Customer Reviews


9 Reviews
5 star:
 (5)
4 star:
 (3)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars D'Amato joins the club
I love it when favorite authors surprise you. For years D'Amato has written wonderful mystery books.Great and timely plots with engaging characters. This time, she blew me away. I cannot explain the difference between a favorite author writing another very good book and an author looking into themselves and pulling out a great read. This book is that and more. Perhaps the...
Published on June 28, 2004 by J. Jordan

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
No big problem with this novel. It's an easy read and holds your attention fairly well. Might not read this author again though!
Published 21 months ago by JAT


Most Helpful First | Newest First

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars D'Amato joins the club, June 28, 2004
I love it when favorite authors surprise you. For years D'Amato has written wonderful mystery books.Great and timely plots with engaging characters. This time, she blew me away. I cannot explain the difference between a favorite author writing another very good book and an author looking into themselves and pulling out a great read. This book is that and more. Perhaps the best police procedural I've read this year. The relationship between our two police is so on the money. The tale horrific. And the setting oozes out of the pages to create a story. You cannot help but feel the heat radiating off of the Chicago concrete. Hawthorne house, where the action begins, is portrayed at the very beginning of the tale from the point of view of several of our players. It is one of the best "settings as a character" passages I have ever read.D'Amato isn't done with the reader at this point. For the murder victim is a pioneer in the treatment of autistic children and many of the suspects are his former patients. It is a locked room mystery with modern themes. D'Amato's best work to date. I would recommend this book above all others as the read of summer 2004.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent police procedural, May 26, 2004
It has been fifteen years The Hawthorne House School for the Treatment of Autistic Children closed its doors but this weekend the founders, doctors, counselors and some former patients are having a reunion. Dr. Jay Schermerthorn, the designer of the protocols, is looked upon as an expert in his field since he had such good results with his treatment. He is now writing books and is going to be the medical expert for a television station on medical information.
The morning after the first night of the reunion, Dr. Schermerthorn is found dead in the basement, the victim of torture. Detectives Emily Folkestone and Ollie Parker believe that this was a premeditated killing done by someone who hated the victim very much. The more they investigate, the more they realize that the doctor was a charlatan who abused the kids under his care. Emily and Ollie are being pressured by the higher-ups to make a quick arrest but the cops believe the only real suspect they have is innocent.
Hopefully Emily and Ollie will be featured in other novels because they make such a dynamite team and give readers an inside look on how a high-profile case is conducted as politics interferingly come into play. Many people had reason to hate the victim but Emily doesn't know how to examine autistic adults so the case gets even more complex. Barbara D'Amato has written about families not just the person with the disability. DEATH OF A THOUSAND CUTS is another excellent mystery by Ms. D'Amato
Harriet Klausner
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating book, April 9, 2005
Marvelous descriptions of Chicago and Hawthorne House build the foundation for this well-written book. However, it's the relationship between the two detectives and the characters of the patients, particularly Jeffrey, that draws you in and keeps you reading. While the mystery is good, it is the look at autism that makes this a fascinating book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars Okay, February 6, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Death of a Thousand Cuts (Hardcover)
No big problem with this novel. It's an easy read and holds your attention fairly well. Might not read this author again though!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Time Passages, April 2, 2011
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This story covers July 14-19 in July of 1995 during Chicago's heat wave. Just as the real heat scorched Chicago, the heat of anger and simmering resentments heats the passions of the characters in this story.

Dr. Schermerhorn, a Freudian fraud who claims he can "cure" children with autism opened a school for autistic children in 1968. His school is a thinly-veiled Orthogenic school founded by another fraud, Bruno Bettelheim. Unlike his real counterpart, Schermerhorn at least has his medical degree. He defrauded the public by telling people they caused their children to be autistic and by not allowing his pupils to go home except for two weekends per year.

On July 14, 1995, at the start of the heat wave, Dr. Schermerhorn and his long-standing sidekick Dr. Emerson invite former pupils (inmates) to a reunion at Hawthorne House, the literary equivalent of the Orthogenic School. The students, most of whom have autism arrive.

Jeffrey Clifford, a plausible character with severe autism was the first to arrive. Marginally verbal as a boy, he remains so in adult life. A gifted man, he restores furniture and works as a computer programmer. He was "born in 1960," yet he gives his arrival dates at Hawthorne House in 1972 and 1974, and his age is given as 7 both times. If he was born in 1960, he could not have been 7 in either 1972 or 1974.

