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Shutter Island [Mass Market Paperback]

Dennis Lehane
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)

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Hardcover £8.35  
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Mass Market Paperback, 31 May 2004 --  
Audio, CD, Audiobook £13.59  

Book Description

31 May 2004
Summer, 1954. US Marshal Teddy Daniels has come to Shutter Island, home of Ashecliffe Hospital for the Criminally Insane. Along with his partner, Chuck Aule, he sets out to find an escaped murderess named Rachel Solando as a hurricane bears down upon them. But nothing at Ashecliffe Hospital is what it seems, and neither is Teddy Daniels. Is he there to find a missing patient? Or has he been sent to look into rumours of Ashecliffe's radical approach to psychiatry? Rumours that hint of drug experimentation, surgical trials, and lethal countermoves in the shadow war against Soviet brainwashing...As the investigation deepens, the questions mount. How has a barefoot woman escaped an island from a locked room? Who is leaving them clues in the form of cryptic codes? Why is there no record of a patient committed just one year before? What really goes on in Ward C? Why is an empty lighthouse surrounded by an electrified fence and armed guards? The closer Teddy and Chuck get to the truth, the more elusive it becomes, and the more they begin to believe that they may never leave Shutter Island. Because someone is trying to drive them insane...
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 385 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTorch; Reprint edition (31 May 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 038073186X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380731862
  • Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 11.6 x 2.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,103,483 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dennis Lehane grew up in the Dorchester section of Boston's inner-city. Before becoming a full-time writer, he worked as a counsellor with mentally handicapped and abused children, waited tables, parked cars, drove limos, worked in bookstores, and loaded tractor-trailers. His one regret is that no one ever gave him a chance to tend bar. He has an MFA from Florida International University, and is the writer-in-residence at Eckerd College in St Petersburg, Florida, where he runs the Writers in Paradise Writers' Conference. He and his wife divide their time between St. Petersburg and Boston. For more information on Dennis Lehane and his novels, visit his website:

Product Description

Amazon Review

Shutter Island is something of a departure for Dennis Lehane. It is not like the private eye novels with which he made his name and it is not especially like Mystic River, his distinguished crime novel about murder, loyalty and revenge. Instead, he gives us a classic of psychological suspense--US Marshal Teddy is summoned to a remote hospital for the criminally insane to look for a missing patient and finds his own future and sanity on the line. It is the 1950s and experiments with drugs, conditioning and brain surgery are all the rage both in the psychiatric profession and in the shadow world of government agencies.

Teddy rapidly becomes aware that no-one he is talking to is remotely telling him the truth and that he cannot be wholly sure even of his charming new partner. As the island hospital is isolated by a hurricane, we find ourselves unable to trust a single thing that the narrative tells us--Lehane displays a gift for sleight of hand which is showily disorienting. At the same time, this is not just a box of tricks. We find ourselves caring deeply for Teddy and his partner Chuck, whatever is going on and whoever they really are.--Roz Kaveney --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


'A psychological tour de force...Absolutely nothing is as it seems in this effortlessly complex twister' -- The Times (Play)

'Chilling, thrilling and so clever you'll be chewing it over long after the final page' -- Mirror

'Lehane's new novel carries one of the most aesthetically right resolutions ever written...A tour de force' -- Publishers Weekly --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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TEDDY DANIELS'S FATHER had been a fisherman. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You Think You've Figured It Out and..then.. 9 Aug 2003
You Think You've Figured It Out and....then
Dennis Lehane is a master of writing and surprise. He is one of the best writers of today- his possession of language and description surpass none. His new novel "Shutter Island" is one of the best. Teddy Daniels and Chuck Aule, U.S.Marshalls, are asked to go to Ashecliffe Hospital for the Mentally Insane to find an escaped patient/killer, Rachel Solando. Ashecliff is on an isolated island off the coast of Boston. From day one none of the staff are very helpful- always below the surface is a subtle message- we don't care, we are going through the motions from those who inhabit this strange island. The worst hurricane of the season occurs, and Teddy and Chuck going nowhere with this investigation, fear for their lives. Will they get off the island, will they find the killer, what is going on in the tower, and why does Teddy have such a hard time forgetting his dead wife? Will any of these questions be answered? Unless you have a tortured, twisted mind- the ending will clear the air. prisrob
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Dark Heart Of Shutter Island 22 Jun 2003
Cold War America in 1954 and Shutter Island, off the coast of New England, is the location of a high security sanatorium that houses some of America's most violent and disturbed criminals. Teddy Daniels and his new partner Chuck Aule are two U.S Federal Marshals sent to Shutter Island to investigate the disappearance of Rachel Solando, a delusional child killer.
From the moment they arrive, the feeling pervades that the resident doctors are trying to psychologically control them and Shutter Island is hiding something far more sinister than a facility for the criminally insane. Why would a redundant lighthouse, away from the facility, be fenced off and guarded?
The island is hit by a hurricane and Teddy realises, now he's cut off from civilisation, that he may need all his faculties just to get off the island alive, never mind discover what lies at the dark heart of Shutter Island.
Generally I'm not a fan of this type of mystery but I'd recommend this to any adult reader. More experienced mystery readers will enjoy the cryptic clues left by Rachel Solando. I didn't want to pause as the narrative dragged me on. I was willing Teddy Daniels to retain his sanity and defeat the manipulations and mind games of the psychiatrists. Maybe I should have paused because I didn't see the ending coming and even when it happened I was left in disbelief. Even hinting at it would be bang out of order. I had to look back and the pieces fitted perfectly.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lehane goes noir 3 July 2006
For fans of Lehane's Kenzie & Gennaro series, this novel may come as a bit of a surprise. It is altogether a darker and more mysterious piece. I've heard that some people who've read this book didn't understand the ending - don't let this put you off. The very ambiguity of the ending, set up by the mind blowing twist, is something that kept me thinking of this book for weeks after.

