Downward-Facing Death
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Downward-Facing Death

3.25 of 5 stars 3.25  ·  rating details  ·  153 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Published September 6th 2012 by Thomas & Mercer
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I like murder mysteries, I thought. I practice yoga. I am a natural reader for this one, I thought.

I was wrong.

I don't get this book. It's a yoga-based modern noir, with a rumpled PI and a mat-toting moll. So it's a clever idea. But it's also a constant commentary on the perceived superficiality of Los Angeles, right down to the highly annoying way that people in LA constantly talk about what routes they're going to take to get places, that fails to ring true to me as anything other than a paro...more
Kathleen Hagen
Downward-Facing Death, b-plus, by Neal Pollack, Narrated by Fred Stella, Produced by Brilliance Audio, Downloaded from

Anyone who has practiced yoga will recognize from the title alone that this book will have to do with yoga. Downward-facing death is a take-off on the pose downward-facing dog. And the name of the protagonist, Matt Bolster, is surely a spoof on yoga props. This is however a good book. Here is the publisher’s note.

Downward facing death... Blessed with uncanny deductiv...more
When a world-famous yoga guru is murdered, the Los Angeles police department calls on the help fo former police officer, Matt Bolster. (Yes, that is his name). Anyway, Matt is no longer a hard-hitting, corrupt policeman. Now he is a dope-smoking poor yoga teacher. But since there is a lot of yoga related crime in Los Angeles, according to Matt anyway, he is often called in to consult. But he has never been called in for something so high-profile and the city is offering big money for him to solv...more
Laura Roberts
So far I'm really digging this Kindle serial. I had never read any books in this format before, and while it can be frustrating waiting for the next installment, it's also pretty fun to read along and see where the author takes things.

I've read some of Pollack's stuff before at the late, great Über, and enjoyed his work, so I figured this would be a good serial to start with. While his previous writing was a lot more snarky and hipster, this story actually fits in well with the "cozy mystery" ge...more
Amber Polo
This review is for the audiobook, not the Kindle serial.
If you love yoga and humor Neal Pollack nailed both. The insider jokes were right on.
To write satire like this you have to love what you're making fun of, and I have no doubt Pollack does. Matt Bolster the hard boiled PI yogi!
Though now not too many teachers or students would want to be in class with him. ;)
A L.A. yoga cop mystery. Loved the narrator. I’d read/listen to another.
I read this book as a Kindle Serial. This was a good format for the story as long as one is willing to wait for each episode to come out (once a month). Neal Pollack did a good job in folding Yoga into the story. By the time I had read the book I felt that was also a practitioner of yoga (at list in the mind). I liked how he ended the story, which wasn't typical for a murder mystery -- the book is just as much about the main character's, Matt Bolster, journey into yoga as it was about solving th...more
I thought I would check out a few of these Kindle Singles - for $1.99 you can't go too far wrong right? So far there is only one episode of this book, but I'm drawn in and can't wait for the next 5-6 to download (at no extra charge!) in the next few months.

Bolster is an ex-cop turned Yogi, a high end Yogi is killed and Bolster is asked to come help his old police force navigate the Yoga world and practices to help find the killer.

