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Body Rides by Richard Laymon

Body Rides (edition 2004)

by Richard Laymon

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2661042,770 (3.72)5
Title:Body Rides
Authors:Richard Laymon
Info:Dorchester / Horror (2004), Mass Market Paperback
Collections:Your library

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Body Rides by Richard Laymon



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The plot is different, I'll give Laymon that. It was a cool idea to have a bracelet where you can go body-hopping any time you want. The execution fell a little flat but overall the premise was good. As the back blurb reads, Neal gets sidetracked one night returning video tapes with a man torturing and murdering a gorgeous female. Putting on an act of bravery, he shoots the man, captures the woman, and saves the day. The ending should have him walking off with whistles and high fives shouldn't it?

Things go wrong when something else tragic happens, and soon Neal ends up getting other people mixed up in his mess. Things go from bad to ugly to worse as he and his accomplices try to track down the man before he finds them first. The plot is interesting in many ways, and the characters are likeable to a degree. Many of the scenes are tense and nail-biting, and there is a sense of "us against them" going down.

However, a lot of emphasis is placed on sex. Now, while I usually don't mind that and enjoy sex in my books -- there was a bit too much here to where it took away from the plot. Tension scenes were broken up to remove pants, character interaction was a little muddled as someone else got horny yet again, and things became a little too unrealistic and akin to soft porn.

When tension is supposed to be there, it is. Laymon really is a Master at getting things going strong and sturdy. At key moments the atmosphere was powerful and dynamic.

Neal is a loveable guy -- this man would cry at a wedding, a funeral, a christening, an engagement. He has a true heart -- one big enough to swallow everyone else around him up. He's a genuine sweet fella, and I couldn't help but really like him. Usually men aren't shown to be so emotional, but he was, and came across convincing. Sue came across as fun and chipper at first but eventually wore down on my nerves. Not her attitude, but just the way everything just fell into place for her. Started wearing me out. As for Marta, I thought she bent a bit TOO easily and was slightly unrealistic and two dimensional. The deeds of the "bad guy" are certainly violent. At times his actions come across a little too extreme, almost like he's there for a little bit of shock factor.

The pace starts out well but then slows down. Mainly it's all the unnecessary sex and dialogue pertaining to lust. Again, this can be a huge strength in a novel and I'm certainly no prude when it comes to the hot and steamy stuff. But here it's used in so much excess it's un-needed, producing awkwardness and teenage angst. Pretty soon it seems like about half of the book only focuses on hormones, not horror.

On a more positive note, Laymon writes beautifully. His words are well chosen, his sentences easily flow together, his dialogue is realistic enough, and the rhythm of his work is exceptional. If only the pace and plot of this one had been worked on more.

Like a cheap condom, too much of a good thing can wear a bit too thin. This is what happened in Body Rides. A nice editing would have trimmed it up the sides, perhaps some more action and less on bedroom play, and more focus on what's important -- the story. But what we have after awhile is a book a bit too long for what it's covering, a story that drags like sheets being pulled on the floor, and mushy (unrealistic) character interaction. It's not a complete lost cause, however; I really liked Neal, the tension was tightly wound at some points, and the ending was pretty cool. Also the idea itself was unique.

If you're a fan of Laymon pick this one up....or, most likely, if you're just curious about all the sex scenes (almost an orgy too) pick this one up . ( )
  ErinPaperbackstash | Jun 14, 2016 |
Poor Richard Laymon, he was born into the wrong world. The Eskimos live in a world of snow and have a hundred words for it, but Richard Laymon lived in a world of nipples and had only the one word. One single, lousy word. Nipple.
Sure, there were 'hard nipples' and 'long nipples', even more exotic 'glistening' or 'jutting' nipples - but in the end, it was all just nipples, nipples, nipples. So many adjectives, just one lonely noun.
No, if life was fair Richard Laymon would have been born into a time and place where the language had hundreds of special words to describe each and every type of nipple that could possibly exist...such as the 'precipipple colostorium nexus', which means a nipple that is three-quarters erect (from finger pinching), resembles a slightly used pencil eraser, and has a small freckle on the left side.
But alas, life IS unfair, as Laymon's untimely death has proved with even more certainty than the dearth of words for nipples.
My brother Adam recently shared his beloved paperback of BODY RIDES, and I loved it. It's preposterous, full of equally unlikely coincidences and decisions, and requires such a spectacular level of suspension of disbelief that in the hands of any other author the whole thing would've been nothing more than a giant joke.
But Laymon's writing possesses some sort of magic spell, and once he's got you he never lets go. I haven't read a book so eagerly in a while. The writing is not classic literature, the plotholes could swallow Seattle, but damn if it's not one of my favorite books so far this year.
If you've got a single fun bone in your body, I don't see how you couldn't have one hell of a good time with this one. A word of warning, though - don't try to play a drinking game using this book, because if you took a drink every time your eyes passed over the word 'nipple', you'd be dead by chapter three. ( )
  Evans-Light | Sep 30, 2013 |
Body Rides - Richard Laymon ****

