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Nine [Mass Market Paperback]

Jan Burke
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 9.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

Oct. 1 2003
On the heels of her soaring bestseller Flight, Edgar Award-winning author Jan Burke reaches new heights of suspense in this ingenious novel of hard-hitting justice and cold-blooded murder.
Los Angeles County Homicide Detective Alex Brandon lives to bring killers to justice -- but when unknown assailants begin systematically killing off the FBI's Most Wanted suspects, Alex sees no cause for celebration. The vigilante slayings eerily echo the work of a serial killer from a decade ago, and convince Alex that "the Exterminators," as a grateful public has dubbed them, are more ruthless and sadistic than their victims. As the attacks mount, it is the ninth target that pulls Alex into a case that is quickly spiraling into deadly territory -- where justice is no longer enough.

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From Amazon

A drug kingpin on the FBI's Most Wanted list is found hanging upside down over a bathtub, his corpse drained of blood. The killing looks like an organized-crime payback hit--until another Ten Most Wanted criminal is found similarly strung up, and then another. Soon Detective Alex Brandon of the L.A. County Sheriff's Department is grappling not only with a testy partner and a complicated home life, but also with a band of brilliant vigilantes whom the public starts to regard as heroes.

Alex Brandon is almost too good to be true, with his penetrating blue eyes, his steely toughness, his politeness, and his tenacious smarts. But Jan Burke--best known for her well-regarded series featuring reporter Irene Kelly--is such a sane, intelligent writer that Brandon and the book's many other characters come vividly alive. She's also a fine craftsman of individual scenes, many of which are perfectly paced little dramas or comedies. Nine's gripping, multithreaded plot is sometimes too complex for its own good, and the climax tips into melodrama, but overall the reliable Burke, a past winner of the Edgar and other mystery awards, has produced another winning read. --Nicholas H. Allison --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Award-winning mystery author Burke (Flight; Sweet Dreams, Irene) takes a break from her Irene Kelly series to test the waters of stand-alone mainstream thrillers, and proves she can swim with the sharks in this tale of vigilante justice. The members of Project Nine, an exclusive club of deranged boys, create havoc for homicide detective Alex Brandon, the L.A. Sheriff's Department and the FBI, since their gruesome project involves eliminating the outlaws on the FBI's Most Wanted List. Brandon has a dark family history, to say the least, and grimly tolerates his partner, Ciara Morton, a good detective with a bad attitude. The leader of Project Nine, Everett Corey, began assembling his task force including Cameron Burgess, Morgan Addison and the delightfully vain Frederick Whitfield IV at Sedgewick, a rich kids' reform school in Malibu. The team's hero, haunted genius Kit Logan, whose nightmarish past includes the killing of his stepfather, serial killer Jerome Naughton, attended the same school. Ninth on the Project's list of targets is yet another Malibu alum: Kit's friend Gabe Taggert, whose involvement in a botched robbery/ homicide has driven him into hiding. Gabe's sister Meghan has history with both Everett and Kit, further complicating the mix. Brandon was involved with the Naughton case 10 years earlier and has dealt with some of the Sedgewick boys; while this makes him uniquely suited to solving the case, it also puts him at risk. Burke does an excellent job with her diverse, bustling cast which includes Spooky, a 13-year-old firebrand in Kit's care, and Chase, Brandon's troubled nephew providing plenty of background without short-changing the absorbing and inventive plot.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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First Sentence
A black-winged bird swooped past Kit's left shoulder, and he shied away from it, crouching down low, half losing his balance. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars A letdown from an otherwise capable writer June 28 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
At times when a writer abandons -at least temporarily -a long standing series the result can be revitalising ,a kind of literary second wind can kick in and there is a discernable gain in quality and intensity with benefits all round , both for the reader and the author .This happened in a big way when Dennis Lehane turned away from the perfectly good series about blue collar Boston P I's Kenzie and Gennaro and wrote the magnificent Mystic River .Similar but less spectacular results were achieved with the creation of new characters and stand alone books by such authors as Harlen Cobden and Robert Crais .
Sadly there has been no such transformation with this novel which sees an end at least temporarily to the Irene Kelly series and Nine counts as a major disappointment from the usually solid and reliable Ms Burke ,It is over-plotted ,low on plausibility and betrays a lack of narrative control with several plot strands being welded together without any real coherernce .There seems a striving after "significance " and "weight " which makes it a deadening experience to read .
At its core is a plot by a group of disaffected wealthy men ,alumni of an up-market private reformatory to slaughter names on the FBI most wanted list .Initilly they favour exsanguination -draining blood from their bodies while suspended over a bathtub -but subsequent methods are more diverse .Their victims are killers ,child murderers ,fraudsters etc -and the public response is favourable to their endeavours .
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5.0 out of 5 stars Jan Burke never ceases to amaze April 1 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I am a big fan of the Irene Kelly series and at first was a little reticent of reading a novel by Jan Burke that did not have Irene as the main character. Luckily I discovered that my fears were completely unfounded and that the quality of this novel is as good as the rest of Burke's work, if not better.
Four young men are the main participants in a group called Project Nine, whose mission is to take justice into their own hands by killing the criminals that are listed in the FBI's Most Wanted list. The members of the group are all former Sedgewick students, which is a school well known for harboring rich kids who have had problems in various areas (school, trouble with police, etc). The murderers use a very distinct method, and detective Alex Brandon finds clear similarities with a previous case in his career. The killer in that prior case ended up being murdered by his stepson, Kit, who was only eleven years at that time.
