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    $7.19 $5.04 list($7.99)
    1. Neverwhere
    $16.29 list($23.95)
    2. A Stroke of Midnight : A Novel
    $23.10 $18.35 list($35.00)
    3. The Dark Tower (The Dark Tower,
    $7.99
    4. Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, Book
    $11.53 list($16.95)
    5. The Dark Tower VI : Song of Susannah
    $23.10 list($35.00)
    6. H.p Lovecraft Tales (Library of
    list($689.50)
    7. Hanging on
    $10.95 list($29.95)
    8. The Alienist
    $7.19 $4.84 list($7.99)
    9. On Writing
    $7.99 $4.48
    10. Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, Book
    $26.46 list($42.00)
    11. Sleeping Beauty Novels
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    12. Art of Imagination: 20th Century
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    13. Bite
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    14. The Stand
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    15. Meg
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    16. Reliquary
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    17. The Relic
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    18. American Psycho (Vintage Contemporaries)
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    19. Wolves of the Calla (The Dark
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    20. Narcissus in Chains (Anita Blake

    1. Neverwhere
    by Neil Gaiman
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0380789019
    Catlog: Book (1998-11-01)
    Publisher: Avon
    Sales Rank: 2551
    Average Customer Review: 4.45 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Richard Mayhew is a plain man with a good heart -- and an ordinary life that is changed forever on a day he stops to help a girl he finds bleeding on a London sidewalk. From that moment forward he is propelled into a world he never dreamed existed -- a dark subculture flourish in abandoned subway stations and sewer tunnels below the city -- a world far stranger and more dangerous than the only one he has ever known...Richard Mayhew is a young businessman with a good heart and a dull job. When he stops one day to help a girl he finds bleeding on a London sidewalk, his life is forever altered, for he finds himself propelled into an alternate reality that exists in a subterranean labyrinth of sewer canals and abandoned subway stations below the city. He has fallen through the cracks of reality and has landed somewhere different, somewhere that is Neverwhere. ... Read more

    Reviews (420)

    5-0 out of 5 stars What a bloody marvelous novel!
    I had the pleasant encounter with Neil Gaiman himself at the DreamHaven bookstore in Minneapolis, MN. As well a large number of people turning out to see him in person. Before seeing him in person, I've read his first major novel, "Neverwhere". Wow, it's truly the best modern fairy tale novel for adults since "Alice in Wonderland"! London came really alive to me, the above world never knew about life hidden in the under world. Literally I mean way under the above world. The characters are so fascinated and I love those two crazy killers acting like some english nobles with perverse sense of humors. Neil Gaiman is very inventive and creative with the story and based on his past stories he'd written for the comic book industry, this man is destined for greatness. I've sweared that Neil Gaiman is the modern William Shakespeare! No one have ever write the stories as well and marvelous as Gaiman...not even since James Joyce and William Shakespeare. I told Neil this and he was rather flabbergasted but it's the truth! Read the novel, then read "Stardust", then read every story Neil has ever written and you'll know that we may have a William Shakespeare for the 21st century! Oh, by the way..."mind the gap!"

    4-0 out of 5 stars Gaiman is a Pro at Weaving Worlds You Get Lost In
    I read American Gods last year and loved it, eager to read what else the author of the fabulous "Sandman" graphic novels has written, I picked up Neverwhere and read it in a day.

    Here, Gaiman takes the real life "London Underground" system of subways and tube stations and adds a twist, a magical world beyond the underground, London Below where pockets of lost time and places are filled with the forgotten people of the world.

    London Below is a world of Baronies and Fiefdoms, of angels, beasts and killers. Richard Mayhew, a securities analyst gets drawn into this secret, invisible world when he helps what appears to be an injured homeless woman. Because of his contact with her and some of the people from her world, he slowly disappears from his own reality. It seems that most people aboveground cannot deal with the reality of London Below so they conveniently can't see them or anything they do.

    A classic quest follows with an interesting cast of characters. Richard and The Lady Door, together with a reprobate Marquis and a bodyguard head off through danger to find answers. You enter the world of rat speakers, sewer dwellers and secret societies. It's all very interesting and funny as well as giving the reader the occasional scare. Below is a world where nothing is what it seems and danger lurks everywhere and yet, its inhabitants seem to derive pleasure from their lives despite that.

    As with Gods, Gaiman weaves his mythical world into the tapestry of the "reality" of every day life and there are times when you aren't sure if what is happening is just a manifestation of Richard's insanity or not. It's a nice tension.

    This book will please the fantasy reader as well as those who love a good mystery. It's a worthy read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Sorry about the confusion
    this a good book. it is reaeally good fool. It is like fantasy, but not really. it is good. it is a good book that is good and it is a book, see, it is a good book and i liked this book beacuse it was a book that was a good book that was good.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Lovely dark fantasy
    Richard Mayhew, a young London businessman finds himself mixed up in the weird alternate reality of "London Below" when he rescues a strange girl named Door. He joins her and a few other denizens from London Below --- such as the (ah, hell, why not?) irrepressible Marquis de Carabbas and the rather intense Hunter --- in her search for the Angel Islington, whom Door's father told her she could trust right before he and the rest of Door's family were murdered by two henchmen named Mr. Croup and Mr. Vandemar (who were hilarious, by the way).

    Gaiman obviously had a lot of fun with names of tube stops and prominent places in London and with the possibilities for parallels between London Below and London Above. I loved the sense of wonder and the sense of humor in Neverwhere, though both were balanced by the sense of darkness in the story. Quintessential Gaiman. A wonderful and imaginative book.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great novel from Gaimen.
    From author Neil Gaimen (Sandman, Good Omens) come this enchanting novel about a world underneath London where magic and violence reigns. The novel's hero, Richard Mayhew, is a simple man with a simple life until one day he sees a bleeding girl lying in an alley. The choice he makes to help the girl opens a whole new world to him. The very next day, Richard's life, as he knows it, has drastically changed. No one seems to know who he is. All records of his life have disappeared. His only hope is to find the girl (called Door) again and see if she can offer any explanations on why his world has turned upside down. His search for the girl leads him to a whole underground world beneath modern London where nothing is at it seems.

    This novel was much better than I anticipated. Full of action and a great storyline, Neverwhere will stretch your imagination to its fullest. Great characters round out this superb story of love, vengeance, magic and escapism. ... Read more


    2. A Stroke of Midnight : A Novel (Meredith Gentry Novels (Hardcover))
    by LAURELL K. HAMILTON
    list price: $23.95
    our price: $16.29
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0345443578
    Catlog: Book (2005-04-12)
    Publisher: Ballantine Books
    Sales Rank: 6907
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    3. The Dark Tower (The Dark Tower, Book 7)
    by Stephen King
    list price: $35.00
    our price: $23.10
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1880418622
    Catlog: Book (2004-09-21)
    Publisher: Donald M. Grant/Scribner
    Sales Rank: 46
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    Amazon.com

    At one point in this final book of the Dark Tower series, the character Stephen King (added to the plot in Song of Susannah) looks back at the preceding pages and says "when this last book is published, the readers are going to be just wild." And he's not kidding.

    After a journey through seven books and over 20 years, King's Constant Readers finally have the conclusion they've been both eagerly awaiting and silently dreading. The tension in the Dark Tower series has built steadily from the beginning and, like in the best of King's novels, explodes into a violent, heart-tugging climax as Roland and his ka-tet finally near their goal. The body count in The Dark Tower is high. The gunslingers come out shooting and face a host of enemies, including low men, mutants, vampires, Roland's hideous quasi-offspring Mordred, and the fearsome Crimson King himself. King pushes the gross-out factor at times--Roland's lesson on tanning (no, not sun tanning) is brutal--but the magic of the series remains strong and readers will feel the pull of the Tower as strongly as ever as the story draws to a close. During this sentimental journey, King ties up loose ends left hanging from the 15 non-series novels and stories that are deeply entwined in the fabric of Mid-World through characters like Randall Flagg (The Stand and others) or Father Callahan (Salem's Lot). When it finally arrives, the long awaited conclusion will leave King's myriad fans satisfied but wishing there were still more to come.

    In King's memoir On Writing, he tells of an old woman who wrote him after reading the early books in the Dark Tower series. She was dying, she said, and didn't expect to see the end of Roland's quest. Could King tell her? Does he reach the Tower? Does he save it? Sadly, King said he did not know himself, that the story was creating itself as it went along. Wherever that woman is now (the clearing at the end of the path, perhaps?), let's hope she has a copy of The Dark Tower. Surely she would agree it's been worth the wait. --Benjamin Reese

    Visit the Dark Tower store
    Over 30 years in the making, spanning seven volumes, Stephen King's epic quest for the Dark Tower has encompassed almost his entire body of fiction. Find every volume of this fantastic adventure, an interview with the master himself, and much more in our DarkTower Store.

    Authors on Stephen King
    Mystery writer Michael Connelly thinks Stephen King's "one of the most generous writers I know of." Thriller author Ridley Pearson says "King possesses an incredible sense of story..." Read our Stephen King testimonials to find out what else they and other authors had to say about the undisputed King of Horror.

    The Path to the Dark Tower
    There are only seven volumes in Stephen King's Dark Tower series but more than a dozen of his novels and short stories are deeply entwined with the Mid-World universe. Take a look at the non-series titles, from Salem's Lot to Everything's Eventual. Can you find the connections?

    History of an Alternate Universe
    Robin Furth, an expert on Stephen King's Dark Tower universe if ever there was one, has created a timeline of Mid-World, the slowly crumbling world of gunslinger Roland Deschain. Read it and get up to speed on a world of adventure.

    Hail to the King
    Fans applauded and critics howled when Stephen King was awarded the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Service to American Letters. In typical fashion, King accepted the honor with humility and urged recognition for other "popular" authors. Listen to a clip of his acceptance speech, then order the entire speech on audio CD. ... Read more


    4. Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, Book Two: City of Night
    by Dean Koontz, Ed Gorman
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0553587897
    Catlog: Book (2005-07-26)
    Publisher: Bantam
    Sales Rank: 396
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    5. The Dark Tower VI : Song of Susannah (Dark Tower (Paperback))
    by Stephen King
    list price: $16.95
    our price: $11.53
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0743254554
    Catlog: Book (2005-04-12)
    Publisher: Scribner
    Sales Rank: 6016
    Average Customer Review: 3.65 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    The next-to-last novel in Stephen King's seven-volume magnum opus, Song of Susannah is a fascinating key to the unfolding mystery of the Dark Tower.

    To give birth to her "chap," demon-mother Mia has usurped the body of Susannah Dean and used the power of Black Thirteen to transport to New York City in the summer of 1999. The city is strange to Susannah...and terrifying to the "daughter of none" who shares her body and mind.

