The kind worth killing A novel

Peter Swanson, 1968-

eBook - 2015

From one of the hottest new thriller writers, Peter Swanson, a name you may not know yet (but soon will), this is his breakout novel in the bestselling tradition of Paula Hawkins' The Girl on the Train-and is soon to be a major movie directed by Agnieszka Holland. In a tantalizing set-up reminiscent of Patricia Highsmith's classic Strangers on a Train… On a night flight from London to Boston, Ted Severson meets the stunning and mysterious Lily Kintner. Sharing one too many martinis, the strangers begin to play a game of truth, revealing very intimate details about themselves. Ted talks about his marriage that's going stale and his wife Miranda, who he's sure is cheating on him. Ted and his wife were a mismatch from the... start-he the rich businessman, she the artistic free spirit-a contrast that once inflamed their passion, but has now become a cliché. But their game turns a little darker when Ted jokes that he could kill Miranda for what she's done. Lily, without missing a beat, says calmly, "I'd like to help." After all, some people are the kind worth killing, like a lying, stinking, cheating spouse. . . . Back in Boston, Ted and Lily's twisted bond grows stronger as they begin to plot Miranda's demise. But there are a few things about Lily's past that she hasn't shared with Ted, namely her experience in the art and craft of murder, a journey that began in her very precocious youth. Suddenly these co-conspirators are embroiled in a chilling game of cat-and-mouse, one they both cannot survive . . . with a shrewd and very determined detective on their tail.

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Suspense fiction
Noir fiction
[United States] : Harper Collins Publishers 2015.
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hoopla digital
Main Author
Peter Swanson, 1968- (author)
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hoopla digital (-)
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Review by Booklist Review

Ted Severson meets Lily Kintner in an airport bar, and their time-wasting flirtation turns serious when he admits that he's just caught his wife cheating. A little drunk, he recklessly claims that he'd like to kill her and is shocked when Lily agrees that he should. Lily pegs his wife as the kind of person who spreads misery, the kind worth killing. After Ted spends the flight exploring Lily's simple philosophy of justice, he allows her reckless comment to morph into a murder plot motivated by hurt and a new infatuation. But instead of earning his version of twisted justice, Ted's plot plunges him into a calculating, murderous game initiated years ago at a small New England university. Boston PD Detective Kimball is another late arrival to the game, and his surprising success at sensing Lily's darkness ups the stakes. Swanson successfully revisits the femme fatale theme of his first novel, The Girl with a Clock for a Heart (2014), in this twisty tale of warring sociopaths, which makes a good companion to similar stories by Laura Lippman and Gillian Flynn.--Tran, Christine Copyright 2015 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A chance airport meeting between strangers sets in motion a Strangers on a Train-inspired murder plot. During a delay at Heathrow, wealthy Boston businessman Ted Severson shares drinks with fellow American Lily Kintner, an archivist at a small Massachusetts college. One thing leads to another, but instead of sleeping together, the two confess their deepest secrets: Ted wants to kill his two-timing wife, Miranda, and Lily wants to help him. In case the Patricia Highsmith connection isn't blatant enough, Swanson (The Girl With a Clock for a Heart, 2014) shows Lily reading The Two Faces of January"not one of her best"in the airport. While the title implies that Ted's (and Lily's) enemies are the kind worth killing, the reader almost immediately decides it's the cold, heartless protagonists who should ultimately get the ax. Miranda is indeed cheating on Ted with Brad Daggett, the handsome and dim contractor who's building the couple's extravagant Maine vacation home, yet it's hard to feel sorry for a man who tells a complete stranger that he fantasizes about killing his spouse, let alone a woman who openly encourages such behavior. Lily's past is slowly, predictably revealed, and we discover her penchant for violence, but instead of making her character more complex, it merely becomes another layer of frustration. While there are twists, most of them are so clearly telegraphed that only the most careless of readers won't see what's coming, especially since Swanson needlessly doubles back over the same events from different points of view. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.