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3.6 out of 5 stars30
3.6 out of 5 stars
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on 13 July 2008
Excellent book of short stories, full of fascinating insights into the darker and weirder side of the human psyche. Great control of tone, structure, voice and suspense. Highly recommended.
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on 27 August 2009
The first story was really good and made me think this was going to be a great book. However every other story went nowhere and ended with a pointless anti-climax. I kept reading hoping each story was going to be as good as the first but after the 7th one I gave up and felt ripped off. Really put me off reading anything else by this author.
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on 30 January 2009
Sophie Hannah predominantly writes new crime thrillers and poetry which I haven't read yet (did you know that her mother is the author Adele Geras?) yet you could see both of these reflected in this collection of dark twisted tales. Her prose has a rhythm and natural flow and she manages to say a lot in a paragraph, also the plotting of these short stories I thought was excellent none of them seemed too long or too short they were just right.

`The Octopus Nest' is a very dark tale that won Hannah several awards and you can see why, the twist isn't until the very last paragraph and is genuinely creepy. Other tales feature obsession, jealousy, envy and madness. I don't want to give too much away so I shan't waffle on much more. This is an incredibly accomplished and entertaining collection of stories and made me run out and get her crime novels, one of which I must read soon. It was also the perfect book for escapism, I completely forgot I was in the plane, and have enjoyed reading it a home since I have come back. I might yet be converted to short stories, I will have to try some other collections at some point, if anyone has any recommendations please let me know.
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on 19 March 2016
After reading almost all of Sophie Hannahs books, I was really looking forward to these short stories.
However, I was very disappointed...definitely not the usual well written stories that Sophie usually produces.
Not recommended.
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on 21 February 2013
I don't usually read short stories, but this was (for the most part) pleasant reading. The first story does set a really high bar, and some of the tales area little muddled or miss the mark. Lovely quick reading fix!
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on 22 December 2011
I love Sophie Hannah and have read all her novels, but found this book of short stories just plain annoying. With the exception of The Octopus Nest which I did find very creepy and clever, reminding me of the old Tales Of The Unexpected series, I found the following stories started off brilliantly imaginative and gripping, yet all ended in a disappointing anti-climax, which left me feeling short changed at having wasted time reading the intriguing build up, to be completely let down with the ending. I did give up after four stories, so don't know if they got any better, but wasn't willing to waste any more time finding out.
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on 9 November 2013
I love Sophie Hannah's poetry as well as some of her novels, and this book of short stories captures the very best of her writing. Thrilling, enjoyable, uncomfortable, thought-provoking. Excellent.
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on 21 April 2015
Disappointed. I am a great fan of Sophie Hannah and have read all her books, but these short stories seemed meaningless. Sorry Sophie!
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on 10 August 2013
All her books r amazing you just have to read them till you have finished the third story is hilarious everyone knows someone like that
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on 9 October 2013
I have enjoyed every other Sophie Hannah book but just plodded through this book and wasn't sure at the end why I bothered
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