Imagine being given a ring that will allow to to enter someone elses body, feel what they feel, experience their thoughts and see the most hidden of secrets. Now imagine this ring in the hands of a randy lad just out of his teens.....

Anyone who is familiar with Laymons work will know what to expect, with lots of references to sex, boobs and girls undressing....

Neil rescues a woman being raped at the roadside and seemingly leaves her killer for dead. As a reward she gives him her most treasured item, a ring that will allow to go for 'body rides'. However the killer isn't dead and now wants to exact revenge on Neil for spoiling his fun. Can he use to ring to his advantage whilst having a little fun on the way?

A wonderful book that at times was gruesome, at times laugh aloud. I love Richard Laymon but can see why he may not be everyones cup of tea. Not a bad place to be introduced to his work. ( )
  Bridgey | Sep 4, 2012 |
To borrow the oft-quoted cover blurb from Stephen King, “If you’ve missed Laymon, you’ve missed a treat.” If you’ve never had the pleasure, I urge you to pick one up one of Laymon’s books (One Rainy Night remains my favourite). They’re the literary equivalent of watching a low-budget slasher flick while riding a dilapidated old roller coaster – a deliciously enjoyable thrill ride that doesn’t require much from the reader, other than to strap in, hold tight . . . and enjoy.Body Rides is pretty much an average Laymon tale, but still more fun than anything else you’re likely to read this summer. The basic plot is pretty simple. After rescuing a beautiful woman from a vicious serial killer, Neal finds himself gifted with a bracelet that allows him to leave his body and hitch a ride in anybody he chooses, experiencing their thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations. During his first long-distance ride, Neal discovers that not only is the serial killer he left for dead very much alive, but he’s come to finish the job . . . and there’s nothing Neal can do but watch from inside his victim.A large portion of the book is dedicated to Neal’s initial flight (from the authorities & the killer) and his relationships with two women who become key to the eventual resolution of the story. By the end, all three of them have used the bracelet for various voyeuristic, investigative, erotic, and frightening body rides. Although the story could have been a good 100 pages shorter, Laymon’s books are always as much about the experience and the atmosphere as they are about the plot, and that’s part of the thrill.Personally, I would have loved to share more in Neal’s experiences riding along in either Sue or Marta’s body, but we certainly get our fair share of Sue experiencing Neal – and the novelty/curiosity is certainly handled very well.Like I said, nobody is ever going to accuse Laymon of being the greatest writer of the 20th century, but that’s fine. Nobody is going to accuse Friday the 13th of being the greatest example of 20th cinema either, but it’s still damned fun to watch with the lights out. ( )
  bibrarybookslut | Nov 14, 2010 |
Body Rides is another must read for any fan of Laymon.
Laymon once again succeeds in creating a story that twists the reader into a knot and then proceeds to slowly untie them.
The characters are surprisingly easygoing considering there may be someone trying to kill them but the story pushes on with the twisted inner dialog and "roll with the punches" morals typical of Laymons stories.
If your a fan of Laymon this is definitely a book to add to your collection. If your not than still give it a try, its guaranteed to leave you thinking what you would do. ( )
  spidermonkey79 | Apr 1, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0843951826, Mass Market Paperback)

When Neal rescues a woman from a vicious assult, she gives him a magic bracelet, which allows him to step inside other people to experience their feelings. But the woman's attacker is out for revenge, first on her, then Neal, and Neal must use the gift to look inside the would-be killer's head.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:58 -0400)

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