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Mr. Mercedes: A Novel

Mr. Mercedes: A Novel

Scris de Stephen King

Povestit de Will Patton


Mr. Mercedes: A Novel

Scris de Stephen King

Povestit de Will Patton

evaluări:
4.5/5 (642 evaluări)
Lungime:
14 hours
Lansat:
Jun 3, 2014
ISBN:
9781442369795
Format:
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Descriere

In a mega-stakes, high-suspense race against time, three of the most unlikely and winning heroes Stephen King has ever created try to stop a lone killer from blowing up thousands.

In the frigid pre-dawn hours, in a distressed Midwestern city, hundreds of desperate unemployed folks are lined up for a spot at a job fair. Without warning, a lone driver plows through the crowd in a stolen Mercedes, running over the innocent, backing up, and charging again. Eight people are killed; fifteen are wounded. The killer escapes.

In another part of town, months later, a retired cop named Bill Hodges is still haunted by the unsolved crime. When he gets a crazed letter from someone who self-identifies as the "perk" and threatens an even more diabolical attack, Hodges wakes up from his depressed and vacant retirement, hell-bent on preventing another tragedy.

Brady Hartsfield lives with his alcoholic mother in the house where he was born. He loved the feel of death under the wheels of the Mercedes, and he wants that rush again. Only Bill Hodges, with a couple of highly unlikely allies, can apprehend the killer before he strikes again. And they have no time to lose, because Brady's next mission, if it succeeds, will kill or maim thousands.

Mr. Mercedes is a war between good and evil, from the master of suspense whose insight into the mind of this obsessed, insane killer is chilling and unforgettable.
Lansat:
Jun 3, 2014
ISBN:
9781442369795
Format:
Carte audio

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Despre autor

Stephen King is the author of more than sixty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His recent work includes If It Bleeds, The Institute, Elevation, The Outsider, Sleeping Beauties (cowritten with his son Owen King), and the Bill Hodges trilogy: End of Watch, Finders Keepers, and Mr. Mercedes (an Edgar Award winner for Best Novel and a television series streaming on Peacock). His novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller. His epic works The Dark Tower, It, Pet Sematary, and Doctor Sleep are the basis for major motion pictures, with It now the highest-grossing horror film of all time. He is the recipient of the 2020 Audio Publishers Association Lifetime Achievement Award, the 2018 PEN America Literary Service Award, the 2014 National Medal of Arts, and the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.


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4.5
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  • (3/5)
    This is not a horror novel, which is what Stephen King is most well known for, having said that, I enjoyed the story.

    Bill Hodges is a retired detective who was quite good at what he did. Mr. Mercedes, the man who drove a mercedes through a crowd of people killing and 8 and wounding many others, is the one he could not solve. After his retirement, he gets a letter from the person claiming to be Mr. Mercedes. The purpose of the letter is to drive Hodges to suicide, instead it does the opposite and he picks up the case to try and solve it.

    The merc killer, Brady, is a very predictable character, similar to serial killers and psycopaths you see on television and in the movies, but the other characters were what kept me reading this book. The way Hodges mind worked was interesting. Jerome, his family, Janey and her cousin added a dimension to the novel that I enjoyed. When I got about 2/3 of the way through, I could not stop reading to find out how Brady would get caught, because you know he will. A good introduction to Bill Hodges as it sets up for the next book in the trilogy.
  • (3/5)
    Not my favorite of King's works. Domestic terrorist pries retired detective off his couch with a taunting letter and a series of online conversations.
  • (4/5)
    Bill Hodges is a recently retired detective. He is haunted by an unsolved crime, where a man drove a Mercedes into a crowd, killing 8 and wounding 15. He receives a letter from a man claiming to be the perp. Hodges believes it is him, and begins an informal investigation. He is aided by a young man, Jerome, and later by a woman with emotional problems, Holly. The three of them each bring different strengths to the team, and together try to figure out who the killer is.

    We, the reader, know who the killer is. Brady Harstfield, who by day works at a discount electronics store making service calls to fix computers, and also as an ice cream truck drives. He sill lives at home, with his alcoholic mother (there are plenty of mommy issues there) and all who meet him think he is a nice guy.

    The chapters alternate between Hodges and Brady's point of view. For me, this made the story all the more tense. Knowing what Brady is planning next, but waiting for Hodges to figure it out was nerve wracking. Normally I don't like a shifting point of view, but in this case I didn't mind.

    Unlike the majority of Stephen King's work, there is no paranormal element here. This is a pure detective story. The writing style is still very much King's. Very descriptive and very "dense." This makes for a long book. The pacing of the first half seemed a little leisurely to me. The second half kicked it up and flew by. Towards the end, I had to keep reading to find out what would happen next.

