Belladonna by Karen Moline (501 pgs) 1998
An initially irritating book (flowery-languaged narrator), Belladonna hooked me early with expert foreshadowing that kept me wanting to learn the secrets. The narrator (confidant and emotional-bodyguard of the titular Belladonna) sends you on a non-linear tour of Belladonna’s life, giving teasing details of what’s to come. Not for the faint of heart, this book contains the worst scenes of sadistic sexual torture I’ve ever come across. The bulk of the novel focuses on Belladonna creating a trap for the men who tortured her. She creates a tantilizing nightclub with herself as the mysterious masked hostess. She then waits like a spider in her web for the hunted to come to her. Truly enjoyable.