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Poison Shy

3.59  ·  Rating details ·  68 ratings  ·  21 reviews
A dark debut from a rising literary talent Brandon Galloway is a 29-year-old nobody, fumbling between dead-end jobs in a town full of drunks and prostitutes. When he lands a position with a pest control company and meets 21-year-old wild-child Melanie Blaxley while fumigating her apartment for bed bugs, Brandon’s life skips from hapless to hectic in no time. He is both att ...more
Paperback, 161 pages
Published September 26th 2012 by ECW Press (first published January 1st 2012)
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Average rating 3.59  · 
Rating details
 ·  68 ratings  ·  21 reviews

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Initial reaction: I have many words to spare on the content and portrayal of this book, but it wasn't what I thought it would be at all. I went into "Poison Shy" with the idea that it might be a decent murder/disappearance mystery, even with maybe some tough depictions here and there, but not on the level of the mediocre plotting and over the top shock effects that were in the duration of the book.

At this point in time, I'm the only one giving this a single star as far as the ratings go on multi
Feb 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
My worst fear? Insanity. All the different kinds of crazy.
Paranoid, psychotic, deranged.
It's not so much being insane that scares me as the prolonged descent, degree by fractured degree, into the cavern of madness...

So begins, POISON SHY, the dark, gritty novel that tells the story of Brandon Galloway, a 29 year old in no-where's-ville USA who is learning to stay away from his own personal poison -- a wild, freckled red-head named Melanie, who he met one day when he was fumigating
Mar 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
4 1/2 stars!

In a word: An unexpectedly dark and bloody tale, filled with unlikable yet sympathy-inducing characters, an over-the-top plot and pitch perfect dialog.

I was not sure what to expect when I started reading Poison Shy, but it had some amazing blurbs on the back of the book, and I was looking forward to seeing if they were true. I’m thrilled to say those blurbs are spot on, and I spent a thoroughly enjoyable four hours inhaling it on the drive back from my vacation a few days ago. Madden
Alice Bola
This short novel is darkly disturbing and filled with sex, booze and violence. Our protagonist is 29-year-old Brandon Galloway who was born under a dark cloud. He lives a relatively lonely existence in a crappy job taking care of his bipolar mother. He has no hope, no future.

As a reluctant hero, Brandon was a great character. He was rough around the edges and complacent with his small existence. He was the shining star in the novel, unlike Melanie Blaxley. She was a very unlikable character and
Dec 03, 2012 rated it liked it
Brandon is a 29-year-old guy who never quite found the ideal job and hopped from one occupation to another, right now he is an exterminator. When he is called to clear out the appartment of Melanie and her roommate of bedbugs he instantly falls for her. She is outgoing and pretty vulgar, quite the opposite of the very shy Brandon. Against all odds they become a couple and he is pulled into the world of sex and crime of her and her roommate.

This was an interesting read, I devoured it in one sitt
Jan 13, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-adult
The premise of this one grabbed me from the start, and as soon as I was approved on Netgalley, I downloaded and started reading ASAP. And at the start, I was really into this one. There is something about Brandon's characterization, his mentality, etc, that totally drew me in. He is sort of ambitionless, just going with the flow even if he's not really happy with it. He's depressed, in a way that is obvious to readers but maybe not to him. He is, basically, trying to just figure his life out wit ...more
Talk Supe
Nov 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Full review at Talk Supe

I love SMadden's voice its sugar-free and tactless with succinct lamentations about life's misfortune, he had no qualms in creating real and human characters, people who pee, vomit, stink and shit for starters. You won't find romantic prose, long and winding rosy lines and dreams of HEA, just a swift punch in the gut that will disturb and grip you at the same time. No illusions of perfection here and he didn't try to romanticize the tragedies of life, POISON SHY plainly s
Janet Koops
Oct 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is one of the best books I have read in a while. Brandon Galloway is unmotivated, unambitious and underachieving. He seems to be searching for something meaningful in life but isn't quite sure how to get it. Then he meets Melanie Blaxley while fumigating her apartment and his dull life is completely shaken up. As Brandon gets involved in more than he bargained for with Melanie's string of ex-lovers and reckless behaviour, Madden has you completely caught in the journey, and while you are sc ...more
Keithmerly S
Apr 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-and-loved
I was skeptical when I picked up this book. I thought, "Oh goody. Another boy turned into a man by a crazy takes-life-by-the-horn-crazed woman."

