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Kill You Twice: An Archie Sheridan / Gretchen Lowell Novel Hardcover – August 7, 2012
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This month's Book With Buzz: "Stranger in the House" by Shari Lapena
In this neighborhood, danger lies close to home. A thriller packed full of secrets and a twisty story that never stops - from the bestselling author of "The Couple Next Door." See more
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Kill You Twice
“Utterly fresh and compelling. . .Cain hits the narrative throttle with all cylinders firing. Like the best thriller writers, though, she knows how to ease off the throttle, too, making room for subtle and satisfying character interplay but at the same time building tension as we wait for the narrative to burst into overdrive once again. Masterful on every level.”
—Booklist (starred review)
"Utter engrossing. . .Cain [creates] riveting character drama between two damaged souls."
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
The Night Season
“Cain’s novel has headlong pacing, endearing characters, twisted humor, and scalpel-sharp descriptions of murder and mayhem. It grabs you like a deadly undertow and doesn’t let you go.”
“High-octane ending. . .The world that Cain creates is as dark and ominous as ever.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Cain kept me perilously on edge at all times, teetering off a watery precipice from which there may have been no escape. I cannot recommend her immersive work highly enough.”
“Cain’s prose is taut, tense, and terrifying as this strange case develops and shudders with new details and twists. You’ll never guess the ending.”
“Superb. . .Cain skillfully incorporates the details of the real-life Vanport flood into her story… Cain pinned readers to their seats with a unique mix of horror, black humor, and psychological tension. This time she adds another arrow to her narrative quiver: the interplay between landscape and mood. This may be the best thriller set in a flooding city since Donna Leon’s Acqua Alta.”
—Booklist (starred review)
“Superb. . .[Cain is] the new queen of serial-killer fiction.”
“Cain's fine fourth thriller. . .Cain easily weaves the history of the real-life Vanport flood with her trademark heart-stopping moments, and fans will be pleased to see the series flourishing without Gretchen on every page.”
—Publishers Weekly (Top 10 Mystery of the Year)
"Chelsea Cain fills her new novel with dark atmosphere, a quick-thinking, likable hero, fast-moving narrative and plenty of wit.”
Evil at Heart
“You have to hand it to Cain, who’s made the serial-killer genre a thoroughly female-friendly experience. . .[She] churns stomachs with a delicate touch.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“She's the most twisted—and most beautiful—serial killer on the planet, and she's back... Cain's wonderfully over-the-top series takes a new turn when fans of Gretchen try their hand at killing. It's not to be missed.”
“Cain is among a new breed of women writers stepping way out of the stereotypical female comfort zones… serving up meatier and more gruesome stories. . .Cain knows how to keep readers fortified with psychological drama.”
—Chicago Sun Times
“The narrative bounces along with Cain’s trademark mix of tight plotting, creepy characters, and body parts.”
From the Back Cover
"Utterly engrossing."―Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Nothing makes Portland detective Archie Sheridan happier than knowing that Beauty Killer Gretchen Lowell is locked away in a psych ward. Archie can finally heal from the near-fatal physical and emotional wounds she's inflicted on him and start moving on with his life. Or can he? His latest case, involving a man who was mutilated and murdered in a public park in broad daylight, bears the stamp of an expert killer…and before long, Archie gets a message from Gretchen, who makes him an offer he can't refuse.
"DELIVERS THE SHOCKS."―MIAMI HERALD
Gretchen claims to have inside knowledge about the grisly Mount Tabor Park murder―and Archie can't risk losing his only lead in the case. At least, that's what he tells himself after he agrees to visit Gretchen…But the ties between Archie and Gretchen have always been stronger, deeper, and more complex than he's willing to admit, even to himself. What game is Gretchen playing this time? And even more frightening, what long-hidden secrets from her past have been dredged up that someone would kill to protect?
