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The Dark Room [Unbound]

Minette Walters
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 13 1995
Jane “Jinx” Kingsley, fashion photographer and daughter of a ruthless millionaire, lies in an expensive private clinic, apparently the luckless survivor of a suicide attempt. When she emerges from her coma, Jinx can remember nothing of recent days: not that her financé, Leo Wallander, has jilted her and run off with her best friend, nor that she made another suicide attempt just a few days earlier. Then the memories begin to surface – memories of utter desperation and terror.

But Jinx has lost her memory, not her mind. She knows she would never try to kill herself over Leo, and she’s just as sure that she was never jilted. With the help of the clinic’s director, Dr. Alan Protheroe, Jinx tries to remember what happened that was so horrifying her mind now refuses to recall it. While the police investigate, Jinx faces the worst nightmares of her life – the truth about what happened.

In this intensely suspenseful novel, nothing is as it first seems, nor even as it subsequently appears. And the answers to the mysteries lie not in the details of forensic evidence, but in the dark, passionate recesses of the mind.

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From Amazon

As readers of The Echo have already discovered, Walters knows how to spin a fine web of terror and psychological deception out of the most familiar ingredients. This brooding and engrossing book, just out in paperback, begins with that slightly frayed item of genre linen, the heroine waking up in a hospital and not remembering how she got there. But Walters quickly sets a lively, inventive table: not only has Jinx Kingsley forgotten her auto accident, but also the murders of her fiancé and her former best friend that preceded it. Of course Jinx didn't do it, and of course Walters will get her off the hook--or will she? --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

