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Until it's Over Hardcover – 6 Mar 2008


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Michael Joseph (6 Mar. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718147847
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718147846
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 3.5 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 904,667 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Nicci French is the pseudonym for the writing partnership of journalists Nicci Gerrard and Sean French. The couple are married and live in Suffolk. There are eleven other bestselling novels by Nicci French: The Memory Game, The Safe House, Killing Me Softly, Beneath the Skin, The Red Room, Land of the Living, Secret Smile, Catch Me When I Fall, Losing You, Until It's Over and What To Do When Someone Dies, all published by Penguin.

Product Description

Amazon Review

What a pleasure it is to be in the capable hands of the husband-and-wife duo who jointly write as Nicci French. Their new book, Until It's Over, is a salutary reminder just how accomplished Nicci Gerrard and Sean French are at turning out sophisticated and disturbing psychological thrillers.

The protagonist of the new book is a young and very fit London cycle courier Astrid Bell, who suddenly seems to be bad news for those around her. When her neighbour Peggy Farrell inadvertently knocks Astrid from her bike, Peggy is subsequently found in an alley, savagely beaten to death. Astrid is assigned to collect a package from a well-heeled women by the name of Ingrid de Soto -- but when she arrives, Astrid discovers her in the hallway of her home, also murdered. Needless to say, the police -- not great believers in coincidence -- begin to take a very close interest in Astrid, and soon life for her and her housemates begins to turn very unpleasant, with internecine squabbling (and a burgeoning apprehension about who is to die next) poisoning once friendly relationships.

The slow and inexorable breakdown in the natural order of things is meat and drink to Nicci French, and the lengthening list of strongly written crime novels has acquired another winner with Until It’s Over. It's particularly commendable that French resolutely avoids the temptation to write about a series detective. Powerful stand-alone narratives with ordinary people at the centre are the hallmarks of a Nicci French novel -- long may they remain so. --Barry Forshaw

Review

Praise for Nicci French and "Losing You ""Lose yourself in this smart nail-biter of a tale about a mother's desperate search for her missing teenage daughter."--"People ""Seamless first-person account. . . . This engrossing read captures the importance of the often overlooked and underappreciated minutiae of everyday life while commanding a deeply personal reaction in readers."--"Publishers Weekly" (starred review) "The novel's greatest strength is its cool-eyed portrait of an English village."--"The Washington Post" "What gives Losing You its chief distinction . . . is its unusually emotive color and its flinty protagonist, who, like any mother, understands that no one can possibly care as much about her child as she does. Nina is the parent we'd all like to be under duress, and I find I've become nearly as protective of her as she is of her daughter."--"Salon" "Nicci French . . . know[s] exactly how to maintain the tension . . . Y --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Tez Miller on 27 Dec. 2007
Format: Paperback
This author (well, authors - Nicci French is a pseudonym for two journalists) is a master of psychological thrillers, and is my favourite writer to come out of England. These standalone novels take ordinary people living ordinary lives, and turn their existence into the stuff of very real nightmares. In this book, cycle courier Astrid Bell's neighbour is murdered, and a random client of Astrid's is dead when she arrives to collect a package. But it's a third murder that leads the police to believe that there is no such thing as coincidence in this case. The book was quite a cracker, until it switched to the POV of the culprit - then there was a rehash of the events through the killer's eyes. While it was nice to read some explanation, it didn't seem entirely necessary. Nevertheless, I'm eagerly awaiting the author's next book.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By M.D. Smart VINE VOICE on 11 April 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After their last book 'Losing You' was written in "real time" - covering a woman's search for her missing daughter over a period of about six hours, which is roughly how long it took to read - Nicci Gerrard and Sean French have tried another new approach in their latest novel 'Until It's Over'. This time the book is split into two parts: the first, slightly longer part follows a young cycle courier named Astrid and her six housemates as they find themselves caught up in a series of murders. The second part of the book follows the same basic storyline from the point of view of the killer, explaining how and (partly) why the killings took place. It's a risky move to reveal the identity of the guilty party with over 150 pages left to go, but the authors manage to keep the story going pretty well. I felt my interest waning as I started the second part of the book, but a clever twist revitalises the story and kept me turning the pages.

Anyone who shared a house as a student will definitely recognise the noisy chaos of 72 Maitland Road, where Astrid and the other characters live. Nicci French captures the atmosphere well; I actually felt quite a pang of nostalgia for my student days reading about life in the house (without the murders, obviously...). However, I never got a real sense of who the characters were. They seemed as if they could be summed up by one or two particular traits: Miles is weak, Pippa is promiscuous, Mick is silent, Dario is a stoner, and so on. Even Astrid, who is the narrator for the first part of the book, never really came across as a particularly well-defined character - I never felt like I knew any of them.

Also, the murders seemed almost incidental to the story at times.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By smartesthorse on 12 Sept. 2011
Format: Hardcover
No doubt about it these two put in a credible effort each time..though having said that, their latest, Blue Monday is rather under par.
This one follows their more usual pattern a 'woman in peril' novel. Nearly all their heroines seem to have unusual jobs, thus making their day to day lives more interesting than those of us stuck in front of dull screens. This time Astrid is a bike courier and she has a very close circle of friends. This latter point is also often a feature of French novel in another book I remember a group called 'the crew'. This time the group shares a house with Astrid and it may be that someone in that house is not what they seem, or is it an outsider that threatens Astrid's peace and maybe even her life.? The book goes on at a cracking pace we soon get a murder and that's only the first, lots of incident some sexy bits, some nasty characters to hate and a good description of modern London life. The writing duo are very competent at drawing a variety of characters and their interaction. The second part of the book moves from Astrid's point of view to that of the baddie and it is less well done, in my opinion. If there is a fault it is the plot is a bit flimsy and unbelievable and I found it all ran out of steam rather towards the end. I have found that in other French novels it may well be just me but I find that these writers are better at setting up plots rather than tidying the ends up in a suspenseful and satisfying conclusion. Well worth aread though.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J.Flood on 1 Dec. 2009
Format: Paperback
I've read a number of Nicci French novels, and I to say I found Until It's Over, one of the better ones. The first part of the novel centres around Astrid Bell, who lives with a number of housemates, in a large house in London. We see the unfolding story through her eyes.

Astrid works as a cycle courier, and one evening while cycling home, she is accidently knocked off her bike, by a neighbour opening her car door. Later, that neighbour is found dead. A few days later Astrid is asked to pick up a package, in an posh neighbourhood. When she arrives at the house, she finds the owner murdered in her hallway. Needless, to say, this is too much of a coincidence, for the police, and they begin to investigate, Astrid and her housemates.

In the second part of the novel, we see the same events unfold, but this time, through the eyes of the killer. I thought this part of the story would be less interesting, as the killer has been revealed to the reader, but this was not the case. In fact, this part of the novel is possibly more exciting, as we see how the killer manipulates the housemates, and the police to their advantage.

Overall, this was a very enjoyable novel, that had me hooked from start to finish. I would strongly recommend it to anyone who likes 'whodunnit' type thrillers.
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