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Until it's Over Paperback – 5 Mar 2009

4.0 out of 5 stars 80 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; Export Ed edition (5 Mar. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0141020911
  • ISBN-13: 978-0141020914
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 20,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

What a pleasure it is to be in the capable hands of the husband-and-wife duo who jointly write as Nicci French. Their new book, Until It's Over, is a salutary reminder just how accomplished Nicci Gerrard and Sean French are at turning out sophisticated and disturbing psychological thrillers.

The protagonist of the new book is a young and very fit London cycle courier Astrid Bell, who suddenly seems to be bad news for those around her. When her neighbour Peggy Farrell inadvertently knocks Astrid from her bike, Peggy is subsequently found in an alley, savagely beaten to death. Astrid is assigned to collect a package from a well-heeled women by the name of Ingrid de Soto -- but when she arrives, Astrid discovers her in the hallway of her home, also murdered. Needless to say, the police -- not great believers in coincidence -- begin to take a very close interest in Astrid, and soon life for her and her housemates begins to turn very unpleasant, with internecine squabbling (and a burgeoning apprehension about who is to die next) poisoning once friendly relationships.

The slow and inexorable breakdown in the natural order of things is meat and drink to Nicci French, and the lengthening list of strongly written crime novels has acquired another winner with Until It’s Over. It's particularly commendable that French resolutely avoids the temptation to write about a series detective. Powerful stand-alone narratives with ordinary people at the centre are the hallmarks of a Nicci French novel -- long may they remain so. --Barry Forshaw -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

Review

Praise for Nicci French and "Losing You ""Lose yourself in this smart nail-biter of a tale about a mother's desperate search for her missing teenage daughter."--"People ""Seamless first-person account. . . . This engrossing read captures the importance of the often overlooked and underappreciated minutiae of everyday life while commanding a deeply personal reaction in readers."--"Publishers Weekly" (starred review) "The novel's greatest strength is its cool-eyed portrait of an English village."--"The Washington Post" "What gives Losing You its chief distinction . . . is its unusually emotive color and its flinty protagonist, who, like any mother, understands that no one can possibly care as much about her child as she does. Nina is the parent we'd all like to be under duress, and I find I've become nearly as protective of her as she is of her daughter."--"Salon" "Nicci French . . . know[s] exactly how to maintain the tension . . . Y

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This author (well, authors - Nicci French is a pseudonym for two journalists) is a master of psychological thrillers, and is my favourite writer to come out of England. These standalone novels take ordinary people living ordinary lives, and turn their existence into the stuff of very real nightmares. In this book, cycle courier Astrid Bell's neighbour is murdered, and a random client of Astrid's is dead when she arrives to collect a package. But it's a third murder that leads the police to believe that there is no such thing as coincidence in this case. The book was quite a cracker, until it switched to the POV of the culprit - then there was a rehash of the events through the killer's eyes. While it was nice to read some explanation, it didn't seem entirely necessary. Nevertheless, I'm eagerly awaiting the author's next book.
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By Matt TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 11 April 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After their last book 'Losing You' was written in "real time" - covering a woman's search for her missing daughter over a period of about six hours, which is roughly how long it took to read - Nicci Gerrard and Sean French have tried another new approach in their latest novel 'Until It's Over'. This time the book is split into two parts: the first, slightly longer part follows a young cycle courier named Astrid and her six housemates as they find themselves caught up in a series of murders. The second part of the book follows the same basic storyline from the point of view of the killer, explaining how and (partly) why the killings took place. It's a risky move to reveal the identity of the guilty party with over 150 pages left to go, but the authors manage to keep the story going pretty well. I felt my interest waning as I started the second part of the book, but a clever twist revitalises the story and kept me turning the pages.

Anyone who shared a house as a student will definitely recognise the noisy chaos of 72 Maitland Road, where Astrid and the other characters live. Nicci French captures the atmosphere well; I actually felt quite a pang of nostalgia for my student days reading about life in the house (without the murders, obviously...). However, I never got a real sense of who the characters were. They seemed as if they could be summed up by one or two particular traits: Miles is weak, Pippa is promiscuous, Mick is silent, Dario is a stoner, and so on. Even Astrid, who is the narrator for the first part of the book, never really came across as a particularly well-defined character - I never felt like I knew any of them.

Also, the murders seemed almost incidental to the story at times.
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Format: Hardcover
Nicci French's novels are unusual in that they are not only extremely clever, psychologically astute thrillers, but they are also strong, atmospheric stories about contemporary women's lives. This one is about Astrid, a bicycle courier in London, who starts to worry when she realises someone is deliberately killing people she knows - either to scare her or to implicate her, she thinks. Like French's other novels, this one feels horribly, chillingly plausible - you can actually imagine it happening to you, or someone you know. The structure of this book, without wanting to give anything away, is very clever and surprising - almost a little shocking, even, but it certainly works. The best thing about French's novels, though, is that the voice and atmosphere are absolutely unique and recognisable as 'Nicci French World', and linger in your mind long after you've finished reading. French's crime novels also have a refreshingly humane feel to them - the writer(s), one senses, have a real faith in human nature, so that the books are always uplifting, despite the murders they contain. The villains aren't frothing-at-the-mouth psychos, they're flawed, damaged people that it's hard not to identify with to a certain extent, whatever they've done. Last but not least, this novel, like French's entire oeuvre, is absolutely gripping and impossible to put down, and leaves you desperately keen to get your hands on the next one.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Much prefer the Freida Klein books. This one was in two parts...the first half telling of the murders and the second half the whole thing told again as seen by the murderer. Because there are so many characters straight off who live in a shared house I needed to keep going back through out the book to find out how he or her arrived there, their potted history. Have read quite a few Nicci French books but wouldn't recommend this one as the best of what I have read by these authors.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not happy. This is the sixth Nicci French book I've read and quite dissapointed. I loved the first half of the book, Astrid is a great heroine , her dialogue is spot on and a with great back story and compelling mystery, but then it all goes down hill. The second half dialogue is buy the murderer who then goes over the whole story from his view.
It was a waste of time for me and the end is very predictable.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Felt I had wasted my time reading the first part of this book (which I actually enjoyed as it scampered along at a good pace with some good characterisation and I had no idea who dunnit) because the second part was told from the point of view of the murderer. We not only found out who he was (only half way into the book) but the tale was retold through his eyes - to say this was boring and a let down was an understatement!! I actually skipped great chunks on my kindle in the hopes it would buck up but it was only in the epilogue when the story had moved forward a few months that I felt mildly interested again. Had looked forward to reading this on a long plane journey but wished I hadn't bothered.
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