.

I also was not impressed with the narration. I didn’t like the deep baritone of the narrator’s voice. He is not someone I would have picked as a narrator for this type of book. He sounded more like a detective from California than a former tattoo artist even before he knew that a crime had been committed on his employer’s property.

I might read other thrillers by Mr. Castillo Price if they are just thrillers and don’t involve gay men having sex several times throughout the book. I will be careful before reading another one though.

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About Jeffrey Owens

Not much to tell. I am married and have a daughter and a grandson. I am an aspiring writer. I am a devout Pentecostal. I love football, NHRA professional drag racing, baseball and sometimes hockey. I sing and play guitar and write songs.
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