    Saving the Tower depends not only on rescuing Susannah but also on securing the vacant lot Calvin Tower owns before he loses it to the Sombra Corporation. Enlisting the aid of Manni senders, the remaining ka-tet climbs to the Doorway Cave...and discovers that magic has its own mind. It falls to the boy, the billy bumbler, and the fallen priest to find Susannah-Mia, who in a struggle to cope -- with each other and with an alien environment -- "go todash" to Castle Discordia on the border of End-World. In that forsaken place, Mia reveals her origins, her purpose, and her fierce desire to mother whatever creature the two of them have carried to term.

    Eddie and Roland, meanwhile, tumble into western Maine in the summer of 1977, a world that should be idyllic but isn't. For one thing, it is real, and the bullets are flying. For another, it is inhabited by the author of a novel called Salem's Lot, a writer who turns out to be as shocked by them as they are by him. ... Read more

    Reviews (194)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Dark Tower VI - The best thus far?
    I never thought I'd say I loved a book more than I love The Drawing of The Three. Even as I read the second installment of the still-forming Dark Tower story, I knew I was in love and that no other story (or piece of a story, as the case may be) would ever come close. However, I'm glad to say that I have proven myself wrong. Song of Susannah excels in doing what all the DT books have done so far: giving us great action, making us jump out of our seats, creating a rich backstory, and of course, it will make you turn the pages faster than you thought was possible. Without getting into spoiler material, DT6 clears up a lot of what happened in Wolves. Susannah's bond with Mia is explained, as are some of the Crimson King's desires. Some readers were scared that the story was getting too schticky when Roland and Crew discovered that Callahan and the events in 'Salems Lot were apparently works of fiction from a writer named Stephen King. Rest assured, this issue is dealt with in a decidely appropriate manner. Also, there's always the question of the rose. I won't say much, but the rose is handled. In true Dark Tower fashion, the book ends with multiple cliffhangers, but I think they're definitely better than the excrutiating ending of The Waste Lands. I'm sure it sounds like I've ne'er seen the book, much less read it, but I'm being vague as to not give too much away. Trust me, when you read this you'll love all of the "Holy Crap!" moments. It seems as if each chapter (stanza) is packed with them. All in all, I'd rate it as my favorite thus far, and I am officially a slave to King until the final installment hits the shelves. Hopefully the next few months pass without incident, say thankya.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fast moving story with some scary ideas.
    Sometimes it's hard for me, being the only person in my group of friends to be a true DT junkie, not having anyone I can truly discuss the books with. However, "Song of Susannah" is one of those novels where a person doesn't exactly have to be a fan to talk about some of the ideas it conveys. Duty, personal responsibility, sacrifice, theories of existence, coming-of-age, the bold (and somewhat unnerving) idea of God as being just some sort of middle-man for an even greater force... all of these things are qualified fodder for any snooty literary chat circle.

    Of course, as a novel on its own, "Song of Susannah" seems more like just an appetizer to that bad boy that some Tower fans have been waiting over two decades for, Volume 7 of the series, "The Dark Tower". It is incredibly fast-paced (a welcome return to the hectic action of "Drawing of the Three" and "The Waste Lands"), and it manages to get across a hell of a lot of necessary info, in a bit over 400 pages. All that, plus even more character development and some nasty surprises. For one, the business with the chap and its parentage? Threw me for a loop.

    It is true that the style of these last two novels seems to differ a bit from the first four. It's hard to describe, more a feeling than anything else, but it feels like some kind of magic has been lost. Mr. King said in his Amazon interview (short but kinda interesting) that he felt the need to finish the series, but it seems to me he could have waited just a bit longer. With the other novels, there was like a little hibernation period in between each one. It always felt like a long wait between stories, but I can't say I was ever disappointed when the novels DID come. Now, it almost feels like Mr. King jumped the gun on his "muse", or whatever you want to call it... the latest novels are very well-written in a workmanlike sort of way, but that true EPIC feeling, prevalent in the first 4 books, only makes a half-hearted appearance.

    One surefire thing about "Song of Susannah"? It will you make wish the summer was only a few days long so you can get right to September, the release month for DT7 (!!!).

    P.S. If you're an impatient reader like me and you want to look for any possible clues as to how to the series might end (of course I'm not guaranteeing anything), you might try looking out for a copy of "Childe Roland To The Dark Tower Came", which I recently read the whole way through for the first time. As I've read through the series again in anticipation of the final book, I've noticed a load of parallels to the poem that I had never picked up on before reading Browning's work. If you can get past the poetic language and Victorian English (I had a tough time at first), it's really beautiful, with an aptly bittersweet ending.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Approaching the Big Bang...
    ...and I don't mean Creation, either.

    Song of Susannah contains more action and fast-paced material than any of the previous DT books, even Drawing of the Three, but at the same time it seems to move in slow-mo, and for good reason: This book takes place primarily in one day, and King goes into tremendous detail on the sequence of events leading up to the end of this epic. Would we have it any other way?

    I got the feeling while reading this book (and accurately so, I have little doubt) that it is simply the first chapter of the very last Dark Tower book. That is to say, the last two books were originally written at pretty much the same time, as one, and King later separated them into two, for reasons of his own (probably for marketing and profit reasons, sure, but it also makes one hell of a cliffhanger!). The most recent example I can recall of this having been done was with the last two Matrix films (please forgive the reference).

    I scoffed at first when King brought himself into the story, and regarded it as a plot-thinner, rather than just the opposite. However, I feel that this must be a vital part of the entire series, that is essential to reach the conclusion King is going for, and has been going for all along, otherwise why would he dare?? I wouldn't say King is modest about his talents as a writer, really, but I don't think he's a fool either. I applaud his courage to venture into such an unusual realm, and sincerely hope he makes it worth our while and patience.

    There is a lot in this book that King answers ("What's going on inside Susannah?" being the main issue) and leaves unanswered (read the book for yourself to witness its monster ending!). I have found some of the turns he's made very curious, but not enough to decide whether they were or weren't good ideas. Like I said before, I think this book is simply a necessary prologue to the last book, and shouldn't be judged as a novel in itself (i.e. Don't expect to be satisfied!).

    Right now I am going on faith in his imagination, just as I have through this entire series, and enjoying the ride.

    As they say, it ain't over 'til it's over. So, for your father's sake, wait until the man finishes the story!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Underrated
    I don't see how anyone could have given this a zero. The entire thing was very well written, and my only complaint with this book is that it is too short, but even that isn't really a problem because the next one is coming out so soon. So far, it seems like all the peole badmouthing it said they hated that Steven King brought himself into the series. I guess it might have been better if he hadn't, but he did it pretty well, it's not like he just popped up and said"Hi I'm Steven King, and I am your God" the way some people have made it sound. Instead he slowly tied himself in to explain many of the things from the Dark Tower 5 and 6. Even if you still can't stand that he was in it, he was only in it for about thrity pages(not counting the author's journal at the end) and (warning:spoiler) he killed himself off in the journal anyway so he can't be in the next one.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
    Fortunately I bought this book (and read it) before reading the reviews. While I was expecting some controversy regarding the fact that King writes himself into the novel, the extremely hostile reaction of so many surprised me. I was shocked when I read where King comes into the book, but it doesn't seem to be an ego-trip or anything of the sort. For one thing, King doesn't portray himself as a very likable guy. Not the sort of thing you write if you're on an ego-trip. Most importantly, the inclusion of his character seems almost inevetible. After reading it, it seems the only explanation that makes sense. It's the final piece to the puzzle.

    I've been reading DT since the beginning, and for me this was the best of the series. The most disappointing aspect of it is seeing so many negative responses. This probably wouldn't be the case if King wasn't in the novel. I wish that others could enjoy it as much as I did.

    The book has *extreme* suspense that builds throughout. It leaves you at a climax (somewhat like Waste Lands - but not quite THAT much of cliffhanger). Fortunately I won't have to wait long for VII. Mentioning Waste Lands reminds me of the controversial ending of that one. So many people made similar comments about it (how it trashed the series) then and now seem to view it as 'the high point. ... Read more


    6. H.p Lovecraft Tales (Library of America)
    by H. P. LOVECRAFT
    list price: $35.00
    our price: $23.10
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1931082723
    Catlog: Book (2005-02-03)
    Publisher: Library of America
    Sales Rank: 485856
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    7. Hanging on
    by Dean R. Koontz
    list price: $689.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0871311186
    Catlog: Book (1973-11-01)
    Publisher: M Evans & Co
    Sales Rank: 587562
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Hilarious Comic Novel
    When I finally found a copy of this book, I was not disappointed. Different from other Koontz tomes, this novel, set in World War II, has a great cast of characters, and is full of laughs, sex, and zany insights into something (war) that is normally not funny. ... Read more


    8. The Alienist
    by CALEB CARR
    list price: $29.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0679417796
    Catlog: Book (1994-03-15)
    Publisher: Random House
    Sales Rank: 108178
    Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    The year is 1896, the place, New York City. On a cold March night New York Times reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned to the East River by his friend and former Harvard classmate Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a psychologist, or "alienist." On the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge, they view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy, a prostitute from one of Manhattan's infamous brothels. ... Read more

    Reviews (396)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating grotesque
    Caleb Carr has written a plot-driven novel with a strong setting and reasonably complex characters. The industrial New York setting comes across as seedy and gritty without being too overblown, and the narrator's somewhat modern perspective and voice allows the reader to feel somehow more familiar with this past time. I can't vouch for the historical veracity but it felt real enough to me.

    Like Crichton, Carr allows the reader to be taken on a thriller journey that includes bits and pieces of knowledge (NY underworld, psychology in the late 19th century) so the book feels less like brain candy. Unlike Michener, Carr avoids drowning out his sense of storytelling in order to share his wealth of information.

    Two weaknesses affect the story. First, the narrator seems a bit of a buffoon--the old "why would the rest of these characters bother tolerating him." Second, Carr seems to think a dramatic denouement requires including every character who's appeared previously and providing them with a weapon. A few pages of overblown drama are quite forgivable though in an otherwise well-researched and skillfully told novel.

    4-0 out of 5 stars What a pageturner!
    I read The Alienist with my face-to-face bookclub this month and was immediately excited for a couple of reasons. First, we needed a change, having focused on "issue" books primarily, and second, I love serial killer mysteries. There's nothing like a great thriller to keep you company on a rainy afternoon. And this was no exception.

