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Heads You Lose by Lisa Lutz

Heads You Lose

by Lisa Lutz, David Hayward

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3676343,251 (3.29)1 / 29



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Showing 1-5 of 64 (next | show all)
What a hilarious novel.

If anyone has any questions regarding how collaborations work - this is certainly a good look at that. Lisa Lutz and David Hayward trade off on who writes each chapter - and then leave notes for one another throughout the book. The way that Lisa and David work together, and fail to work together, becomes more and more clear as the book begins its slow implosion into hilarity and nonsense. Need I say it doesn't make a great deal of sense?

The pleasure in reading this comes in a rather meta way. Characters are tortured and ruined in order to piss off the co-author just a little more - threatening notes and overuse of pretentious turns of phrase are emphasized just to grate a little more. The book is laugh out loud funny, and more than a little vindictive. What's not to love?

This is arguably one of the best revenge novels out there. It's a pity that it wasn't exactly intended to be that.. ( )
  Lepophagus | Jun 14, 2018 |
Cute. Have not read the Spellman Files (same author) might look into them. ( )
  kmajort | Feb 9, 2018 |
Twenty-something siblings Paul and Lacey Hansen cannot risk the authorities learning that they are illegally growing pot and so cannot call the police when a headless corpse shows up in their yard. So they hatched a plan and dump the body off a hiking trail and wait for the police to discover it.

Believing that the corpse is Paul’s friend, Darryl, they are stunned when Darryl turns up alive and well. So who is dead? And when they discover that the body is not where they left it, they have no idea where to find it. And that is just the beginning of things that suddenly go wrong . . . .

Although the idea having two authors write alternating chapters in a story, the result here is problematic at best. Readers are likely to find it difficult to relate to either the characters or the plot when each chapter ends with the two authors trading comments and barbs about the preceding chapter. Any continuity the story might have that had is lost when the reader is pulled out of the narrative to read one author’s comments about the other’s work in the chapter they’ve just finished.

Oftentimes the banter between the two authors feels antagonistic and the ongoing contretemps serves as a sort of retribution as each one creates dastardly happenings for the other’s favorite characters. Readers expecting either a taut crime novel or a witty narrative are bound to be disappointed with this clunky tale. ( )
  jfe16 | Nov 18, 2017 |
A collaborative effort in which the story and the history between the authors were both part of the plot. I got tired of the one-upsmanhip between the writers and stopped paper way through. ( )
  Pmaurer | Sep 23, 2016 |
Witty and fun, with a nice dash of intrigue. ( )
  ChrisWay | Jul 5, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 64 (next | show all)
Inspired perhaps by those round-robin collaborations published 75 years ago by England’s Detection Club, Lutz (The Spellmans Strike Again, 2010, etc.) and Hayward add a new twist: The two collaborators, each responsible for alternating chapters, are in sharp disagreement about how the tale should be told.....


Two heads are better than one, it turns out, when solving the mystery of a headless corpse. Lisa Lutz, San Francisco author of the best-selling comedic crime novel series that started with "The Spellman Files," teamed up with former boyfriend David Hayward, a poet and editor, to create "Heads You Lose," a collaborative effort that ostensibly reveals as much about the co-authors as the characters. ...
It's loads of fun, even for the gimmick-phobic. Just go with it.


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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lisa Lutzprimary authorall editionscalculated
Hayward, Davidmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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For Jerry and Linda
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Dave, I just finished the first chapter of a new novel - a real crime novel with a dead body and all- and I thought of you.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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from Amazon com :Product Description
New York Times-bestselling author Lisa Lutz conspires with-or should we say against?-coauthor David Hayward to write an original and hilarious tag-team crime novel.

Meet Paul and Lacey Hansen: orphaned, pot-growing twentysomething siblings eking out a living in rural Northern California. When a headless corpse appears on their property, they can't exactly dial 911, so they move the body and wait for the police to find it. Instead, the corpse reappears, a few days riper . . . and an amateur sleuth is born. Make that two.

When collaborators Lutz and Hayward (former romantic partners) start to disagree about how the story should unfold, the body count rises, victims and suspects alike develop surprising characteristics (meet Brandy Chester, the stripper with the Mensa IQ), and sibling rivalry reaches homicidal intensity. Think Adaptation crossed with Weeds. Will the authors solve the mystery without killing each other first?

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Pot-growing siblings Paul and Lacey Hansen must investigate why the headless corpse of Lacey's ex-fiance turned up on their property, in a metafictional mystery where the authors disagree as to how the story should progress.

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