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Ratings and Book Reviews (5 58 star ratings
5 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.3 out of 5
58
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
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    Unusual

    I chose this book because of the author, but got drawn in because of the unusual premise of the story. A proper page turner!
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    Unique

    A unique twist involving the author in the story with real events intertwined with the fiction. a little confusing at first but once I got into the story I was hooked and found it a most enjoyable read. I am now going to read the follow up book.
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    Surprisingly good.

    An unusual concept, that I didn't think would work. Bug it surprised me and I couldn't put it down - and the ending was excellent.
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    Hawthorne Investigates

    3.5 Stars Admittedly I have read the Hawthorne books out of order but I found The Sentence Is Death to be the better of the two. In this one there is so little of Hawthorne to grab on to that he is, literally, just words on a page. I know this is deliberate as it accurately reflects the narrator's exasperation at knowing so little about the subject he is now to write about; but it did make it hard going at times. This is especially because it is almost an ego-piece at times with the narrator taking control of every aspect and lamenting his difficulties in writing the book about the Cowper Murder whilst he knows so little about his hero. There were many times I wanted to heartily slap Tony and tell him to get his head from a certain orifice, but I couldn't because this is a fiction piece and whilst the Tony we read about has the exact same career trajectory and home life as the actual author (confused yet?) they are not one and the same person. It is this conceit that dangerously blurs the lines between fact and fiction but somehow the plotting is so bizarre (and rather outlandish at times) that the reader is never in any real danger of mixing reality and fiction in to an homogenous blob - at least I hope they aren't. I did enjoy reading the book and before I started I had already promised myself that I would not try and figure out whodunnit as I knew it would be suitably obscured and every time something relevant was mentioned it would be immediately followed by a ton of obfuscation. I think if I had been trying to work out who the murderer was and what their motives were I would probably have just given up on the book. There is a certain wit and humour buried within the pages - but it is of a rather black and bleak sort (but that appeals to me). As a final aside I am pretty sure that Mr Horowitz does not know any Funeral Directors personally. He pretty much does a disservice to the profession in this book, painting them as dour and rather humourless individuals. Trust me on this, we really aren't (my first job and still my best ever job was as a Funeral Director's Assistant), there is just a certain demeanour expected from us when "on the job". In reality we generally have overdeveloped senses of humour and a strong sense of the ridiculous.
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    My favourite book

    I would recomend this book to family and friends.
58

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