    It's Spring, 1896, and the New York City police department is faced with a dilemma. Someone is murdering and mutilating young male prostitutes. Commissioner Theodore Roosevelt brings together Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a controversial profiler (aka alienist), John Moore, the police beat reporter for the Times, and an assorted cast of trustworthy detectives and friends to take the case. Can this team of unexpected investigators find the murderer before he strikes again?? Guess you'll have to buy the book to find out...

    Overall, I enjoyed Carr's vivid description of turn of the century NYC and his ability to write in response to the time period's needs. I don't think he missed a single detail. The ending was slightly anti-climactic though I would not hesitate to recommend the book to anyone interested in this type of novel. I'm on my way to find The Angel of Darkness for more adventures with this funny, endearing group of characters.

    4-0 out of 5 stars The Alienist, by Caleb Carr
    The Alientist, by Caleb Carr, is one of the most unique novels you are likely to read. Although it could be termed a mystery, I think it works better as historical fiction. Anyone disappointed with the recent film Gangs of New York should look to this book as more interesting historical fictional set in 1800s New York. Unlike that movie, however, this book really conveys a sense of old time New York during the turn of the century. But the setting does not dominate the novel, rather it serves as a striking backdrop for the considerable story, using such real life characters as Theodore Roosevelt. J.P. Morgan and Anthony Comstock (whose ancestors also appear in the similarly themed Quicksilver, by Neal Stevenson) also make brief apperances. As with Quicksilver, the settings and characters compliment the plot, using it to examine philosophical and religious issues, a trait not commonly found in typical mysteries. The end result that the main thrust of the plot (i.e. the search for a serial killer) takes on greater meaning, in its attempt to show the difficulties faced by attempting to reconcile civilization's greater struggles with that of the (seemingly insignificant) individual.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A slightly different New York
    One of the most well-researched, intelligently written books of historical fiction on the shelves. Carr not only utilizes the budding sciences of criminal psychology and forensics, but he presents each method as seen through the eyes of those living in the 1890's when both were considered new developments. He successfully mimicks the style of the day, which is often longwinded and wordy, but at the same time poetic and lyrical. The descriptions of old New York, particularly the dangerous, back-alley tenement ghettos, the subculture of police corruption, and the Victorian decadence once known as the "sporting life" are written so well that it's hard to believe Carr wasn't actually there to witness it all firsthand. Definitely recommended, and a good hook for the sequel, Angel of Darkness.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Satisfying
    The finest writing, to my mind, is that which uses one's mind. Caleb Carr fully engages the minds of his readers by expertly plumbing the minds of his characters, including a chillingly twisted mind, that of a serial killer. Mr Carr invites his readers to sort out details, to route out clues, to struggle along with the protagonist, New York Times writer John Moore, as he devises a method in which to trap a man who has killed, and who will kill again, before captured finally within the breathless climax. To capture this killer, John Moore utilises psychology, a science which in 1896, the year this novel transpires, was brand new, untried, and popularly maligned. To help him along in this is Laszlo Kreizler, the Alienist, a practitioner of psychology during a time when the mind remained the domain of myth, misunderstanding, and the property of a Higher Power. Battling corruption and ignorance, John Moore, under Kreizler's tutelage, rallies an investigation that plows new ground in crime fighting history. These men are splendid and admirably portrayed, however, I admired especially the female liason, if simply for the fact that Mr Carr included an intelligent, independent woman character within a late 19th-century setting, a time almost universally unkind toward women, wherein they were relegated to the lower ranks, and regrettably dismissed to forgettable subservient roles. ... Read more


    9. On Writing
    by Stephen King
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0743455967
    Catlog: Book (2002-07-01)
    Publisher: Pocket
    Sales Rank: 1777
    Average Customer Review: 4.61 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    "Long live the King" hailed Entertainment Weekly upon the publication of Stephen King's On Writing. Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer's craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King's advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported near-fatal accident in 1999 -- and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it -- fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told. ... Read more

    Reviews (540)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Ideas behind the words
    "The story is the most important part of the story" could accurately sum up Stephen Kings book on writing.

    The first half of the book is autobiographical. Stephen takes us through his childhood, discussing key events in his development as a person and a writer. This sets the context for the experiences he later writes about.

    The second half is the "On Writing" part, where he gives advice to aspiring fiction writers. He covers technical aspects (be concise) as well as tips on the creative process (don't sweat the plot, create situations and be true to what the characters would do in them). He describes the process of writing as "finding a fossil" - the fossil of the story is out there, use the most subtle tools out there to share the fossil.

    At the end, Steve covers his current status and recovery from a near death experience at the hands of an errant van driver. Perhaps this is the most touching part of the story.

    This book does capture some very useful nuggets of information, and will be especially useful to avid king readers. In that sense, it isn't just a trade book for writers. Enjoy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and practical book for writers
    I read this book - my first by Stephen King - after noticing a lot of favorable reviews, and I really liked it. This book has been highly recommended in many different forums for young, aspiring writers, and I can see the reason why.

    While the first half of the book is autobiographical, dealing with events that made Stephen King the type of writer he is; the second half deals almost exclusively with King's insights and suggestions on the craft of writing - from vocabulary, grammar, editing, etc., to the nuances of dialogue, description, and narration. Unlike many books dealing with the art of writing, this book has a friendlier, almost intimate approach, and King uses numerous examples from his own work and that of other writers to illustrate his points. Two of the best pieces of advice in this book are: "Write with your door closed, re-write with your door open", and "If you don't have the time to read, you don't have the time or the tools to write".

    This is a very inspiring and motivating book for anyone interested in writing. King himself never stopped writing, no matter what the circumstances - the abject poverty of the early part of his life, or the excruciating pain as a result of the life threatening accident - and that is the biggest lesson in this book for writers.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Like a school book, but way more fun!
    Stephen King's On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, is probably the best advice book you're goin to get.
    It has three parts:
    (1)An account on his younger life, and why he thinks he came to be the type of writer she is today.
    (2)The second part is an absolutely fantastic account on writing. He runs you through Plot Development, Character development, different types of plot eg: Story/Situation, advice on Literary Agents, submitting short-stories to magazines etc etc etc...
    (3)And the last 60 pages or so is an account on the horrifying accident he had in 1999 in Maine. He walks through it in detail.

    As an aspiring writer myself, I found this book classic. When I think back to before, when I didnt read it - and was writing myself - If found that I really needed it.

    So, for anyone who wants to know the low-down on becoming a successful writer, buy the book; for anyone who is a fan this is a must, you will read exciteing stories about his childhood and later life, and read the explicit chapter on his horrible accident.
    King, at his best. :-)(-:

    5-0 out of 5 stars Book Review: Stephen King ¿ On Writing
    Book Review: Stephen King - On Writing

    I enjoyed the first half of the book for the humorous lighthearted approaches Steve takes to his life. One inspiring moment would not leave my mind. I wish that I had one in my own life as significant. As a young boy Steve copied the works of his favorite comic and showed the result to his mother. "Write one of your own, Stevie," she said. WOW! Obviously the seed of a writer was already planted but what fertilizer was that moment in Stephen King's life. Permission to write came at a very significant age. So many writers struggle to give themselves permission to write. A comment like this reminds me how influential a parent is to their child. Imagine what may have become of Steve had his mother been a different woman.

    Other enjoyable moments involved poison ivy, a rather naughty school distribution and Steve's bleak telling of his drug and alcohol abuse. With the latter I sat wondering at Stephen's courage. Not just to relate these facts openly and honestly to his readers, but also to step beyond his dependency and hope, perhaps pray, that his writing did not come from the altered state. Some of his readers would see Steve in a darker light when realizing he is a former addict. I know that my image of Stephen changed. I saw in him honor, courage and a great strength to overcome. I admire him for stepping through the fear I can only imagine he must have felt and coming past it into real living. May we all learn from his experience.

    When I reached the middle of Stephen King's "On Writing: A Memoir", I could not help but notice the very distinct change of voice between the first section and the second. I wondered how the light hearted man, who wrote about living life even through some very hard moments, could possibly be the same man who wrote in stilted lament. I read feeling rather resentful of the attitude I felt coming from the pages. I wondered how he dared imply that the way he did things was the only way to do them. I was particularly flummoxed at the parts where Steve speaks of plot and how no writer should ever use plot, story is the key element. I agree, story is key, but my current novel is laid out perfectly on a large board with every little plot nuance decided. Of course since I am suffering a serious writer's block with that novel perhaps Steve has merit when he speaks of plotting and the damage it can do to story.

    Beyond that single disagreement I found Steve spoke to the readers of "On Writing" with integral truth. He spoke fact, but somehow in the second half of the book there seemed a lot less joy. It is only when I reached the postscript I realized why the two halves of one book seemed so different. You may notice the significance of change yourself when you read this book and you will find as I did that there is an rather extreme reasoning for it. Right where the voice changed is the eighteen months where Steve had been recuperating after being hit by a Dodge van. This life-changing event very obviously changed his sense of self and ultimately his voice, his writing.

    The second half of the book involves a lot of helpful advice, but personally I felt that a writer would find the first half much more inspiring. The second half answers questions you might have, but the answers are only helpful if you write in the same way Steve writes. Every writer does things their own way and while you can take his words and mince them in your own mind and heart into something of your own, if you attempt to copy his routine exactly you will loose your self. He admits this also and I thank him for once again being so honest. The second half of the book offers a great deal to aspiring writers but I feel the first half offered twice that again.

    Overall this book is a wonderful read for all writers and entertaining for non-writers. I freely admit that I have never read another of Stephen King's books but having read this one I am itching to read some of his fiction. He has a fluid hand that is a delight to read. I did find the profanity scattered across the book grating, but he has a section where he speaks of that also. It says a lot about who Stephen is and how he was raised. The entire book opens him up for readers to really know him, and that is a true connection of minds that shouts the truth he shares of writer's telepathy.

    Despite all he has suffered in life Stephen comes out a stronger man. In "On Writing" he offers aspiring writers a wealth of advice the most significant being, "Read a lot, Write a lot." You can only learn your subject by immersing yourself in it and as with all artistic desire to reach perfection the Carnegie hall anecdote comes to mine, "Practice, practice, practice". Thank you, Stephen King, for sharing yourself with me. I am a better person and hopefully a better writer because of your candor.

    Rebecca Laffar-Smith

    5-0 out of 5 stars Helpful and Entertaining
    I read this book while in the middle of editing a book for publication. It reminded me of many things I had either forgotten (from my days of working with the Chicago Manual of Style or The Elements of Style) and suddenly, my red pen used A LOT more ink.

    A highly entertaining read, I recommend for all serious writers. Take a few tips from a true master of the craft.