But this was anything unlike what I expected. It was more. I absolutely love this book. I cannot believe how much Stacy Madden packed into those 160 pages.

Brandon Galloway is a 29 year old unmotivated, unambitious, un-everything, nobody who is fumbling his way through life working a menial minimum wage job at a pest control company.

He then meets 21 ye
Oct 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
I was a bit sceptical about this book when I first started it but I found that I was compelled to continue reading as the characters and the content kept me interested until the very last page.This is a story about a bug man who meets a girl,and gets dragged into her dysfunctional world. It is about how he copes with the dysfunction and
makes it through the drama. The addition of his own dysfunctional family and assorted other characters rounds the story out and ties everything together in a nic
Jenee Rager
Sep 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 1st-reads, mystery
Definitely one of the more unique stories I have won from goodreads. The story is fast paced, and the author starts the story at the ending so you know what's going to happen but really not why, which is a style of story telling I have always enjoyed. I will say I was probably not the target audience for this book but still enjoyed it. I definitely think the style of writing, and the plot itself would appeal more to men than women, and hit especially hard in with the post college, pre middleage ...more
Sep 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I got this book for free as part of the goodreads firstreads. I was hooked by the very first paragraph. I enjoyed the author’s style of writing. I loved the plot and felt the book had a lot of potential! I gave it three stars, because it was such a short book 160 pages and I felt like the introduction took up a third of the book. Don’t get me wrong, the author did a great job painting a picture of who Brandon was, giving his back story and getting me invested in Brandon as a character, but it ma ...more
Sep 11, 2012 rated it liked it
This is a story of what can happen to you if you take a chance and walk on the wild side..all the things you just don't think REALLY happen to find out that oh yes they do..but when you think about still are not real sure HOW you got involved in the first place..and then..if you had the chance would you do the same things again...knowing what you do now? Interesting book....wild tangents.
I received this book from
J. Kent Messum
Aug 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Poison Shy is a fast, fluid read that is anything but a typical little thriller. Set in a small town, Madden turns typical and not-so-typical folk into unlikely heroes and disturbing villains. Be forewarned, this book is not for the faint of heart or weak of stomach. If you like your reading on the dangerous side, then this is definitely a novel worth checking out. Get ready to have your boundaries pushed in some places.
Aug 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Thoroughly impressed with Poison Shy; it’s a tidy, taut thriller that held me to the very last page. I wanted to kick Melanie’s ass and then adopt her and give her a shower and a warm bed. The dialogue rang so true, I felt like I was listening to the whole thing through a paper-thin, filthy apartment wall.

Madden has a voice to be reckoned with.
Nov 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This was a entertaining read. Some parts were a little more sexualy graphic then needed be. The tie in to exterminator versus romantic infatuation pushed the envelope also. Again this was a good read and worth the 4 staars I gave it.
Aug 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
A fast, fun sucker-punch of a debut. Looking forward to seeing what Stacey Madden does next.
Feb 21, 2013 rated it liked it
This was totally different than the books I usually ready however I did enjoy it. It became a little predictable but overall it was still a nice easy ready which I enjoyed.
Lynn Kearney
Dec 24, 2012 rated it liked it
It's trying awfully hard to be a noir, (but doesn't really succeed.) ...more
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Stacey Madden is a writer based in Toronto.

He is the author of the novels Poison Shy, and Touching Strangers.

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