Can't wait for the future installments!
It is really interesting reading a novel this way (a serial). This was a fun and entertaining book and the main character is lively and hilarious. The last installment of the book did get too graphic for me so I had to skip some pages but overall I enjoyed it. The many yoga references and the details of the L.A. yoga scene were unique and a definitely intriguing. I had no idea a "dark underbelly" existed in the world of yoga!
Definitely intrigued. Light, fast read. I liked all the text-world, text-self connections I could make with this book and its thinly-veiled reference to Bikram Yoga. Very entertaining. Looking forward for the next part!
Update - what a STUPID book. I am sorry I recommended it to anyone. The first few parts were fun and light, but the plot got more and more stupid and contrived. The ending was ridiculous!
The serial format of this book did not work for me. I read fast and I read a lot, so by the time a new installment came out, I had pretty much forgotten what had happened so far. Although I have enjoyed other serialized novels, I think the plot and characters in Downward Facing Death just weren't compelling enough to keep me thinking about them beyond when I shut the book (er, kindle case, I suppose).
Keith Vandenbergh
My first serial. The story moved along well enough in the early going but as the episodes continued I found myself losing interest. It's a straight forward story with a likable protagonist but not quite enough to it to keep my interest though the gaps. Top it off with a relatively anti-climatic ending and I couldn't bring myself to say more than that it was just okay.
This is your basic murder mystery, set in the weird world of yoga enthusiasts in Los Angeles. I read it as a Kindle Serial, to get a feel for the idea. I appreciated having a little slice of story to read at a time, but I wish the installments had been more frequent. I forgot some character names and details of the plot reading over the course of several months.
I was really enjoying his odd little story. Pollack is funny and writes well. I just felt as though the story really scrambled at the end.
This is a fun read for anyone who is interested in yoga. For a yoga teacher or serious yoga student it will be a fictional romp into many of the real things that go on in the yoga world. It explores some of the dark sides of yoga and some of the soothing nurturing aspects too. I didn't need the swearing but over all I enjoyed the book.
This was my first experience with a Kindle Serial. The concept works; it's nice to fire up the Kindle and find a new segment right at your fingertips. The book was OK. I'd recommend it only to those who practice yoga, know a thing or two about it, and happen to like mysteries. Otherwise it's too much of an inside joke.
Cheyenne Hornburg
If you are into crime novels and yoga, and have a sense of humor about both, you will enjoy this series. Live the Kindle serial and hope to see more from Pollack. Have loved his writing since Alternadad. He writes as if talking to you as a friend. I dig it.
Diane Patterson
I thought this book was completely hysterical -- a great look at Los Angeles ("getting anywhere takes an hour"), at yoga culture, at the craziness of celebrity, at how we let ourselves get sucked into what we think other people want.
On a whim, because I liked his earlier book-Poser- I downloaded this for my Kindle. $3.99. Yogis will appreciate his tongue in cheek rant on the yoga world. Funny at times. Might read another.
It was fun; I started growing bored of the serial, though - it felt a little long waiting between new releases, and I kind of forgot where we'd left off... yoga references were fun though
Ed Lynn
Jan 27, 2013 Ed Lynn rated it 4 of 5 stars Recommends it for: fans of humorous detective stories
Excellent and frequently whimsical story of Matt Bolster, Yoga Detective, solving the murder of a famous yoga instructor. (Originally released as a Kindle Serial in 6 installments.)
Pollack is hilarious and both loves and sees through yoga and yoga culture. The extremely dead-on LA details and gumshoe details make it all work just beautifully
Interesting to read a book in serial form on the Kindle. Entertaining at times, but overall didn't do too much for me.
Thoroughly entertaining genre fiction (even if the "Yoga Mystery" genre contains a sum total of 1 writers).
Lisa Gladden
A fun Kindle serial, one section released each month. It was difficult to wait for each additional chapter!
Craig C
Sep 13, 2012 Craig C is currently reading it
Not sure how long this will take as it is an unfinished serial.
A light, fun read, made a bit more interesting by the serial format.
While I never would've believed 20+ yrs ago I'd find some of the languauge and/or situations a little uncomfortable, I found this installment entertaining and intriguing. I look forward to the next of the series.
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Neal Pollack’s first book, The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature, was published in 2000, becoming an (almost) instant cult classic. His debut novel, Never Mind the Pollacks, hit shelves in 2003, and was shamelessly promoted by his band, The Neal Pollack Invasion. In 2007, he published Alternadad, a best-selling memoir. In 2010, Pollack became a certified yoga teacher and published Stre...more
More about Neal Pollack...
Alternadad Stretch: The Unlikely Making of a Yoga Dude The Neal Pollack Anthology of American Literature: The Collected Writings of Neal Pollack Never Mind the Pollacks: A Rock and Roll Novel Jewball

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