    From the author of I'm Living Your Dream Life and The Things I Wish I'd Said, McKenna Publishing Group ... Read more


    10. Dean Koontz's Frankenstein, Book One: Prodigal Son
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0553587889
    Catlog: Book (2005-01-25)
    Publisher: Bantam
    Sales Rank: 2212
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (39)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Did Koontz write this?
    Being a huge fan of Koontz, I had to pick this paperback up.To be honest, I am not convinced that Koontz wrote this book.Kevin Anderson is listed as a co-author and I feel like he wrote the book, possibly in consultation with Koontz.It's not a bad read; it's just not nearly as good as most of Koontz's books.The book has an interesting premise that does read very quickly.I just found the plot to be somewhat simplistic and the characters to be stereotypical.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Dean Koontz's Frankenstein
    I have loved Dean Koontz for years but his books of late have gotten away from the reason I fell in love with his stories...All I can say is HE'S BACK!I can't wait for the 2nd book!! I could not put this down,it made me breathless the whole way through!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Frankenstein Prodigal Son
    I am a big fan of Dean Koontz but not this book. The character Decaulion was boring. I didn't think much of the ending (I don't want to give it away). Usually I'm surprised by the ending, or satisfied. A predictable conclusion.

    2-0 out of 5 stars not koontz's best
    If you have read a Koontz before, you will pretty much already know the story line to this tale. The only difference is that here Koontz takes in Frankenstein and turns him into a Marvel Comic book character out to save the day.

    I think that I have read just about every Koontz book. He has a plot that he uses over and over again shifting characters and situations just slightly in order to write something new, but it's really not often new. The reason that I read or listen to Koontz is that every once and a while he almost produces an astounding book. Back in the early 1990's it seems to me that he wrote two or three tales of horror that was really engrossing.But since then he has written close to 20 books that are just goofy. They are silly in that they go so over the top with a bad guy who is so purely evil pitted against a couple that is falling in love and as pure as can be. And the ending always is a lesson in Christian morality that makes you wants to call up the author and offer some editorial advice. The only difference with Frankenstein as opposed to most of Koontz earlier work is that this one is three times more complex and three times as long. I have not read the last two books in the series yet, but I hope that they don't become three times as sappy.

    Koontz has the ability to write a great novel. His imagination and ability to push a story along are not in question. What is in question in my opinion is his need for pat resolutions. At the outset of this newest book, he talks of meeting with Phillip K Dick, an author who inspired many a twilight zone episode in the 60's. Dick's stories were strange and odd tales that harbor a mood I think Koontz strives for in his work. I wish that Koontz would pick up a few of Dick's books and see that if his happy endings were applied to them, they would fall apart, just as Koontz's do. I wish that Koontz's main characters were either more flawed if on the good side or less evil if on the bad. At times when you are reading one of Koontz's books, you feel very much like you are in the middle of one of the better X-file episodes and wonder why Koontz doesn't grab a hold of these moments and expound.

    (...)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect!
    Koontz is the man and this was a very good read. The only problem I have is that it lacked a real powerful ending. I understand that it is a series and he wanted to leave something for the next novel, but the whole Randal Six story went nowhere. I still recommend it and can't wait for the next in the series. ... Read more


    11. Sleeping Beauty Novels
    by A. N. Roquelaure
    list price: $42.00
    our price: $26.46
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0452156610
    Catlog: Book (1999-05-01)
    Publisher: Plume Books
    Sales Rank: 4429
    Average Customer Review: 3.76 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty:
    Anne Rice writing as A. N. Roquelaure.In the traditional folk tale "Sleeping Beauty," the spell cast upon the lovely young princess and everyone in her castle can only be broken by the kiss of a Prince. Anne Rice's retelling of the Beauty story probes the unspoken implications of this lush, suggestive tale by exploring its undeniable connection to sexual desire.

    Beauty's Punishment:
    This sequel to The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, the first of Anne Rice's elegantly written volumes of erotica, continues her explicit, teasing exploration of the psychology of human desire. Beauty, having indulged in a secret and forbidden infatuation with the rebellious slave Prince Tristan, is sent away from the Satyricon-like world of the castle. Once again Rice's fabulous tale of pleasure and pain dares to explore the most primal and well-hidden desires of the human heart.

    Beauty's Release:
    In the final volume of Anne Rice's deliciously tantalizing erotic trilogy, Beauty's adventures on the dark side of sexuality make her the bound captive of an Eastern Sultan and a prisoner in the exotic confines of the harem. In Beauty's Release, Anne Rice makes the forbidden side of passion a doorway into the hidden regions of the psyche and the heart.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (110)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Over-rated. Typical Anne Rice!
    These books could have been amazing, they could have been breathtaking, they could have been... art. But they weren't. Sure, the concept is original and there are some truly delectable parts. But honestly, how many times do we have to hear about someone getting spanked or Beauty's incessant whining? If all the boring parts were taken out and Beauty's character even slightly developed this story would have been the length of one of the novels and fun to read! Unfortunately, the spankings get redundant and som parts are just gross, pure shock value. These novels, while entertaining and worth reading, have all the depth of DeSade... the world's greatest over-rated author of erotic "trash". Buy the audio tapes of these books if you can find them... Elizabeth Montgomery (remember Bewitched?) read Beauty's parts and all the boring junk was cut out! They're much better than the novels themselves!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent read!
    When I read the first of the Sleeping Beauty books by Anne Rice, I read it in an afternoon. I immediately went out and bought the remaining two books in the trilogy. I had purchased the first one out of curiosity, after paging through it. At first, these books may seem to be just a lot of sex, and S and M type of stuff, but there is more to it than that. Rice explores the feelings of the characters and how they adjust to their situation and surroundings, and how they relate to each other in such an extraordinary setting. I found myself reading as fast as I could to find out what happened to Beauty and her friends. If you are offended by extremely explicit and graphic sex, you would not like these books. But if that doesn't bother you, and you like a sense of fantasy and seductiveness, these are the books for you.

    5-0 out of 5 stars As always, Rice captivates!
    I am a huge Anne Rice fan and of course the most of us have atleast heard of her alias writing names. So I had heard of this set of erotic tales she had written but could never get my hands on them. Finally I got the trilogy and I could NOT put these books down! Then once I was finished with the last page of the last book, I wanted more!! Anne Rice can take anything and make it sensual. These books are a great and intrigueing read, for a wide audience, even if you're not necessarily into BDSM or that type of thing. Though they are probably not for the weak hearted. But they sure are mind-opening to those who can handle something different than the boring missionary-ness of her our lives and sex-lives. Definate recommendation! Enjoy!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Erotic Tale of Growth and Discovery
    I had received the trilogy as a birthday gift. I do enjoy the fantasy world of Anne Rice and this is no acception. The reader gets to enjoy with the main characters how they grow not only sexually but also emotionally. Some reviewers I've read got so hung up the repetion of some of the action that they miss the point. So read and enjoy the series.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Imaginative
    This collection of books grabs you from the beginning and doesn't let you go. Even when you have finished the third book, you crave for more. I give this book the highest recommendations possible, being one of Anne Rice's best collections possible. It seems to be the culmination of her writing career, branching out into other genre`s and succeeding at it. ... Read more


    12. Art of Imagination: 20th Century Visions of Science Fiction, Horror, and Fantasy
    by Frank M. Robinson, Robert E. Weinberg, Randy Broecker
    list price: $99.95
    our price: $84.96
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1888054727
    Catlog: Book (2002-10)
    Publisher: Collectors Press
    Sales Rank: 72064
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Since the beginning of his existence, man has used imagination to create magical worlds that would transport him beyond the borders of reality. Art of Imagination is a trilogy consisting of the award winning Illustrated History series: Science Fiction of the 20th Century (Year 2000 Hugo Award Winner), Horror of the 20th Century (Bram Stoker Award nominee), and Fantasy of the 20th Century creating the ultimate collection. It was in the twentieth century that book, magazine, and poster artists reached new pinnacles of creativity in depicting the unknown. This collection of works by artists and designers of movie posters, books, and magazines provides a hearty feast for the eyes of the enchanted reader. These artisans and their works are the subject of this new must-have book for not only collectors of memorabilia, but for every person who has longed to step into his or her imaginary world, be it one of fantasy, flight, or fear -- if only for a moment. ... Read more

    Reviews (5)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A heavyweight vision.
    First off I think you should know that this wonderful book's 768 pages weigh a bit over ten pounds. It is a reprint of three very popular Collectors Press 20th Century series, Science Fiction, Horror and Fantasy. I bought this copy because I'm interested in visual popular culture and I was very impressed with the historical scope of the subject matter, the 1300 colored illustrations include not only book jackets but covers of magazines, comics and nicely, film posters.

    With so many illustrations you can search out your favorites, I like the work of Hannes Bok, Kelly Freas and Jeff Jones and there plenty of examples of their work. Running through all the images the three authors contribute a popular history of each genre but it is the huge collection of covers that make this a knockout book for me.

    BTW, I bought this big book at a huge discount and I suggest you take the trouble to check the title out on the comparison shopping book websites, you'll be surprised at price variations.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Necessary purchase for my collection of art texts
    Being a professional artist, and a mondo horror fan, I was craving to get my pencil smudged paws on this book. Over 700 pages of lavishly illustrated science fiction and horror history. Art of Imagaination brings to attention the works of the great artists who have worked in this field for over a century. Anyone with even a minor interest in thsi subject would find this text a true page turner. Highly Recommended.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Trip Through the Fantastic!
    This book is a must have for anyone who is creative. If you've lost your sense of wonder, this book will bring it back. You cannot help but be inspired by this fine tribute to the illustrators and art directors of fantastic art. You will not be disappointed buying this book. No cheap black & white stroll through memory lane here. It's a full color journey spotlighting the creative talent of imaginative artists from days gone by to today. High quality paper and binding are the icing on the cake. A tip of the hat to the authors and publisher for such an authoritative volume on a thinly treated subject.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Biggest Bargain Going--and Best
    First of all: a disclaimer. I edited one of the three books incorporated in this single volume as well as an overall introduction. But I'm not shilling for the book--I don't have to. Included in this one volume are "Science Fiction of the 20th Century," "Horror of the 20th Century," and "Fantasy of the 20th Century." An illustrative history of the three genres--in one volume. Bought separately, they would have run you $... The same plates were used in this volume, the same paper--in many cases, the reproduction is even better than in the original volumes. NOT available in most bookstores. This is probably the biggest, single, hardbound volume of 4-color illustrations ever published in the United States. If you looked at the single books in the series and passed because of price, take a look at this one. Not just for the pretty pictures--the written historical sumamries are also worth the price. End of commercial--nobody's paying me to write this and any royalties as such have been prepaid. Fellow editor/authors Robert Weinberg and Randy Broecker know their stuff. Reason for this screed: I'm damned proud of the book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars DEFINITIVE & THRILLING
    If you have ever had even the slightest interest in Science Fiction, Fantasy or Horror art, this book is the best choice. Rather than tossing out the same old trite examples, the authors have collected an astounding number of the very best covers and illustrations from pulps, novels and posters - all from the finest names in the business. Printed on high-quality gloss paper, every page is a treat for the eyes and a confirmation that pulp art holds an important place in American popular culture. All of the best authors are represented, the best artwork, and fantastic commentary. A perfect gift for a Sci-fi/Fantasy/Horror fan - or for yourself! You won't be sorry for the price: The exceptional quality of the printing, the vibrant colors, and just the delightful heft of a book so filled with great pop art will be worth every penny. ... Read more


    13. Bite
    by Laurell K. Hamilton, Charlaine Harris, MaryJanice Davidson, Angela Knight, Vickie Taylor
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 051513970X
    Catlog: Book (2005-01-31)
    Publisher: Jove Books
    Sales Rank: 2316
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    Book Description

    A never-before-published Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter story from New York Times bestselling author Laurell K. Hamilton. A brand-new story from New York Times bestselling author Charlaine Harris, featuring the much-loved Sookie Stackhouse.