It's a great read & I'd recommend it to all fans of thrillers & mysteries. I like Lehane & believe that this is amongst his best (the main competition being Mystic River.)

Give it a go - I bet you won't be disappointed.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read 4 Aug 2009
By Alexander Bryce TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What a book. After Mystic River, my first Dennis Lehane,I thought that he could do no better. I was wrong. This is a cracker . A mystery that keeps the reader on his/her toes throughout. Take an institution for the criminally insane on an island off Boston during a storm circa 1954 then throw in a missing "patient",two young U.S. marshals who have baggage and have never met before, a variety of unusual guards and medics. The result in the hands of a real story teller like Mr. Lehane is a book that you can't put down.
As with all good writers you soon become involved with his characters and really care what becomes of them.
It would be unfair to be too specific about the twists and turns as the story unfolds as this could ruin it for potential readers. Suffice to say that just as you think that you have worked it out you soon learn that you have not and have to rethink again and again right up to the final revelation.
I would go so far as to say that this is the best work of its kind that I have ever read. I wish that I was starting it anew.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Cracking Thriller 6 Sep 2009
This is the first of Dennie Lehane's books that I have read - I saw the trailer for the Shutter Island movie - it looks great so I decided I'd like the read the book first.

Set in 1954 in an asylum for the criminally insane situated on Shutter Island just off the coast of Boston, we are introduced to US Marshalls Teddy Daniels and his partner Chuck Aule. They have arrived on the island to track down an escaped patient - Rachel Solano. Rachel is a very dangerous woman, as are all of the other 65 patients housed on Shutter Island.

The reader soon discovers that Teddy Daniels has another reason for taking this assignment - events from his past link him with the Island and one of it's inhabitants.

To go into any more detail would spoil the plot but the book is fast-paced with lots of action, the story is full of twists and turns and very suspenseful in places.

The ending is jaw-dropping, I had to go back and re-read some of the previous chapters just to ensure that I'd read it correctly. It's certainly not what I expected and is extremely well written.

The movie is directed by Martin Scorsese and stars Leonardo DiCaprio - it is due for release in February 2010 - I hope it stays true to the story in the book - if so, it should be a cracker.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good read
Published 21 days ago by melanie stewart
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Hadn't seen the film. knew nothing about it. Great.
Published 1 month ago by paj
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by D A WAGSTAFF
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Published 2 months ago by MR G GRAVES
4.0 out of 5 stars it's a great novel. Bought it for a book club meeting ...
it's a great novel. Bought it for a book club meeting and if you can find a book club where they are intelligent enough to actually discuss the book, then this is a good one. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Josephine Reese
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent keeps you guessing and even now I'm not sure ...
Excellent keeps you guessing and even now I'm not sure who did it. A book you can read again with a different perspective
Published 3 months ago by Sunnyfish
5.0 out of 5 stars Great purchase
Lovely condition and well worth the read. Thrilling story that you (or at least I) can't put down! Good value as was cheaper than can be found in shops.
Published 4 months ago by Ella MacKrell
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Thriller
I was amazed with this really good book from Dennis Lehane. Such a brilliant thriller full of great suspense. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Cas Allas Mazda
4.0 out of 5 stars Page turner but confusing
I was recommended the book by a colleague and found it to be a real page turner but towards the end, i got very confused - worth reading though.
Published 4 months ago by L. A. Maas
1.0 out of 5 stars So badly written
This book had all the hallmarks of being great, but the infantile writing style was its undoing. It was so convoluted that the plot was almost impossible to follow. Read more
Published 5 months ago by bagmad
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