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The Camera Killer Paperback – 17 Jul 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 116 pages
  • Publisher: AmazonCrossing; Original edition (17 July 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1612183239
  • ISBN-13: 978-1612183237
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 14 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,695,935 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Thomas Glavinic is an influential Austrian novelist. He won the Friedrich-Glauser Prize for crime fiction in 2002 and was shortlisted for the German Book Prize in 2007.

Product Description

About the Author

Thomas Glavinic is an influential Austrian novelist. Born in 1972, he is considered a guiding voice in Austrian literature. He’s written several novels and has won both critical acclaim and commercial success, winning prizes and topping Austria’s bestseller list. The Camera Killer won the Friedrich-Glauser Prize for crime fiction in 2002 and Glavinic was shortlisted for the German Book Prize in 2007. Pull Yourself Together reached number one on both the Austrian bestseller list and the Austrian Radio and Television critics’ list.

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Customer Reviews

3.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Eleanor TOP 500 REVIEWER on 17 Oct 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"The Camera Killer" opens with the statement 'I have been requested to commit everything to paper.', and sure enough that is exactly what the narrator of this novella does ('She replaced the salami in the refrigerator and transferred the cheese to her right hand. With her left hand, she removed a fresh packet of butter (organic, the wrapper said so) from the refrigerator.' and so on). No detail is too small as he meticulously describes step by step a visit he and his partner make to some friends in the Austrian region of West Styria, a visit which coincides with the horrific murder of two children and a media-saturated hunt for the killer. This clinical narration makes for a strange book, in which it is difficult to judge the import of the details being endlessly conveyed.

"The Camera Killer" has a lot to admire in it and there are many clever and unsettling moments; however, overall I found it a bit predictable, with characterization which wasn't quite subtle enough.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S Riaz HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This novella is set in Austria when our narrator, accompanied by "his partner" Sonja (I emphasise this as the constant use of this phrase, rather than her name, was quite irritating by the end of this story) visits friends in an isolated rural location over an Easter weekend. Heinrich and Eva live next door to a farm and are surrounded by their neighbours many unwanted cats, which leads to them having to lock the house up carefully to avoid them getting inside. From the very begining, when the couples go for a walk and discover the remains of an old house, there is a sense of foreboding which is intensified by news of a murder that took place nearby.

This is the infamous Camera Killer, whose crimes are shocking enough to create a media frenzy and about which Heinrich becomes quite obsessed about over the coming days. This novella has many plus points - there is increasing tension as, with all news stories these days, there is saturation coverage which Heinrich eagerly follows. The manhunt, as the news unfolds, makes the two women afraid that the murderer is close by and they become increasingly hysterical as the story progresses. On the minus side, I found the ending quite predictable and the style of writing quite dry, although that could be the translation added to the style of the author. Overall, it is an interesting and original idea, which asks questions of the media and their coverage of emotive news stories, as well as telling the story of the bizarre nature of the crime in question.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JK TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 25 Sep 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The Camera Killer is a novella, short story, written in the form of a statement and unfortunately, because of the way it's written, I knew what the ending would be almost from the start. It has a brutal plot involving the murder of young boys and you learn about the murders through the four main characters who are on holiday in the vicinity. The story unfolds as they watch media reports on TV, talk about the murders but; the characters themselves remain mostly unexplained or explored and at least one of them is hardly mentioned at all. Eventually the police find a camera which has been used to record the murders and it becomes evident that the murderer is still in the area.

A highly stylised piece of writing with a huge amount of literary class to recommend it but; it's not a typical murder mystery, it's not a police procedural and I wouldn't know what category to put it in. There's some slowly building psychological tension but it's so lacking in warmth and emotion the brutality of the boys murder and cold, hard, factual reporting of the details is too much. The whole thing is bleak.

I'd have to give 4 stars for the quality of the writing but I could only give 2 stars for enjoyment and I'm relieved The Camera Killer was so short because I'd have given up if it had gone on for longer.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Maxine Clarke VINE VOICE on 6 Aug 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This novella, just over 100 pages long, takes the form of a statement. A young man and his partner Sonja travel to the country to stay with their friends Heinrich and Eva for a few days over Easter, in the middle of rural, conservative Austria. The foursome hear of a terrible crime, in which a man has kidnapped three boys and persuaded two of them to commit suicide. The book consists of a description of the foursome's activities in the days leading up to an arrest: cooking, eating, playing games and some degree of interaction with the locals.

While the friends pursue their apparently innocent activities, they follow the horrible story of the murders on TV. The killer's video camera has been found, so there is much debate on the media, from politicians and religious authorities about the justification of showing the film of the boys' deaths. Heinrich becomes obsessed with the TV coverage, whereas the two women alternate between hysterical fear and fascinated horror. All four of them seem compelled to not only watch the case unfold, but also, when it appears that the killer may still be on the loose and in the area where they are staying, to participate in local gossip and speculation.

The Camera Killer won the Friedrich Glauser prize for crime fiction in 2002, so it is a book to be taken seriously. I found it unenjoyable, as it is a straight description of events designed to show the characters' moral emptiness and detachment from reality - for example by the way Sonja is named only once, and by the way that the foursome switch to playing badminton or cooking dinner whenever there is nothing about the case on TV or in the papers. The crime itself is so horrific that I did not want to read any of the details about it. There is no explanation of the motivation for the murders here (perhaps not a bad thing): people are simply blank slates whose characters and motives can only be surmised by the reader.
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