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I Don't Want to Kill You (John Cleaver) Paperback – March 29, 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 88 customer reviews
Book 3 of 3 in the John Cleaver Series

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Fans of Jeff Lindsay's Dexter series will welcome Wells's gripping debut.” ―Publishers Weekly on I Am Not a Serial Killer

“Wells's debut is an unabashedly gory gem. This deft mix of several genres features a completely believable teenage sociopath (with a heart of gold), dark humor, a riveting mystery, and enough description of embalming to make any teen squeamish, even if they won't admit it. Buy multiples where it won't be banned.” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review) on I Am Not a Serial Killer

About the Author

Dan Wells is the author of I Am Not a Serial Killer and Mr. Monster. He lives in Orem, Utah, with his wife, Dawn, and four young children.

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Product Details

  • Series: John Cleaver (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 4th edition (March 29, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765328445
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765328441
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (88 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #52,093 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Steven Diamond on March 31, 2011
Format: Paperback
The following review was posted on Elitist Book Reviews. For more reviews, go check us out!

***The Review***

One of the lessons we have learned during our time reading and reviewing novels is that it is hard just to get a book published. Making that first novel solid? Even harder. But you know what's even MORE difficult than that? Writing a series where every novel gets better and better.

Dan Wells' horror series staring John Cleaver--a teenager who has all the early tendencies of a serial killer--comes to a conclusion (just for now hopefully) with I DON'T WANT TO KILL YOU. The novel is fantastic, even better than last year's terrific MR. MONSTER.

So what makes this novel so good? We'll start with the character, John Wayne Cleaver. If you've read the previous two novels in the series (which hopefully you have, otherwise why the heck are you even reading this review?), you know that John is an odd sort of fellow. He obsesses over serial killers; their methods, their psychology and their motives. John also worries that he will become one, so he sets rules for himself. He also works (secretly from his classmates at school and the rest of the town) in the family mortuary. The great thing about John is that for every instance where he scares the reader with his macabre thoughts and actions, he also makes the reader laugh. The balance here is perfect, and even better than the previous novels. At the same time, however, Wells has made this character grow. Remember, the events of the three novels all take place collectively over a very short amount of time. John has seen and experienced a lot since he first faced off against the killer from I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER, and it shows in I DON'T WANT TO KILL YOU.
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I'm not going to tell you what the book[s] are about, because anyone reading this likely already knows.

I stumbled across the first book in this series I Am Not A Serial Killer (John Cleaver Books) while wasting time in a book store. It looked interesting enough, so I bought it. I didn't expect the twist, and didn't care for it at first, but was in love with the book by the end. I immediately pre-ordered Mr. Monster (John Cleaver Books) and finally I Don't Want To Kill You. Each book is better than the last, with this one leaving me wanting more. I simply could not put any of them down.

I suggest ordering all three together, because you aren't going to want to wait between books. Let's hope the series doesn't end with this one.
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Wow, I really flew through this trilogy. I have been spending less time online of late, which means I get to watch a movie earlier and than normally once my movie is finished, I have an hour or so to read my book before I need to head to sleep. And I have found that reading a little bit every night, I am able to fly through a 300 odd page book in a week or two tops. Which is honestly fantastic as you have no idea how many books I have here to read!

I introduced to you our sociopath teenager, John Cleaver in my last review, Mr. Monster. Which was Dan Well's second novel after I Am Not a Serial Killer. In Well's first book, John faces a shape shifting Jeepers-Creepers type monster that eats his victims limbs or organs as his need to be replaced, for regenerative purposes. In Well's second book, Mr. Monster, he faces a much more evil demon, one that tortures his victims for weeks on end so he can feel what they feel. Finally, in this third instalment, John has called the third demon, from the last demon's mobile phone, and told her to come because he wants to finish her off too. This 16 year old boy that is so confused and has no father, has decided that killing demons settles his craving to kill. So he doesn't have to be a normal serial killer and hurt perfectly innocent people, he can kill these demons that only kill others anyway so essentially, he is saving lives, not destroying them. In this third book, I Don't Want To Kill You, John makes new friends, tries to figure out who the demon is and how they kill so he can kill them. He also gets more heavily involved with the police and feels the sadness of a string of mysterious suicides that happen in his town, Clayton.
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The first two books in the John Cleaver series were pretty good. In the first we deal with a demon and then a different demon in the second one. How creative can Dan Wells get with demons? I actually wondered if he could surprise me in this book.

Not only did he surprise me, but he waaaaay exceeded my expectations. If you loved the first two books, you are going to cry over this one. It is AMAZING and touches you at an emotional level he never did in the first two books. Dan Wells' writing seems to improve and get better with each book, and John Cleaver becomes more the person we would like to see him become.

This one ends indicating that more is to happen, just as the second book ended, and I'm excited to see the new direction this series will take with the developments of this book. If a book four is coming, I can't wait for it.

If you loved the first two books, get this without hesitation. If you liked them or were kind of iffy on them, then I'd recommend giving this a chance. It is quite easily and hands down the best of the series thus far. If you couldn't stand the first two books, I question why you are even considering this one.
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