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The Silence of the Lambs [Paperback]

Thomas Harris
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)

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Book Description

5 April 1990
There's a killer on the loose who knows that beauty is only skin deep, and a trainee investigator who's trying to save her own hide. The only man that can help is locked in an asylum. But he's willing to put a brave face on - if it will help him escape.


Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow Books Ltd; New edition edition (5 April 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 074930054X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749300548
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 10.6 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 491,067 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

The Silence of the Lambs, by Thomas Harris, is even better than the successful movie. Like his earlier Red Dragon, the book takes us inside the world of professional criminal investigation. All the elements of a well-executed thriller are working here--driving suspense, compelling characters, inside information, publicity-hungry bureaucrats thwarting the search, and the clock ticking relentlessly down toward the death of another young woman. What enriches this well-told tale is the opportunity to live inside the minds of both the crime fighters and the criminals as each struggles in a prison of pain and seeks, sometimes violently, relief.

Clarice Starling, a precociously self-disciplined FBI trainee, is dispatched by her boss, Section Chief Jack Crawford, the FBI's most successful tracker of serial killers, to see whether she can learn anything useful from Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Lecter's a gifted psychopath whose nickname is "The Cannibal" because he likes to eat parts of his victims. Isolated by his crimes from all physical contact with the human race, he plays an enigmatic game of "Clue" with Starling, providing her with snippets of data that, if she is smart enough, will lead her to the criminal. Undaunted, she goes where the data takes her. As the tension mounts and the bureaucracy thwarts Starling at every turn, Crawford tells her, "Keep the information and freeze the feelings." Insulted, betrayed, and humiliated, Starling struggles to focus. If she can understand Lecter's final, ambiguous scrawl, she can find the killer. But can she figure it out in time? --Barbara Schlieper

Review

‘A snapshot from hell’ -- Rolling Stone

‘The best book I’ve read in a very long time… subtle, horrific and splendid’ -- Roald Dahl

‘Thrillers don’t come any better than this… razor-sharp entertainment, beautifully constructed and brilliantly written’ -- Clive Barker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One word... WOW! 29 Nov 2005
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Ok, before I write my opinion on this book, I have to admit something slightly embarrassing first. Deep breath….I love trashy psychological thrillers! However, this is certainly not a trashy book, whatsoever. As a young reader (I was about 14 when I first read this), I was in the lucky position of not seeing the film first. Yes, it is a great movie. Yes, Jodie Foster makes a great Clarice Starling, and yes, it does not deviate from the book too much. However, there is so much more information included in the novel that simply cannot be materialised into a film (do you know the chemical formula for bilirubin?).
I will not bore everybody with the plot, I’m sure the world and his dog has seen the famous ‘liver and Chianti’ scene, and many more besides, but if you have not read this book yet – read it now! Thomas Harris is the most superb, underrated author of modern times, and I find it difficult to choose which of his novels is the greatest. For those of you who have seen the movie adaptations of ‘Red Dragon’ and, more depressingly, ‘Hannibal’; do not be put off from reading these works of art.
I realise I am gushing far too much about Harris’ brilliance, but that is how reading his novels make me feel! Although my view is slightly biased, ‘The Silence Of The Lambs’ offers everything required for a great book – thrilling, page-turning suspense that leaves you hungry for more and feeling like you have actually learned something when you finally put it down. I am now waiting with baited breath in the hope that Thomas Harris will write more about Hannibal’s past ‘meals’, and satisfy my hunger!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars There are thrillers and there are thrillers. 4 Jun 2003
Format:Paperback
We all know about Hannibal Lecter, the infamous antagonist of Harris' trilogy due to the success of the movie adaptation of this book. Our introduction to the leads is short and precise. Harris knew exactly what he wanted to create when he sat in front of his word processor and began writing this terrificly terrifying novel about serial killers. There is no time nor pages wasted running around just to fill space. I have undertaken a writing course and the main lesson that I learned was that every word should earn its space on the page, and Harris definitely uses every word to its maximum. He sets the pace from the off and we join Clarice Starling as she is introduced to the most infamous serial killer of all time in a high security prison for the insane. From there the ride begins!
If you are fortunate enough to not know anything about this book order it now and enjoy as I did and many millions of others have. If you have only seen the equally outstanding film, buy this book and read an author at the pinicle of his career. Mr Harris, I salute you.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
By Stephanie De Pue TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Thomas Harris's "The Silence of the Lambs," a bone-chilling thriller, was an immediate hit upon its 1988 publication. Now, more than twenty years later, most of us inevitably approach, or reapproach, it knowing something about it; with the famous movie based on it firmly in mind. Yet, I, at least, had to fight off the temptation to stay up all night to finish it, although I surely knew where it was going.

