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Despite its superficial resemblance to a whodunit, The Church of Dead Girls is not a conventional thriller. Don't expect it to be suspenseful. This is a literary horror tale--slow paced, contemplative, meticulous in its descriptions--about a formerly sleepy small town in which the crucial distinction between public and private life is dissolving as suspicion spreads like a toxin. The reader's guide to this process of corruption is a high school biology teacher--reserved, somewhat snotty, but a thoughtful man, and reliable in spite of his cynicism. He says, "It is dreadful not to be allowed to have secrets. Years ago I happened to uncover a nest of baby moles in the backyard and I watched them writhe miserably in the sunlight. We were like that." Ultimately you realize that the killer's identity, even the deaths of three girls, are small matters compared to the collapse of the town's very soul. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Despite the lurid title, Dobyns's latest novel (he is a poet and author of the "Saratoga" mystery series) is a compelling mystery that shows how the people in a small town change because of a series of murders. First, a promiscuous woman is murdered. Then three girls disappear in succession. The narrator reports how the symptoms of fear escalate into a raging disease consuming the community. Cloaking prejudice and fear with righteousness, certain citizens target individuals who are on the community's fringe. By the story's end, no one escapes suspicion. Many characters and the complexities of human interactions receive well-rounded treatment. This absorbing tale, fit for any general collection, is highly recommended.?Michelle Foyt, Fairfield P.L., Ct.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
What a huge waste of my time. It took me a very forced 6 months to finally finish this book. I kept thinking that it had to pick up at any moment. It didn't. Read morePublished on Feb. 5 2007 by V. Smith
I enjoyed this book. Never heard of the author, happened across it by accident and was pleased i did. Yes, it can seem a little slow, but thats the point. Read morePublished on May 27 2004 by alistair w
Unlike most reviews on this page, I thought the writing was a little stiff, almost like a police procedural. Read morePublished on June 20 2003
This being the first work of Dobyns I have read, I had no expectations. From the first line I was hooked, the entire novel was read in one sitting. Read morePublished on June 18 2003 by Kenneth Keough
Dobyns beautifully arranges the stereotypical setting of small town America. His wonderful use of imagery makes this small town, Aurelius, come to life. Read morePublished on June 8 2003 by J. Muckley
Everyone said it begain with the disappearance of the first girl. But it began much earlier than that.
So begins Dobyn's novel, Church of Dead Girls. Read more
I first read this book in the fall last year, and fall is definitely the time of year to read it. I sat outside on my porch becoming more and more unsettled as I turned each page,... Read morePublished on Jan. 7 2003 by S. Fackler
except to not expect this to be the usual vicious and gory serial killer murder mystery. I've actually hesitated writing this review for a while now, simply because I cannot... Read morePublished on Dec 6 2002 by Hippolytos