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Customer Review

40 of 46 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Straining credulity to the limit, 30 Mar. 2012
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This review is from: Kind of Cruel: Culver Valley Crime Book 7 (Kindle Edition)
I thought Sophie Hannah's plots couldn't get any more preposterous after the simply ridiculous narrative of Lasting Damage (which I still rather enjoyed until its laughable denouement).

I was wrong.

I think the problem with Kind of Cruel is that I just didn't care. If I have to read another interminable scene between Charlie, Simon, Proust, Sam and the other two who I care so little about I can't even remember their names, I may just hurl the book across the room.

The book picked up a little about halfway through, once the true character of the main suspect began to unfold but I found I was still skimming whole paragraphs in an effort to find something of interest. The weak-as-water 'climax' (told entirely in back-story) and the hypnotist's email which literally went on for pages explaining emotional incest - seemingly lifted straight from a psychology textbook - were the last straw. No more Sophie Hannah for me. Shame because Little Face, Hurting Distance and The Point of Rescue were wonderful.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 15 May 2012 10:36:39 BDT
Patrician says:
I haven't read this one yet, am waiting for it to be delivered, but I chuckled at your para about Charlie et al. Yes, I've always found them - well especially Charlie & Simon, & the latter's relationship with Proust - a wee bit unbelievable & tedious. Hard work. Crime novels tend to have dysfunctional anti-hero-type cops, & at least Hannah has been original as concerns the nature of the dysfunction, but these people are so screwed up it's a wonder they function at all. I thought I was a bit neurotic but am a rock of emotional stability compared to Simon (& to a lesser extent Charlie). I know objectively that there are people this emotionally constipated, but I can never quite picture Simon as a coherent character: is it asperger's or is he actually psycopathic, & how for long can this 'love' affair limp along (I'll have further clues when I read the book, I hope). Living with such a person is only possible with a strong dose of denial, or complete emotional detachment (which Charlie definitely doesn't have). And if I remember rightly Hannah doesn't believe people can change (a view I share myself). I find myself wondering if in a future book he might turn out to be the 'perp', though as far as I can remember he isn't physically vicious.
But my real point is not whether such people move among us, but that Hannah's narrative, in spite of or because of the lengthy navel gazing never convinces me as to the authenticity of these characters & their involvement. Sellers & Gibbs (that's their names!) are more two dimensional but more believable.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Aug 2012 17:39:02 BDT
I Have this book but i have not read it yet. lasting damage was brilliant at the start but the ending was dissapointing

Posted on 18 Oct 2012 12:01:20 BDT
I have to agree, this was the most disappointing book. I read great comments about it in a book review but I just could not get into it. Very disjointed and I have to say life is too short to read bad books.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Nov 2012 16:03:25 GMT
I have Aspergers Syndrome and I found your remarks about people like me very cruel. You are clearly an intelligent and well educated person so there is little excuse for such an hurtful attitude.We are human beings first and foremost. I have no tendencies towards violence and I share this with most of my fellow sufferers. It is true that sometimes, rarely, AS people can have violent episodes(often self directed) but that is because of the intolerance shown to us by, dare I say it, people like you.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Nov 2012 16:55:44 GMT
Patrician says:
I'm sorry you are hurt by my comment, but I think if you read it again you will find I do not make any disparaging remarks about Asperger's.
When I suggest Simon may have Asperger's I only mean in respect of the fact that he finds it difficult to socially interact with others. That is the sum total of my meaning. The rest of my comments are criticisms of the writing inasmuch as it is difficult to 'place' Simon -ie, his character as portrayed by Hannah is unbelievable - or empathise with him. I definitely DO NOT say or imply people with Asperger's are prone to violence; and in fact I mention that Simon has shown no tendency to physical violence. But this remark had nothing to do with Asperger's, it was simply about whether a character as dysfunctional as he is (in the books) would turn out to be the perpetratorin a future book. I object to being called intolerant by someone who does not even know me.
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