To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
In a Lonely Place (Femmes Fatales) Paperback – November 1, 2003
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
I wish there had been more written about Dix's background, he was a fascinating character. I wasn't really surprised by the last sentence I already had a sneaking suspicion as to what was to be revealed.
Well developed characters and plot, you really have to read this story for yourself and meet Dix Steele.
Gone are the jabs and cynicism of some noir, but the author replaces these with effective attention to detail. She creates the atmosphere of alienation and isolation that her main character experiences, and then transforms the mood to one of mayhem and tension. A skillful writer will not belabor the point and give you every answer to a character's profile, and Hughes allows us to make our own judgments about the hows and whys of Steele's mental state, giving us glimpses and clues without revealing too much. It's equally fascinating--and unnerving--how we get to stew around in Steele's brain at points, which fluctuates between despair, sadness, isolation, anger, madness and insecurity. His cocky demeanor and "thrill-seeking" attitude are truly psychopathic in nature, and Hughes' ability to dig this deep into a character's psyche is truly remarkable (and, effectively disturbing).
While the plot follows a semi -traditional "killer on the loose" crime scenario, clearly the author does a masterful job of keeping several key characters "in the dark" as to the nature and details of the crimes, and this makes for a rewarding mystery as to the outcome (even though, as readers, the criminal's intent is right in front of us). As events unravel, Hughes has a compelling way of almost taking an unreliable narrative approach to the point of view, particularly toward the end.
If there is a negative, it is the dialogue between characters, which is a bit flat and forced. I found this evident especially in the scenes with Dix and Laurel.
Over all, though, In a Lonely Place was an impressive noir, a character study of the criminal mind and a suspenseful read that builds to a final, skillful conclusion.
There's also a brilliant and insightful afterward by Lisa Maria Hogeland that analyzes the novel and its characters in depth.