Harris, to be sure, writes a great, tense story of suspense. He'd already published Black Sunday, and Red Dragon, where we were first introduced to Dr. Hannibal Lector. LAMBS' story, we know, concerns the efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigations to catch a serial killer nicknamed Buffalo Bill. The agency sends trainee Clarice Starling to interview Dr. Hannibal Lector, former psychiatrist, imprisoned in a Baltimore insane asylum, after having been found guilty of nine sadistic, cannibalistic murders. Lector has unusual tastes, and intense curiosity about the darker side of the mind. The formerly eminent medical man's understanding of himself, Starling, and the killer forms the core of the book.

LAMBS benefits from a complex, multi-layered plot. As it proceeds, we realize that Lector knew all along where it had to lead. The author's timing is impeccable: he hits his high notes, then gives us a moment to unwind. We hardly dare breathe during the Lector/Starling Tennessee scenes -- we're waiting with dread for what we know will come; when it does, it's overwhelming. The plot's also titillating, let's be honest about it, sex change operations and all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible! 19 Jan 2007
Format:Paperback
I am 15 and after reading this book can think of no other word to describe it other than this-phenomenal. Could hardly put it down, its so exciting with stories and characters that you really get involved with!!! You really REALLY want to know what happens and i could hardly stop myself from turning to the end just to find out what happens. WOWOWOWOWOWOW!!!! READ IT-you don't know what you are missing!

Also, i havent seen the film, so.............if that sways your judgement in any way...........im happy to help!!!

I really hope there is going to be another one coming out after hannibal rising (that i am reading at the moment!!!!) I love it so much!

ALSO-dont be put off because i said i was 15, because occasionly even i am when i see someone has put that!

In conclusion, find yourself a free few weekends and weekday evening and read all of the hannibal books; you WONT be dissapointed!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic
Another great product very impressed and very cheap I would 100% recommend this product to ant Hannibal fan its great
Published 1 month ago by peter j pate
5.0 out of 5 stars The best of the bunch
Yes, you'll want to read Red Dragon first to understand the characters but this is the defining book. You can read it multiple times a year and not be bored.
Published 1 month ago by Michaela
5.0 out of 5 stars After 3000 books this one is still my favourite
A fully realised work of imagination with well rounded characters, a colourful plot that keeps you galloping and a detached writing style that provokes absorption rather than... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Bryan Irving
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it
I love reading thrillers, they are my favourite genre. The Silence of the Lambs was published and released on film before I was born, however I knew I had to purchase one of the... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Jo
1.0 out of 5 stars packaging extremely poor
This was brought as a Christmas present. It is a CD that is in a cardboard covering and was creased and squashed when it arrived. It looks awful now. Read more
Published 3 months ago by H E HARRISON
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic book
My second book from Thomas Harris and I love it I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys Psychological thrillers :)
Published 5 months ago by Lukas
5.0 out of 5 stars Always a good read
Have bought this book a few times as I love the read, my daughter also read it, and the follow on books
Published 5 months ago by Joannec
5.0 out of 5 stars Eloquent, psychotic and spine-chilling a true masterpiece.
Dr Hannibal Lecter is the only cannibal I've ever wanted to succeed. A truly engaging character who it is a little to easy to empathise with.
Published 5 months ago by Garry Dawe
3.0 out of 5 stars It's alright
To be perfectly honest, I think I built this book up after hearing so much about it and it being a bestseller and everything. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Rebekah-May
4.0 out of 5 stars Happy to know it gets better!
Better than the first book. Good read. Could not stop reading till the finish.
Better read it if you're interested into Hannibal's story.
Published 6 months ago by Kurt
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