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Carnival of Shadows

Carnival of Shadows [Kindle Edition]

R.J. Ellory
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Book Description

Murder, conspiracy and a hint of the supernatural: the powerful new thriller from the bestselling author of A QUIET BELIEF IN ANGELS.

Product Description

Kansas, 1959. A travelling carnival appears overnight in the small town of Seneca Falls, intriguing the townsfolk with acts of inexplicable magic and illusion. But when a man's body is discovered beneath the carousel, with no clue as to his identity, FBI Special Agent Michael Travis is sent to investigate.
Led by the elusive Edgar Doyle, the carnival folk range from the enigmatic to the bizarre, but none of them will give Travis a straight answer to his questions. With each new turn of the investigation, Doyle and his companions challenge Travis's once unshakeable faith in solid facts and hard evidence.

As the consequences of what has happened become ever more disturbing, Travis struggles to open his mind to a truth that defies comprehension. Will he be able to convince himself that things are not what they seem? Or will he finally reconcile himself to a new reality - one that threatens to undermine everything in which he has ever placed his trust?

In his powerful, atmospheric new thriller, bestselling author R.J. Ellory introduces the weird and wonderful world of the Carnival Diablo and reveals the dark secrets that lurk at its heart.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1004 KB
  • Print Length: 448 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1409124207
  • Publisher: Orion (22 May 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00IA2E4QG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #17,268 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

RJ Ellory is the author of twelve novels, all published in the UK by Orion, and available in twenty-six additional languages. They are:
BAD SIGNS (2011)
'Candlemoth', his first-published, was shortlisted for the Crime Writers' Association Steel Dagger, as was his fourth, 'City of Lies', in 2006. His fifth novel, 'A Quiet Belief In Angels' was a Richard & Judy Book Club selection in 2007, and went on to win the Livre De Poche Award, The Strand Magazine Novel of The Year, The Mystery Booksellers of America Award, the USA National Indie Excellence Award for Best Mystery and the Inaugural Nouvel Observateur Prize. 'A Quiet Vendetta' won the Quebec Laureat, the Villeneuve Readers' Prize and the St. Maur Prize. 'A Simple Act of Violence', Ellory's sixth novel, won the Theakston's Crime Novel of the Year 2010. He has been nominated for a further thirteen international awards including two Barrys, the Association 813 Trophy, and the Europeen Du Point. He has also written the screenplay of 'A Quiet Belief In Angels' for Oscar-winning director, Olivier Dahan, and has optioned 'A Dark and Broken Heart' for film. His novella 'Three Days in Chicagoland' is being released as a French graphic novel at the end of 2014, and he has published short stories in numerous British and American magazines. Ellory is also the guitar player in Zero Navigator, and is soon to record an album of songs co-written with Martin Smith of ELO in a project entitled The Whiskey Poets. He was born in Birmingham, U.K., and continues to make this his home with his long-suffering wife, idiosyncratic son and two troublesome cats.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars RJ's got his mojo back 22 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What a relief! A novel from RJ Ellory that puts him right back where he belongs, up there with the best of British crime-fiction writers. After what I felt was a slightly disappointing previous outing with The Devil and the River, Carnival of Shadows is a thoroughly engaging and satisfying read with a return to form in the area that Ellory is normally so strong : Character creation and development. Add to that some really outstanding prose and imagery, and all you need is a decent story to wrap around it. No problems there - this is the complete package.

The story is based in the small town of Seneca Falls, Kansas, in 1959, where a travelling carnival has unexpectedly made base, and a murder of an unidentified man has already taken place. Cue newly promoted Senior Special Agent Michael Travis from the FBI to come in on a fact-finding mission. He has an interesting background, one that is in part based on the death of one of his parents when he was fifteen years old. The second chapter of the novel is dedicated to what his mother had called "the terrible rage", culminating in a dramatic event that had taken place right in front of Michael Travis and which would understandably shape him into to the man he is today. This is a familiar Ellory fingerprint, describing new characters and within the space of a few pages explaining not just who they are, but why they are who they are. He creates depth to his characters, gives them dimension and helps us to relate to them and care for them. This can work both ways - liking and disliking - but the important point is that we care, and that's not a common skill in writers these days.

