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Text Message [Kindle Edition]

William Malmborg
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

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Book Description

"I have your sister. Do exactly as I say or I'll kill her!"

Mallory thought it would be a quick trip to the mall, one where she could get a last minute Christmas gift for her boyfriend. Little did she know a momentary slip in judgment would result in her little sister's abduction. Unable to call the police for fear her sister will be killed, Mallory has no choice but to play the awful game the sadistic kidnapper has designed for her, one that begins during the crowded midday hours, but won't end until long after the mall shuts down for the evening.

HIS MALL . . .

Mr. Campbell has been waiting a long time for the perfect game, one that is obviously stacked in his favor given that failure would result in his imprisonment. Such stacking doesn't really concern him, however, not when it is the fun of the hunt, and the ever-changing scenario, that gets his blood pumping. And Mallory seems to be the perfect girl for this, her sudden lack of compliance after the first few tasks he instructs her to perform in order to keep her sister alive quite different than what he is used to when dealing with his female victims. In fact, in all his years of playing such games, he has never before encountered a girl who will allow such horror to unfold upon the captured loved one simply so she can preserve her own dignity. It is quite refreshing.

HIS GAME . . .

Dan knew his security shift at the mall would be hectic, what with it being one of the last shopping days before Christmas and a blizzard predicted to hit the area during the afternoon hours. What he wasn't expecting was to be caught up in a horrific game of cat and mouse between a college girl named Mallory and an unknown serial killer that kidnapped and is torturing her little sister. Not that he actually realizes this is what is unfolding, his self-imposed quest to figure out what is causing the similarly aged college student to act so bizarre his only real concern. Well, that and staying under the radar of his boss Jerry who seems to have it out for him. Will he be able to help Mallory survive her ordeal once the reality of the situation becomes known to him, or will he fall victim to a serial killer that never intended for him to be a part of the game?


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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 895 KB
  • Print Length: 375 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Darker Dreams Media (8 Nov. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0069RZXEQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • : Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #233,947 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

William Malmborg has been publishing short stories in horror magazines and dark fiction anthologies since 2002. In addition, four of his novels, DARK HARVEST, JIMMY, NIKKI'S SECRET and TEXT MESSAGE, are all available, as is a short story collection titled SCRAPING THE BONE that features five previously published and five original tales of horror. When not writing William caters to the whims of Toby and Truman, two cats who reside with him in Wheaton, IL.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good horror 28 May 2012
By seagull
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As creepy places go I think empty shopping centres are quite near the top of the list- a la empty hospitals and hotels. This story is set in a huge empty shopping centre and does not disappoint ratcheting up the tension page by page. The blurb does not hint at quite how depraved our nasty little hero is, be aware that this is definitely not for the faint of heart but for those who dare it is one night of bloody horror via mobile phones.
A nice original and easy read if you can stomach it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Would make an exciting film. 30 Mar. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Mallory and her sister Jenna are shopping in a Chicago mall. They separate whilst shopping and Mallory receives a text message from Jenna's phone. Mallory has a choice, ignore the message, phone the Police or play the game. She chooses to play the game and this roller coaster of a thriller starts.

Text message is all about a sadistic game played within a shopping mall. It is a fast moving thriller set in a short time frame, less than 8 hours. I liked the structure when each new chapter was from the viewpoint of another of the 3 central characters within the same time frame. You get the actions and thoughts of Mallory, a security guard called Dan and Mr Edwards the sadistic game master. Although the pace is fast, there is plenty of back story on each character so you can get a handle on what drives each person. The tasks that Mr Edwards sets for Mallory to play are a sexy challenge and the punishment for failing is very sadistic.

I really enjoyed reading Text Message, it gave a lot of pleasure and I think it would make an exciting film. This is an entertaining read and the games Mr Edwards wants Mallory to play will make most men smile with desire. Women readers may find the games creepy or embarrassing though.

William sets the scene of the shopping mall very well and captures the mood of all the people working there. I have often wondered if things other than shopping is going on in the background within shopping malls. Now whenever I hear a text message notification sound, I will wonder if another game is taking place. Text Message is a very good read and I vote it the top score of 5 stars.

Text Message is available as an Amazon Kindle eBook of 658 KB and was written in 2011.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sick - but not in a good way...(and boring) 29 April 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Good idea, poorly executed.

Plot: Madman kidnaps one girl and tortures her. In the meantime, he calls the captured girl's sister and forces her to follow commands to prevent further bad things happening to captured girl.

