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4.3 out of 5 stars321
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 30 May 2014
I do like a crime book, and I don't mind the violence most of the time, but I thought this book over-did it a bit and it felt a bit uncomfortable. The bit about his brother also got a bit tedious, but it was ok.
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on 25 April 2015
its just okay. Mo has tried to entwine too many incidents, all gory, and some too far fetched for imagination, resulting in a readable but not coherent book. a simpler plot would have been fa more gripping
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on 9 November 2014
Maybe there was a point to it but the racist language and stereotyping was just too vile to wade through. There is enough of that crap to deal with without voluntarily inflicting it on myself. I stopped a quarter of the way through.
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on 11 January 2016
This book started well. I almost thought I'd hit upon a great new writer. But getting further into the book, I found some of its characters so poorly drawn that I had to change my opinion. A glaring example is the arty heroine whose only dialogue for a large part of the book involved references to whatever kind of wine she was drinking. 'Do you want some Chablis?' or 'I've just opened a bottle of Fitou.' or 'I've got Burgundy'. Why couldn't she just say 'Do you want some wine?'
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on 4 May 2015
I was recommended by a few people to read this series. With trepidation, I started the long and winding road of the Birdman journey.

I will admit, I nearly gave up due to the gruesome atrocities in the book. But I am glad I never as you have to look through those and read into the storyline itself. DI Jack Caffery has just been given the job of lead investigator in this gruesome killing. They find bodies that no one expects to be like they are. You have a sick and twisted and perversed person out there who is sticking something into these bodies.

Now, is there 1 killer or more in this story. I won't say, but find out for yourself if you're daring to open a Mo Hayder book to find out about THE BIRDMAN.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 24 October 2010
Other reviewers have summarised the plot so I'm not going to bother repeating that. I've had a mixed response to Hayder: I thought Skin was pretty terrible, really liked Tokyo and have just read Birdman.

In lots of ways this is a fairly run-of-the-mill crime thriller with women being tortured and killed by a psychopathic killer with mother issues... Some of the plotting and writing is quite clunky and amateur, especially the flashbacks to said killer's childhood. However, the characterisation of the lead hero/anti-hero Jack Caffery really lifted this book out of the more usual fare for me.

While he's certainly a variation of the familiar 'tortured cop' fictional stereotype, Hayder manages to imbue Jack with life beyond this. Charming (when he feels like it), sexy, attractive and vulnerable, Jack is also driven, obsessional and hard with a very dark core to his psyche.

There are a few too many cliched elements to make this an outstanding book, but Hayder's ability to get under the skin of a fascinating, intriguing and edgy character like Caffery makes it one well worth reading.

Be warned, as other reviewers have said, this isn't for anyone averse to blood and gore (and yes, some of it is gratuitous), but alongside that more schlocky element is something genuinely compelling about the main character.

I am mid-way through The Treatment and think it's a far better book, more polished and intense than this one, but to really get a handle on Caffery, Birdman has to be read first.
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on 6 January 2015
I first read this book sbout 8 years ago, it was one of those authors that stayed with me. Have read all the jack caffery stories now and they"re all excellent. I was surprised that re-reading it again just now, it was every bit as gripping. Im going straight back onto book 2
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on 15 September 2014
Finished this last night after a four-hour reading session (I couldn't stop) and was officially too terrified to sleep afterwards. I was utterly enthralled from start to end and will now be reading the entire collection of Jack Caffery books. This is dark crime drama at its very best!
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on 31 October 2002
I randomly selected this book at a UK airport before travelling to Australia. As a result, I lost 4 days of sightseeing so that I could get to the end! As an avid reader of all types of fiction and non-fiction - this will stick in my mind as one of the best books I have ever read. Destined to be made into a film, it would far outstrip anything in the 'Lector' trilogy and has a multitude of twists that no one could envisage. As far as thrillers go, it was also refreshing to read a novel that is set in the UK - (unlike the fine work of Grisham, Harris and the like). Characters are well defined, the plot is well structured and it will impact on you for days. Thoroughly recommended - buy it now!
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on 4 March 2013
As usual you were kept on the edge of your seat until the very last page. Although her books tend to follow the same trend you just never know when there is going to be a twist in the tale. My opinion is excellent as always, can't wait to get started on another of her books.
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