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Switch Mass Market Paperback – International Edition, August 25, 2009

4.1 out of 5 stars 37 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


"A terrific little-guy-in-big-trouble thriller. think Saw meets Payback moving at warp speed" -- LEE CHILD "Grant McKenzie really knows how to make a story move!" -- LINWOOD BARCLAY "A thriller that got me asking questions. Switch is a promising debut, a well-conceived thriller with no loose ends. Reminiscent of Dean Koontz. I'll be watching out for his next book" -- LIENTJIE MENTZ - VOLKSBLAD, South Africa "Think Harlan Coben on speed" -- KEN BRUEN "This is pulse-pounding stuff" THE GOOD BOOK GUIDE

About the Author

Grant McKenzie was born in Scotland but has spent the past 25 years working as a journalist in Canada. He started his career working the "dead-body beat" (working the night shift and being the first journalist on crime scenes) at one of Canada's largest tabloids. Since then he has worked as a senior editor and a columnist.

Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (August 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553819917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553819915
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,346,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Born in Scotland, living in Canada and writing American fiction, I like to wear a kilt and toque with my six-guns.

My debut novel, SWITCH, was praised by author Ken Bruen as: "Harlan Coben on speed with a heart breaking compassion that will literally have you biting your nails." It debuted in the UK from Random House Transworld, and in Canada from Penguin Books. It has also been published in the U.S., Germany, Taiwan, Australia, and coming soon to mainland China.

My second novel, No Cry for Help, was published by Bantam UK and Random House Germany, and is now available in the U.S. and Canada.

I have recently signed a 5-book deal with U.S. publisher Polis Books to release Switch, K.A.R.M.A., and The Fear in Her Eyes in paperback and digital. Plus, my newest thriller, Speak the Dead, will be released by Polis in hardcover next fall. Another new book, tentatively titled The Butcher's Apron, is set for fall 2016.

Under the pen name M.C. Grant, I write a new and very fun mystery series featuring wisecracking, ass-kicking, San Francisco-based reporter Dixie Flynn. Published by Midnight Ink. Dixie's three adventures are: Angel With A Bullet, Devil With A Gun, and Beauty With A Bomb.

My short stories have been featured in the First Thrills anthology edited by Lee Child from Tor/Forge, plus Out of the Gutter and Spinetingler magazines. My first screenplay also won a fellowship at the Praxis Centre for Screenwriting in Vancouver, B.C.

As a journalist, I have worked in virtually every area of the newspaper business from the late-night "Dead Body Beat" at a feisty daily tabloid to senior copy/design editor at two of Canada's largest broadsheets. In between regular newspaper gigs, I have also contributed technology/humour columns to various magazines around the world. I currently reside in Victoria, BC.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
Reason for Reading: The summary of this debut book by a resident Canadian had me very interested.

All I can start out with is a big WOW! This is not quite my usual fare of thriller which usually consists of the serial killer variety so I was not prepared for the intense serial-ness of this book. What an incredible story that in truth could happen to anyone. As the book first started off, I was reminded of a popular Hitchcock devise of the innocent man finding himself caught up in the middle of evil doings. These are innocent men, simple men, regular Joe's who have been brought into the spider's lair to play his nasty game. He kidnaps their families and then the men must do exactly as he says, being given missions of increasing moral complexity, or else he will kill the family.

As we enter the book, one man is at the end of his mission and believes that his wife and daughter have been murdered. At the same time another man has been brought into the game with the kidnapping, given the rules and his first mission. Eventually the two men meet and figure out a connection between themselves, thus trying to find a connection between them and the dead or injured, so they can figure out who hates them so much to be doing this, when they have never done anything illegal in their lives before.

This book starts off running and does not stop until the end. The chapters are quite short making this a very easy book to just keep going 'one more chapter' until the wee hours of the night. The fast pace means a lot of action, while this usually means character development suffers, in this case it doesn't.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is a very fast paced, constant action novel that with short James Patterson like chapters lets you do the just one more chapter before I put it down thing, and before you know it you've finished the book. Fans of Harlan Coben or Linwood Barclay style plots will enjoy this book although by jumping straight into the action we never really get to know the two main average guys (especially with Zack, we slightly do with Sam) or put ourselves in those shoes for the imagine if this was me, what would I do scenario like those two authors brilliantly pull off. But we have to remember this is Grant McKenzie's first novel, those guys have been writing for decades.

McKenzie also writes in an a lot of the time hide the identity of the character for a while in a scene style by describing them from another characters point of view or simply saying the woman. This is obviously to create a bit of mystery such as who is this woman, who is the attacker but if you're paying attention you'll work out who it obviously is or more importantly is not so you know whose left by process of elimination which sort of makes writing this way unnecessary and misses out on the reader really experiencing what's happening from that character's point of view to its full extent.

Set in Portland Oregon, basic plot of Switch is two nice middle aged guys, Sam and Zack, one a successful surgeon, one who never achieved his dreams of being an actor, both find their families have been killed. However both are shocked to receive a call from a caller telling them, they're still alive, for now! They must perform a number of evil tasks for the caller, and in the time they are not doing these tasks come up with 1 million dollars, if they do all this the caller will return the family members.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I don't know why most of the reviewers on here have trashed 'Switch' as I really enjoyed it. This was a fast-paced and action-packed book from start to finish. The plot was well-constructed with plenty of action that was both absorbing and entertaining and I was particularly impressed by the clever use of two entwined plots. This book was so engaging that I stayed up until 3am to finish it! I've read many novels of the crime/thriller genre and I believe this author has nailed it first time. Grab yourself a copy of 'Switch'. You WON'T be disappointed.
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Format: Paperback
Failed actor and full-time security guard, Sam White, is coasting through life, trying to provide for his family, when a phone call changes everything. His wife and daughter have been kidnapped and will be returned only if Sam does what the caller asks, and what he asks is criminal, to say the least. Sam is unaware that the same thing has happened to a doctor named Zack Parker until Parker approaches him with his own disturbing story. They decide to figure out who's dismantling their lives before it's too late to save their families.

Switch is a fast-paced thriller about loss of control, failed dreams, and how far someone will cross legal and moral lines for loved ones. It's a scary premise that I wasn't sure I wanted to read at first, but the short chapters and incredible tension kept me turning pages, and the twists and turns were good. The bad guy's motive wasn't particularly original, but the ethical dilemmas White and Parker faced were riveting.
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