    The edition that I read had a preview of the next book in the series, Finders Keepers. It was really interesting and made me want to run out and get a copy for myself. I think this book will be enjoyed both by fans of Stephen King and fans of detective stories. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.
  • (4/5)
    More of a cat and mouse story between a retired detective and a "perk", this was a bit of a different story from Mr. King than much of his other work I've read but I was pleasantly surprised. He still knows how to tell a story and immerse one in the world you are reading about. You can almost see and feel things as you go along and bears the mark of an outstanding author. I'm already looking forward to the other 2 stories in this trilogy.
  • (5/5)
    This series has been on my tbr forever. King is one of my very favorite authors, but I was hesitant to try the detective series. That was silly because I freaking loved this book! Unexpected twists, great characters, creepy villain, plus some seriously funny parts. Uncle Stevie definitely delivers on this one. Highly recommend the great narration on audio.
  • (5/5)
    A quick moving thriller in every sense of the word. Beware: once you start, you'll have to finish this propulsive book. It's not really a mystery, since the killer is revealed fairly early on, but there is constantly growing tension. Let's just say that I had to put the book down a few times because I became tense reading.First Stephen King novel I've ever read, and I was surprised by the skill of his writing. I understand there are more books with this detective and I'm going to seek them out.
  • (4/5)
    I picked this novel and its sequel, Finders Keepers, up at the Thrift Store, as I was intrigued to see what Stephen King would do with detective fiction. Although I am really fairly well done with spending time inside the head of a psychopath, King kept me engaged with Brady Hartsfield, turning some of the things we think we know about such people sideways (for instance, Brady is a single guy living at home with his Mother, and their relationship is downright icky, but he is fairly self-aware; he isn't driven by either abnormal obsession with or hatred for Mommy). And, mercifully, the Brady sections of the novel do not predominate. Mr. Mercedes was a page turner, and the suspense is palpable---King set me up a couple times for a really nasty thing that didn't happen, but something else nasty happened instead. Knowing that there are two more books in this trilogy gave me some confidence that King wasn't going to bump off Det. (Ret.) Hodges in this one. But the last book is called "End of Watch", which suggests he might be saving that wallop until his faithful readers are REALLY invested in the character. I just don't trust the man, who also likes to sneak damned clown masks in to so much of his fiction. (He understands our my fears too well.) Still, there's no question about his ability to get and keep a reader's attention, so he's got me hooked on Hodges and company now.
  • (5/5)
    A retired police detective gets a letter from a killer he never caught, baiting him into investigating the case on his own. His unofficial investigative team soon expands to include the family of a victim and his own teen-aged neighbor who happens to be a whiz with technology. Meanwhile, the reader sees into the mind of the killer as he plots out his next move.This was a riveting and suspenseful read (even with King having spoilered some of his book in a later novel). The characterizations are incredibly interesting, and this will keep you hooked. There were a couple of times here and there where King seemed to get a little bit long-winded, but overall the book keeps you glued to the page. My one quibble is that King giving Jerome the "Tyrone Feelgood" alterego seemed offensive.For audiobook readers, Will Patton was an amazing narrator, bringing to life all of the characters. I am definitely looking forward to the next book in the series.
  • (3/5)
    I read the final third of this novel in a breathless rush. Rather a turn-up as the middle of it was enervated and saggy. Its themes are death and regeneration and I did wonder if this change of tone was an artistic choice. If so, rather an odd one in a thriller.There is some silliness, and I was put in mind several times of a Scooby Doo investigation and I’m sure that was not intended by the author.The characters are seemingly able to log into the Blue Umbrella website without passwords. At first I took this as a mistake, but there is a fair amount of commentary on the elderly’s inexperience with the internet, and what with King’s current status as an ancient stick insect I can’t help wondering if it’s some sort of joke. Of which there are many. It’s a very funny novel. The loving description of what strychnine does to dogs, for example. Or Hodges’ sex scene. What really set me squeaking was Hodges’ first scene which, by word count, is about daytime television, but is really about suicide.What I particularly enjoyed was the mirroring that pervades everything. It’s everywhere you look in the novel, most prominently between Bill Hodges and Brady Hartsfield, beginning with their initials.
  • (4/5)
    As they have tended to be for Stephen King books, my expectations were high for this one, especially since the reviews of it have been so favourable. My expectations were almost met, but not quite.Mr. Mercedes is, of course, a great story. It's dramatic enough from the start to be instantly interesting, and it makes it clear from the outset that this is one of those books where "that couldn't possible happen"-things can actually happen, which is crucial for a book like this to work. It's also refreshingly unpredictable, and I never knew where it was going. This wasn't down to sudden twists and unexpected turns, but rather the compounded effect of a story where both the events and the characters are original enough for me to lose my general sense of "I've seen this kind of thing before" gut-feeling about what is going to happen. The characters are well-developed enough for their actions not to feel out of place, and likeable enough (when they need to be) for me as a reader to care about what happens to them.That said, I felt that the book as a whole lacked some intensity. The fact that some sections of it were real page-turners made me all the more aware that other sections weren't. It never got boring, but at times it felt a little too much like I was reading a set-up to a future event rather than something that was written for its own sake. I think I've used the phrase "a great story told well" in reviews of Stephen King books before, but this time, for the first time, I feel like this was a great story that perhaps could have been told a little better.Still, Mr. Mercedes was a really fun, worthwhile read, and delivers more or less exactly what one would expect from a Stephen King story with a blood-soaked umbrella on the cover.
  • (4/5)
    I mentioned in my review of Mr. King’s On Writing that I’d never read one of his books. Well, at the Houston airport on Friday night, getting ready for the last leg of travel that would get me home from two weeks on vacation, I picked up Mr. Mercedes.

