The Christmas Thief Paperback – 7 Nov 2005
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About the Author
Mary Higgins Clark is the author of thirty-one worldwide bestselling suspense novels and a memoir. She lives with her husband John Conheeney, in Saddle River, New Jersey. Visit
Mary Higgins Clark is the author of thirty-one suspense novels; three collections of short stories; a historical novel, and a memoir. She is the co-author with her daughter, Carol Higgins Clark, of five holiday suspense novels.
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Top customer reviews
It is based around the dubiously named "Packy" Noonan, who is a con man caught swindling rich people with a dodgy investment programme. Somehow (!) his two henchmen get to Brazil with $10m while he changes all the rest of the money into diamonds and hides these diamond by putting them in a flask and tying them to a tree in Vermont!!! There is no explanation as to why he thinks this is the best place for them. But then again why wouldn't he? He spends 12 years in prison, then decides to break his parole (there is a lot of mention of the fact that he broke his parole, just incase we forget)and recover his jewels. Unfortunately for him, that tree has been chosen as the Rockerfeller Centre Xmas tree and is sue to be cut down just one day after he skips parole. Typical!!
From this set up we have a farcical plot of a criminal stealing a tree rather than climb up and get his stuff (which is very dubiously justified), the couple who's tree it is, being in love with it and getting very upset when its stolen, a jealous neighbour who wants his own tree to go to the Rockerfeller Centre trying to steal it then finding the diamonds and stealing them, a woman who "Packy" swindled conveniently being on holiday in Vermont and spotting people she recognises but can't quite place (if someone swindled me out of millions of dollars I think I'd remember what they looked like) and bizarrely some supposedly amateur detective work going on.
It goes without saying the good guys prevail, but you feel far more attachment to the ludicrously developed, stereotyped, criminal characters than the bland 'goodies' and frankly the outcome is a disappointment.
For a supposed thriller this book has about as much suspense the Mr Men books. Quite frankly the clues come along with sledgehammer subtlety and are repeated several times just in case you've missed them. When something is needed to move the plot forward it conveniently appears half a page beforehand, and the dialogue makes Eastenders scripts look like realistic dramatic writing.
If you can read this book and not laugh you clearly lack a sense of humour. If can read this book and not get whats going to happen several chapters in advance, you probably need medical attention. It is only the ridiculously convenient twists that leave you not knowing exactly what will happen from about page 6.
DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK AS A THRILLER. BUT DO BUY IT! Buy it as a piece of comic genius, or as a handbook on how not to write a novel. The only good thing about this shocking book is that it is so hilariously bad, and that makes it well worth reading.
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