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Child 44 Hardcover – Apr 29 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (April 29 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446402389
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446402385
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.2 x 3.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 590 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #320,965 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Loved the character development, the historical details and the rapid sustained pace of the story. Despite there being very little dialogue, this
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Format: Paperback
A page turner for sure but I question the historical accuracy of it. I suspect it's waaay overdone. I enjoy reading yes, to be entertained but also to learn something about people and different places so that I can be a better man after I finish reading it. When it sensationalizes and exaggerates history it does no one a favour.

Speaking of sensationalizing, like too much we see around us now, it has an obsession with glorified violence and tries to out-do the next book over in its horror.
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Format: Paperback
Good book. Really enjoyed it.

The author presents a solid mystery wrapped up in the enigma of Stalinist Russia -- where murder and crime doesn't officially exist. Although Stalin himself murdered millions.

I thought the story tied together well although the book plodded a bit in the middle. The author sets up sequels which I will have to check out.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful By taking a rest on May 12 2008
Format: Hardcover
The following are true; Mr. Smith is a talented young writer who has written a very good first book. He did his homework and lists as resources authors who have among them a winner of The Nobel Prize.
Reality check; he may someday enter the lists of writers that include John LeCarrre and other notables of this genre however he is not there at present and based on what I have read of this man I think he would be the last to suggest it. This work is a solid debut; it is not the greatest work since Guttenberg began his printing press.
I don’t know where the line is drawn between fiction and historical fiction. The author moved the events that truly took place in the 1980’s to Stalin’s 1950’s “when the stakes were much higher for someone who dared to risk opposing the State”. That may be an understatement as Stalin presided over one of the most murderous, repressive cults of personality in History.
The story required a primary character that went through an about face in his beliefs and personal conduct. I found this to be a stretch based on the events in the book. As part of The MGB Leo Demidov zealously and actively engaged in horrific behavior based upon his State-Based conditioning. I found his change as a character too extreme to accept as a reader even though the author used Khrushchev’s arrival to buttress the closing events of the book. I thought it made for an ending that was a bit too bright for 1950’s Russia.
I really did enjoy the unwinding of the motivation for the serial killer. I cannot say much as it would spoil the tale for readers to come. I found it unique among the stories of its type. And unlike others I did not find there were any contrived gotcha moments or gratuitous twists in the book.
The book is an enjoyable read. It is also the author’s first book. He is likely to write and grow and give readers finer work as he develops his talent. Talking of any author’s first work in superlatives is unfair and unrealistic.
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Format: Hardcover
Surprisingly good. It's tight and fast-paced and gives a glimpse into a repressed culture in a repressed era. It could have had the feel of a history or anti-soviet lesson but managed to avoid that lecture-y feel.

Coming from our modern liberal world, it's hard not to wonder how anyone lived in that kind of repression, and how anyone managed to get anything done...

It's fiction but how much of it could have been true? Were/are there serial killers in countries that weren't/aren't caught because the government doesn't acknowledge their existence? Will we ever know?
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