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The Dead Room [Kindle Edition]

Robert Ellis
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (194 customer reviews)

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  • Length: 416 pages
  • Word Wise: Enabled
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Book Description

The No. 1 Bestseller (US & UK)

A young woman is found, brutally murdered and left on gruesome display in the “safety” of her own home. The atrocity kicks off an investigation into a bizarre string of increasingly disturbing murders, all believed to be perpetrated by someone of unprecedented savagery and cunning.

As the city’s panic rises, civil attorney Teddy Mack is thrown headlong into the grisly homicide case—and into a world of dirty politics and corrupt justice, where deceptions are as deadly as a killer’s twisted secrets. Now, another woman is about to meet the same horrific fate as the others. To end a madman’s reign, Teddy must enter his maze—a place of unimaginable terror and shocking revelations.

With his second thriller, L.A. Times bestselling author, Robert Ellis, delivers an explosive read with full-blown characters caught in a world stacked with twists and turns and an emotional intensity that burns white-hot.

THE DEAD ROOM serves as the introduction to the Lena Gamble series, and remains a truly one of a kind find.

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Product Description

About the Author

Robert Ellis is the international bestselling author of "Access to Power", "The Dead Room", and the critically acclaimed L.A. Times bestseller "City of Fire", "The Lost Witness", and "Murder Season" - selected as top reads by Booklist, Publishers Weekly, National Public Radio, The Chicago Tribune, The Toronto Sun, The Guardian (UK), The Evening Telegraph (UK), People Magazine, USA Today, and The New York Times. His novels have been translated into more than ten languages, are read in more than thirty-five countries, and are available in audio and all digital formats. Born in Philadelphia, Robert moved to Los Angeles where he worked as a writer, producer, and director in film, television, and advertising. Robert studied writing with Walter Tevis, author of "The Hustler", "The Man Who Fell to Earth", and "The Color of Money." His books have garnered praise from authors as diverse as Janet Evanovich and Michael Connelly. For more information, visit him online at

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1743 KB
  • Print Length: 416 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0055X0OLM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (194 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #12,743 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Robert Ellis is the international bestselling author of "Access to Power", "The Dead Room", and the critically acclaimed L.A. Times bestseller "City of Fire", "The Lost Witness," and "Murder Season" - selected as top reads by Booklist, Publishers Weekly, National Public Radio, The Chicago Tribune, The Toronto Sun, The Guardian (UK), The Evening Telegraph (UK), People Magazine, USA Today, and The New York Times. His novels have been translated into more than ten languages, are read in more than thirty-five countries, and are available in audio and all digital formats.

Born in Philadelphia, Robert studied writing with Walter Tevis, author of "The Hustler", "The Man Who Fell to Earth", and "The Color of Money", before moving to Los Angeles where he worked as a writer, producer, and director in film, television, and advertising. Robert's books have garnered praise from authors as diverse as Janet Evanovich and Michael Connelly. For more information, visit him online at


"The new Robert Ellis thriller MURDER SEASON balances the reality of high profile murder cases with a wonderful protagonist -- L.A. police detective Lena Gamble. Before you can say 'Chinatown' we are immersed in a tale of mind-boggling corruption where virtually every character in the book has a hidden agenda. Ellis is a master plotter who keeps triggering surprises at regular intervals. Along the way we meet wonderful characters."

"Robert Ellis is not quite a household name yet, but on the strength of MURDER SEASON, his fifth novel, such a destiny seems inevitable. This is a strong, riveting read from beginning to end. Within the space of a few books, Ellis has demonstrated that rare ability to skillfully navigate his readers through a complex plot filled with interesting, dangerous and surprising characters."

"The first chapter in MURDER SEASON is truly masterful, and if I were teaching students a way to write a first chapter that laid in the themes of the book, set a tone, and did it concisely yet beautifully, I think I would use this chapter. Fancy writing shouldn't put you off reading it, however, because to miss this novel would be a crime. And after setting the tone with the first chapter, MURDER SEASON is off and running."

