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Money Shot

(Angel Dare #1)

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  2,214 ratings  ·  271 reviews

It all began with the phone call asking former porn star Angel Dare to do one more movie. Before she knew it, she'd been shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car. But Angel is a survivor. And that means she'll get to the bottom of what's been done to her even if she has to leave a trail of bodies along the way...

Mass Market Paperback, 250 pages
Published February 2008 by Hard Crime Case
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3.74  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,214 ratings  ·  271 reviews

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Feb 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Ex-porn star and talent agent Angel Dare has been set up, beaten up, and left for dead. Now she's hiding from the law AND the bad guys who want a missing suitcase. What does Angel want? Revenge, and she'll do whatever it takes to get the men who ruined her life.

This was a fun read of the fast and furious variety. The ass-kicking female protagonist kept me turning the pages when I really should have been doing something else. It definitely satisfied my thirst for seeing bad guys go down ( and not
Dan Schwent
Apr 17, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: cool-covers, hardcase
When you shoot a woman and leave her in the trunk of a car, you'd better make sure she's dead...

Former porn star and current talent agency owner Angel Dare is duped into meeting an old friend, beaten, raped, shot, and left for dead in the trunk of a Honda Civic, all because of some missing money she knows nothing about. But Angel doesn't die and, with the help of an ex-cop named Malloy, goes looking for those responsible...

Money Shot is a quick read, full of action and suspense, as befits its pl
Jan 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Hardboiled, Hard Case Crime lovers
It's often said that the most sensitive part of your body during a porn session is your ears - no one likes getting busted with their undies around their ankles.

Well, no-one that is, unless you're Angel Dare.
”I’m sure you’re wondering what a nice girl like me was doing left for dead in the trunk of a piece of shit Honda Civic out in the industrial wasteland east of downtown Los Angeles. Or maybe we’ve met before and you’re wondering why it hadn’t happened sooner.

My name’s Gina Moretti, but you
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A former porn star known by her screen name Angel Dare (this name is bound to give some excellent and appropriate titles to her work, like Double Dare) retired and started a more respected (?) business of modeling agency for porn industry. I believe this is called matron. In any way she kind of missed her acing career so when her former producer and friend offered her one more job with the hottest male star of porn
Ron Jeremy
she could not refuse.

To make a long story short instead of the expected acting sh
This is an awesome little pulp crime novel set deep in the porn industry community of Los Angeles's San Fernando Valley, which also happens to be where I lay my head at night! It follows Angel Dare, a former porn star who now runs an agency for new talent. One night she gets a call to shoot one last scene and she can't resist the urge to prove that she's still got it. But the shoot turns out to be a front and she winds up shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car and framed for murder. She th ...more
Mar 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime-fiction
Christa Faust's Money Shot is the first Hard Case Crime original I've read, and it's a doozy. Some have complained that the new paperback originals that Hard Case publish are too self-conscious, and work too hard at recreating all the conventions of pulp narratives from the '40s, '50s, and '60s without taking the time to think about whether or not those conventions might work in a modern setting, or even why they may have worked in the first place, but this is definitely not the case with Money ...more
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*

"Coming back from the dead isn't as easy as they make it seem in the movies."

Hard Case Crimes have been hit or miss with me. Most I find good but not many great. I know there's more out there waiting for me to discover and fall in love with them - I've read about five (sad number).

Angel is a retired porn star who currently keeps afloat by running a company of working women for the entertainment industry. After receiving a phone call from a director she respects and trusts, she agrees to do one l
Mike (the Paladin)
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
I thought about dropping this all the way to a 1 star rating, but I really didn't hate the book. I only sort of disliked it. And before anyone jumps to the conclusion it was the subject matter it wasn't. I can stand an "adult" type story. The problem here is simply that the book was a kind of one trick pony with what I found some fairly weak storytelling.

Of course I know everyone won't feel that way and to be fair it is complete and total "mind-junk-food" so. you know to each their own.

Our prota
Mohammed Abdi Osman
Dec 14, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: noir
It all began with the phone call asking former porn star Angel Dare to do one more movie. Before she knew it, she'd been shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car.

When i read that part of the synopsis i thought no way im gonna get a book that sounds so clichè,so far from my taste. The cool cover pose with the gun, the female author being a contemporary noir author is what made me try this.

I liked Angel Dare despite her porn star name sounds silly. She had a strong voice,attitude that made her
The Shayne-Train
Jul 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was a great, fast-paced, and well-written noir romp.

