Recensione a cura di Elio Freda
Romanzo d’esordio per John Verdon che ha sbancato in Spagna con oltre 250000 copie vendute, esce in Italia edito da Piemme ‘L’enigmista’. Indubbiamente la trama è coivolgente e suscita curiosità : un serial killer che pare conoscere la vita e i segreti delle sue vittime tanto da esser capace di leggere nella loro mente anche un numero a caso tra 1 e 1000. Gli ingredienti per un buon libro ci sono, trama originale e personaggi ben descritti e caratterizzati. Tuttavia manca il ritmo in alcuni frangeti, soprattutto quando l’autore si dilunga un pò troppo sulle descrizioni ambientali. Inoltre, essendo una storia in cui il presente va a braccetto con il passato nel personale dei protagonisti, si poteva approfondire di più questo aspetto, aggiungendo così curiosità e tensione. Invece, alcune volte si ha la sensazione di sfiorare ma di non toccare alcune tematiche. Promosso, ma non a pieni voti.
Votazione : 3/5
Book Description : An extraordinary fiction debut, Think of a Number is an exquisitely plotted novel of suspense that grows relentlessly darker and more frightening as its pace accelerates, forcing its deeply troubled characters to moments of startling self-revelation. Arriving in the mail over a period of weeks are taunting letters that end with a simple declaration, “Think of any number…picture it…now see how well I know your secrets.” Amazingly, those who comply find that the letter writer has predicted their random choice exactly. For Dave Gurney, just retired as the NYPD’s top homicide investigator and forging a new life with his wife, Madeleine, in upstate New York, the letters are oddities that begin as a diverting puzzle but quickly ignite a massive serial murder investigation. What police are confronted with is a completely baffling killer, one who is fond of rhymes filled with threats and warnings, whose attention to detail is unprecedented, and who has an uncanny knack for disappearing into thin air. Even more disturbing, the scale of his ambition seems to widen as events unfold. Brought in as an investigative consultant, Dave Gurney soon accomplishes deductive breakthroughs that leave local police in awe. Yet, even as he matches wits with his seemingly clairvoyant opponent, Gurney’s tragedy-marred past rises up to haunt him, his marriage approaches a dangerous precipice, and finally, a dark, cold fear builds that he’s met an adversary who can’t be stopped. In the end, fighting to keep his bearings amid a whirlwind of menace and destruction, Gurney sees the truth of what he’s become – what we all become when guilty memories fester – and how his wife Madeleine’s clear-eyed advice may be the only answer that makes sense. A work that defies easy labels — at once a propulsive masterpiece of suspense and an absorbing immersion in the lives of characters so real we seem to hear their heartbeats – Think of a Number is a novel you’ll not soon forget.
Review: Romance debut for John Verdon who dug out in Spain with over 250,000 copies sold, released in Italy, published by Piemme (as litterally ‘The Riddler’) “Thinkof a Number”. Undoubtedly, the plot is intriguing and arouses curiosity: a serial killer who seems to know the life and the secrets of his victims, so as to be able to read in their mind a random number between 1 and 1000. All good ingredients for a great book as an original plot and characters well described and characterized. However it lacks the pace in some circumstances, especially when the author dwells a bit too much on the environmental descriptions. Also, being a story where current events go hand in hand with the personal history of the characters , Verdon could have gone deeper into this aspect, thus adding curiosity and tension. Instead, sometimes the reader has the feeling of brush up against some issues but do not really touch them.
Promoted, but not with flying colors.
Rating : 3/5
- Paperback: 448 pages
- Publisher: Broadway Books; Reprint edition (June 5, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0307885453
- ISBN-13: 978-0307885456