"MURDER SEASON is, at its heart, a red-hot police procedural with lots of twists. Ellis is also wonderful with characters, and he makes you care not only about Lena Gamble, but about several other characters in the book, notably a cop on his way down. Ellis's thoughtful meditations on what's right and what's wrong make MURDER SEASON a standout."

"Ellis's Lena Gamble is one character readers cannot get enough of. We want more."



"MURDER SEASON will sweep through your reading hours like a raging, out of control forest fire. It roars with suspense and growls with danger--and the unexpected and clever conclusion will leave you with your mouth hanging open in shock. You might just need to be put on oxygen after reading this one."

"Ellis's style is mostly straight-ahead and to-the-point, with some noticeably impressionistic passages that open and close the novel. Yet, at every moment when a conclusion seems obvious, Ellis tosses in twists and surprises that propel the story to different levels, keeping us guessing until the final page."

"The combination of unanticipated revelations and the effectively portrayed sense of utter alienation that eats away at Gamble's confidence make MURDER SEASON the most intense and haunting entry of the series to date."


"Scorching. Deliciously twisted. Nothing is what it appears to be. Ellis succeeds masterfully in both playing fair and pulling surprise after surprise in a story that feels like a runaway car plunging down a mountain road full of switchbacks."

"Fans of Michael Connelly and T. Jefferson Parker will relish Ellis' second crackling thriller featuring Hollywood robbery-homicide detective Lena Gamble. Ellis (City of Fire, 2007) serves up a killer crime tale with riveting characters and relentless twists."

"Certain powerful and corrupt individuals, some of them with the LAPD, arrange an efficient murder. Then, curiously, the department assigns the case to a detective whom they think will mess up the investigation. Two problems emerge: Robbery-Homicide Detective Lena Gamble (City of Fire) has no intention of failing, and there is an unknown witness helping her. Doggedly, Lena cuts through all the corruption, defies her superiors' orders, and, of course, puts herself in danger repeatedly. Ellis's elaborate puzzle is a nail-biter to the final page. Great LA settings enhance this high-speed thriller. Recommended for all popular collections."

"Ellis writes well and has a good sense of pace and timing. Once you start "The Lost Witness," you'll stay with it through those zigs and zags. And even when you finish the book, it'll spring up like a side effect each time you see those pharmaceutical commercials on the network evening news."

"Ellis piles on the Hollywood atmosphere and procedural detail, and the end revelation is expertly timed and genuinely shocking."

"The Lost Witness is a tough thriller that makes Ellis a name to watch."

"The Lost Witness is another gripping story by a writer who knows the seamy L.A. underworld well."

"City of Fire, the first in the Lena Gamble series, was good, but this second installment, The Lost Witness, is better. Nothing is as it seems in this unputdownable thriller which stars a woman of uncommon courage."

"Our staff is very much in agreement that THE LOST WITNESS may very well be one of the best thrillers that you will read in 2009."

"One of the first things noticed when reading Ellis´s latest (The Lost Witness), much like his first, is the realistic and fantastic job he does with his approach to this high octane tale from a female´s perspective. With not too much, and not too little, his creation of a female heroine comes off with just the right amount of bravado and sensitivity to convince even the most discerning of readers. And to top that off, while the story starts off with an even and steady tone, its steady but ever-increasing pace heads towards the explosive ending like a firecracker; one that explodes with more force and surprises than ever expected. And it´s in reaching this unexpected ending and finding out finally who done what and why that makes this read top-notch; there´s much more here than meets the eye. Filled with greed, big money, family loyalty, and things best left to the reader to discover on their own, this is one that comes highly recommended."


"Los Angeles, under a cloud of acrid smoke ... Robert Ellis´s City of Fire is a gripping, spooky crime novel."

"City of Fire is my kind of crime novel. Gritty, tight and assured. Riding with Detective Lena Gamble through the hills of Los Angeles is something I could get used to. She's tough, smart and, most of all, she's real."

"I just discovered this guy. This book is terrific."

