The Boy Who Followed Ripley Paperback – Aug 26 2008
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From Library Journal
To coincide with the premiere of the paperback publication of 1992's Ripley Under Water ( LJ 10/1/92), Vintage is releasing a brace of Highsmith's earlier adventures of Ripley, the cordial young man with the talent for murder. Dubbed "especially brilliant" by LJ 's reviewer, Ripley's Game ( LJ 5/1/74) finds the protagonist continually bungling a hit, while The Boy Who Followed Ripley ( LJ 5/1/80) finds him trying to protect a young man on the run after murdering his wealthy father.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Patricia Highsmith was born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1921 but moved to New York when she was six. In her senior year she edited the college magazine, having decided to become a writer at the age of sixteen. Her first novel Strangers on a Train was made into a famous film by Alfred Hitchcock in 1951. Patricia Highsmith died in Locarno, Switzerland in 1995. Her last novel Small g: A Summer Idyll was published posthumously just over a month later. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
I have found the quality tails off as you read through the series, finally hitting rock bottom with the Boy who followed Ripley. To be fair the second and third are perfectly readable, just not as good as the first. The Talented Mr. Ripley deserves all the credit it gets, it is a well written and attention grabbing tale.
The plot is reasonably straightforward, but I get the feeling that much of the substance remains in the authors head - there are many instances of unlikely events that Tom for some unfathomable reason imagines will happen, and lo and behold, they do. He instantly recognises who the boy is, with little evidence. He immediately comes to the conclusion for no apparent reason that certain things will happen to the boy (I won't spoil it), they all happen. These in our world are called coincidences, in Ripleys world we are expected to swallow them one after the other.
I found myself skimming paragraphs, as I knew what would happen, because Tom had thought about it happening 10 minutes before.
The character of the boy himself is woefully undeveloped. The premise of the boy 'worshipping' Tom Ripley is thought sufficient to explain why the boy meekly does everything Tom tells him to, whether or not it makes sense.
Still, I'm not going to give it no Stars at all. I did manage to finish the book, and I certainly couldn't do any better!
This is not her best work. I found myself turning to my wife and saying 'Boy, this book is boring'. A first for me.
The Boy Who Followed Ripley has just an interesting premise. A sixteen year-old American rich lad seeks out our rogue Tom Ripley and befriends him. We discover the boy has a dark secret, which he shares exclusively with Ripley. The boy's friendship extends into something like hero-worshipping. At this stage Highsmith could have used some clever homo-erotic angle, which would have been an interesting twist back to the original The Talented Mr Ripley novel, or at least made the boy into some sort of threat to Tom Ripley (..a man with many secrets). But no, the author merely injects some rather unoriginal mystery/criminal handy-panky which involves with boy and Tom Ripley. The only curious bit is that Tom Ripley is the good guy here, which is a bit of disappointment for the fans of the Ripley series.
On a much more minor note, I was unfortunate enough to read a 5-6 year old UK version of this novel. The publisher took liberties in translating many expressions into British slang, which is really appalling since the two main characters in this novel are Americans. It is downright bizarre to read a book where Americans use words like loo (toilet), pissed (drunk) and fag (cigarette). This is the first time I witnessed this in a UK edition Highsmith novel; I hope the most current edition of The Boy Who Followed Ripley is spared from this nonsense.
Bottom line: a very readable, but very mundane Ripley book. Disappointing and, sadly, not recommended.
Most recent customer reviews
I suspect that author Highsmith was feeling more comfortable with expressing her own sexuality by the time she wrote this entertaining little mystery, as the homoeroticism is... Read morePublished on Dec 12 2003 by Nelson Aspen
This book is definitely my favourite of the Ripley novels. Patricia Highsmith has an incredible ability to detail the touching relationship between Tom Ripley and Frank Pierson. Read morePublished on March 8 2003 by Justin
In the fourth Tom Ripley novel, we meet sixteen-year-old Frank Pierson, the younger son of a millionaire. Read morePublished on Oct. 3 2001
Don't read this unless you loved the rest of the series and can't stop. You just aren't going to convince me that Ripley could turn in the ransom money, or that his friends... Read morePublished on Aug. 6 2001 by moth
The Boy Who Followed Ripley is my third RIPLEY book. I've read a couple of other Highsmith's as well (The Tremor of Forgery and Eleven were both excellent). Read morePublished on Aug. 4 2001 by David Krasner
I just read all the ripley books, and this was my least favorite. It starts off good, but as soon as Frank is safe from the kidnappers the books meanders and takes a really long... Read morePublished on April 8 2001
I'm working my way through the Ripley series (am currently into number five), and I think that *The Boy who Followed Ripley* is the best since *The Talented Mr. Ripley. Read morePublished on March 26 2000 by Debra Hamel
This was definitely a favorite book of mine out of the Ripley books. Highsmith created a character that you can't help but love - and hate - at the same time. Read morePublished on Feb. 29 2000