    A hot new novella from USA Today bestselling author MaryJanice Davidson, set in the world of Undead and Unwed's Betsy Taylor, the newly, and reluctantly,crowned Vampire Queen.

    Introduced in the collection Hot Blooded, and on the heels of the wildly successful Master of the Night, Angela Knight has created a fascinating universe of Arthurian Lore and erotic vampirsim. And a sexy original story from Vickie Taylor, a new addition to Berkley Sensation. ... Read more


    14. The Stand
    by STEPHEN KING
    list price: $12.99
    our price: $19.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0517219018
    Catlog: Book (2001-08-21)
    Publisher: Gramercy
    Sales Rank: 217903
    Average Customer Review: 4.58 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Arguably the greatest horror novel ever written by the greatest horror novelist, this is a true Modern Classic that was first published in 1978, and then re-published in 1990, complete and unabridged, with 150,000 words cut from the first edition restored, and now accompanied by unusual and imaginative line art.The total copies for both editions, in hardcover and paperback, exceeds 4 million worldwide.

    The Stand is a truly terrifying reading experience, and became a four-part mini-series that memorably brought to life the cast of characters and layers of story from the novel.It is an apocalyptic vision of the world, when a deadly virus runs amok around the globe.But that lethal virus is almost benign compared to the satanic force gathering minions from those still alive to destroy humanity and create a world populated by evil.

    Stephen King is a brilliant storyteller who has the uncanny gift of putting ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances, giving readers an experience that chills and thrills on every page.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (779)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Stand: Complete & Uncut
    Well, I safely say that I finally finished this one after a long, long year & eight months. This is a novel that will have an enormous impact on all of it's readers.

    This one is about a deadly virus, called the SuperFlu, that wipes out 90% of American. The ones who survived, Stu Redman, Frannie Goldsmith, Harold Lauder, Nadine Cross, Larry Underwood, Ralph Bretner, Glendon Batemen & his dog Kojak, Tom Cullen, Nick Andros, Richard Farris, Lucy Swann, & Dayna Jerggins, must come together and meet up in Nebraska, where Mother Abigail, the woman who has lived 109 years, has promised to help them in this whole ordeal. While all of this is going on, a black-hearted man by the name of Randall Flagg, is planning something worse than the virus, for he is planning to take over what is left of the world.

    From the master of the macabre, Stephing King brings you one of the most terrifying novels of all and this time, it is complete and uncut, giving you the chance to read every single word.

    Buy this amazing novel and you will never put it down again.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good, long, bothersome - Average Stephen King
    I read the Stand a while ago, and only recently came across it again on Amazon, which is where this review comes in. I used to be an avid Stephen King fan. He is truly a man with great ideas. Among my favorites were Misery, Pet Semetary, Desperation, and Hearts in Atlantis. The problem is, for these four great novels, there were the fifteen other ones that I read.
    Now that I think about it, Stephen King has a style that he always follows: A great story, a great start, great characters. Then... A good buildup, long descriptions that seem useless after a while, bothersome plot points that do not belong, and eventually an ending that is almost always disappointing. The Stand has a great idea, amazingly written characters, and a terrific kickoff. The problem is, somewhere in those 1200 pages, I just stopped caring, and around page 800, it hit me: this is the ultimate Stephen King book. It contains everything that he always writes about and every characteristic that makes him him. I suppose if you like those useless plot points and those bothersome drag-ons, this is a terrific book. I guess that my real problem is with the ending. The Stand, on Amazon, on the outside, and within its own pages, was built up to be an amazing epic. And it seems to me that it has no ending. I mean, clearly, it ends, but not in a way that remains true to the book, and not in a way that leaves you satisfied. I won't tell you not to read this book. It's enjoyable. But I give it a rating of three because compared to what it has been given, it doesn't even come close.
    You want an epic? Read Steinbeck's East of Eden, read Don Quixote, read anything by Dickens. You want End of the World or Future Dystopia? Read Burgess. You want amazing language. Read Nabokov.
    I hate to say it, because I disappoint the person I was only a year ago, but I regret wasting money on mediocre books of his when I could have bought ones that were outstanding.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Making my Stand!
    The Stand by Stephen King has been considered by many to be one of his greatest works. Sadly in my opinion this is very far from the truth. The enormous novel starts off as a simple story of catastrophe. The human race is infected by a plague is is quickly dieing at the waysides. Without giving too much away, this does not remain to be the main premise of the book and eventually it shifts to a story about the battle between the force of God and an a dark force led by "the walking dude".

    I will get the good comments out of the way to begin with. The original premise of mankind dealing with a horrible plague is quite terrifying and Stephen King does depict this quite well. The does make the first 400 pages of the book go by quite fast. His character development is phenomenal to the point of pain, giving long-winded chapters describing characters that end up being unimportant and "short" living. That is my biggest complaint, the story was simply to long. Comprised of three books ranging from 200 to 500 pages a piece, it seems as though King cannot decide what story he is trying to tell. He pulls in new characters whenever he pleases and then just as quickly trows them into the trash bin. King makes the reader watch character after character grow and change and work , only to see them die abruptly and accomplish little to nothing. He spends hundreds of pages on seemingly pointless details, only to have major plot twists whizz by in a page or less. I found the ending most discouraging, which left the reader with the vague feeling that nothing of any significance had occurred in the last 1150 pages. Simply put, I would not suggest this book to anyone who I cared for in the least bit. I found it time consuming and pointless, and the only redeeming quality I have unearthed is that I managed to read five other books while trudging through this monstrosity. So if you wish to read King, I would suggest the Gunslinger instead.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Salute the Captain Trips
    "The Stand" is where "The Dark Tower" series starts, maybe. It starts as a super virus called Captian Trips sweeps through the country, killing off over 90% of the population. The survivers gather into two parties. One with the saintly Mother Abigail in Boulder, Colorado; the others throw their lot in with the evil Randell Flagg (who has appeared in several King books) in Las Vagas, Nevada. There are so many characters (over 100 that contribute something) that it is hard to really be able to make them individuals, especially the core heros. However the stand-out characters are Nick Andros, a sensitive deaf mute; and The Trashcan Man, a pyromaniac who is more than anyone can handle. So, if the characters aren't especially strong, than the story is really compelling, even if some what episodic. "The Stand" is fans of Stephen King's favorite book, although not mine ("It" is my favorite King book). It is still very powerful, apocolyptic, action packed, scary, grim, and many other darker adjectives. I liked the action, and there was a lot of it; gun battles with roving rape gangs, narrow escapes from explosions, fights in redneck bars. There is also many tense moments of real terror, like with a kid terrorizing Trash Can Man; and Larry's frightening trip through Lincoln Tunnel. There are a lot of memorable scenes in this book, both horrible and tender. It also goes through most of the emotions; love, hate, jelousy, malice, and friendship. I also liked the moment when Larry says "Great, we just reinvented the CIA!" after it is suggested some people should go and see what Flagg is up to in Navada. If it wasn't for the way excessive length (over 1100 hard cover), it would be excellent. However, consider this statement; I read it once over ten years ago, and I remember every detail. It is a really good story. You must also remember this is a lead in to a much larger story.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Read, Disappointing Ending
    The Stand is the story of a killer plague that wipes out 99.5% of America, and about the apocolyptic battle between good and evil that follows, but to me, all of that came secondary to the most fascinating thing of all: the characters.

    The characters in this story are fascinating, multi-dimensional, and deep. They each start out in their own respective locations in the U.S., and come together near the middle of the book. Before the characters even meet one another and the real story begins, you are already intimate (and most likely fond) of each one. Stu Redman, Fran Goldsmith, and Larry Underwood will stay with you long after you put the book down.

    The fascinating characters and interesting plot make for a fun reading experience, but in my opinion, the conclusion of the story isn't worth the 1100 pages building up to it. It makes for an effect in which you've grown attached to all the characters, are thoroughly enjoying the book, and suddenly the ending comes, and you can't help but think to yourself, "What, that's IT?"

    Nevertheless, this is a novel I would definitely recommend. It would be especially handy to have on a good, month-long vacation. ... Read more


    15. Meg
    by Steve Alten
    list price: $22.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0385489056
    Catlog: Book (1997-06-02)
    Publisher: Doubleday
    Sales Rank: 93007
    Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    If Michael Crichton and Clive Cussler were to combine their talents to create the ultimate summer read, MEG would be the result--a jaw-dropping and terrifying page-turner of the deep.

    On a top-secret dive into the Pacific Ocean's deepest canyon, Jonas Taylor found himself face-to-face with the largest and most ferocious predator in the history of the animal kingdom.The sole survivor of the mission, Taylor is haunted by what he's sure he saw but still can't prove exists--Carcharodon megalodon, the massive mother of the great white shark.The average prehistoric Meg weighs in at twenty tons and could tear apart a Tyrannosaurus rex in seconds.

    Written off as a crackpot suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, Taylor refuses to forget the depths that nearly cost him his life.With a Ph.D. in paleontology under his belt, Taylor spends years theorizing, lecturing, and writing about the possibility that Meg still feeds at the deepest levels of the sea.But it takes an old friend in need to get him to return to the water, and a hotshot female submarine pilot to dare him back into a high-tech miniature sub.

    Diving deeper than he ever has before, Taylor will face terror like he's never imagined, and what he finds could turn the tides bloody red until the end of time.

