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First Thrills [Paperback]

Lee Child
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (202 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
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Book Description

1 Aug 2011

Con men and killers, aliens and zombies, priests and soldiers, just some of the characters that thrill and kill in this compelling collection of gun-toting, double-crossing, back-stabbing, pulse-pounding stories.

Jeffery Deaver investigates the suspicious death of a crime-writer in The Plot; Karin Slaughter's grieving widow takes revenge on her dying ex-husband in Cold Heart; Stephen Coonts discovers a flying saucer in the depths of the ocean in Savage Planet; and John Lescroart's secret field agent finds himself caught up in a complex game of cat-and-mouse in The Gato Conundrum.

Handpicked by world number one Lee Child, celebrity authors and stars of the future are brought together, writing brand-new stories, especially commissioned for this must-have collection. Whether you're reading today's bestseller or tomorrow's phenomenon, grisly horror or paranoia thriller, historical suspense or supernatural crime, one thing is for certain. You'll be thrilled to the core.

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First Thrills + Reacher's Rules: Life Lessons From Jack Reacher + Never Go Back (Jack Reacher 18)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Corvus (1 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848876947
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848876941
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (202 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 111,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


This is an incredible lineup of new talent. I'm delighted to be part of their introduction to an eager fan base. Readers will be surprised by just how good they are. --Lee Child

Hands down one of the best short story collections you're ever likely to read --Booklist *STARRED REVIEW*

Twenty-five twisted imaginations... an admirable attempt to give a boost to writers with whom the public may not be familiar... Lee Child, who edited the anthology is a master of the genre, but his choice of opener, by the acclaimed Gregg Hurwitz, is a risk: it is so accomplished and involving that the narratives which follow necessarily struggle to reach the same level. However, none of the 25 is a stinker... There is a whole new lexicon to be learnt from at times but it doesn't take away from the quality of the tales and... it adds authenticity to what is often hardboiled crime fiction. --Independent on Sunday

About the Author

Lee Child is the editor of this collection of stories. He is the internationally bestselling author of fourteen Jack Reacher thrillers, including the Number 1 Sunday Times bestsellers Bad Luck and Trouble and Nothing to Lose.

This collection also includes stories by Karin Slaughter, Stephen Coonts, John Lescroart, as well as another 21 authors.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars First Thrills - Few Thrills!! 27 Jun 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book in anticipation of a good read but sadly I was disappointed.Some of the authors I hadn't heard of and,those I had,I was not taken by the quality of story. Ignore the name Lee Child on the front but I know what Jack Reacher would do with this book!!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average Anthology 18 Jan 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I guess its how you read the blurb on this. I must admit I saw it only as a short story collection, but I can equally understand how some people saw it as a Lee Child standalone book. Problem is that publishers will do everything they can to sell books and great big letters on an Amazon page headed by really small ones can make a big difference to what you see.

Anyway, the stories. Not totally convinced they all fit the brief; some crime, some murder/mystery, others laced with supernatural. I love short stories that grab me by the throat and don't let go for the few thousand words. I didn't really get that with this collection.

In the main the 'rising stars' fared slightly better than the established authors. Lee Child's story was instantly forgettable, although Karin Slaughter made a valiant attempt to rescue the pros' reputation with Cold Heart, probably my overall favourite.

Very handy to have a collection like this on the Kindle as you can race through a story in 15-20 minutes. Good for a short lunch break or bus trip.
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242 of 257 people found the following review helpful
By nathers
Format:Kindle Edition
I have to start this review by saying to all those people that bought this because they saw Lee Child's name on the cover and were subsequently disappointed that this is not a Lee Child novel...seriously? It's not that hard to figure it out from Amazon's description, or from downloading and reading a free sample!

Right, now that is off my chest, this is a great collection of short stories. What I love most is that while they are all related in some way to the crime genre, they are eclectic in sub-genre, plot, era, writing style, etc. Some are really hard boiled and gritty, others are more akin to sci-fi, and others still mix in a little horror. Overall this has been a delightful read and I'd recommend it to anyone looking for short stories, new authors, or something they can simply read in bitesize pieces!
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect example of how to write badly 13 Aug 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
We selected this book for the first sesssion of the office book club, thinking that short stories wouldn't force people to read an entire book, and that these were written by authors we'd enjoyed in the past. What we got felt like a collection of works that had been left in a drawer for the past twenty years and probably should have remained there. There some moderately interesting ideas, but all were poorly executed and felt "amateurish". Each tried too hard for a "twist" and had the feel of first efforts in a creative writing class. If you are looking for a book that leaves you feeling you could have written better yourself, this is close to perfect. If you want to be entertained, look elsewhere.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars First Thrills 23 July 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Having read all of Lee Child,s books I was disappointed with his short story contribution. I bought the book because of his sponsorship and the choice of other authors was poor. G Deaver,s story was readable but was similar to other plots in his books but at least there was good structure to the work. The quality of other short stories by new authors are also very unimaginative.

I bought the hardback to keep in my library to reread in a few years time but the use of Lee Child to 'Head Line' the book is a complete con.

Rhys Lloyd
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148 of 163 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Caught me out as well! 26 Dec 2010
By Midnight TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I also saw the cover & Lee Child listed as the 'author' - so promptly downloaded this book. I really am not a lover of short stories so I was hugely disappointed to discover it is actually a collection of short stories written by others.
However, I have given it 3 stars as those who do like to dip into a quick story to entertain or enthral them for a short spell, will probably get satisfaction from these.
It contains an eclectic mix of new and established authors and gives a balanced selection. It may serve the purpose of encouraging readers to try some of the different authors.
I have no gripe with the excellent idea of supplying a platform for different authors - I just feel it should be more obvious that we are not really getting a Lee Child's book. I have now had to ensure a mental note to myself to read the synopsis in future!
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been better 22 Aug 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am not at all sure that the competition to get into this book was fierce - some of the stories were not brilliant. Some I even skipped, thinking they were not worth reading. The size of the book is bulked up with blank pages throughout and several at the end, so it is not as thick and worthwhile a read as it looks on the shelf.
Some of the stories were outstanding, I have to say, others were mediocre and all are copyrighted 2010, so there is no way of knowing how long they have been around, previously published or whatever. My main grip is, as an editor, that the stories did not fit the theme. First Thrills does not include horror, They are supposed to be thriller writers and unless the two genres are now overlapping to a degree that I will find unacceptable, these were not all thrillers. Mr Child should have sent a good third of these back for either being not up to standard or not fitting the theme.

Not impressed, sorry to say. I wanted a good mix of outstanding stories from top thriller writers. What I have is stories from top thriller writers which are not outstanding. It as if they are letting their name carry them through.

I write short stories, lots of them. I know what a story needs. I edit for a living, I know what an anthology needs. On that basis alone, I can say this one does not measure up. For the sake of the good stories in there, it has three stars. On the basis of the names in there it should have been five.
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