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Blood Men: A Thriller (Christchurch Noir Crime Series) Kindle Edition

103 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

New Zealander Cleave's disappointing U.S. debut focuses on the son of a notorious serial killer. When Edward Hunter was nine, his father, Jack (aka "Jack the Hunter"), was convicted of murdering 11 prostitutes in Christchurch, New Zealand. In the 20 years of Jack's incarceration, Edward hasn't spoken to or visited him once. Edward is doing okay in his struggle to get over his past until the day shortly before Christmas he and his wife, Jodie, get caught in the middle of a violent bank heist that leaves Jodie dead. Edward, who has always feared that he'll turn out like his father, is shocked when Jack contacts him from prison and encourages him to seek revenge on the robbers. He's even more shocked when he takes Jack's advice. While Cleave (The Cleaner) explores intriguing concepts-- particularly the gray area between guilt and innocence--and the steady stream of blood never feels gratuitous, too many subplots and character motivations compete for anything to truly resonate.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

What was it like to grow up with a serial killer as a father? Edward Hunter knows: his father has a monster inside him, and although he's now in prison, his legacy is something Edward has always feared. But Edward is nothing like his father. He has a good life—friends, a job, a loving wife, and a child he adores. All that changes though, the moment he calls out to save a bank teller from being killed during a hold-up, and the robbers kill his wife instead. What has he done? How can he fix it? When the police work too slowly, Edward decides to investigate himself, and as he does, he connects with feelings he has denied his whole life—and discovers his own terrible monster. Compelling, dark, and perfectly paced, New Zealand writer Cleave's psychological thriller explores the evil lurking in us all, working relentless magic until the very last page. There's nary a misstep in this riveting thriller about the bad deeds even good men sometimes do. --Stephanie Zvirin

Product Details

  • File Size: 3557 KB
  • Print Length: 338 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1476710872
  • Publisher: Atria Books; Reissue edition (June 30, 2010)
  • Publication Date: July 20, 2010
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003UBAYV6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #66,489 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Paul Cleave is currently dividing his time between his home city of Christchurch, New Zealand, where all of his novels are set, and Europe, where none of his novels are set. His eight novels have so far been translated into over a dozen languages and nearly 20 territories. He has won the Saint-Maur book festival's crime novel of the year in France, has been shortlisted for the Ned Kelly award, the Edgar Award, the Barry Award, and has won the Ngaio Marsh award for NZ crime fiction.

The New Zealand Listener said that Cleave writes with 'an energy that conventional crime novels lack', and he has been called 'the next Stephen King', 'a rising star of the genre' and 'a writer to watch'. Publishers Weekly have said 'a pulse-pounding serial killer thriller. The city of Christchurch becomes a modern equivalent of James Ellroy's Los Angeles of the 1950s, a discordant symphony of violence and human weakness... the book's real power lies in the complexity of its characters,', and

Cleave numbers among his fans top crime and thriller writers such as Mark Billingham, who wrote: 'Most people come back from New Zealand talking about the breathtaking scenery and the amazing experiences. I came back raving about Paul Cleave.' John Connolly called Blood Men 'dark, bloody, and gripping . . . classic noir fiction', and said that in Paul Cleave 'Jim Thompson has another worthy heir to his throne'. The Lab's John Heath calls Cleave's writing 'uncompromising, unpredictable, and enthralling', adding, 'Made me vomit -- seriously, it's that good.' Simon Kernick said 'Cleave writes the kind of dark, intense thrillers that I never like to finish. Do yourself a favour and check him out,' and S.J Watson said 'An intense adrenalin rush from start to finish. It'll have you up all night. Fantastic!'

His novels are - The Cleaner, The Killing Hour, Cemetery Lake, Blood Men, Collecting Cooper, The Laughterhouse, Joe Victim, Five Minutes Alone, and Trust No One.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Craig Sisterson on August 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
Kiwi novelist Paul Cleave doesn't write boring stories, that's for sure. His taut tales told through the eyes of deeply troubled `heroes' have broken the mould when it comes to New Zealand crime and thriller writing, becoming international bestsellers.

