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4.2 out of 5 stars
All For One
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58 of 58 people found the following review helpful
on April 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Sometimes things can get complicated. Life is like that. You never really plan for it, you never hope for it, and you never really know quite how to handle it. When something does happen, something unexpected, you make a choice and you live with it. Maybe your choice wasn't the best. Maybe you could have done things differently. But you made it, you can't undo it, and the next part is living with its consequences.

That, from my reading of All for One, is the essence of this wonderfully written and tragic tale of six children and their teacher caught up in the mystery of the death of a classmate. As you follow the course of this tale from their simple decision made at the beginning through the intricate web of its consequences, you too will find yourself drawn into it as I was. Each of the characters has his own story. Each is constructed by Pearson with a depth of detail that I found captivating. And each, as you will discover, is both intriguing and heartbreaking.

I was told before reading this book that it was "dark." As descriptive of a complex human tragedy, that is exactly what this story is. As such, you must be willing accept that there are dark places in the human soul, places that most would turn away from rather than glimpse. You must be willing to walk the path of fear and darkness to its end. And you must be willing to stand at the precipice and watch its conclusion with eyes wide open. If you are so willing, be not afraid, you will find yourself having read a truly wonderful book. When I have read a story of this power, I am left with but two words for the author. Thank you.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on July 25, 2011
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
The cruel school bully gets killed. Six children discover his body, one of them may have murdered him. Detective Dooley Ashe, the Kiddie Catcher, tries to uncover the truth. Mary, the children's teacher, would do anything to protect them. With different goals in mind, Dooley and Mary form an uneasy alliance. As the story progresses to its tragic end, both Dooley and Mary are confronted with demons from their past.

As one of the reviewers pointed out, ALL FOR ONE is in part a story about choices, choices we have to make, sometimes under pressure, and how these choices have results that determine the rest of our lives. It deals with psychologically complex and flawed human beings. It is also a story about childhood abuse, injustice, and about good people who try their best and sometimes succeed and sometimes fail.

ALL FOR ONE is one of the best psychological thrillers I have read in quite a while. The characters are convincing and portrayed with great sensibility. A fast-paced and well-crafted mystery, it leads the reader through a maze of events and flashbacks and unexpected twists to an amazing surprise ending. However, is not one of those contrived surprise endings of less successful thrillers. This ending, as unexpected as it is, is foreshadowed and makes total sense in retrospect.

Highly recommended. I look forward to more of the same author
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I don't usually read dark novels. I tend to read predictable fluff. I like humor and a good romance. If this is you, you probably won't like this book. I, however, liked it a lot. It kept my attention. You can't read this book without total concentration. It changes characters from one paragraph to another. The characters are all deeply disturbed by something which is ongoing or in their past. I got lost in the characters many times and had to go back and try to figure out which of the students they are and who they belong to. The story is riveting. You find yourself cheering for the kids to keep the secret to themselves because the "dead kid" was such a bad seed. You think you have it figured out and something happens to prove you are wrong. The last quarter of the book ties everything together and there can be no happy ending when deaths occur.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on September 14, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I finally, blessedly finished this; then I took a long break, as far from my eReader as possible, playing with my dog, before attempting to write a review. The hardest one by far that I have ever written....but I always write reviews. At about 70% I almost ended my misery, but just did not want to mess with those people who insist one cannot and should not write a review if you haven't read the whole darn book.....who are these people? Do they also clean their plates when the fish has gone bad? Anyway, I will begin by saying that this book is, oh, maybe 200 pages too long? Then there are many errors, such as a character wearing one sweatshirt in one paragraph, and then a different one in the next. There are missing words....or just the most bizarre literary (?) devices I have ever seen. There are fragmented sentences abounding, which seem to be an attempt at writing a disturbed person's thoughts.....but just gave me a headache. Page after page just made no sense. Two characters showed up rather abruptly and rather late and turned out at the very end to not actually exist at all! Not only can I not recommend this book, but based on professional expertise, I believe that there are people who should not go into this at all. Many reviewers used words like dark to describe it, which is laughably close to calling it a comedy, I think. It is frighteningly disturbing yet in no Stephen King manner at all, leaving gaps in logic and clinical knowledge everywhere. Yet all of what I have said seems so very strange now, at the unsatisfying end of it all, especially since I loved the story early on, originally thinking it was one of the best books I had ever read! Please trust me.....avoid at all or no cost (I got it for free, thank goodness).
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on March 19, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I know that I seem to be the only review so far that did not enjoy this book. I am an avid reader and I enjoy a good mystery or the old who done it, but this particular book just did not entertain me at all. ITS very slow paced and there were far too many characters that we do not get to know very well. It lost my interest within only the second chapter.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on April 14, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
In theory, this could be a great thriller. As executed, this book is painful!

