Sing Her Down

MCD. May 2023. 288p. ISBN 9780374608484. $28. THRILLER/WESTERN
Pochoda’s (These Women) new novel is a Western thriller that starts in a prison and ends in a showdown on a gritty street in Los Angeles. Two women, trapped by circumstance but bound together by their secrets and the violence bubbling below the surface in each of them, end up on the run from the law and their own pasts. Florence “Florida” Baum is in an Arizona prison for a crime that was not her fault—or so she insists. Diosmary Sandoval, a fellow prisoner and Florida’s previous cellmate, knows better. She knows there is a seething rage inside the other woman, not least because Dios has experienced the same within herself. When the two women gain an early release due to COVID, Florida is determined to return to the life she had before prison, but Dios isn’t ready to let that happen. Now the deadly cat-and-mouse game begins.
VERDICT Pochoda’s evocation of the Old West with a couple of desperados on the run is flawlessly executed with each gritty page in this contemporary thriller, but she goes a step further in allowing the rage of her female protagonists to take center stage.
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