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Mimi's Ghost Hardcover – January 8, 2001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Arcade Publishing; 1st North American ed edition (January 8, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1559705566
  • ISBN-13: 978-1559705561
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,317,612 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Expatriate Englishman Morris Duckworth, the conman, serial murderer and psychopath last seen in Juggling the Stars, is back, in the egregious effulgence of his evil and charmed life. What is a literary fellow like British author Parks (Europa) doing with a slime like Morris? Having fun, writing a wild and wacky thriller that's like sharing a roller-coaster ride with a suave maniac. Morris is an inspired mixture of loony self-regard and stupidity fueled by obtuseness. Having fatally dispatched Massamina (Mimi) Trevesan, the heiress he kidnapped in the first book, evaded the law and even ingratiated himself with Mimi's family, Morris is now married to her sister, the voraciously libidinous Paola. He's living in a luxury condominium in Verona, swanning around in his Mercedes and battling with his brother-in-law for control of the family wine company. What makes Morris so fascinating is his utterly amoral mindset. Far from suffering true guilt, Morris engages in consummate self-justification. He believes Mimi has forgiven him for her murder, which was merely a reaction "to extreme circumstances." Exhibiting unmistakable signs of schizophrenia, he "sees" Mimi and talks to her, often by car phone. It's Mimi, he thinks, who advises him to dispatch three new victims. Parks applies a wicked imagination to his ingenious plot, getting Morris into one farcically dangerous situation after another. One need not have read the first book to enjoy the frissons of suspense in this one, and readers will hope they haven't seen the last of Morris and his bizarrely lethal adventures. (Feb.) Forecast: It may be his very proflicacy (10 novels and three nonfiction books) that has kept Parks from establishing an identity on this side of the Atlantic. With the right breaks, this very funny novel could find a niche in the mode established by Elmore Leonard.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

A study of psychosis or a riveting ghost story? Just as scholars have debated this question in discussions of James' The Turn of the Screw, so too may readers dissect Parks' latest mystery. The fortune-hunting Englishman, Morris Duckworth, misses his Italian Mimi, the great love of his life, an unfortunate development because he murdered her in a previous book and married her older sister, Paola. He can, strangely enough, clearly hear and see Mimi, taking solace in their telephone (cordless, of course) conversations as he awaits the death of her and Paolo's mother, a demise that will give him the 50 percent control of the family winery he has long desired. Hoping to finally earn genuine membership into the family that had spurned his courtship of Mimi, he views his brother-in-law Bobo's management of Trevisan Wineries as a mere detail to deal with once he's fully on board. Enter a flesh-and-blood "ghost" from the past that can implicate Morris in Mimi's death, and Parks' deeply dark humor unfurls as Morris takes Mimi's advice and commits yet another murder. Whitney Scott
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mary Whipple HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on April 5, 2001
Format: Hardcover
There is something uncomfortable, squirmy, and even a bit repulsive about Mimi's Ghost, despite the fact that it's a lot of fun to read. Morris Duckworth, the main character, you see, is a serial killer. Though Parks presents him in broad strokes and with some sense of absurdity, he also comes across, unfortunately, as someone the author finds quite amusing, a "delightful killer" of sorts.

At the outset of the novel, Morris has already killed at least three people--Mimi, the only woman he has ever loved and two characters named Giacomo and Sandra, and there are hints that he has also killed his mother. A good-looking, blonde Englishman living in Italy, Morris has quickly married Mimi's sister Paola and hopes to be in charge of the family winery soon. What he has not expected is that he will begin communicating with Mimi on his cell phone, that he will hear her voice talking to him at unexpected moments, that he will see her wink at him in photographs, and that he'll recognize her face as the Virgin in Renaissance paintings. As Morris tries to ensure his position in the family business, he resorts to homicide again, but he also becomes a born-again Christian, decides to establish a residence for homeless immigrants who have been living in the local cemetery, and tries to embark on an introspective life of good works.

Morris may well be a schizophrenic and/or psychopath. I was never sure, however, exactly what point of view the author wanted to convey about him. Though Morris's actions are repulsive and show absolutely no remorse, many parts of the book are almost slapstick funny, and there is a great deal of satire-of the British character, of Italian police procedures, of business practices, and of bribery and graft.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Di Gioia on July 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I didn't think this book was as good as the first but I am hoping there will be a third part to the story of Morris Duckworth.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Tim Parks continues the sordid, yet comic, misadventures of Morris Duckworth. The sequel didn't grab me into it as much as the first, but still was a very enjoyable read. Dig in to this series and enjoy.
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