Henry and Ben, two men with severe autism arrived with their families. April, another client with severe autism attends the reunion. Only Karl Deemer and Jane Macy, two former clients are not autistic.

Time is fluid in this story. As Jeffrey's age does not gibe with the years given, neither does April. A literary snapshot of April at 7 in 1968 shows a portrait of a girl with very severe autism. No school was able to meet her needs, so she was accepted at Hawthorne House. At the reunion in 1995, her age is given as 41. That could not be if she was 7 in 1968. That would place her age as 34 in 1995.

During the reunion, Dr. Schermerhorn, a Bettelheimian fraud who relied on another fraud, Dr. Freud as a crutch is murdered. The question is who did it? The list of suspects is quite high. Jeffrey's footprint was found in the man's blood. Karl Deemer was at the scene of the crime. April hated Dr. Schermerhorn for not allowing her to go home. In one especially heart wrenching scene, when April is questioned by police dectectives Ollie Park and Emily Folkestone, she declares that she does NOT like Dr. Schermerhorn. I was disgusted with April's mother who kept insisting that April did indeed like the man.

Henry Rollins also had reason to hate the late doctor. During his taped sessions, which police later obtained, Dr. Schermerhorn threatened to send Henry to "the nuthouse" if he didn't start talking normally. The doctor also told Jeffrey that his family no longer wanted him and that he, Dr. Schermerhorn was Jeffrey's father from that point on. Karl Deemer, an abused and neglected child as was Jane Macy were not autistic, but learned to play the game. Deemer admitted saying what he thought the doctor wanted to hear and Jane, who came from grinding poverty and abuse felt the doctor had saved her.

A few things that bothered me other than the fractured, inaccurate time sequence was the way autism was referred to as a disease. It isn't. Autism is a neurobiological condition that affects sensory processing and communication to varying degrees. I also didn't like the way Schermerhorn diagnosed Jeffrey during intake as having "autism consequent on maternal rejection." That kind of Kannerian bull manure had already been called into question by 1972 (and 1974), the years given as Jeffrey's admission dates at Hawthorne House.

Other suspects include staff and colleagues. One delightful character, Dr. Carol Hansen, an adamant, anti-Freudian certainly had plenty of reasons to want the man dead. The question remains, who, if any of these attendees killed the doctor? Was the murder committed by more than one person? Each charcter acts as a segue into the next character being featured and the intrigue builds into a resounding crescendo.

In time, the clues, the trails of tears and footprints will lead to.....an intense and riveting story with an excellent conclusion.

Al Stewart's 1978 song "Time Passages" and the Eagles' 1976 magnum opus "Hotel California" could easily be the soundtracks of this book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating book, August 4, 2004
By 
L J Roberts (Oakland, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Marvelous descriptions of Chicago and Hawthorne House build the foundation for this well-written book. However, it's the relationship between the two detectives and the characters of the patients, particularly Jeffrey, that draws you in and keeps you reading. While the mystery is good, it is the look at autism that makes this a fascinating book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Book, December 2, 2010
By 
PJ (Central PA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Death of a Thousand Cuts (Hardcover)
This was an excellent mystery that was particularly memorable because of the characters with autism. I know very little about autism, and can only assume or hope that the characters were portrayed accurately, but if they were, I've learned from the book. I was drawn in by Jeffrey's obsession with numbers and how incredibly upset he was when the symmetry of a parquet floor was messed up by a wall. The book stands apart from others because of the character who walked in circles, the tantrums, the ones who couldn't communicate clearly, the ones who had to have their food just so - and the difficulty of the investigators to interview them.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!, September 2, 2007
By 
BLS (Houston, Texas) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'm a very picky reader. I hate reading anything that can not keep my interest, and anything that you can pretty much just guess the ending. However, this book was amazing!! It kept you on your toes. You never know who's at fault in this book, and its very interesting. It's very descriptive, and I love it!! I have already read this book, and I'm reading it yet again. Though I know the ending, I can't quite remember everything, as I read it about 2 years ago, and it still has my interest! I definitely recommend this book! Infact, I already have!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book, good service, August 22, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Death of a Thousand Cuts (Hardcover)
This is an excellent book, and was delivered to me in very good condition, and promptly, from the seller.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Death of a Thousand Cuts
Death of a Thousand Cuts by Barbara D'Amato (Hardcover - June 1, 2004)
Used & New from: $2.47
Add to wishlist See buying options
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.