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Getting Off: A Novel of Sex and Violence (Hard Case Crime #69) - Lawrence Block, Jill Emerson Kate Tolliver's life has been a never-ending cycle of sex, murder, and robbery since she was a teenager. Only five of the men have lived to tell the tale and that's something Kate means to remedy in the only way she knows how...

After a long hiatus, the Hard Case Crime series returns with a bang. Or, more appropriately, a long series of bangs. What better way to mark the return of the line than a tale from the man who kicked it off in the first place, the esteemed Lawrence Block.

Right off the bat, I have to say this is my favorite cover yet in the Hard Case line and possibly my favorite cover of all time. Take a few seconds to give it a closer look. I'll wait...

As the subtitle indicates, Getting Off is indeed a novel of sex and violence. Lots of sex, lots of violence. The thing that keeps it from straying into Cinemax territory is the ability of Lawrence Block. The man can spin a yarn, that's for sure.

Even though Kate's a psychopath, Block had me rooting for her the entire time, hoping that's she'd be able to cross the five guys off her list. While her back story is dark, Block doesn't play it up for sympathy. It's the character of Kate Tolliver that got me in her corner. She's foul-mouthed, violent, and sometimes hilarious. Also scary, primarily because she's so believable. Her relationship with Rita also played a big part in keeping Getting Off from being some sort of second rate Basic Instinct ripoff.

Any complaints? Not really. There was a spot that I thought dragged near the end but I think that may have been due to me really wanting to see the last name get his hash settled. While this isn't a complaint for me, there's a lot more sex and profanity in Getting Off than all of the other Hard Case books not written by Christa Faust put together. I had no problem with any of it but I could see how some people would find it off-putting. Then again, people who look at the cover have some idea what they're getting into.

Welcome back, Hard Case! Don't be a stranger.