"City of Fire by Robert Ellis is a no-holds-barred, barnburner of a thriller that blends Los Angeles-style crime fiction a la Michael Connelly with pulse-pounding Dean Koontzian psychological suspense. With a Southern California increasingly threatened by Santa Ana-fueled wildfires as backdrop, the emotionally supercharged story line centers on a killer who terrorizes west Los Angeles ... like Connelly's gritty Bosch saga, City of Fire features a tough but deeply flawed protagonist, a tantalizingly complex plot, fully realized -- and realistic -- characters and, most of all, a palpable intensity. And if that weren't enough, the bombshell plot twist at the novel's conclusion makes this an absolute must read for thriller aficionados."

"Ellis nicely depicts how the unsolved murder of Lena's musician brother casts a specter over her life and work. But City of Fire is ... about its propulsive plot: the ins and outs of police investigation and how the growing horror of a mad multiple murderer loose on the fiery streets of Los Angeles leads to unexpected decisions, layers of betrayal and a scorcher of an ending."

"Robert Ellis' brisk, complex City of Fire is hot stuff. Ellis excels at vivid writing and the expert plotting keeps the reader off-kilter. Ellis takes the police procedural and makes it a tale of personal corruption and desire, where right and wrong overlap. Here, the answers aren't easy as Lena wonders about 'blowback ... what the truth could do to a soul.' L.A., which is written about so often, seems fresh in the hands of an original storyteller such as Ellis."

"Ellis vividly evokes Hollywood as a place of burning desires, where the boundaries between good and evil are blurred beyond distinction. Ellis's prose is crisp, and his plot moves at a good clip. His characters are credible and complex."

"This potboiler dishes it out. This book is fast. Ellis makes it easy to be terrified. Recommended for popular collections."

"An LAPD detective goes out on an emotional limb chasing a violent serial killer. Lena Gamble and her new partner, Hank Novak, are called to an early morning crime scene in a small house near the Pacific Coast Highway ... A complex portrait of the flawed but righteous Lena by Ellis (The Dead Room, 2002, etc.) makes this sure-footed police procedural something special."

"City of Fire begins like a roller coaster, building tension, anxiety and fear. Then it plunges at full speed, spiraling and twisting through scenes that will have hearts pounding and fingers flying through the pages. But there is no smooth braking to a stop in this book. It careens to the end and then flies off the rail with a shocking twist that will leave readers stunned. Robert Ellis is a master of suspense."

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 48 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Twisty turny ! 9 May 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a book for the reader who likes their stories convoluted. There is a twist every other page which makes it extremely hard to put down. I enjoyed it no end but it's hard to find a good spot to put it down at bed time !
The writing is fast and furious without sacrificing detail and the characters believable and realistic.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant! 2 May 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was the first book I read on my kindle and I literally couldn't put it down! As the other review said, it twists and turns the whole way through, keeping you hooked and wanting to read more, just when you think you've got it Ellis slides in another twist. Not one for the feint hearted.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Accomplished 14 Aug. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Ellis' novel "The Dead Room" follows the story of Teddy Mack, an attorney who is dragged into the case the horrific murder of a beautiful young woman, by her odd mailman, seen running away from the scene of the crime, covered in her blood. Mack is a man with a tortured history (haunted by the wrongful killing of his father) but he reluctantly visits the woman's accused murderer in jail but doubts arise. Nothing is simple for Teddy and he gets caught up in a web of lies, politics and double crossing.

At the heart of "The Dead Room" is a thrilling plot which twists and turns and the drama is kept up at a steady pace. For what could have been an unbelievable central storyline, Teddy Mack is realistically slowly enveloped by the sequence of events that threatens his life and the lives of others.

Teddy Mack is a well rounded character and you find yourself sympathising with his efforts to reveal the truth about the murder. The other protagonists are introduced deftly and they feel three dimensional, however loathsome many of them are!

The prose paces itself well; there is a good mixture of description without over use and the dialogue is punchy and realistic. At many times, Ellis creates a tense, dramatic atmosphere which weighs heavily on the reader - you are aware that there is so much to be discovered yet the truth is tied by lies and deception.