In Blood Men, Cleave's fourth novel and first to be readily available in the USA, Edward Hunter is a happily-married family man with a great life but a very dark past; he's the son of a notorious serial killer who's been in prison for 20 years, and will never be coming out. The son of a man of blood. When tragedy strikes, Edward suddenly needs the help of the man he's spent his entire life distancing himself from. And as things spiral out of control, Edward fears he's destined to become a man of blood too.

Cleave's prose crackles with freshness and energy. Sporadic moments of brutal violence may be too much for some who prefer mysteries of the Christie-esque `cosy' style (or distract some critics), but those who can handle grittier crime will uncover a top-notch tale. Cleave masterfully mixes compelling characters, sly humour, a taut plotline with enough tension and twists to keep the pages whirring, and a well-evoked, if somewhat malevolent, version of Christchurch.

With Blood Men, Cleave shows he not only stacks up with, but in fact betters, many of the better-known big-name international bestsellers that readers worldwide by in droves.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Tom Warder on November 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
Just finished reading Blood Men, by New Zealand author Paul Cleave. As an American, I find it interesting reading stories that take place in New Zealand. This is the second book of Paul's that I've read (The Cleaner), and I've thoroughly enjoyed them both.
Paul has an interesting way with words, and a nice sense of humor.
Don't hesitate to pick up one of Paul's books.
I think you'll enjoy them as much as I did.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Rachel on March 24, 2011
Format: Paperback
Second book I read of Cleave and the second one I loved , I read it in three days . How a man lives when his father his a serial killer , of thirteen prostitutes ? When Eddie loses his wife all his world fall apart , I did not expect the final twist but it made me think of all the book , what I have read and how Eddie behaved , thought ...
One thing I not enjoyed much (but the same thing can be said for Cemetery Lake) is that Cleave sometimes go in the 'too much' so not really believable , but anyway I loved his novel , I kept reading and reading and in the end I just wanted to read it again for comprehend it again better
Excellent Paul Cleave , now I am impatient to see again Theo Tate in his next novel !
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By James N Simpson on August 7, 2010
Format: Paperback
Cleave has written a few books since his 2006 debut masterpiece, The Cleaner. Not only have those novels not reached that thriller's quality level but to be honest have been a bit average. That high level we enjoyed with The Cleaner has however once again been reached with Cleave's latest Christchurch, New Zealand set thriller, Blood Men. Blood Men is a bit different in style to the Cleaner and other previous novels. This one reads sort of like a Harlan Coben/Linwoood Barclay everyday guy's happy life suddenly being turned upside down forcing him to use internal resources he didn't know existed beforehand. It doesn't have the humour element that The Cleaner had either, but the thriller aspect is well and truly there. There's also a cameo by the main character from the Cleaner.

In Blood Men, Edward Hunter meets his wife for lunch. Afterwards they go into a bank and stand in queue. Outside unbeknownst to them six men with shotguns are about to join them. The robbers aren't shy about murdering those inside and when one tells a female bank teller she took too long to get the money so as punishment she's coming with them, Edward without thinking speaks up to stop them. As punishment they murder his wife. Edward's life is shattered, if he didn't have a young daughter he'd end it all.

Edward had to rebuild his life once before. When he was a child armed police came to his house one night and dragged off his father. He would later discover his father was the serial killer of a number of Christchurch prostitutes and earnt the public nickname Jack the Hunter. For years the media has speculated if his father's desire to kill would be genetically passed onto his son.
Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Rachel Routier on November 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
Stumbled across Blood Men in a book store and had to have more! I haven't found a new author like Paul Cleave in a very long time.Pick up one of his books and you wont put it down until the last page is finished.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on August 30, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't know if you're like me, but sometimes when looking on this site for my next read, i'm drawn to a book by it's title. I don't like to read too much of the synopsis because it often give away too much. So when I saw Blood Men with a unanimous 5 star rating I ordered the book.

I can't tell you how glad I am that I did. Well drawn characters and a story that just flows. After finishing it I checked if there were other works to be found.

There are three other titles by this author...and I had to go to Europe via the web to find them BUT oh they are so worth the effort.

This author is TERRIFIC
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