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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on 14 March 2013
S Quinn's thriller "I Take This Woman" takes you on a journey through Thailand's seedy underworld of sex bars and female trafficking. Written from the perspectives of a range of characters: innocent Thai girls, hoping to escape their debt-ridden and bleak futures by marrying an Englishman; Ruby, the intrepid journalist, determined to make a documentary exposing the horrors she eventually uncovers; and Anders, the Swedish security expert who helps Ruby, despite her inital mistrust of him. Throughout these interwoven tales, we are introduced to a Thailand that's not in any the brochures; one in which women are bought and sold like cattle. Some of the scenes from the perspective of Mae, the trafficked 'would-be' bride, are painful to read, but only because they so accurately depict the horrors that these women suffer. S Quinn's story gallops along, the pace never slowing, as the reader is drawn deeper into each of the characters' stories - culminating in the final shocking scenes, that manage to both surprise the reader and have a crafty tug at the heartstrings. This is a well-thought thriller that deftly considers an emotive subject.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on 15 April 2013
I probably wouldn't have noticed this book had it not been offered as a freebie and I really would have missed out. It is a work of fiction but it is so well researched and written that it educates the reader at the same time as being so exciting that he/she is hooked from page 1.

The subject could not be more harrowing but at no time does the author introduce gratuitous or explicit sex scenes. The fact that we are seeing the action from the point of view of several of the main characters lets us truly absorb the story. We can imagine the sheer terror of the trafficked girls, the desperation of the young girls coming to Pattaya in the hope of finding someone to care for them and support their families and the horror felt by the documentary maker when she realises exactly what is going on.

There were a couple of excellent twists woven into the story. I was so sure that I knew who the traffickers were that when I discovered their true identities I had to go back and reread several sections. All in all I thought this was a really excellent read and will be looking out for this author in the future.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 26 March 2013
I was recommended to read this book and although it was not my normal genre I throughly enjoyed it! In fact I devoured it in a matter of days (much to my childrens annoyance!). This book handles the subject matter well and respectfully and the writing style is easy to follow and leaves you wanting more. I am looking forward to reading more from this author and I am sure she will go far. So to sum up if you are looking for a new author to try and something out of your normal comfort zone give this book a go and look into the dark side of paradise.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 26 March 2013
One way to engage readers is to put them in situations that they are not familiar with. Not every reader would have bought a woman. Few would have explored the story on the other side of the trade. This may be a fiction, but it is on serious matters.

A non-trivial amount of research has gone into the book. The author is observant:
* How does a Thai bride feel when she moves to Britain? "It's dark here, as well as cold. No one ever mentioned the darkness."
* How does a poor, ill-treated Thai girl remain hopeful? "In Thailand, we believe if we good, we come back next life as a man."
The cultural differences highlighted make the book interesting.

The fast pace and the twists make the book engaging. Besides, I quite like the story being told by the individual characters. It shows how each character sees the world with different perspectives. It also brings the characters alive.

The book is enjoyable to read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 15 March 2013
Set in Thailand `I Take This Woman' follows the story of Ruby, a documentary maker looking for her big break and a way to save the failing production company she works for. In doing so she finds herself immersed in a world of perversion and corruption, following the story of a girl called Mae to its climactic ending.

A harrowing tale of the trafficking of women the novel has all the elements of a decent thriller and ensures you stay immersed from start to finish. It portrays very brutal and frank treatment of women and does not hold back in ensuring that the voices of the most sidelined characters are heard.

Whilst the main protagonist, Ruby, is likeable and easy to follow, the characters that really shine through are the prostituted girls; their frank tales, often told in the first person, are what really drives the story and you really begin to feel a sense of urgency in tracking down Mae and seeing her story through to the end. Linear and easy to follow the plot is strong and hangs together extremely well; I certainly didn't see the ending coming but at the same time found the 'big reveal' to be somewhat anti-climactic. I would have liked to experience more concern for Ruby and perhaps this wasn't achieved because of the switch to third person for her parts of the story.

Overall, though, I thoroughly enjoyed it. The characters are fairly well rounded and the plot has enough twists and turns without being confusing. The novel doesn't hold back or shy away from the brutality it's attempting to portray and I believe that is what makes it so captivating; Susannah Quinn succeeds in making the reader feel quite deeply for the mistreated female characters.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 March 2013
S. Quinn's story centres on the ambitious, but soft hearted, Ruby, an expat Journalist, living in Thailand. The television company she works for have run out of money, but Ruby wants to make one last documentary in the hope of winning a prestigious television award that will save the company. She embarks on an investigation into Thailand's mail order brides. Helped by Anders, the handsome Swedish security expert; she focuses her attention on Mae, a poor peasant girl from the North. But, what she discovers takes her into a world of sexual slavery, corruption, and cruelty.
If I hadn't read it on my kindle, I am sure I would have torn the pages of the book in my impatience to follow Ruby. The story was so gripping and intense that I couldn't wait to get the end. Not only was it entertaining, but it drew my attention to the real human suffering that takes place in a country that is so popular for its exotic beaches and golden sunsets. Do what you need to do, before you start to read this book, because you won't want to put it down!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 22 April 2014
Badly written I felt , in a kind of diary style. Short bursts and sketchy detail. On a sensitive subject, I felt I was cheated out of the gritty realism that goes along with this subject.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 May 2013
I received this as one of the free iPad kindle books and am so thrilled that I did. This was a well written, gripping and sometimes harrowing tale of the trafficking industry from Thailand to the UK. It told the story from different perspectives, enabling us to see it from several points of view. The twists and turns throughout the book made it impossible for me to put down and I was also touched by the evolving relationship between Ruby and Anders. When the traffickers were revelealed I was surprised as I hadn't seen it coming. I would definitely read more by the author, Susanna Quinn, as I really enjoyed the storyline, the subject matter (very informative) and also her writing style, which kept me gripped from start to finish. Would thoroughly recommend this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 6 March 2013
A dark fast paced thriller, this one had me gripped from the first page. The torrid underworld setting which is uncovered as the story unfolds is all too convincing and the first person perspective puts you right there, experiencing terryfing depredations through the eyes of the victims. Its not too torrid and heavy though, which always a risk with subjects and settings like this, and it is written with a deft hand. I Take This Woman is nevertheless an aptly timed light shone into a murky and sickening world, one of the unpaletable and unacceptable "exernalitities" of contemporary global capitalism and "free trade", all packaged in a satisfying and well constructed mystery novel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 March 2013
I’ve just finished racing through this book and had to leave a review. I was gripped from the start and thought the book had the fantastic combination of being an exciting thriller with a serious story to tell. There’s an important message within here – the book shines a light on the seedy underside of Thailand and what many women suffer when they are forced into the sex trade. I liked the feisty heroine and totally got behind her in her quest to uncover the truth. This is a real page turner - buy it
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