The sub-plot of the conviction of Mack's father and his subsequent tragic killing adds a poignant perspective on events and adds another layer to the primary plotline.

For a reasonably lengthy novel, it is not long and does not suffer from "over writing". All the scenes and chapters feel necessary and it is incredibly easy to read - not so easy to put it down!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Read 27 July 2012
By AngiG
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A real page turner.
I liked Teddy the main character especially as he was seen to be a kid by several of his contemporaries including the slime ball Andrews, but he showed that he was well able to use his brain and worked it out ! Very clever in places and a sexy scene between Teddy and the ADA too
The twist at the end, whilst I knew something was coming I didn't guess it.
Hope for more
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars TERRIFIC READ 17 July 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
If you like mystery and suspense in a thriller this book has it all even to the very last. Just could not put it down.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars well written 18 May 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I picked this book up whilst I was browsing the horror section, though I'm not totally sure it belonged there.
I would class it as more of a legal thriller. So, while not my usual genre, I read it anyway.

I was pleased with the writing style and the editing. I had no problems at all with any grammatical aspect of this book. It's well written and if I did find any errors in it then they were too small and rare to remember.

I found the story itself difficult to get into, this may just have been due to the book not being my usual read, it felt slow and drawn out in places, but the characters felt to be well fleshed and nicely written. I'm not interested in legal perspectives, so I would say that this aspect severely dampened my enjoyment, I can't rate down for that, it's a personal preference.

There seems to be a lot of space given to self reflection and contemplation, which I don't feel was entirely necessary all of the time, but it gives character insight and understanding.
The book doesn't really keep you guessing, the killer is revealed fairly early on and the story is not a whodunnit so much as a pursuit of justice.

If this is your kind of thing I expect you'll love it.
The writing style is nice, the grammar is good, the storyline, if it's your thing, is well plotted.
I enjoyed the book, despite it not being something I would normally read, but it did take me a long time to get through because of this. I kept putting it down, going off and reading something else, then sort of 'working myself up' to more.
I give it four stars because I appreciate something that is well written. I do think it's badly categorised, it doesn't really belong in horror.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars stunning! 26 Feb. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read a lot of crime novels, I have something of a morbid fascination for this kind of thing, no idea why but anyway, I've read many from the average to the terrible to the brilliant, and this definitely ranks among the brilliant.

Yet again, I have been introduced to another author I had previously not read thanks to amazon's kindle deals. I got this book for free but would happily have paid, I was gripped by the storyline and loved the characters particularly Teddy and Nash.

If you like your books full of suspense and twists, this is highly recommended and I will definitely read more Robert Ellis books in the future.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars View Changer
This book convinced me that FREE does not equal rubbish. Previously I only risked free classics. I received an email informing me that The Dead Room was free on Kindle. Read more
Published 1 month ago by jodenoy
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
This was okay but I read it it some time ago and do not find it remeberal
Published 1 month ago by Toby M
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by Susan more
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read
Good read all the way through kept me needing to read just one more page! Good pace with with good twist! Really enjoyed the read.
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
What a brilliant read, a real page turner . just got better and better as the story went on. Great
Published 4 months ago by heggy1888
5.0 out of 5 stars Well deserved 5 stars
Thrilling, fantastic read. I'm hooked with this author's books. Second in a week. Loved it, can't wait to read the next one.
Published 4 months ago by marilyn
5.0 out of 5 stars Twist at the end
Fantastic read really keeps you on your toes great ending never expected it all what a brilliant twist to end a great read...
Published 6 months ago by lesley
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a really satisfying read, lots of twists ...
This is a really satisfying read, lots of twists and turns. The main character is engaging-rather hoping he appears in another book.
Value for time and money
Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book!
Kept me interested until the end with a twist that I never saw coming. A few typos, but did not affect the overall quality. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars What a read
This book had me hooked from the start. Brilliantly written and weaved a web of intrigue. Fantastic. Mr Ellis I salute you.
Published 7 months ago by S. Deacon
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