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The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair [Kindle Edition]

Joël Dicker , Sam Taylor
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (372 customer reviews)

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Book Description

August 30, 1975. The day of the disappearance. The day Somerset, New Hampshire, lost its innocence.

That summer, struggling author Harry Quebert fell in love with fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan. Thirty-three years later, her body is dug up from his yard, along with a manuscript copy of the novel that made him a household name. Quebert is the only suspect.

Marcus Goldman - Quebert's most gifted protégé - throws off his writer's block to clear his mentor's name. Solving the case and penning a new bestseller soon merge into one. As his book begins to take on a life of its own, the nation is gripped by the mystery of 'The Girl Who Touched the Heart of America'.

But with Nola, in death as in life, nothing is ever as it seems.


Product Description

Review

'An intricate murder mystery that could be the read of the summer' Sunday Times. 'It's like Twin Peaks meets Atonement meets In Cold Blood - the French thriller everyone is talking about' Gaby Wood, Daily Telegraph. 'A smart, immensely readable, impressively plotted page-turner ... A tour de force, this seems set to be a huge success' Metro. 'The tale is expertly told, as unreliable information dances with necessary plot shifts and unexpected moments of catastrophe. An accomplished thriller' Independent. 'Spellbinding ... a top-class literary thriller ... It is maddeningly, deliciously impossible to guess the truth' The Times. 'Dicker has the first-rate crime novelist's ability to lead his readers up the garden path ... An excellent story' Sunday Express. 'A global phenomenon' Le Monde. 'All the ingredients of a world bestseller' Die Zeit. 'A great noir' Corriere della Sera.

From the Inside Flap

August 30, 1975.
The day of the disappearance.
The day Somerset, New Hampshire, lost its innocence.
That summer, struggling author Harry Quebert fell in love with fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan. Thirty-three years later, her body is dug up from the grounds of his seaside home at Goose Cove, along with a manuscript copy of the novel that secured his lasting fame. Quebert is the only suspect. Marcus Goldman - Quebert's most gifted protégé - throws off his writer's block and heads to New Hampshire to clear his mentor's name. Befriending the locals in sleepy Somerset, he learns that Harry's is not the only dark tale to be told. Solving the case and penning a new bestseller soon merge into one, and as Marcus' book begins to take on a life of its own, the nation is gripped by the mystery of 'The Girl Who Touched the Heart of America.' But with Nola, in death as in life, nothing is ever as it seems.
Joël Dicker's phenomenal European bestseller is a great American novel in all but authorship: a thrillingly intricate crime story, a hymn to the boundless reaches of the imagination, and a love story like no other. Nothing you have read before can prepare you for the truth about the Harry Quebert affair.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1059 KB
  • Print Length: 657 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0143126687
  • Publisher: MacLehose Press (30 April 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.ŗ r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00ELIF0WK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (372 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #136 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Like Marcus Goldman in The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair, JOËL DICKER has also found success and fame as a writer. Unlike Marcus, Joël had four novels rejected before he was able to find his first publisher.

28-year-old Dicker from Geneva has spent the last year on a whirlwind world tour as his novel has found global success everywhere from Israel to South Korea. Joël's writing career started aged 9 when he founded a nature magazine for which he was named "Switzerland's youngest editor-in-chief." At 25 he was awarded the Prix des Ecrivains Genevois for his unpublished novel Les Derniers Jours de Nos Pères (The Final Days of our Fathers) and while waiting for this novel to be published he wrote his first American novel, The Truth about the Harry Quebert Affair.

That Dicker chose to set the novel in America is hardly surprising - it's a place he knows well. As a child he spent every summer with cousins in Maine, New England. The idea for the book came on a trip to New Hampshire when a solitary house on the ocean front caught his eye. He drew a sketch of the house to remember it. Months later, he found the sketch in a drawer and the idea for the book grew from there.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
33 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was really looking forward to this book, I thought the premise was good: a successful author struggling with his second book comes to the rescue of his friend and mentor, Harry Quebert. Harry is accused of the murder of a 15 year old girl whom he is in love with. The body of the girl was discovered in Harry's back garden 33 years after she went missing.

Unfortunately the book did not live up to the premise. The writing is appalling. At first I thought something had maybe been lost in translation, but I don't think everything can be blamed on the translator.

There is no depth to any of the characters. You should really be shocked that a 15 year old girl has been brutally murdered and her body lost for 33 years, but because you know nothing about the girl except, 'she likes dancing on the beach and feeding seagulls', you really don't care one jot.

The dialogue is childish in the extreme. The scenes with Marcus' mother are nothing short of embarrassing and if they are meant as a joke; fail miserably.

There is a character who has been badly disfigured and instead of telling the reader that he has a speech impediment and allowing the reader to use his imagination, the author writes his speeches throughout the book phonetically. It is cringeworthy. I could not read them. Having to skim over them all just to be able to get the gist of what he was saying.

Marcus decides to investigate the murder himself, so he can clear Harry's name. The police very kindly let him get on with it. Giving him access to all kinds of evidence and in the end they join his investigation.

There are so many twists in the book that when you get to the final one you really have lost the will to live and just want the book to end.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down... 30 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Looking at other reviews, feedback was very mixed. For my part, I loved this book. I could not put it down, reading great chunks of it at a time.

It’s a whodunit, mixed with a love story with some laugh out loud moments thrown in (think Writer’s Mom conversations and “poor Bobbie”).

