In October, film critic Christopher Smith (pictured) self-published the thriller, Fifth Avenue. When his book cracked Amazon’s top 10 bestseller list, he faced homophobic insults and death threats in a now-deleted post on an Amazon.com discussion board.

We caught up with Smith to talk about the controversy. Our interview follows below…

UPDATE: This interview has generated criticism from a number of readers. We have collected some reader responses here.

Q: Did you expect to deal with controversy when you put Fifth Avenue out there?

A: I did ask friends about a few specific scenes in the book and wondered if I should censor myself from telling the truth in those scenes. I don’t believe in censorship, so I decided not to self-censor, especially after reading Stieg Larsson‘s books, which can be brutal.

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