    Steve Alten holds a master's degree in sports medicine and has a Ph.D.from Temple University.An avid amateur oceanographer, Alten has been studying Megalodons for over ten years.He lives with his wife and three children in South Florida.MEG is his first novel. ... Read more

    Reviews (453)

    3-0 out of 5 stars such promise!
    great idea for a story....the science of the megaladon staying alive in the heated waters in so cool especially the idea of the blood of a dying meg allowing another to swim the cold waters to the surface and go on a killing rampage...the main character is someone who you can really get behind and are proud of when he proves he is right...
    the ending gets cheesy.... though the rest of the action in the novel is on par with other thrillers....the end leaves open the possibility for a sequel (which was written), and is cool how the doctor knows what kind of shark it is by its eyes, and it is a baby meg....too cool...haven't read the sequel yet because i've been warned against it, but i may anyway

    this is one of those books that should have been turned into a movie and wasn't...take away the fantasy of a mini-sub going into a massive shark's body, and this book was believable and fun...its like jaws with a science background

    4-0 out of 5 stars prehistoric peril in the Pacific
    I had never heard of this book until I read the reviews of Charles Wilson's Extinct, and I decided to try it. Jonas Taylor spends the better part of his career trying to convince the public that prehistoric megalodons could survive in the warm waters of undersea canyons. When a submersible dive goes awry, he spends the next 7 years in psychotherapy and trying to convince himself that he only imagined seeing a megalodon. But when a friend shows him a picture of what could be a megalodon tooth lodged in the old wreckage of the submersible, Jonas decides to make the dive again. What he discovers on the dive leaves him paradoxically excited that he can finally prove that he is right yet upset that he loses another friend and inadvertantly brings the female to the surface. Everyone, including the media and the U.S. Navy, gets into the act once the megalodon surfaces. The ensuing chase and capture of the megalodon is exciting and will keep you reading, constantly wanting to know who will win out, man or beast. Like any good shark book, Meg is filled with "good guys" and "bad guys", and I can't deny that I felt a certain satisfaction when the meg snacked on the cheating wife. I only wished that the lover and news reporter had met the same fate. Of course, I also never understood why Benchley's great white never got to munch on the mayor of Amity! Unlike many of the reviewers below, I remember that this is science fiction, and what does it matter how big the tooth is, how long the meg is, or how many millions of years ago it lived? It IS fiction, after all. I found the explanation of how megs could survive in the Mariana Trench and how one of them could swim to the top bathed in the warm blood of the dead meg plausible. However, even I had trouble with two points: the meg is able to leap out of the water almost its entire body length (straight up, too--to attack a helicopter) and Jonas (Jonas, not Jonah) pilots the submersible inside the shark and kills it from the inside (maybe all action heroes should conveniently carry eight-inch meg teeth around with them). Yes, I remember that the great white in Jaws 2 also jumped out of the water to attack a helicopter, and I had trouble with that 25 years ago, too. I don't think that Meg will keep readers out of the water like Jaws did (the real shark attacks on the Gulf Coast of Alabama are doing that), but it will give you something to think about. Overall, this was a great read, the excitement building and building until the dramatic climax. Like many of the reviewers below, I will read the sequel and I think Meg would probably make an exciting movie.If you are a fan of shark books, you will like Meg, but then read Extinct; it is better.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Birth Of Terror!
    Welcome back to the world Megaladon! MEG is an amazing read, full of action and terror. Remember JAWS? Well, to MEG, Jaws is the size of a goldfish cracker! Happy swimming!

    5-0 out of 5 stars This book is a MUST
    I am personally not a big reader, nor do I enjoy most books, but "MEG" was probably the BEST book I've ever read. I really enjoyed "Jaws" and MEG is 10 times better. The story is extremely well developed and played out. I honestly cannot recommend it any higher than "near-perfect." The only downfall I had with this book was a paper cut.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Read before you go swimming...Great Book! ! !
    ...the most dangerous predator in history...is no longer histroy...
    Yup, that's right, Steve Alten went above and beyond in creating this masterpiece. It's what I call the new "JAWS" read, only bigger and better.
    The action is stunning when the Megalodon appears and the overall plot is gripping and never slow paced.
    Trust me, if you like "JAWS", "BEAST", and all the other classic monster books and movies, you'll love MEG!!! ... Read more


    16. Reliquary
    by Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0812542835
    Catlog: Book (1998-07-01)
    Publisher: Tor Books
    Sales Rank: 5256
    Average Customer Review: 4.23 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (121)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Just when you thought it was safe to go back to the museum..
    "Relic," a dark, twisted tour through a museum stalked by terror, is a book one would imagine would be difficult to follow. Does "Reliquary" do this successfully? Yes... to a point.

    This time, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child take us on a horrifying subway ride, past underestimated homeless "moles," a rabbit's warren of black tunnels, and a frightening continuation of the first book's monster story. "Reliquary" is a relief in that it doesn't suffer from "sequelitis," that "deja vu all over again" feeling that most sequels seem to have. There's no rehashing of the original story, here. "Reliquary" goes where "Relic" was afraid to, and with enjoyable results.

    My quibble with "Reliquary" is that it isn't quite as tight as "Relic." The plot seems to meander a bit more, and I prefer the museum setting of the prequel. The writing, however, is top-notch (as expected), and it's a sign of the writers' talents at characterization that I felt as though Margo, Smithback, Pendergast, and the rest of the returning cast were old friends of mine. The authors hint at a promise that these characters will feature in future books, and I would love that. I look forward to it.

    All in all, "Reliquary" is a satisfying and worthy sequel to "Relic." Given some of the plot twists and differences between "Relic" and its unfortunate silver screen adaptation, it appears that Paramount couldn't make "Reliquary" into a movie without running into some serious continuity errors. Of course, looking at the first film, it doesn't seem like Paramount was very concerned with that to begin with, so I'll just have to hope that they don't get their grubby mitts onto "Reliquary." The world doesn't need another movie like Paramount's "The Relic." More books from Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, however, are more than welcome. :)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Just Shy of Brilliant
    Relic, the book that started it all, is without questions my favorite book of the modern era, so it was a no brainer that I'd read it's sequel, Reliquary. And after reading the opening chapter, I knew that I held in my hands another wonderful piece of writing. This book is still demonstrably better than 4 out of 5 books out there, but I must admit that it falls a bit short of Relic. While I would still heartily recommend this title to anyone who read Relic (and those who hadn't, I definitely recommend Relic first; DON'T SEE THE MOVIE), I was a bit disapointed, though it'd be hard to put my finger on just why. All the original main characters were there (which, during Reliquary's climax, gave me a feeling that none of these people really were going to die). And believe it or not, I found a disconcerting amount of the book unbelievable, with quite the disappointing ending. Yes, I know that considering that Relic was essentially about a monster/evolutionary abberation/transformed paleontologist running amok in the NYMH, leaving cadavers hyothalumus-free wouldn't assure it a place on the non-fiction booklist, the original's narrative and attention to detail made it a bit more plausible. Still, I'd have to say that this book is still an excellent read, and for fans of the genre, well-worth the price of admission.

    3-0 out of 5 stars One thing prevented this one from being 5-star.
    I won't give anything away, because it is a damn good read and a worthy sequel. It's just one thing that does it. You'll know it when you get there.

    Sorry I can't say more, but... that'd give it away.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good, not great
    I love the books of these 2 authors and I really liked this one, however it was not there best effort. I thought it dragged a bit, and the facing of the monsters wasn't really well played out. I will say I did enjoy them bringing back all the charters from the 1st novel and they had some great dialogue, and also thought the conspiracy plot and the method of release was pretty good too, but it just lacked the fun of the first novel I think.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Not as good as STILL LIFE WITH CROWS
    I became a Preston/Childs fan after reading STILL LIFE WITH CROWS. I'm still impressed with how simpatico these two guys are.
    Anyway, I wasn't aware that this was a series and now that I've read another one, working my way backwards, I'm not as impressed.
    First off, there are too many featured characters in RELIQUARY. FBI agent Pendergast doesn't even show up until well into the story; yet we have Dr. Margo Green; police lieutenant D'Agosta; Dr. Frock; Smithback, the reporter; Simon Brambell, the medical investigator; Snow, the diver; Hayward, the female police officer; plus a host of minor characters who have their own perspectives just before they're dusted by the wrinklers. It's hard to know for whom to cheer and there's too much distance between each account. It's often necessary to page back to see where they were when last encountered.
    Also, maybe I'm too much of a left-brainer but I didn't believe those wrinklers for a second. These two guys seem to be obsessed by monsters and the underworld. In STILL LIFE WITH CROWS it was a cave bigger than the Carlsbad Caverns and a Kong character with the mind of a baby. In this one it's the underworld beneath New York City and a collection of genetic monstrosities.
    The most interesting aspect for me was the author's note at the end of the book. I knew there were a lot of uncharted abandoned tunnels beneath NYC but not thirty stories. As many as five thousand "houseless" have lived there; they form their own communities and communicate by tapping on pipes. Even more remarkable is the authors' claim that the Astor Tunnels actually did exist. THE MOLE PEOPLE by Jennifer Toth is a factual account of the homeless beneath the city. ... Read more


    17. The Relic
    by Lincoln Child, Douglas J. Preston
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0812543262
    Catlog: Book (1996-01-15)
    Publisher: Tor Books
    Sales Rank: 2983
    Average Customer Review: 4.59 out of 5 stars
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    Amazon.com

    A series of bizarre and brutal murders is taking place in the halls of the New York Museum of Natural History, only days before a massive exhibition is set to open.Margo Green knows that the killer is something not human, something that's not even supposed to exist.Where did it come from, how did it get into the museum, and how can it be stopped? ... Read more

    Reviews (208)

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Most Spectacular Novels in Existence!
    If you haven't read it or seen the movie, read the book and do not, I repeat do not, watch the movie. The movie makes a mockery of this fabulous work. It does have Tom Sizemore, though, and the creature, Mbwun, looks sort of cool, but oh well. The book is excellent. In case you don't know, it is about an explorer from the New York Museum of Natural History who travels to South America, and discovers a hideous legend and a mysterious relic that is a sculpture of the beast in the legend--or at least a sculpture of the beast that anyone who consumes Mbwun becomes. The explorer sends a crate with the relic and some mysterious packing fibers to New York just before he is supposedly killed. Back in NY, a small time scientist named Margo Green is working in a totally different field. In coordination with her curious journalist friend William Smithback, she finds herself investigating the dissapearance of the explorer...and the mysterious murders that have been taking place inside the Museum. Working on the case is cynical NYPD cop, Lt. Vincent D'Agosta. Before long, a curious, intelligent FBI Agent named Pendergast comes along. He is not officially in NY, and is there for his own reasons, but he becomes essential to the investigation. He is one of the best characters in any novel, and you will truly learn to appreciate him. The story develops a bit too slowly, but it is worth the wait. The Museum is plunged into chaos before long, and the beast Mbwun is unleashed upon them all. Everyone should read this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great stuff
    WOW! Cool! Fantastic! those are just SOME of the words that come to mind while pondering how great this book really is. Forget the comparisons between Jurassic Park and 'Relic' since they are so different, it's difficult to even compare, let alone be fair. Also, if you have seen the movie, DO NOT LET IT KEEP YOU FROM READING THIS SUPERIOR STORY. The movie, well, let's not mince words, it SUCKED. It was fodder for those who have absolutely NO imagination (my apologies for those who actually enjoyed this drivel--but compared to the book, that is truly what it is). Read this book and be totally enthralled with the characters and the situations they are in, and you just cannot help but realize how downright freaky and terrifying the location of this story really is. Oh, by the way, the sequel is trash compared to this. I have read everything by these authors thus far, and 'Reliquary' is the ONLY book to this point that isn't completely captivating.

