Kim's Reviews > Let It Bleed

Let It Bleed by S.L. Schmitz
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's review
Apr 17, 2011

really liked it

Let It Bleed is the debut novel by author S.L. Schmitz, and a truly unique one. Set in the 1980's underground punk scene in Middle America, this story is not for the casual reader. Much of it is written in a very stream of consciousness way. The story is at times dark and very raw, other times almost ethereally beautiful. The Dead Girl is a drugged out punk girl, drifting along the brink of insanity, a Virgin Mary unlike anything most of us could imagine. Her Joseph is the lead singer of a locally popular industrial band, dark and controlling and somewhat abusive. Neither of these characters embody the story of Mary and Joseph as we traditionally know them, and that is refreshing.

The book is very well-written, although definately not always an easy flow. The stream of consciousness writing style was made all the more intense by the fact that most of it followed the Dead Girl, already floating on the edge of madness. It was an interesting mix of that style and a more normal flow of words and the combination kept you guessing and wondering and wanting more. The author is masterful at the technique, the poetry of the words flowing between darkness and light in a matter of moments as you try to follow the Dead Girl's thoughts.

The character development was insane, with the writing style definately helping to define both the personalities of the characters and the environment in which they lived. Could I relate to them? Not at all, but in this particular book, that is a good thing. I don't believe that you are supposed to relate to them; rather you are caught along in the mysteries of their story.

This is definately a book that takes time, not a quick read. The stream of consciousness flow was deliberately confusing at times, and had me rereading passages from time to time. It is also a book for more mature audiences, with the dark themes, gritty language and scenes. If I had to pick a word for this book, I think it would be "haunting". It is also a book that I will be reading again!

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Reading Progress

April 17, 2011 – Started Reading
April 17, 2011 – Shelved
April 17, 2011 –
April 18, 2011 – Finished Reading

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