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THE MALICE BOX Spiral-bound – 1111


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  • Spiral-bound
  • ASIN: B00AXGWVTE
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Palindrome Mordnilap on 17 Sept. 2009
Format: Mass Market Paperback
First of all, can I make something clear to the negative reviewers (and others): this is NOT a Da Vinci Code clone. What Martin Langfield has written is a fast-paced, intelligent, supernatural thriller, predominantly set in New York with flashbacks to Cambridge and London. It weaves occult philosophy and esoteric religious practices into the narrative of a tightly written novel that will keep you in suspense, forever guessing what will happen next.

The so-called "puzzles" which people have called into question are not meant to be on the same level as the Times cryptic crossword, and they work best when you just accept them for what they are and read on to see them revealed. In any case, the climax of the novel explains why the puzzles themselves are not painfully difficult to unravel; they aren't meant to be.

Langfield successfully blends occultism, history, religion, mythology and a commendable grasp of Manhattan's architecture and geography to produce something very different from the average "race against time to stop the serial killer" plot. Indeed, the ambiguities and continual upsets that run throughout the novel often make it difficult to know whose side you, the reader, are meant to be on from one moment to the next. This all adds up to what makes it so compelling. I read the book over four evenings, but agree with other (positive) reviewers that it would work best if read in one sitting.

For those who claim to have found it "difficult" or even "boring", I can only wonder if they approached the novel with the wrong expectations. Forget how the book may have been marketed, this is not the Da Vinci Code. And it's all the better for it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 25 Jan. 2009
Format: Hardcover
I thorougholy enjoyed this book. There is a wealth of detail that, in contrast to what some other reviewers have said, serves to add to the quality of this work, signifying that the author has done his research properly. There is nothing worse than a potentially good book being ruined by sloppy or incomplete research and here, the detail brings the city to life. I have visited New York briefly but this really brought the images of the city to mind.

I liked the plot, I empathised with the characters and particularly liked the drawing together of strands as the story progressed.
Buy it
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Sundry Items on 17 Feb. 2007
Format: Hardcover
After having experienced a rather long dry spell trying to find intelligent AND entertaining suspense-fiction, I stumbled across The Malice Box. I had a hard time putting it down at night, which I paid for with two extremely groggy days at work. And I found myself preoccupied trying to figure out how the story was going to end. Congratulations to M. Langfield. I finished the book yesterday and it is still resonating! Here's hoping for a follow up!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Zephfire on 1 Aug. 2009
Format: Hardcover
A twisting , turning, complex race against time and around Manhattan. It was an engaging read, lots of changes in direction for both the main character, Robert, and the reader. I loved the descriptions of the buildings and the articfacts, despite never having been to Manhattan I finished the book feeling as though i'd just had a personal tour with an authortive guide! I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good mystery and likes to try and solve the puzzle as they read, as I do.. I even enjoyed it when my guesses as to what would happen next were wrong..as the author's direction was always better!
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By book-worm.biz on 11 Feb. 2007
Format: Hardcover
A rattling good adventure sweeping you through Manhattan on a quest to retrieve 7 keys before they unlock a device which will destroy the world. Classic good versus evil stuff: an unwitting hero asked to step up and follow the Path to help the guardians of the Perfect Light defeat the Brotherhood of Inwn.

Robert Reckliss is an English journo in New York, whose strange and compulsive pastime is collecting scale models of NY buildings. This obsession sets the scene for a tale which uses the architecture and history of New York to drive a fascinating hunt against the clock. But the story has roots in his Cambridge days where he was drawn into the scavenger hunt games of the Unicorn Club by its enigmatic leader who twenty years on sends him a "Boîte à Malice" the Malice Box with the plea "Help me! Time is running out!" along with a cryptic puzzle to launch him on the first of seven trials to challenge him over the next 7 days.

Each trial is accompanied by fascinating puzzles for the reader to solve along with the hero - although he gets the help of the guardians. There is lots of stuff to interest and intrigue: science from Isaac Newton to the Manhattan Project, alchemy and metaphysics, religion and mysticism, all cleverly interwoven in a story where the hero has to find the power of the Light within him before he can defeat the dark powers of the Brotherhood.

And forget Paris and the da Vinci Code, a lot of people will be taking this book on a trip to Manhattan to follow the Path for themselves!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kevsbrook on 17 July 2012
Format: Hardcover
An excellent read. I keep going back to it and re-reading segments. I find it reveals hidden truths, and that is quite scary. It is first on my recommended reads when chatting about books to friends, family, work colleagues.... anybody who takes an interest really. I daren't read the follow-up book. Maybe I should. Maybe one day....if I ever summon up the courage.

Tip: research using the internet with book in one hand - internet resource in the other. You will be amazed.

Enjoy
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