    It's okay, though (read it first, even though its a sequel, you won't lose too much). READ THIS BOOK! Thank me later (you WILL). Let me know what you thought rmgomske@lightcom.net Enjoy!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston--The Relic (1995)
    Although a fairly blatant spoof of the Michael Crichton formula, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child's "The Relic" is a superb, fast-paced suspense/horror read that is one of the best of its kind produced in the middle 1990's. The authors use excellent characterization, an in-depth look at museum politics, some soft humor, and stupendously eerie sequences that will have readers' hair standing straight up.

    Preparing for a special new exhibit at Chicago's Natural History Museum, scientist Margo Green receives some unusual crates with incredible artifacts from the Kothoga indian tribe. Inside many of the crates is a strange plant and nothing more, which seems awfully fishy to the scientist and she researches the relics further. As she gets closer to the truth and the the museum gets closer and closer to the grand opening of their new exhibit, a horrific monster begins to terrorize the building. With the help of her long-time friend Mr. Frock and a rogue FBI agent who investigated similar murders in New Orleans, Margo Green fights for her live against a creature that embodies more secrets than she could imagine.

    Preston and Child produce a tremendous tale, splicing several genres together that will satisfy fans of Koontz, Crichton, Grisham, King, and Deaver. Stylishly scary, eloquently written, and a fantastic, whoulda-thunk it finale that will astonish. Adapted into a very well-made motion picture a couple years after its release--the book is far better, emphasizing the personalities of the main characters to their entirity and adding numerous extra plot twists. Simply excellent.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Debut title for author duo... One of the best books out
    Not much to say other than this was one of the best conceived and written books of its kind I have ever read. Preston and Child do not write with such a "sterile" style as Crichton, and that really gives them the edge.

    This is a scary damn read. Very much so.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A real page turner!
    I flew through this book. Suspensful, fast paced, full of wonderful characters. A must read ... Read more


    18. American Psycho (Vintage Contemporaries)
    by BRET EASTON ELLIS
    list price: $14.00
    our price: $11.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0679735771
    Catlog: Book (2000-03-01)
    Publisher: Vintage Books
    Sales Rank: 11594
    Average Customer Review: 3.62 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (955)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Ellis's most accomplished novel
    If you can make it past the egotistical, self-centered characters whose own indulgence is made an art form, you should be able to get the biting humor and mockery of Bret Easton Ellis's "American Psycho."

    Patrick Bateman is a young Wall Street broker who spends his days making dinner reservations at trendy restaurants, comparing business cards, and slaughtering people in his apartment once the sun goes down. You see, Patrick is also a serial killer, a hollow, emotionless leech who's so consumed and comforted by his material possessions that all he can feel for the human race is disgust and hate.

    Ellis's novel is plotless (no big surprise); there's no real storyline, just a series of excerpts from Bateman's day-to-day life. The first hundred pages or so are a hilarious indictment of shallow yuppies consumed with greed--Ellis shows off a true flair for simple, repetitious, but witty dialogue. But the second half up until the last act of "American Psycho" contains some of the most graphic passages ever printed, with the grisly details of the torture inflicted on Bateman's victims. To understand these scenes you need a grasp of the character's psychology, which might be difficult for some. In the last act, reality folds in on itself as Bateman's sanity drifts away, but I get the feeling Ellis had no real idea how to end the novel in a realistic way.

    This is Ellis's strongest, most satirical work. Like I said before, if you can look past the annoying characters and LAUGH at them, you should find this an intense yet very funny read.

    5-0 out of 5 stars wonder how "...her head would look like on a stick."
    American Psycho is the best black humor book i have ever read. Of course, if i failed to mention about the gory details, the right atmosphere is not set while the reader is reading this book. The sudden shifts of paradigm from an average successful businessman to a psychotic killer is eerie and gut-wrenching. This book has no plot to it. But, that in itself should not be the basis for judging it's entertainment factor! This book is a "beautiful" satire criticizing the whole yuppie lifestyle in New York's Manhatten during the "Manhatten Era" in the 80's. Its about Patrick Bateman who knows he is good-looking and is 'well-tanned' living in New York. He thinks that all the girls like him because he's got the looks, green bucks, and the styles. But, the quirky part is, he's into serial killers and he quotes one of them while he was talking ot his friends on the usual topic - 'women.' He 'jokes' about one serial killer, Wisconsin in the fifties - Ed Gein, "He said, 'when i see a pretty girl walking down the street I think two things. One part of me wants to take her out and talk to her and be real nice and sweet and treat her right...the other part wonders what her head would look like on a stick." According to the blurb, this is all a part of his "American Dream" which is for me to know and for you to find out~!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A study of evil
    I don't think I have ever read a better character portrayal than the one presented in American Psycho. Ellis is so skilled at bringing Patrick Bateman to life that it can be disturbing to read. I wouldn't be surprised if this book has become a standard text for criminologists at FBI training centers. On one level, Bateman is the embodiment of evil, on another, he is representative of a superficial mindset that Ellis obviously knows and has studied very well. Ellis is out to have some fun by forging these two aspects together in one person, explaining homicidal rage as an extension of vanity and pathological materialism. Bateman's crowd is the smart set, not exactly hip, at the top of the social rung of Manhattan; they are young, rich and educated. The conversations Ellis records are very funny. He exaggerates manners and employs a style that approaches slapstick. The conversations are so convincing, so well wrought, that they have a life of their own, echoing those of our own world. It is a powerful satire that strikes at the very core of our being. We have all encountered these people at one time or another and have probably even acted in similar fashion ourselves. It is worth reflecting on to understand why Ellis made the choices he did in writing this book, why he chose a serial killer to analyze this pathology and why he includes several graphic passages of unimaginable cruelty. To say the book is a criticism of 80s Wall Street greed is simplistic; Wall Street is Wall Street, the same then as it is now and always has been. Ellis is making a much larger indictment of society, and the Wall Street characters are merely the most convenient targets, and perhaps the best (worst) exemplars of what he wants to illustrate. The conclusion is obvious: when man worships mammon, he loses his humanity. The extreme case is Patrick Bateman, the American Psycho, and although we may not all become serial killers, the American obsession with brands is a dehumanizing pathology. This is the reason Ellis describes in detail the attire of each character on every occasion in the book (he does this perhaps a hundred times, rattling off the designer or brand name of four or five articles of clothing), as well as going into detail about restaurant names and many, many other objects. The repetition of these pricey brand names is important so as to hammer home his point over, and over, and over. He wants our attention. It is crucial to understanding the book. Where else in the narrative is there this kind of repetition? It is in the brutal murders with the gory details. Draw your own conclusions.

    5-0 out of 5 stars pure glee
    i read this book in one day with a stupid grin on my face the whole time. giggling in subways with wrinkled old women staring at me. yes, there are horrible torture scenes, graphic sex scenes, etc. & this book is 'not for everyone'--if you have no sense of humor, you may end up throwing it in the trash as did an acquaintance of mine.
    but
    the insights into the workings of Patrick Bateman's [the token American Psycho] mind are incisive, witty, & REAL--he is not some laughable caricature meant to scare the reader or disgust, he is a real person, a clearly developed character, who deals with his oh-so-unfulfilled life in a "slightly" deviant manner. The book is in part a satire on decadent New York society, VACUOUS stamped across everyone's face, people who hear only what they want to hear [& this is made hilariously clear in the novel...do read & find out how]. A look at how people who simply have too much money deal with that 'anxiety.' The graphic torture & sex scenes are more of that, the sheer waste & opulence, it is nothing over which to become morally outraged.

    More of what makes this book so great is how Ellis channels the reader into Bateman's mind, completely--do not be surprised if you find a few uncharacteristic thoughts popping into your head days / weeks later. i am not gifted with a very good memory but i can recall this book in great detail. i call it empowering in a way, not in that it inspires the reader to begin a killing spree, but it lowers the threshold of 'reserve,' the obscenely inflated decorum that seems to grow on one when one is not looking.

    This is without a doubt one of my top three favorite books, with Coin Locker Babies by Murakami & V. by Pynchon. It's a heaping slab of euphoria.

    [i am now, of course, frantically going after the rest of his books--although from what i have heard this seems to be his best]

    3-0 out of 5 stars relies too much on shock value
    I do consider Bret Easton Ellis to be one of the great young writers of his generation, but this book seems too intent on pushing the limits of graphic depiction of violence and I felt that detracted, rather than added to the book. It is tough to read and I'm not squeemish. What kept me going, was curiousity over how much of what was happening was real, and how much is being dreamed up by a schizophrenic mind but that really is left totally open. Be warned, there are graphic depictions of torture, murder, and dismemberment. But Ellis is a good writer and the novel is well written for sure. I enjoyed Less than Zero, and the Informers far more than this book. ... Read more


    19. Wolves of the Calla (The Dark Tower, Book 5)
    by Stephen King
    list price: $18.95
    our price: $12.89
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0743251628
    Catlog: Book (2005-01)
    Publisher: Scribner
    Sales Rank: 2270
    Average Customer Review: 3.98 out of 5 stars
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    Reviews (256)

    4-0 out of 5 stars That car knocked the old King loose thank God
    I've read damn near every Stephen King story around, and the Dark Tower is easily my favorite. The weaving in and out of his other books that this series has done should eventually be look upon as one of the great literary achievents. Yes, King isnt Ulysses but he isn't Encyclopedia Brown either, the guy has writing chops.