There is an awful lot of padding of narrative with day dreaming from the killer about nasty things he'd like to do - the examples are sick and serve no real purpose in furthering the main plot.

I ended up skim reading from chapter two onwards - wouldn't ever recommend this book to be honest.

I can see why it's free!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read 24 May 2012
By Claire
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book had me hooked from start to end. Where others have criticised the way the author focuses on the background on some of the characters, I think it just adds to the depth. Not a dull moment throughout.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed reading 30 Jan. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
From the first page the book grabbed me. Very fast paced which kept my interest high. The bad guy is really brutal and the way the chapters change between different characters viewpoint meant we could understand how/why they were acting as they did.

As long as you are not easily disturbed by cruel acts of torture it is worth a read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A disturbingly sick read. 13 Feb. 2013
By dean s
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is the first book ive read by this author and boy was it good. This saw-like story kept me gripped from the start and did until the end. The whole concept of it taking place in a shopping centre and the female character being stalked by a mobile phone was a great idea that keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout the story.
I would certainly say it is a sick storyline which i liked for a change and is certainly not for the weak hearted.
The only down point id put on the book is to me it seemed a bit of a weak ending like other people have said,but overall a fantastic book. Keep them coming.
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3.0 out of 5 stars First half good, second half a bit dull 1 May 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
As previous reviewers have mentioned, this book isn't really for those who are squeamish. The descriptions of some of the acts the bad guy performs are not necessarily that detailed, but still sick and twisted -and at times, a bit childish even. It's not a book for the easily offended.

The start of the book is at breakneck pace, throwing you straight into the story. The perpetrator gives Mallory tasks to do, one of which made the schoolboy in me chuckle a little, and cranks the pressure up along with the extremity of his requests.

However, it feels like about half way, or even a third of the way through, the author runs out of ideas and steam. There are some flashbacks to previous experiences of the perp and of Dan, a security guard at the mall, but only in snippets, which give a look into the psyche of both. Both of these could have been expanded o na bit more. In the mean time, the story sort of unfurls at a slow pace, with lots of description about the layout of the mall and where staircases are, which gets a it tedious. As one reviewer rightly points out, you can miss entire sections and not miss any action.

It's a shame really, because there's a good idea within this story, and the beginning is like an extreme Simon Kernick novel - lots of pace and action. But once it slows down, it gets a bit dull, and the climatic confrontations at the end drag on for ages with no real sense of tension at all.

Not a bad read by any means, just a little inconsistent, and with 'thriller' type reads, the pace should either be a constant breathless sprint, or should get quicker throughout the story, not the other way round.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good horror
This was a good read and just when you thought it couldn't get worse for Mallory, it does. I felt the ending was drawn out a little, and this, combined with the many typos and... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Goldfinger
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Kept me hooked throughout. Loved it! Fast paced, thrilling and genuinely thought provoking. How far would you go? Must read!
Published 6 months ago by Emma B
5.0 out of 5 stars Ballsy thirteen year old
another brill book by William malmborg made even better cos he mentions my pet peeve of people parking in a disabled parking space when they are not disabled and as a wheelchair... Read more
Published 11 months ago by tracy langsley
1.0 out of 5 stars Not worth reading
this is by far the worst book I have ever read. I skipped pages and just gave up in the end. Extremely boring.
Published 11 months ago by MRS J E CAMPBELL
4.0 out of 5 stars Clever idea.
Everyone texts these days. Non stop. But imagine being separated from your sister in a huge shopping mall then getting a text from her phone......but it isn't her texting you. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Nev
4.0 out of 5 stars Great read
I enjoyed reading this novel, although it takes a strong constitution so be warned. The main characters were well structured and the pace was kept just right as the perspective... Read more
Published 18 months ago by V
4.0 out of 5 stars Let's play a game...
Having read (and loved) Jimmy, I was keen to read more of William's work and I wasn't disappointed with this offering. Read more
Published 18 months ago by X30ALF
5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Gory Read.....
I had not heard of this author before but downloaded this book as a freebie and decided to give it a go as the storyline sounded good. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Rebecca Thompson
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and fast paced
Very interesting and fast paced book. The way it was told was very appealing though there are a few grammatical errors that need tended to.
Published 21 months ago by kayleigh
5.0 out of 5 stars Think before you answer that message
Really great fast paced story line that kept you guessing, and then when you do find out who you are just hoping that he wont win. Well worth getting .
Published 22 months ago by Amazon Customer
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