Heh heh, I said romp. I used that word because this particular "detective story" is set in the word of the SoCal porn industry. And the word "romp" is a sexy-sex-sex word to me.

I highly enjoyed the fact that this particular seedy story had a female protagonist/narrator. Angel Dare is both the damsel AND the "hero."

This hits all the right noir-ish notes: dirty back alleys, untraceable pistols, suitcases full of moolah, bad dudes with grea
Sep 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aside from the cool name and cover, what really took this story to the next level for me was Angel Dare. Needless to say, Christa Faust knows how to spin a tale with a strong, capable heroine (not to be confused with the substance that might have been consumed by sex slave workers). The story clipped along like a Greyhound on I-70 in the middle of Colorado. Angel knows how to deal with the pond scum in the sex slave trade and porn business, and she can take a beat down about as well as any red-b ...more
Mar 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Trying to explain what I was currently reading to my wife, I described the passage I’d then reached thus: “The former porn star who is in our heroine is at the home of another former porn star, one who is washed up and drugged out, trying to get a current porn star – this one drugged up and paranoid – to leave the bathroom, before a third former porn star comes back.”

My wife looked at me with baffled disapproval. But really, I can think of no better description for the level of exaggerated, over
Christa Faust writes like she means it. I loved her sole lesbian noir Butch Fatale so much I had to venture into her mainstream work as well. Money Shot is dark, tough and stylish contemporary Noir that’s full of invention and builds to one hell of a climax.

When former porn star now talent agent Angel Dare is set up, raped, busted up, shot and left for dead in the trunk of a car she has nothing left to live for except to take revenge on the men responsible. With the help of former cop Malloy sh
Aug 14, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: black-as-night
Read on plane from Doha to London, full review may follow

Full of potential this Hard Case Original from Christa Faust reads like the anti-Megan Abbott of modern female written noir. Whereas Abbott focuses on the domestic life of her female characters Faust has a protagonist who used to be a porn star and tries acting like a male action star.

I wish it could have hit the height my imagination had in mind but still a highly enjoyable pulp read.

I have recently become obsessed with the Hard Case Crime books. I want to collect them all! The covers are so amazing!

Unfortunately, this book wasn't as amazing as the cover. I enjoyed the beginning and end, but the middle dragged for me. Angel Dare is a great character and I am looking forward to reading the next one.
I expected to like this more than I did. Overall the story was good, almost 4 stars, but the heroine's motivations degraded it. On the plus side, there was a wonderfully gritty trip through the porn industry & some memorable characters that were quickly, but well sketched. Our heroine was strong, tough & capable. Lots of action & sexual tension. Not much actual sex & what there was didn't detract from the story. It didn't read like a porn novel, which would have been very easy to ...more
Oct 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
if it wasn't enough that quentin tarentino said that "christa faust is a Veronica in a world of Betties", how about that b. gottlieb says she's the sleaziest, toughest, pulpiest crime writer out there?
i think i'm in love.
Jul 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I feel like I should put on some chili red lipstick and shake out a cigarette before I start this review. I left the chili red lipstick at home and I don't smoke, so I'll do the best I can.
MONEY SHOT is a no holds barred, don't get attached to anyone kind of book. Under normal description, this could be a cozy mystery...the main character is not a detective and finds herself having to investigate the hell that her life has become through no fault of her own. Except cozy mystery writers tend to
Jan 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
I dove right into this book, hoping that Faust achieved the same wonders that I found in her book, "Hoodtown." The prose pulled me in right away, as did the makings of the mystery. Faust quickly drops her heroine in the shit, and I braced myself for a brutal comeback culminating in bloody, bloody revenge.