British suspense writer Walters, each of whose previous books (The Ice House, The Sculptress and The Scold's Bridle) has won an award, now has a new publisher and a big promotional push behind her. Unfortunately, the new book is her weakest to date?overplotted and rather unconvincing. It rests on an interesting premise, however: its heroine, Jinx Kingsley, who has been found drunk and disoriented on an abandoned airfield in Wiltshire after apparently trying to kill herself by wrecking her car, is suspected of several murders?but can't, after her accident, remember anything that happened for several vital days. Her husband had been mysteriously killed some years before?and now her fiance and the girlfriend with whom he has been cheating on Jinx are missing. Can her powerful millionaire father be involved? And what about the man who is savagely attacking prostitutes in the area? As Jinx tries, in a local clinic run by sympathetic Dr. Alan Protheroe, to recover her memory and exorcise dark terrors hovering at the edge of her mind, several well-observed police investigators dig out fragments of her story. But that story is so complicated, and filled with such a welter of walk-on characters, many of them ultimately insignificant, that the reader loses patience. Jinx herself is not made sufficiently sympathetic to win interest, her growing affection for Dr. Protheroe seems half-hearted and the ultimate murderer, when finally unmasked, comes right out of left field. Walters is highly talented, but perhaps she is working too fast. 75,000 first printing; major ad/promo; Literary Guild main selection.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Suspenseful Read July 18 2000
By kanga
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have read several books by Minette Walters and rate this as one of her best. The main character, Jinx Kingsley, has amnesia after a car accident and we are left wondering (as Jinx is)about her involvement in some pretty gruesome murders. A great concept, well handled by the author to create a suspenseful read.
The characters are interesting and the pace is good. The only reason I have not given it a five star rating is that I felt that the ending was a bit too happy and optimistic - out of character for some of the personalities in the story.
If you have read and enjoyed any of Minette Walters' books before, then you will not be disappointed with The Echo. If you have not read one of her books, this is a good first read. If you like The Echo, then try The Ice House and the Sculptress as well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Minette Walkers-The dark room March 15 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The newspaper reported the case with relish. The famous photographer Jane (JINX) Kingsley tried to kill herself after her fiance left with her best friend Meg; both disappeared afterwards...But when Jinx wakes from her coma, she cannot remember the suicide attempt. With the help of Dr. Alan Protheroe, she slowly begins to piece together what she remembers of the last couple of weeks. the memories seem to come back...Memories of depression and absolute terror and nobody knows the real truth... Minette Walkers' book cought my attention from the first page and held it to the very last. You keep guessing the truth until the ned and even beyond it. The plot twists so hard it nearly breaks and every character has a motive. It is a brilliant writing and it wakes you think. Her characters are complex and interesting. "The dark room" is a fascinating and satisfying psychological mystery with interesting characters and a lot of twists in the plot. I love Walkers' style of writing especially because you have to find the truth for yourself.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Another dizzying maze of plots and subplots July 1 1998
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Walters certainly has talkative characters and The Dark Room is no exception. Once more the motley group are presented to the reader with no censoring - one minute we like them, the next minute a nasty side turns up - and no end of marathon monologue. The police investigators in this novel are particularly dislikable in their hounding of Jinx Kingsley - reminding me of how often American police seem to find the perpetrator first and then gather evidence and force it to stick to the unfortunate one in their grasp. Yet with all the standard Walters whirlpooling in this labyrinthine plot the reader is left a bit dazed - and wanting. The perpetual review of the evidence and the second and third interviews of the suspects and witnesses began to annoy me. I had three choices for the culprit (using the Walters formula of the least likely character to do someone an injury and the character left nearly hanging in the corners of the plot) and narrowed it down to one. I was wrong (although he was still one of the initial three), Walters won (blast her!) and therefore I award one star for each suspect. Hope ol' Minette has a more involving story next time round, as the Colonel might say.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another one of Minette's good books! May 8 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A very very interesting book that catches you from the first page to the end of the book.A book that can take you from a very unpredictable beginning to a very intersting story and as usual a happy ending,except for the tragedies happened in the story. The main character being Jinx Kingsly,suffering from amnesia after her fiancee decided to marry her best friend and her car crashed which seemed to be a suicide attempt. For Jinx that was hard to believe but she couldn't remember what actually happened and couldn't contribute anything to the investigations.She was the prime suspect when the dead bodies of Jinx's fiance and his new girlfriend were found in middle of the forest. The story goes on an attempt to bring back Jinx's memory by her doctor and the attempts of the detectives to find out who killed them. Involves many people and descibes the charcters of the people in the story, a look at human nature and the different kinds og people in the world. Happy Reading!
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5.0 out of 5 stars You won't be able to put it down! July 13 1998
Format:Mass Market Paperback
When I was in Britain last summer and desperate for a good read, I asked the clerk what she recommended for someone who had just finished a Patricia Cornwell and enjoyed it. She suggested Minette Walters (The Ice House) and after reading it, I immediately ordered everything else Walters had written. These books have also made the rounds of my school, and we're all waiting with bated breath for the next one. If you love Hitchcock-type suspense thrillers, this is the book for you. Her characters are well-defined and believable, her plotting intricate. Better yet, as someone now unspeakably bored with the whining and tiresome Kay Scarpetta, each of Walters' novels is different from the others--and each is equally ingenious. A true "Queen of Crime," she far surpasses Ruth Rendell. I'd also highly recommend the Scold's Bridle--and the end of "The Sculptress" will leave you gasping in surprise.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, but occasionally uneven June 11 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Jinx awakens in the hospital and is told that she tried to kill herself after being jilted by her fiance for her best friend. She's suffering from short-term amnesia around the event, but is certain that that couldn't be true-- she had been dissatisfied with her relationship herself. Why would she try to kill herself over a relationship she would have been relieved to have ended? The question becomes more than academic when the pair turn up murdered, and the question is how much Jinx really remembers...
The book kept me reading, and fascinated. Jinx was a strongly drawn character and conflicted enough that you buy the fact that people have doubts about her innocence. The ending was unfortunately disappointing for being overly convoluted. It may not live up to the standard of The Scold's Bridal, but it's a well-written book.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth reading.
Hints and clues abound, but the ending still carries some surprises. Characterization is uneven and it's hard to come away saying "I cared about x or y" -- but it's a... Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2002 by Maureen
3.0 out of 5 stars The Dark Room - Minette Walters
While her style is gripping, her female characters very strong, and romance is kept to a minimum, I am also glad that this was not my first exposure to Ms.Walters. Read more
Published on May 28 2000 by P. Sibun
5.0 out of 5 stars The Dark Room
This book was my introduction to Minette Walters-I have since read two more titles by her! This book was full of suspense--and it was the first storyline involving amnesia and... Read more
Published on April 30 2000 by Roberta B. Dugan
3.0 out of 5 stars Dark Room (and Disturbing)
Following the example set in "The Sculptress," Ms. Walters has crafted yet another thriller that leaves the question in your mind: did they nab the right person? Read more
Published on Dec 21 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars Minette is a Master
I have read all of Minette Walter's books and I am constantly surprised. With each book her writing gets stronger and the plots get even more interesting. Read more
Published on Dec 2 1999 by Karen Bierman Hirsh
3.0 out of 5 stars A baffling gripping mistery
An enveloping murder mistery with psychological streaks which grows and grips as one advaces into the final chapters. Read more
Published on Nov. 10 1999 by Manuel Gwiazda
4.0 out of 5 stars A Very Mysterious Read
Very wonderful book! My first read at a Minette Walters' mystery, although I've heard fondly of her other works. Very suspenseful, and I totally did not think of the ending ... Read more
Published on Sept. 17 1999
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good read from Walters
A satisfying psychological mystery from one of the best practitioners in the field, but not up to the level of The Ice House or The Sculptress. Read more
Published on Sept. 4 1998
4.0 out of 5 stars Another well crafted mystery
Minette Walters keeps the plot humming with red herrings, mysterious characters and plot twists. There is no lacking in gruesome detail. Read more
Published on Aug. 30 1998
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