    Anyway, as for Wolves of the Calla, I just finished it today after toilet-reading it for about 2 months. I must say i was pleasantly suprised and very satisfied. I'd gotten a little worried because King had really started this "maturity" vibe in a lot of books around the mid-90's. I noticed with Insomnia he started kinda tackling getting old and more serious looks at love and that went right up through his accident. Wizard and Glass was the peak manifestation of that. It wasn't terrible, but it was like a giant, "oh i remember young love" mind-dump for a thousand pages. I was bored, which was double disappointing considering it followed the Waste Lands the most exciting book in the series and I waited 10 years nearly for it.

    Anyways, this time i really talk about WotC.

    It was a really great book. I never found the plot tedious or the Calla boring. The only really slow parts were the beginnings of Callahan's story because I knew it was going to lead to something huge (and it does) and I had 500 pages to wade through to get there. I think some people dont realize that the slow build in the book is almost certainly a design. Everything that had to come about in order for them to face down the wolves was important to the broader implications of Ka and the Dark Tower story as a whole. Plus I think it further fleshes out just how iconic and complete a hero Roland is. (as a cynical person, I hope this builds to him ultimately failing as a hero to achieve whatever he means to achieve at the Tower)

    But anyways, i was really shocked how many reviews actually said Wizard and Glass was their favorite book so maybe I'm way outside the mainstream and this is just me spitting into the wind. If you liked the first 3 books, then this is exactly in that same vein. Connections with other books, extensive deepenings of the plot, and some great questions are raised for the final two books.

    oh and the best part? when your reading it, you know you wont have to wait a damn decade to get to the next book. GOD BLESS YOU STEPHEN KING!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Finally, a return to the quest for the Dark Tower
    Long-time King fans like myself have eagerly awaited this sequel for many years, and for the most part, the master storyteller does not disappoint. After focusing on Roland's past in the previous installment, Wizard and Glass, in Wolves of the Calla, King returns to the present-day challenges facing Roland and his companions, Eddie, Susannah, Jake, and Oy. Much like in The Wastelands (the third book of the series), Wolves of the Calla tells the story not only of the ongoing quest for the Dark Tower but also of a more immediate predicament--in this case, the plight of the town of Calla Byrn Sturgis. King tantalizes the reader through brief returns to the New York City setting as well as glimpses of the tasks which lie ahead of the gunslingers in the future. In addition, dedicated King followers will appreciate the tie-ins with other King works, namely 'Salem's Lot. Although not quite as captivating as the second two books in the series, Wolves of the Calla is a satisfying continuation of this fascinating saga which will whet the reader's appetite for the two remaining Dark Tower novels, both of which are scheduled to be published in 2004.

    4-0 out of 5 stars I'd give it 4 1/2 stars if I could
    For all of you, like me, who despised Wizard and Glass this book is for you. Finally we are getting somewhere. It has been YEARS since King has been this good. It is good to see him back. Don't listen to the reviews of people who don't like the fact that it seems King is going to include himself in the Dark Tower series. What is the difference between that and Eddie, Susannah, and Jake entering Roland's world. Obviously they don't understand the point King has been hinting at all along: the thinness of reality. He even goes into a beautiful aside about how the choices we make and how one side step can change the course of our history. This is King's oh so subtle way of letting us know that our perception of reality may not be the truth of the matter. I'm hooked again Mr. King. Bring me to the Dark Tower. It has been years and I am ready. As we all are. I'm sure you won't dissapoint.

    5-0 out of 5 stars King keeps giving ... and we swallow it all!
    Again, King has the skill to develop his characters into breathing, thinking, 3D personalities, and once again he has done this in Wolves of the Calla. I loved this book. King takes his time, which some don't have patience for, but for me is essential in devoloping the story, the tension, and the life of these people. I just finished it today, and have already opened up Dark Tower VI to begin the next step in the journey.

    King has matured greatly as a writer and storyteller, and he doesn't rely on just scares, plot twists and gimmicks anymore; his vision and goals, it seems to me, is to truly build another world and people who we must care about. And he has done so in this exceptional series. I look forward to the two final parts, even though I'll be sad when it ends.

    Also, I'd recommend these books to non-King fans: it is truly above par to even his own works, which, in my opinion, are fantastic...!

    1-0 out of 5 stars Awful
    I'm completely disappointed with the series at this point. The dark story of a gunslinger's quest for the Dark Tower seems to have taken a back seat to a new premise: fictional works are not truly fictional; they are the real life occurances of other worlds.

    As intriguing as it may sound, Mr King tries to convey this point by including plot items only from 19th Century American pop-culture! The characters actually find and read one of Mr Kings books! Will the last book of the series spontaneously combust in my hands as the gunslingers read about themselves forcing the plot into a death spiral of circular references?

    If that weren't bad enough, both this book and Wizard and Glass have very similar storylines. In both books, 700+ pages of the book is spent trying to develop a story that leads up to a battle with gunslingers grossly outnumbered, while the battle itself is over after only several pages. The characters even get the idea for how to fight this new battle from what happened in the previous book!

    I bought book 6 about the same time I bought this one. I'm not anxious to read it. If I do read it and it doesn't salvage the storyline, I won't be reading book 7. ... Read more


    20. Narcissus in Chains (Anita Blake Vampire Hunter (Paperback))
    by Laurell K. Hamilton
    list price: $7.99
    our price: $7.19
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0515133876
    Catlog: Book (2002-10-01)
    Publisher: Jove Books
    Sales Rank: 8481
    Average Customer Review: 3.22 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    The "steamy" (Booklist) Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter novel that took Laurell K. Hamilton to a whole new level is now in paperback.

    Includes a bonus excerpt from the next Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter novel, Cerulean Sins, coming in January 2003.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (495)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Narcissus in Chains
    I have read all of the Anita Blake books in order through the entire series. I have also bought all the books except for Creaulan Sins which I am waiting for a paper back copy. I love this series and have recomended it to all my friends. I and most of my friends are avid readers and once we started reading this series we could not put it down. I bought Guilty Pleasures (the first Anita Blake book) on a whim, the very next day I had finished it and went back for the rest of the series. I read the entire series in one week, hardly even stopping to eat. And I have reread them more times than I can count. Being a poor college student I could not afford to buy Creaulan Sins in hard back, but as soon as I heard my local library has it I started haunting the place waiting for it to come in. I recomend if you enjoy anything even remotely Sci Fi or just want to try something new Read Guilty Pleasures. But be forwarned the series is very addictive.

    1-0 out of 5 stars 90% Sex, 10% Crime/Mystery
    I started the Anita Blake series during my senior year of high school. I was totally hooked. I am now entering my junior year of college, and I have become very disappointed since I read Narcissus in Chains.

    The story is full of mindless sex. I enjoy sex in novels; it's great, but most of these sexual scenes are out of nowhere and not tied to the actual plot.

    More and more, I can't stand Nathaniel. He's a whiny little baby who looks to Anita for EVERYTHING. It's like someone suddenly yells FREEZE and the plot suddenly halts because Nathaniel needs something. I'm surprised that he isn't dead yet, really.

    The villian in this novel was terrible. LKH pushed aside almost all of the plot's mystery so she could present us with smut. Suddenly, as the book is winding down, she has the gang drive over to the club and the gun fight is on. It's just too random. There was no extreme detective work. And LKH presented the villian as though we were supposed to know who it was all along. What the hell?

    The series was wonderful when she was animating, solving crimes, and suffering under the weight of the sexual tension. LKH uses the arduer as a poor excuse for all the sex in her novels now.

    This is the worst of all the novels in this series in my opinion. I'm going to read Incubus Dreams because I've already been a long time fan, but I don't have much hope for it.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Soft Porn for the supernatural lover
    While I understand the evolution of Anita's life, this book takes her love life well into the porn field. If you like a half dozen scenes of sex, including group and S&M sex (biting), then you'll appreciate the entire book. Otherwise, if you overlook it, you can still enjoy the book by skimming those sections you don't wish to read. I like Laurell Hamilton's writing, but perhaps she should develop other new worlds of fiction to explore.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Because I can't give it 4.5 stars
    I liked this book with the one major exception of the introduction of a new romantic lead that is one of the worst uses of CPD-- Although, I don't like this new character and hope that he will eventually be written out of the series. I still liked the book.

    There was some obvious editing problems with this book and there were other issues, but it still was an entertaining read.

    I would not start with this book first.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Anita Blake rebuttal
    Okay -- I do not do reviews, but I read these reviews and they were so negative in general that I felt I had to. One reader complained that LKH "has taken a wrong turn with Richard's character." Well, Richard is LKH's creation so she can change him anyway she wants. And actually Richard has been like this from day one -- it's just coming our more. Someone else called Richard whiney(sp?). Richard wants to be a normal person and not a werewolf. He also (mentally) lives in a world where people are honorable and do the right thing -- boyscout syndrome. But real life is not like this and it causes him a great deal of conflict. This really adds to the story. Someone else wrote that Anita's new boyfriend being small enough to wear the same clothes she wears "was just too disturbing." Why? Anita is about 5'5" and so is her new boyfriend. It disturbs you to read about short people? Your'e a biggot! And for those of you who haven't been exposed to this series, Anita usually wears shirts and jeans and tennis shoes so her boyfriend is not going in drag! Someone else complained about the kinky sex. Huh? Re-read this book. Are you referring to kinky sex as sex with more than one sex partner at a time? That's pretty tame by today's standards! Someone else complained about Anita losing control of her life. Anita dealing with the "ardeur" which takes away her self-control, of which she is extremely proud, this just helps develop the character even more. She is becoming more and more a "maternal but strong heroine" which adds more depth to her character.

    Someone else complained that "the carnage is so over the top" they lost interest. You need a heavy dose of reality. Read some true crime stories or something -- people are this violent on a daily basis -- women slaughtering their children, husbands murdering or torturing their wives. No, this just adds to the realism, besides which it helps set the feel for the story -- about how horrible the violence is. Another reviewr complained about Anita saving Gregory, then Damian, then Michah, etc. Guess what -- she is a strong character and saves people in every book. That's the whole point -- she saves people. Someone said that original the "plot stormed along" in earlier books. Well if you want action read a western, or an action/adveture book, not a vampire story! SOmeone had a problem with Anita becoming something she originally despised -- a monster, but if you notice she never becomes a monster, the real question she is really asking is -- who are the monsters? The monsters or the people? One of the werewolves points out that more monsters are killed by people than people are killed by monsters. Remember Adolph Hitler? A perfect example of what she's talking about! SOmeone else complained about Anita giving in to "mystical wanton lusts" -- like you're a 50-year old virgin? Come on, get real. And one final note -- if you don't like the way a writer tells a story, just remember it's her story and not yours. Go write your own -- but you can't can you? ... Read more


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