"Masterful on every level."―Booklist--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
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Top customer reviews
So first off, you will enjoy this a lot more if you READ THE SERIES IN ORDER. Not every series needs to be read in order, but this one does. There is a long history between the cop and the killer (and I'm really annoyed with reviewers who downgrade the book because they started in the middle of the series). Secondly, I totally disagree with the reviewer who thinks Lowell should be killed off so Archie can move on to other antagonists; one of the things that makes this a great series is the long arc of the relationship between Archie's damaged protagonist and Lowell's twisted lady killer. In fact I find this to be one of the stronger books of the series precisely because Lowell is more present in this tale. She is in a state mental hospital and the interactions between her and Archie (and Archie's partner Henry) are terrific. Each book has other killers as well, but the relationship between these two is always present, and I think that's a good thing.
The action takes place a few months after the events of The Night Season, as the city continues to clean up after the flood. I love that Cain treats the books as chapters of a larger story. The characters are wonderful: Archie is damaged but a good man despite being obsessed with the woman who evaded him for so long and then tortured him for ten days. He is almost constantly in pain, but has maintained his decency and humanity. Susan, the comic relief, is a young journalist friend of Archie. In this book we get to know more about her and spend some time with her mother, which is really fun. Henry, Archie's partner, is still in pain from the events of the last few books, but is in good form here. And Gretchen, now in a mental hospital, is drugged up and frustrated, though it seems like she has some sway over her doctors. Uh oh.
The book starts with a body in a Portland park, strung up and mutilated, and soon there's another victim burned at a local landmark. And that's another thing I love about the books -- Portland is a presence and I love the city and enjoy reading about it.
Another reason to read the series (in order!) -- you begin to develop an appreciation of Cain's long range thinking and plotting. That lovely neighbor who's being friendly to Archie? You know that's going somewhere, and with Cain, you know it's probably nowhere good ....
Caveat: These are great murder mystery thrillers, but they are graphic and quite violent. If cozy mysteries are your cup of tea, it might not be a good idea to venture here. If you haven't read any others in the series, don't start here. Go to Chelsea Cain's Heartsick first. If you have been reading the series, I believe you'll find this is a terrific outing for Archie. There are some great twists and a terrific ending (or two).
In order, the Archie Sheridan/Gretchen Lowell books are: Heartsick, Sweetheart, Evil at Heart, The Night Season, and this one, Kill You Twice.
On a different note, I continue to enjoy storyline involving Susan and the cast of characters that swirl around her universe. Hopefully Cain will continue to allow Susan to push forward in her life and continue to create interesting subplots involving her journey. While I was frustrated at times, and I'm sure this is intentional on the part of the author, I know I will pick up the next book. However, the ending of that book will definitely determine whether, given the plethora of fantastic books out there , I will buy the next one.
Cain stepped up with this one and managed to tie up a ton of loose ends that have been bothering me for some time. The odd focus on Pearl in book three. Gretchen’s identity seemingly popping up out of nowhere at age nineteen. Cain seems to have a long list of mysteries she’s working to cleverly and gradually resolve as she simultaneously introduces new and exciting content to the series. Her tactics in this installment maintained a good balance of old conflict resolution and new conflict introduction. Not bad. Not bad at all.
I have been fortunate to have read three book trilogies that has made my usual relaxing read of the Sunday New York Times a therapeutic means the weekends impending close.
Until the Sunday the Times list the New Book Release. I now maniacally scour the New York Times book review to learn if the Archie Sheridan and Gretchen Lowell latest storyline of the Stockholm relationship between Cains two brilliantly centered characters posess the mental (Gretchen) and physical (Archie) wherewithal to escalate their literal knashing of souls to desiminate the core existence of their depraved, yet covert mirror image. Ms.Cain dosen't miss a step when putting pencil to paper with writing the Beauty Killer novels. Each booked is freshly unsettling without gratuitous overkill. Chelsea Cain writing is imaginatively illustrate.