"Michael was merely fifteen years old when the Terrible Rage came to an end.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Immersion Therapy 2 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As with all of RJ Ellory's recent work, Carnival Of Shadows is much more than a book. It's an immersion, a complete experience. His prose hauls you deep into the world he describes, an entirely credible real world, not a fictional construct, not an escapist fantasy; this is a world of half-truths, half-light and half-lives. A world built from layer upon layer of shadows.
You can read the plot synopsis and decide whether or not to buy the book from that alone, but the book is far more than that. It's a story -- of course it is. It's filled with characters -- of course it is. It's set in a time and a place and a specific context carefully chosen and populated to lend a surreal entertaining air to the proceedings. And you can read it that way, and enjoy it. Hurrah, etc.
There's also far more to the novel than the story, the mix of characters and events, actions and consequences. It's an invitation to understand, to consider, to learn and appreciate Ellory's unique take on the events he describes. It's packed with questions: what makes a G-man; who joins a carny; how can small-town America handle America the state and the system? What is law and what is order?
The genius lies in providing a cracking thriller wrapping for a load of serious stuff. Read it twice; the first time to enjoy the plot and the characters, then a second time, nodding your head and going Hmmm...
Excellent. Five stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What the hell is going on? 12 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
RJ Ellory never ceases to surprise. It's a slow burner building up to a crescendo resolution. Well written, it draws the reader into the political drama - the American nightmare. Ellory is a master plotter and Carnival of Shadows is no exception to his earlier works all of which I savoured. The characters are crafted to the extent that when the book ends they stay with you at least until his next offering.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No formula, just chemistry 28 May 2014
I approached this book with a little scepticism because the blurb on Amazon gave me the impression Carnival of Shadows (COS) was another small town crime investigation and therefore sounded similar to RJE's last book The Devil and the River; that was a great read, but I was looking for something different from a writer who, amongst his many talents, is capable of bringing a fresh perspective in each of his standalone novels.

Forget the blurb, although that might just be my fault, RJE has done something fresh because COS starts small, with a FBI agent sent in to investigate a murder [assuming it is even deemed a Federal Crime] and then develops, in typical RJE slow burning style, to a book of immense intrigue. I can't say too much, without risking becoming a spoiler, but suffice to say it will be thought provoking and leave the discerning reader with lots of questions, perhaps no surprise given that the book is `dedicated,' to those of us who daringly ask questions.

COS is written in the third person, almost entirely from the perspective of Michael Travis [MT] the FBI agent and whilst the majority of the novel focuses on his present time investigation, MT's backstory is covered within several chapters taking us as far back as his childhood and teenage years. The switching back and fore is very well handled. It gives insight into MT without disturbing the flow of the novel. The amount of backstory is just about right too and the emotion is raw and tender and it helps the reader really get under the skin of MT.

The other aspect of the book I really enjoyed was the exchanges between Edgar Doyle [ED] and MT. ED is one of the most charismatic characters RJE has created and it's good to see such a character develop in parallel to the lead role. I really enjoyed this book. It's a candidate for my favourite RJE novel and when I struggle to find well written books with depth that make me think, for the money it was well worth my hard earned cash.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars R.J.Ellory with a difference
Have read all this authors books, this is different to the rest but I really enjoyed, I definitely believe this sort of thing goes on in our great world, man finding himself in a... Read more
Published 5 days ago by Grandad bob
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner!
What a great read. You cannot fail to be entertained by it. I was going to say that as a writer of crime fiction R.J. Read more
Published 7 days ago by L. Simmonds
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great
I love RJ Ellory's style in most of his past books.This has to do with his style of writing almost of a bygone era . I found this book a little hard to get in to. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Lindylou
5.0 out of 5 stars RJ Ellory is amazing, and this is another amazing novel
RJ Ellory is amazing, and this is another amazing novel. Heard him speak recently and read from his hugely successful 'A Quiet Belief in Angels', further proof that he really knows... Read more
Published 26 days ago by Janet Tchamani
5.0 out of 5 stars R J Ellory
Super book, excellent plot. This man has a knack of holding you right to the very end. Just love his books.
Published 28 days ago by Sandra Clifford
5.0 out of 5 stars Oustanding Novel - Brilliant!
This novel is an outstanding piece of fiction, it literally took my breath away as I was sucked into the world of words that R.J. Ellory so brilliantly created. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
4.0 out of 5 stars And the Beat Goes On!!
What more can be said about R J Ellory?
His books engage your mind and soul from page 1 and hold you in a vice like
grip right up to the last page. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mr. John Frank Herbert
5.0 out of 5 stars Ellory weaves his magic
The book starts by introducing us to Michael Travis, a Special Agent for the FBI. The year is 1959 and he has been tasked with travelling to the small town of Seneca Falls in... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Siltone
2.0 out of 5 stars should have a sub title PARANOIA
This in my opinion is Mr Ellorys worst book .Such a disappointment the similarities between this and Alisteir Mc Cleans Last Frontier are striking . Read more
Published 1 month ago by John Houraghan
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
I absolutely loved this book. It's much different to RJE's other books and I liked the magical element incorporated within the story. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Yorkshire Rose
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