- File Size: 659 KB
- Print Length: 263 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: February 27, 2011
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B004PYDIFG
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Not Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #515,242 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Virtual Strangers (Love and murder in cyberspace) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Is anyone like whom they seem to be online? Who can you trust? Who should you fear?
A world where nothing is private and everything can be used against you.
I was immediately drawn into the story in the first chapter and the story held my attention until the final, surprising ending. Most chapters are split into the two viewpoints of the main characters. Reading each of their "take" on the situation at hand gave the story much more depth than what I was expecting.
A fresh, modern take on the movie "Strangers on a Train". I look forward to more collaborations between these two authors.
Virtual Strangers operates in two worlds, the real world and cyberspace. The real life murder-mystery portion of the book has plenty of unique twists; many of them work because of the uniqueness of the tie-in to cyberspace. The real world portion also has the stereotypical murder mystery device of strangers (okay, Virtual Strangers) stuck together in a big house trying to solve the murder. However, this has the variation that the murder(s) didn't happen in the house, instead they're together specifically to solve them.
However, what sets Virtual Strangers apart is how well O'Leary and Zaltin capture the dynamic of life in cyberspace and the potential for the two worlds to collide. Anyone who spends much time online should relate. How often have you seen someone on a forum behave in ways they never would face to face? Is a friend on Facebook who lives halfway across the world the same as your friend who lives next door and does it feel different? How much is real and how much is something else? When you think you're anonymous, are you?
This review is based on a pre-release copy obtained for free from the author.
**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog.**
I downloaded this book after the author mentioned on a Discussion Group thread that her co-writer had written some of the Wallander episodes for TV. This Henning Mankell TV series is one of my favourites, especially the Swedish version. As a writer, Mankell is amongst the best. Maybe I expected too much.
The idea behind the book could have been fascinating. Many of us contribute to online threads, and the Discussion Groups on Amazon are very addictive. The story is written from two viewpoints, that of Annika and Seabee. Annika lives in Paris married to a Frenchman severely injured in an accident a couple of years ago. She does not show much sympathy for his plight, and he is undeniably difficult to live with. Seabee lives with Lies, a sexually demanding dominatrix-like woman, (apparently we should feel sorry for him because she does not cuddle him), and is tired of his relationship but doesn't want to be the first to move out of the apartment they share. But when Lies has one of his non-housetrained dogs put down when it defecates in her designer shoes, it is the last straw. Both Annika and Seabee are writers and they meet through an internet site and they joke about getting their partners killed as in 'Strangers on a Train'.
It starts well, but as the book proceeds, the characters really don't develop. Practically every waking thought of Seabee is associated with sex - if he had been a pubescent teenager it might have been believable, if rather boring. But we are supposed to think that he is an intelligent man, a writer and translator, Alpha male, maybe, but surely he should have a few other thoughts in his mind as well.Read more ›
Unfortunately, as the book progressed, it became more and more implausible. At this point, I will be discussing some specific details from the second half of the book. They aren't really spoilers, but you may not want to read if you're sensitive to things like that. It didn't ring true at all that all the main players from the web site - some of them middle-class Americans - were able to travel to England at the drop of a hat. Have the authors checked plane ticket prices recently? I understand it is a mystery classic to gather all the main players in one place (and what better place than an isolated English country house?), but if you choose a specific set-up for your novel, you can't just abandon it for the dénouement from an entirely different book.
I agree with another reviewer that the identity of the actual villain was telegraphed explicitly - this removed some of the pleasure from the book. I was also really taken aback by the way Sebastian, a gay character, was portrayed - it just seemed kind of hateful.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good story line and characters. Though the murderer is predictable even though the author tries to throw some loops in there to throw you off.Published 4 months ago by Charlotte S.
This was a very interesting book in the way it was written. I would recommend this book to someone looking for a great mystery. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Shelly Muzyka
Unrealistic characters, predictable ending, soapy. Nevertheless it is reasonably entertaining.Published 4 months ago by Eliza
Written better than most kindle books. The plot bogs in a few places but for the most part it moves along, at times the pacing is inconsistent overall, not a bad book!Published 8 months ago by Buddhagyrl
I enjoyed this mystery and found the premise original--I also like how the narrative had two points of view which kept the story moving. Would recommend!Published 8 months ago by Christie L
I can promise you I hated this book. Really truly hated it. There is nothing I liked about it but seeing that I was 100% finished with it. Three things that come to mind. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Kindle Customer
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