Fifty pages later, I felt stuck. The good prose was still there, along with the makings of a deeper mystery, but something about the heroine's place in the story kept me at a distance. Angel Dar
Feb 22, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Walmart and Payless Shoes porn
Shelves: hard-case-crime
I hate porn puns and I hate product placements all through the book for Target and Walmart and Payless Shoes and it was a slimy, gross book anyway and I didn't care what happened to the tough as nails porn star and I don't know who was a bigger whore, the porn star or the author for shilling for all these white trash consumer dungeons.
Jul 05, 2009 rated it liked it
This is viceral fiction (I mean emotionally driven rather than crude). There's such an ugly cast of characters here (the 3 P's: pornstars, prostitutes, and psychopaths). The revenge motive drives the entire second half of the book. This is justice given out by the injured party which usually isn't pretty and in this case, it's really unpleasant. Faust pushed the limits of my taste at certain points as she almost seemed to relish sticking the reader's nose into the cesspool of humanity (human sla ...more
Feb 14, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
I didn't like this one as much as I'd hoped to. It starts out well with the kind of female protagonist I like. The book opens with Gina Moretti, a former porn star (stage name Angel Dare) narrating. She's beaten, bound and gagged in the trunk of a car. She flashes back to how she ended up in this predicament and the book takes off from there. The problems I had were that the plot isn't very plausible. She's on the run for a murder she didn't commit. Her gun was used in an execution style murder ...more
Feb 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fun-if-frivolous
This is the one I joined HCC for and I've been digging it. Admittedly, I haven't gotten very far bc The Man insists I pull my shifts for a living, but the 70 pages I've been through have been excellent---witty, bawdy, fast-paced, lotsa action. You gotta love a book with a dead man named Sam Hammer and a heroine who keeps comparing her various injuries to the titles of her checkered porn oeuvre. Fun indeed.

UPDATE: Well, I just finished it. Snap cracklin' fun. The plot's a little bland and I didn'
Sep 01, 2008 rated it really liked it
Diverting noirish romp in the adult film industry, featuring the wiescracking, smart, and tough Angel Dare. Dedicated to the late Richard S. Prather and filled with his wry humor.
Apr 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Erstwhile porn star Angel Dare, now running what's essentially a call girl ring (although she's big on defending and empowering her employees, so that they're the exploiters rather than the exploitees), is having an odd day even before she's given the enticing offer of doing a scene with her favorite current male porn star, Jesse Black. How could she have known that Jesse is a rat, part of a human-trafficking gang, and that the invitation was the start of a plot that involves murdering her best ...more
Mar 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was way better than I expected. I don’t read much crime fiction, which I wanted to change so I found a recommendation for this on bookriot. It was well worth it.

Entertaining, full of twists, set against the background of the sleeze of the porn industry, this is an unusual and well-drawn story. Angel Dare goes from a cliché porn star to a hard-boiled tough chick, in a well-written, believable transformation. She gets betrayed, is hunted by both the cops and the bad guys, uncovers a sex slave
Tom Mathews
This was an entertaining piece of pulp that has the potential to be a great noir novel, but while it kept me reading, it but never totally sucked me in. I enjoyed that this story took on the gritty, tough-guy tale and looked at it from a woman's perspective. Angel Dare is an interesting character but she never really sells the angst that any really great noir protagonist must have. Dennis Lehane once told me that "In Greek tragedy they fall from great heights ... in noir they fall from the curb. ...more
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
You may also read my review here:

Gina Moretti, aka Angel Dare, is a retired porn star who has since started her own agency, Daring Angels, for other girls in the biz. She helps them navigate the, er, ins and outs of an industry that can sometimes take advantage of the unwary and considers herself something of a protector of her girls. One day, Angel gets a call from an old friend, Sam Hammer, who she has worked with extensively in the past and trusts, to
Timothy Mayer
Dec 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I've read by Christa Faust (see top photo), but I don't think it will be the last. It's also the second I've encountered from Hard Case Crime. If this is any indication of the publisher's abilities, I may have a new addiction. There has been a lot of chatter on the Net as to how Hard Case has spark plugged the noir genre and I'm starting to believe it. Hard Case is specializing in releasing new classics from masters old(Lester Dent) and new(Jason Starr).
Money Shot begins w
Mr. Matt
Aug 19, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: pulp-fiction, 2013
Money Shot is at heart a story of revenge and retribution. Angel Dare (an ex-porn star turned adult model agency owner) is swept up into a broader conspiracy. She is tricked into a compromising position by an old friend, shot and then left for dead in the trunk of a beat up car.

All I can say is that if you kill someone you had better make sure that they are dead. Angel spends the remainder of the book tracking down the people who wronged her and then exacting her revenge - all while getting to
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Pulp Fiction: February 2018 - Money Shot 35 48 Feb 22, 2018 12:26PM  

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Christa Faust is an American author who writes original novels, as well as novelizations and media tie-ins.

Other books in the series

Angel Dare (2 books)
  • Choke Hold (Angel Dare #2)
“Eventually, morning came instead of bad guys. That was the thing about mornings. No matter how fucked up your life got, how deep and black your despair, how sure you were that you just couldn't take another second of this shit, morning just kept on coming. Over and over. Morning didn't give a damn about your little drama.” 5 likes
“The truth is, the biggest, hardest dick in the world is useless if you don't know how to eat pussy.” 0 likes
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