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With Child Paperback – Mar 31 1997


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With Child + To Play the Fool + The Art of Detection
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; Reprint edition (March 31 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553574582
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553574586
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 2.1 x 17.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 113 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #222,842 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Amazon

I can't think of any moments in recent mysteries that equal the sheer physical and emotional terror of Kate Martinelli's discovery--about halfway through this third book in Laurie R. King's excellent series, now available in paperback--that the 12-year-old girl she is looking after has disappeared. Kate, a just-out lesbian, is under fire for that and other reasons at the San Francisco Police Department, and the missing girl is the daughter of the woman whom Kate's work partner has just married. Kate's relationship with her life partner, Lee, is in serious trouble, and she has strong feelings about wanting children of her own. The motel from which the girl has vanished is in the middle of a notorious serial killer's terrortory. As she does in her equally smart and visceral series about Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes (The Beekeeper's Apprentice, A Monstrous Regiment of Women, A Letter of Mary), King balances all the elements perfectly, and keeps us involved every inch of the way. Her other Martinelli books are A Grave Talent and To Play the Fool.

From Publishers Weekly

The third absorbing Kate Martinelli story (after the Edgar-winning A Grave Talent and its follow-up, To Play the Fool) leads the Bay Area cop into the Pacific Northwest, where a serial killer is on the loose. Kate's female lover Lee, severely disabled in an earlier tale, leaves to spend some time on an island off the Washington coast. At the same time, Kate's partner, Al, is wooing a woman whose precocious 12-year-old daughter, Jules, asks Kate to help her find a now-missing homeless boy whom she has met in a park. While struggling with little success to cope with Lee's absence, Kate finds Jules's friend but in the process gets hit on the head hard enough to have to take medical leave from the department?until her sporadic, debilitating headaches cease. When Al and Jules's mother go on their honeymoon right before Christmas, Jules stays with Kate; on a trip north, Jules disappears from the motel near Portland. The desperate search for the girl, who fits the profile of the killer's other victims, creates excruciating anguish for Kate, particularly after she is sent back to California. There, she breaks some rules to find out whether Jules was taken by the killer or by someone who knew her personally. Although readers may connect pieces of the puzzle sooner than Kate, the pleasure of her company and the accelerating suspense preceding the climax make for a compelling read. Author tour.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Format: Paperback
This book left me a little frustrated. I think Laurie King is great writer. What I believe sets her apart from other writers, mystery or otherwise, is her ability to cleverly weave research into an interesting plot. We've all read books where the authors have obviously researched--and I mean obviously. They may as well present their information in the form of a numbered list titled "Things I've learned about..." Laurie King, on the other hand, feeds us information on cults, obscure religious movements, the Bible while building strong characters and a riveting plot. Now the complaints--what happened in this Kate Martinelli book? In the first, I learned about art and about "the high-extracting personality." In the second, I learned about a religious movement called "the fools." In this one, she seemed to have fallen into the Patricia Cornwell trap. I didn't learn about anything except how Kate Martinelli always ends up being the next victim just like Cornwell's Kaye Scarpetti. Having said this, I should add that I still give the book 4 stars. It's a quick read and kept my interest, I just expect more from Laurie King. I know she can do better--I've read the proof.
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Format: Paperback
"With Child" has been my constant companion for the past several hours: it went to lunch with me, and to dinner, and spent a quiet afternoon in between. What kept me going was not the apparent plot--as I read the book, I thought there were two separate plots, the search for Dio and the search for Jules, and I found them quite loosely tied together. Then I completed the last scene and realized that this wonderful book is a web of plots, based on the them of being 'with child', of finding children on many levels. There's Jules and Dio, both lost; Lee's need to have a child despite her lesbianism and her disability; and Rosa surrounded by children. There's the search for missing children at the center of this book, and the search for love at the emotional core. It's the search for partners and for family relationships which motivates all the characters, even the most villanous, and which holds the actions together in a tightly-knit whole cloth
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Format: Paperback
Before I nitpick, let me say that I enjoyed reading this book. It's well written with interesting characters. It just isn't quite the masterpiece that the first two Martinelli books are.
Much of this book focuses on Kate's personal life crises - Lee has left to recover with a long lost aunt and Kate doesn't know where she stands. She spends more and more time with Jules, the soon to be step-daughter of her partner, Al Hawkin. (Readers of the previous books will remember the child genius.) She spends some of the time tracking down a runaway friend of Jules. In the second half of the book, Jules disappears during a road trip to Seattle. Still, Kate isn't allowed to participate in the the active search and acts policelike only on the fringes.
Bottom-line: Probably a worthwhile read for existing fans of the series but wouldn't be the best book for starting the Martinelli series (which is terrific overall).
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Format: Paperback
I first read "A Grave Talent" and couldn't wait to read "With Child". I only bring mystery books on vacation, and this was the first one I read in Puerta Vallarta over mid-winter break. Not only is it a great way to keep the sun off of your face while lying prone on a beach chair, it is an intriguing story with wonderful characters. I prefer King's American style of mystery plots compared to the traditional set-up of English writers like P.D. James. James gives you the complete cast of suspects, then slowly reveals who did it. I won't give away how King sets up this book, but it isn't the same as James!
No trips to Mexico this year with a new baby on the way, but when Baby Jack is born I will definitely send my husband out to fetch me some more Laurie King mysteries to wile away the hours of nursing my newborn, lying prone on a bed this time around.
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Format: Paperback
This book is the third in a series featuring Kate Martinelli--a homicide detective in San Francisco. When Kate's lover, Lee, goes off to the Pacific Northwest to recover from serious injuries, Kate feels sorry for herself until she befriends Jules, a friend's daughter. She becomes involved in many searches for children---at the job, helping find Jules' homeless friend, Dio, and finally when Jules herself disappears while on a trip with Kate. This is a hard book to put down, particularly with the plot twists, including the possibility that Jules could have been kidnapped by a notorius serial killer. I enjoyed it but was somewhat disappointed by the unresolved issues between Kate and Lee at the end of the book. But then this is an incentive to read the next installment.
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Format: Paperback
This book was a little different than the first two books, but I enjoyed reading it and finished it off rather quickly (a sure sign that it was good). I still have a hard time with the realities of Kate's job, but I can overlook some of that. I enjoyed this book a little more than the last, where I felt like I'd missed something. This book did a better job of filling in the "while you were away" time gap. Still think that more could be done with the intimacy in the relationship, but that's nitpicking.
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