Most helpful positive review
Expect the unexpected ... and still be surprised!
on July 16, 2007
In his introduction to "Twisted", Deaver acknowledges his personal delight with the experience of writing short stories. He suggests that because readers don't invest the same time or have the same emotional involvement in a short story as they would with a full length novel, the author is free to play an entirely different game - to hit like a sniper's bullet, to make the story fast and shocking, to make good bad or to make bad badder. But, Deaver says the most fun he had was to make really good really bad.
But - make no mistake - Deaver brings to the short story all the sophisticated skills that have been the foundation of his success as a novelist. He has a gift for dialogue, vivid characterization and suspense and his stories show deep insight into the emotions, the motivations, the fears and the love and happiness of his widely varied cast of characters. Despite its fundamentally gritty nature, his writing shows uncommonly refreshing humour and a capacity to convey deep feeling.
Doubtless everyone will come away from reading "Twisted" with their own personal set of favourites. I was fond of "Lesser-Included Offense", a crafty tale of shifty, cut-throat legal maneuvers during the capital trial of an accused murderer; "Gone Fishing" in which a daughter begs her loving father not to go fishing in an area which has been the site of a series of brutal killings; and, finally, "Nocturne" which begins with the theft of a priceless Stradivarius violin at gunpoint and ends with a ... well, you're going to have to read it yourself!
The dust jacket reviews liken Deaver's mastery of the short story twist to O. Henry and Edgar Allen Poe. I was reminded of Jeffrey Archer's "A Twist in the Tale" and Roald Dahl's "Tales of the Unexpected". For some easy going but compelling, rapid-fire, high quality toilet or beach reading that you can pick up and put down without losing the thread, "Twisted" will be your cup of tea! Definitely recommended.