I skimmed the entire second half of the book, and the pace of the story was still pitifully languid.

As for the whodunnit? I'm betting I'm not the only reader who figured it out way before the reveal. Confirming I was right was the only reason I endured the glacier pace to the end.

Could have been really good. Wasn't.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 11, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
This was a compelling, horrific, dark, tragic story. Like another reviewer, I was quite certain who had "dunnit" long before the end of the book, but that wasn't the end of the story. I was still compelled to follow through to the last page. I am glad I did. No matter how right I think I am, I could always be wrong.
The only thing that prevents me from a 5 star rating: the silly errors that should have been caught by a good proofreader before publication (I noted 14 while not looking for them. How many others did I pass over with just an eyeroll?). My son (Richard Veysey) is a writer and I read everything he sends me several times, including aloud, trying to catch the slightest error. We may never reach perfection but it should always be our goal.
Though it seems to be rampant, this problem is not confined to e-books. Several years ago, long before the kindle, I had to stop reading one of my otherwise favorite authors because his books had so many errors they became distracting and annoying and frustrating, especially since we had not waited for the paperback; we'd shelled out the $25 or so for the hardcover as soon as it was available at our local bookstore. Halfway through the last one I read I sent a message to the author via his website but had no response. If it meant so little to him, as the author, to get it right, I decided I did not need to support his work. Please, authors, show some pride in your product and respect for your readers. Don't put out just anything. Get it right.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 5, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Finished reading this book - what a great book - a group of school kids that band together to protect one of their own when a school bully is found murdered at their school.

The kids make a pact to stick together to protect one of their own, one that may have killed this bully. Their school teacher would do anything to protect her students and believes in their innocence. The police bring in the well known kiddie catcher, a man ready to retire and fighting his own demons from a past case that continues to haunt him.

The town is in shock, parents can't and don't believe their child would ever do such a thing, but no one is mourning the loss of the bully either, he had done some horrible things, and the town was glad he was gone, everyone but his own family.

This book takes you on a lot of twists and turns and you just can't put it down. Just when you think you know who it is your thrown down another path and who you thought may not be who the real killer is.

Great book - highly recommended.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on March 19, 2012
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I find it unfair to rate a book based on a criticism of the edition, but I cannot let this one slide (which is why I give it three stars rather than an undeserved one star, the storyline is alright to me).

The number of typos and mistakes in this edition is appalling, and more than a fleeting distraction. It is unforgivable that the mistakes haven't been corrected... in an electronic edition of all things! Missing letters and words are common which at best I could maybe attribute to a bug when my book downloaded. ie.: "Closer now, Jeff got, still doing the occasion zig onto..." (p. 197), or "... to let her know that he again on the job." (p. 218).

But then there are these luminous gems: "They're father is taking them around the neighborhood" (p. 177) and "It would either had to become something more" (p 286) which indicate something quite other than a data transfer glitch.

Ironic this story centers on 6 students and their teacher. Editor gets an F.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on September 14, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I loved this book at first, couldn't wait to finish it and find out why 6 seemingly wonderful kids were pushed to killing the school bully. Up until exactly halfway through the book, it was a wonderful read, the characters pulled you in and kept you interested. Then the author seems to lose momentum and flounder around for a way to pull the story through. He brings the love interest angle to the forefront, the main characters suddenly become vague, lose their strength, and the story goes off on a tangent. I scanned through the end of the book enough to see that it never got back to the story it should have been. Too bad, because this could have been a great book. I seldom quit reading any book once I begin it, but I couldn't get past the abrupt change in the strong character of the teacher, she is suddenly talking (arguing?) with herself, via annoying self-asides like this (and going crazy?) I quit reading it in disappointment and disgust.
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