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Spiral (Ring Series, Book 2) Paperback – August 1, 2005

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Editorial Reviews


"Suzuki is called the Stephen King of his country, but that's not really accurate; King isn't nearly as adept at creating complex characters, explaining scientific principles or writing the kind of dialogue that might actually be spoken by humans." - Las Vegas Mercury

"...Suzuki is plowing a path that nobody else has traveled, ..." - Agony Columns

"Suzuki's ambitious trilogy does succeed, and it's hard not to be impressed with his aplomb in turning a straight supernatural horror mystery around into a piece of pure science fiction." - TIMES
“...a unique, alchemical quality... he has demonstrated a miraculous power for transmuting the very common into the very frightening.” -- Rue Morgue“An enduring modern archetype”-- SF Reader

About the Author

Koji Suzuki was born in 1957 in Hamamatsu, southwest of Tokyo. He attended Keio University where he majored in French. After graduating he held numerous odd jobs, including a stint as a cram school teacher. Also a self-described jock, he holds a first-class yachting license and crossed the U.S., from Key West to Los Angeles, on his motorcycle.The father of two daughters, Suzuki is a respected authority on childrearing and has written numerous works on the subject. He acquired his expertise when he was a struggling writer and househusband. Suzuki also has translated a children's book into Japanese, The Little Sod Diaries by the crime novelist Simon Brett.In 1990, Suzuki's first full-length work, Paradise won the Japanese Fantasy Novel Award and launched his career as a fiction writer. Ring, written with a baby on his lap, catapulted him to fame, and the multi-million selling sequels Spiral and Loop cemented his reputation as a world-class talent. Often called the "Stephen King of Japan," Suzuki has played a crucial role in establishing mainstream credentials for horror novels in his country. He is based in Tokyo but loves to travel, often in the United States. Birthday is his sixth novel to appear in English.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 283 pages
  • Publisher: Vertical; First Paperback Edition edition (August 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932234160
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932234169
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #611,574 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Marc Ruby™ HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 18, 2006
Format: Hardcover
In Spiral, the sequel to Suzuki's Ring, we are to discover that the hoped for (if uncomfortable) resolution e promised at the end of Ring is not to come to pass. Instead we discover that there is a whole layer below Sadako's efforts at vengeance and that a darker and more haunting motive drives the story - one that threatens more than just those who watched the videotape.

Dr. Mitsuo Ando is haunted by the horrible accident that killed his son and destroyed his marriage. Still unable to make sense of his own life, he is called on to perform the autopsy of his friend Ryuji Takayama, who played a vital role in Ring. What he finds is that death was caused by a coronary blockage and that there are signs of a smallpox like viral infection. Odder is that the body seems to expel a piece of the newspaper used to fill out the thoracic cavity. Ryuji and Dr. Ando used to be addicted to ciphers, and a string of numbers on the paper can be decoded to spell R I N G.

Ando is drawn to Mai, Ryuji's student and lover, who suddenly disappears. As he investigates Ando discovers for himself that all of the victims of the videotape died similarly - all deaths seemingly by a viral infection and exposure to a videotape. Spiral thus introduces another, more unnerving idea. The Spiral is DNA and the theme of the book is mutation or, in broader terms, change.

This book is every bit as solid as Ring, but it pulls the rug out from under the reader by shifting from Ring's story of curses and ghosts to hard science fiction with just a dash of mysticism. As readers, we often have trouble shifting gears like that - stories that suddenly become something else take us out of our comfort zone.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Mike on November 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
Spiral is the 2nd in the series of Ring books. This installment takes place shortly after the first book with a pathologist performing an autopsy on one of the last victims. The story isn't going for the creepy shocks and awes of the first book, but goes a little more into the reason behind it all. The fates of the last books characters are explained. You find out what the ring basically is and how it works in more detail as the story goes on. It has a Michael Crichton feel to it with all the scientific explainations going on over the course of the book. It's not boring or too stuffy by any means it kept my interest enough to finish the book in a few evenings. The story does pick up towards the end and becomes more of the horror story you would expect. With a few comebacks of characters in the first book, there is enough here to keep you wanting to know more about this whole Ring thing. Can't wait to read loop and see how it all ends.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Phasedin on June 3, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I almost never read fiction. I'm pretty much hooked on real-life biogrophies and events that really happened. I am however a huge fan of horror films and I heard so much about the original Japanese "Ring" movies (4 in all, all with English subtitles) that I just had to get them on DVD. While I enjoyed the original Japanese "Ringu" movie very much, I really enjoyed best of all the first sequel "Rasen", which I believe translates into "Spiral". It turns out that, unlike the American movie version or "Ring" the first 2 Japanese movies are very faithful to the novels. So as soon as it was translated into English I bought the first "Ring" novel and was hooked. Truly enjoyable. And for us Americans it also gives a bit of a glimpse of what contemporary Japanese life is like, although i'm sure the author never even thought of that while he was creating his works. It's just a nice side-product of the actual story.
"Spiral" I also pre-ordered. And much like the movie "Rasen" it offers a scientific basis for the mystery of how the virus actually works. You can almost believe it the way Mr Suzuki uncovers the scientific basis for the virus.
You also get to find out what happens to the main characters who remained alive at the conclusion of "Ring", so it's recommended to read that one first.
Not at all content to simply rehash the same old story with some new characters who don't know anything about the video and resulting virus, this takes the story to an entirely new level. I was glued to this book and was sad to see it end.
In the back of the hardcover edition it states that next year the 3rd and final book in the series by Mr Suzuki, "Loop" will be published.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Photopro on December 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I have to admit that this story was written very well in the form of a sequel and a stand alone novel. The author wanted a reason to carry on the story he left at the end of "Ring", but I can see where things could get a bit sticky. Therefore, this book is supposed to be a stand alone novel that will keep "Ring" fans happy.

Starting the story out with the autopsy of the character who died at the end of the first novel brings readers right in, but soon after things seem to get a bit far fetched. How? Well, the author takes horror to a scientific level, almost Michael Crichton like, an tries to keep us on our toes at the same time. I do think it works, but just the keeping us on our toes part, the "horror" gets lost pretty early on in the book.

I think that you have to look at this book in one of two ways to make your decision on whether you like it or not. First, do you want to look at it as a sequel or second, as stand alone novel.

Although I read the first book and loved it, I dont think that it succedes as a good sequel, even though main characters return, even the evil girl Sadoko, or in the U.S. named Samara. As a stand alone novel though, I find it great. I mean, this is fiction people, not reality, its supposed to be far fetched.

I enjoyed this book very much as a thriller, not a horror, and honestly believe that both "Ring" fans and newcomers will enjoy this read. I cant wait for the third installment entitled "Loop". Have a fun read.
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