The author not only presents a highly interesting and complex plot in terms of the reasons behind the actions of the characters, but also does an amazing job in depicting Alex and Kit, and also in intertwining elements of their personal life into the story. Each time I grab a book written by Jan Burke I find myself surprised not only by the highly entertaining stories she creates, but also by the outstanding quality of her writing. This is probably why she has won numerous prizes, including the prestigious Edgar Award. This work has convinced me: besides waiting for the next Irene Kelly novel, I will grab anything this author writes!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed Aug. 22 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
You start out thinking that this can't be what it seems. Early on, we learn about a small group of spoiled rich kids (early- to mid-twenties) who have decided to go after the criminals on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List. That's right. Four guys with no police training or other relevant experiences start capturing and killing the most dangerous criminals in America. It does not matter if the criminals are heavily guarded drug kings or international terrorists. These four guys, with nothing but money and antisocial personalities, can do easily what the FBI and police can not. Not only can they find, capture, kill and return the bodies to southern California, they are able to take care of several of these most-wanted criminals a week (even the ones living outside the country). Of course, a savvy reader sees this as preposterous and expects the author will soon make clear what the real story is behind the murders. But halfway through, you realize that Jan Burke is serious. She wants us to buy the premise along with a number of other absurdities (one example -- a suspect is found murdered, and law enforcement people start to act as if the case is solve; the lead investigator does not even bother to inform his partner of this development until the next morning). I won't give away the rest, except to say that the motive, when we learn it, does not even come close to accounting for the main antagonist's behavior.
I suppose if you like cartoonish plots and characters, this story works. With enough suspension of disbelief, I can see how the book could even be fun. However, it is apparent from the writing that Burke wants us to take her plot and characters seriously. Unfortunately, she makes this difficult.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Ten in My Book! July 19 2003
Format:Hardcover
Fans used to the Jan Burke's Irene Kelly character are going to be in for a rude shock when they pick this book up. Irene Kelly is gone and this book may signal the beginnings of a brand new series character as well as a more intense, graphically disturbing writing style. The results, while at times disturbing, created an intense read that makes this book live up to the billing on the front cover "a novel of suspense."
This is an exceedingly difficult book to review, as there are three main storylines of equal importance with numerous overlapping plot points. As such, I am forced to simplify greatly while trying to avoid giving away major elements of the plot. The main thing is to understand that this is simply a very good book.
As the book opens, Homicide Detective Alex Brandon of the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department has been called out to the site of a gruesome murder. Someone has been carefully hung upside down from the ceiling of a bathroom. The individual was repeatedly tortured and then, through the use of an anti-coagulant injection allowed to slowly bleed out through numerous small cuts into the bathtub until dead. He has been dead sometime but he is readily identifiable as Bernado Adrianos, one of the top ten on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List. Along with killing him, his killer has also helpfully written the number nine in his blood on the bathroom mirror.
The killing reminds Detective Brandon of another case from many years ago involving Kit Logan. At this same time, Kit Logan is at his expensive home in Colorado. The victim of horrific child abuse, which is detailed graphically in the novel, he has tried desperately to put his past aside by isolating himself. But isolation has not turned out to be the answer and once again, his enemies seem to be moving in on him.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great Book by a great author
They say there are only about 4 or 5 plots for all the stories ever written. That may be true, but Ms Burke can do more with all of these plots than most authors with one in their... Read more
Published on April 11 2004 by Cole Cordray
4.0 out of 5 stars Murder and Revenge !!
Jan Burke's NINE was a terrific read. A story about murder and revenge. Very exciting !!
Published on April 7 2004 by lizbeth star
5.0 out of 5 stars a new fan
This is my first Jan Burke book and I really enjoyed it. I found it to be suspenseful and entertaining. I hope she writes more adventures for Alex Brandon!
Published on June 25 2003 by J. Bourne
4.0 out of 5 stars a new fan
This is my first Jan Burke book and I really enjoyed it. I found it to be suspenseful and entertaining. I hope she writes more adventures for Alex Brandon!
Published on June 25 2003 by J. Bourne
2.0 out of 5 stars Slow and forced
Sedgewick, a reform school in Malibu for troubled rich kids, has produced Project Nine, a group of sadistic killers bent on eliminating the FBI's ten most wanted felons ... Read more
Published on Feb. 16 2003 by Anna Klein
5.0 out of 5 stars Who wants kids like these?
It's an unpopular club in anyone's book....the FBI's top ten most wanted list. Members of that list are showing up murdered in Irene Burke's latest book titled Nine. Read more
Published on Jan. 29 2003 by Suzanne Vitale
5.0 out of 5 stars Impressed, as Usual
I cowardly approached Nine much as I did Flight in that I miss Irene and I knew neither Irene nor Frank were in Nine. Read more
Published on Dec 30 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Burke's fan base will grow thanks to this gripping thriller
It happens. You start a book with high expectations for whatever reason --- the inside cover summary, a friend's recommendation or, heaven forbid, some nebbish reviewer --- and... Read more
Published on Dec 7 2002 by Bookreporter
4.0 out of 5 stars Serial Killers go after the FBIs most wanted list
Edgar and Agatha award winner Jan Burke has done it again with this exciting tale of serial killers who are applauded as heros because they systematically torture and kill some of... Read more
Published on Nov. 29 2002 by Silver Springer
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