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The Lake of Darkness Paperback – January 9, 2001
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Intrusion: A Novel
A loving couple, grieving the loss of their son, finds their marriage in free fall when a beautiful, long-lost acquaintance inserts herself into their lives. Learn More
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From Library Journal
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"Ruth Rendell is surely one of the greatest novelists presently at work in our language."- Scott Turow
"Rendell writes with such elegance and restraint, with such a literate voice and an insightful mind, that she transcends the mystery genre and achieves something almost sublime."- Los Angeles Times
"Rendell's clear, shapely prose casts the mesmerizing spell of the confessional."- The New Yorker
Top Customer Reviews
This book features Martin Urban, a staid and somewhat stuffy young man who would have felt at home in Victorian England. Martin wins a very large sum of money in a football pool with a little help from Tim Sage, an old friend of his. Altruistic and given to some rather god-like pronouncements, Martin wishes to give the money away to the deserving poor, in order to enable them to buy a home. Poor Martin, there are none so blind, as those who will not see.
Beset by subliminal homo-erotic thoughts regarding Tim Sage, he meets a mysterious young woman named Francesca, who is as demure and submissive as a Victorian maiden and captures his heart. Unfortunately, she is bound to another. All, however, is not as Martin thinks that it is.
Enter Finn, the twisted son of Lena, former cleaning lady to Martin's mother. When Finn's path crosses that of Martin's, during one of Martin's fumbling attempts to give some of his winnings away, a very clever dialogue ensues between these two with some unexpected, deadly results.
Fans of Ms. Rendell will not be disappointed by this book. It is filled with the slightly off-beat characters for which she is known, some of whom harbor dark twisted thoughts, while others are entirely socio-pathic. Well-written is spare, clear prose and filled with enough twists and turns to satisfy the most discerning of readers, this is another gem in Ms. Rendell's treasure trove of mysteries.
'Darkness' ranks as one of the most perfectly crafted mysteries ever written. When all the pieces fit so beautifully--without stretching and reaching, without the reader thinking he's on a fictional ride--so perfectly, it is physically satisfying. The reader feels like one of the gods on Olympus looking down on these characters who stumble inexorably into what is to be their fate.
At the end of this book, I sat back and sighed with satisfaction. Yes, brilliant, Ruth. How do you do it?
This book is reminiscent of Elmore Leonard in that it is not a mystery per se - not Inspector Wexford - but more of a crime novel, a psychological treatise where the characters dictate the action. While neither Martin, Finn, nor Francesca evokes our sympathy, their interwining does. The plot is woven among these three much like a loom.
The strength of the book is Rendell's emphasis on the psychological make up of her main characters as well as her ability to draw them into relationships without their necessarily being in the same scene. I gave the book 4 stars and not 5 because this could have been a bigger story. However, if you're looking for a mystery, go read Sherlock Holmes. There's more deeper psychological angst here.
What a great book! I could hardly put it down. I loved the ending where the bad guy forgets one very important detail and can't do anything about it. We assume that he will be caught, but don't know for sure.
What I like about this book was that the characters seem to be normal, but they are anything but. It makes one wonder what ones neighbors might really be doing.
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to read a great story.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Much as I like Ruth Rendells books this was one I did not enjoy. From start to finish it did not inspire me and close to the end I gave up. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Heather wain
I found Rendell's usual array of quirky characters here but for once none were appealing, none drew much interest for me, made me want to read more. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Barbara Ewing
Like the December 23 reviewer, I thought this was a good mystery, well up to Rendell's standards. However, the Kindle edition (which I borrowed via my library) was created by... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jane Q. Doe
Good story, up to usual standards of a Rendell mystery. However, this ebook version needs some serious editing. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Kindle Customer
Again a very well done intrigue. The perversity of people and fate.....perhaps a tad too much as usual with RR but....Published 7 months ago by Angela G
Rendall is smart and insightful. How does she do it? Or, how did she do it? I get done with her canon, and then start over.
I had read this book before but had given it away and I wanted my husband to read it to introduce him to Ruth Rendell. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Arlred