If I compare it to some of the other recent “overhyped” books that I’ve read – The Luminaries / The Goldfinch - this was my favourite of the three. My feeling was that they flagged in the final 10-20%, whereas this still felt fresh, although perhaps, ended with one or two plot twists too many.

Overall though, it was a brilliant read.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Truth About Harry Que-BORE 9 July 2014
Format:Hardcover
Beyond disappointing, it's a crime it was ever written. I bought this much-hyped book after reading a review on a site I normally trust but, oh dear. It sounded so good, but if you want to read abysmal writing with the world's most annoying characters, this is the one for you!

There is nothing and no one to like in this sorry tale - is it just me or were all the characters as dumb as a box of rocks? I'm surprised Gahalowood managed to find his way home, let alone solve anything remotely resembling a crime. It took me so long to wade through the tedious story that by the end I couldn't care less who killed Nola. In fact, I can't even be bothered to write another word about it, my review title says it all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
There are a lot of 5 stars reviews here, and a fair few 1 star reviews. This book falls in the middle of the two. A word of warning, this is NOT a literary classic, it is a page turning romp. Those of you expecting wonderful prose, with fully fleshed out characters will not find them here - what you will find is a very well paced murder-mystery with pastiche characters and cliched dialogue.
It is wonderfully self aware, and only when you get to the acknowledgements at the end will you understand what you've just read - from that perspective Dicker has done something different, but it doesn't excuse the lazy writing. The story itself is good, but you would swear that Dicker himself has never been in love as the relationship between Harry and Nola seems utterly shallow and unbelievable - one need only read the English Patient to see how love can be conveyed.
Reviews describe this as Twin Peaks-esque, a masterpiece, the greatest book of the year, etc, etc - don't believe the hype. Read it, enjoy it, but be aware that the critics reviews are a genius bit of marketing (one that Barnaski himself would be proud of).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Smart crime and punishment 21 July 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read some of this book in the original French and some in English. As an exercise in vocabulary development of the former it could be described as useful. As a novel or creative endeavour I found it wanting. If you like your novels slick and smart as a frothy cappuccino then look no further; this is a cleverly constructed whodunit,no argument. If on the other hand you seek more substantial fare then look elsewhere.Dostoevsky this is not. It does not come close to Donna Tartt or Henning Mankel. For me it lacked any serious content or literary soul.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
This book has had rave reviews all over Europe, and had been on my “must read” list for some time. I have to admit that I was not aware when I bought the book that it had been translated from the original French (?). When reading books not originally written in English, I often find that the translation is stilted and aims more for an exact word-for-word translation of the original rather than concentrating on the plot, story or contemporary English phrasing. After becoming accustomed to the translator’s style in this book, though (maybe a couple of pages), I found that the style was far more relaxed, nuanced and vernacular. There was the odd sentence that could have been better phrased, but I found that a rare occurrence.

Anyway, the book itself is fabulous. Characterisation is excellent, and whilst nobody comes out of the story 100% likeable, surely that is a reflection of real life rather than a failing on the author’s part. I also enjoyed the idea behind the book, of a writer struggling for inspiration and under pressure from his publisher becoming caught up in a life-changing event which leads him to a potentially best-selling book.

The plot moves along nicely – although this is a relatively long book for a novel, there is very little “filler”, the story grabbed me from the start and I found the further I became involved in the lives of Marcus Goldman (the supposed author of the book), Harry Quebert, and the other characters, the more they came alive and led to my wanting to know more.

I have given this review five stars, but in reality I don’t think this book quite meets that standard (it’s definitely worth more than 4 stars though - I would give it about 4 ĺ if I could).
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars characters well formed and easily imagined, loved the book
Well written ,a page turner,characters well formed and easily imagined,loved the book
Published 1 day ago by norfolk
1.0 out of 5 stars Very Silly,
Tedious and silly. I hated all the characters by the end and cannot understand why this book has garnered such acclaim. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Marian Clayton
1.0 out of 5 stars ... much positive publicity will forever remain one of the greatest...
Why this book received so much positive publicity will forever remain one of the greatest mysteries to me. Read more
Published 3 days ago by rollingrabbit
4.0 out of 5 stars Thriller with a difference
This follows Marcus Goldman, a successful first author who is struggling to write his second book and his old college professor and fellow writer and friend Harry Quebert finds... Read more
Published 4 days ago by Justhavingfun
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent whodunnit
Perfectly set & paced first novel that draws the reader in before twisting & turning. Unexpected treat from start to finish that unwraps as it goes.
Published 6 days ago by Connor2nz
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Really awful, embarrassing writing. Just don't buy it.
Published 6 days ago by Jodie Kane
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Rambling, repetitive and not a likeable character in it!
Published 7 days ago by Linda Simpson
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing and brilliant
Loved this book. A murder mystery with a style of writing that is compelling and original. I've never read anything quite like it before.
Published 9 days ago by Clare Berry
2.0 out of 5 stars Harry Quebert Affair.
This book had such good reviews in the media that I was really looking forward to reading it. I actually borrowed a copy from the library rather than buying one and I am so glad... Read more
Published 9 days ago by TRENDYWENDY
1.0 out of 5 stars Long and Boring
This is the worst book I have read in a long time 643 pages of boring story don't bother to read it
Published 11 days ago by R. Clegg
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