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Every Contact Leaves A Trace

Every Contact Leaves A Trace [Kindle Edition]

Elanor Dymott
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"Superb … a quite exceptional novel … it also has a confidence and ease with the rules of its genre, an appealing way of wearing its learning lightly, and a melancholy perceptiveness that is less reminiscent of The Secret History and its imitators than of Ford Madox Ford’s 1915 masterpiece The Good Soldier … Beginning as a straightforward locked-room mystery, it develops into a delicate meditation on grief and revenge … Dymott has contrived a plot that is deeply satisfying without being trite."--The Observer

"The telling of stories is key to this compelling locked-room thriller … There’s something of Ishiguro in the prose’s precision, the methodical narrator, and the reader’s unease about the characters’ self-delusion. But there is no sense that the story is anyone’s but Dymott’s … Dymott's capacity to conjure striking imagery is exceptional. She builds up suspense to an almost unbearable zenith before lightly side-stepping into a related subject. This is more than a murder mystery. It's an examination of the subjectivity of accounts of truth. It's a desperately moving love story about a lonely man who finds salvation in another only to have the idyll destroyed. Finally, it's a tale of revenge, served cold and deadly."--The Independent

"An exquisite, creepy and unexpectedly sexy murder-mystery … With the tension of a Nicci French thriller, the intellectual fizz of Donna Tartt’s The Secret History and the very best of Maggie O’Farrell’s unnerving readability, Dymott is a classy storyteller. She gets under your skin from the first chapter and remains at the back of your mind for days after the final page. Read this novel now before everyone else starts talking about it."--Elle

Book Description

Part love story, part murder-mystery, this is an extraordinary literary thriller, guaranteed to make your heart beat faster and faster...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1485 KB
  • Print Length: 415 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B00AN86K0S
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital (5 April 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0224094033
  • ISBN-13: 978-0224094030
  • ASIN: B007IV8560
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (69 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #25,922 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
By Roman Clodia TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Alex and Rachel return to their Oxford college and by the end of the night Rachel is dead. Unable to deal with his grief, Alex is drawn into investigating Rachel's past life, especially the time, ten years ago, when they were both undergraduates...

This is a well-written novel that conforms easily to the genre of dark, psychological mysteries. It brings together themes of the dark side of golden undergraduate life, the relationship between past and present, and the extent to which we ever really know those we love.

Where it excels, I think, is in creating a voice for Alex, now a thirty-something lawyer, dogged, a little unimaginative, and devastated by the loss of Rachel whom he loved unconditionally.

The denouement to the murder element felt a bit unconvincing and predictable to me, but that didn't stop my enjoyment of this book.

If you like books like The Secret History and My Cousin Rachel then this may be a good choice.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Where the author excels is in showing us how 'truth' is a much more slippery beast than we tend to think it is. She handles constantly shifting interpretations and possibilities masterfully, giving us - at times - a novel of satisfying complexity.

But she has been badly let down by whoever edited this (or whoever told her it didn't need editing). There are 100-200 pages around the middle of the novel that are simple unnecessary. And even some of the good sections are marred by being over-written. For example, we learn at one point that Alex finds an old ticket. Then a couple of sentences later he "notices" that it is folded in half. Really? Couldn't we just have been told, in the first place, that he found a folded ticket? At times it reads as if the writer is being paid per word.

That said, the last 100 pages are excellent. I'm just not sure it was worth ploughing through some of the earlier sections in order to get to the good stuff. But I will probably give the author the benefit of the doubt and read her next book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not always fair to Oxford 30 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An OK read. But you do conclude that the Oxford college set (students and fellows) really are so up themselves! And after a while, it's hard to care too much about the characters other than Rachel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Those looking for a linear naive narrative, predictable plot, and clichéd characterisation would undoubtedly be better off sticking to the unchallenging output of Jeffrey Archer and his ilk. Every Contact Leaves A Trace effortlessly transcends the Thriller genre and subtly echoes in one's consciousness long after the last page is finished. Quite outstanding for a debut - some authors make several attempts before turning out something this well honed, and most will never manage it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Every Contact Leaves a Trace 31 Jan 2014
By marcie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It started really well and I was caught up in the story, but I'm afraid that the ending was very weak and disappointing,it seemed that it was going nowhere....and didn't
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars lost interest 4 Nov 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
this book has an unjustifiably high opinion of itself. Humourless one-dimensional characters, pitifull narrator and leaden plot. no redeeming features.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Intelligent Read 14 Aug 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
There's quite a lot going on in this book - narratives and embedded narratives - and it's quite dense. But what a change to read something written so well and with an intricate (believable) plot. Brilliant.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprised to find enjoyed. 16 Nov 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I started to read the reviews when I was about a third through the book and thought I was going to become bored. It is a bit overlong and I did skim some of the pages. However, although there some pretty obvious questions eg can a student really have her essays written by another in her tutor group of 3 for 2 years without her tutor noticing? She may have been copying them out, but the styles would be similar, surely? Or, did she have a really dim tutor? - this is Oxford remember! I did want to read to the end and did so. I liked some of the very descriptive language. There are holes in the plot, but I am surprised to find I have finished it with a feeling of gladness that I persisted.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars "In one long yellow string I wound / Three times her little throat...
Progress is somewhat stately in this densely written but very absorbing tale. Just as you think you are getting somewhere with the story Ms Dymott veers off the path of the plot... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Eileen Shaw
1.0 out of 5 stars Just dreadful
Oh dear - I would have said that I can get pleasure out of almost any book, but I was defeated by this one. Poorly written, weak plot, unsympathetic characters .. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Smamph
4.0 out of 5 stars Clever crime
This is a well-crafted, tense and thrilling investigation into an unusual murder. On midsummer's eve, Alex's beloved new wife - Rachel - has been brutally killed in the grounds of... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Trydaran
4.0 out of 5 stars Every Contact Leaves a Trace that readers want to follow...
Very well written. Intricate structure with varying points of view requires an attentive reader and I enjoy such challenge. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Pat Shu-Lee
4.0 out of 5 stars Too long but worth it
Yes, I agree that it is too long and sags in the middle. But I still really enjoyed it and didn't want it to end. Not many books you can say that about.
Published 8 months ago by S. J. H. Cromie
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
Good well written book. A little too in depth at times, and jumped from one scene to another a lot, and I felt as though I was having to look up on previous pages to know where I... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Paula Penny
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Read Yet
I have not read the book yet as I generally buy several at a time on my kindle so no comment
Published 8 months ago by MS SALLY K MURRAY
2.0 out of 5 stars Chronologically confusing and deadly dull
This was such a disappointing and dreary, dull read. I struggled to get through it even though it is actually not that thick a book. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Henry H8
2.0 out of 5 stars Tather turgid and long-winded with a predictable ending.
After a promising start it became rather turgid and long-winded and had a predictable ending. Not exactly a page-turner I'm afraid.
Published 9 months ago by A.S. Thursfield
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