    And so it begins. Because I guarantee that the next thing I’m doing after posting this review is reserving all of his books at the library.

    Unbeknownst to me, Mr. Mercedes is the first novel in a trilogy. And thank goodness it’s the first; I’ve accidentally read the second novel in a series first before, and it SUCKS.

    You know what doesn’t suck? This book. This book is fun. It’s disturbing (one male character has a VERY close relationship with his mother, for another. Also, you know, mass killing), and the antagonist is certainly unappealing, dropping the n-word fairly regularly. The premise is this: A man drives a car into a crowd, killing eight people, and is not caught. Det. Hodges, now retired, was on the case but wasn’t able to solve it. Six months post-retirement, he gets a letter from the killer. And so it goes.

    I appreciated that this case wasn’t one that had been haunting the detective forever; it had really only been maybe a year (two at most) since the original crime was committed. So it was less ‘white whale’ and more ‘the one that got away.” There are interesting supporting characters, and plot twists that I didn’t see coming. Is that because I’m unfamiliar with Mr. King’s writing? Don’t know. Don’t care. I enjoyed the heck out of this book, and am actually pretty excited to pick up the second one from the library this week.
  • (4/5)
    I have to admit, I was expecting a bit more from this one. I love King's work, and have really thought some of his recent books to be among his best... but this felt rough for me. The characters were a little bit too familiar in some cases, and too flat in others. The plot itself also seemed to be lacking a bit of the depth I've come to expect from King. Did I enjoy the story? Yes though the beginning was slow. Will I read the next one? Yes. Do I think it comes close to measuring up to most of King's other works? No, I really don't.
  • (4/5)
    The was an intriguing read that made me recall some of the early King novels I read in the '70's. He is at his best here in this book weaving an intricate and fun story about a serial killer in a midwest city and the battle of with between him and the retired cop determined to bring him in. I listened to this one on audiobook CD and Will Patton does an excellent job of delivering style to King's prose.

    4.5 stars for a really fun read read. Recommended for any fan of Stephen King as well as all murder mystery fans.
  • (5/5)
    I loved this book. Holly reminds me of a dear friend.
  • (2/5)
    Okay, I'm going to give up on Stephen King. I can see that he's a good writer, but things happen too slowly for me.
  • (5/5)
    Mr. Mercedes is a fantastic reminder that Stephen King is not just a horror writer. He is a storyteller that is so gifted he can write across many genres. With his first crack at detective fiction, King creates a creepy cat-and-mouse story with characters you truly care about. I am ecstatic to continue this series.
  • (4/5)
    It took a while for me to immerse myself in the story. I do not know why, but somehow the start did not grab me. Later, however, the course of the story was really exciting and I could hardly stop listening to the audio book. Hodges and his amateur detective grew to my heart. I hoped and suffered with them that they could solve the case.I will definitely read the other two books of this trilogy.
  • (5/5)
    I've been a Stephen King fan since sixth grade, when my father let me borrow his copy of Salem's Lot. The most recent book of his I read was the final book in The Dark Tower, and I was less than impressed with it: The Dark Tower felt largely forced to me, and was such a dragging bore that it took me several months to finally get through it -- which I found to be extremely disappointing. That said, Mr. Mercedes was a nice reminder as to why I love King as a writer: his passion for his craft bleeds through the pages of this book.

    Mr. Mercedes is the first book in Stephen King's Bill Hodges Trilogy, and it is by far among the best books that I've read as of late. Set in the Midwest, which was a nice change for King's books, Mr. Mercedes begins with a crime against the poor. A group of unemployed jobseekers lined up outside in hopes of landing employment are mowed down by a deranged man behind the wheel of a Mercedes. In the aftermath, he escapes, leaving behind eight dead and several more wounded. Among the dead are a mother and her infant child. Detective Bill Hodges later retires, with no success at discovering who was responsible for the murder. The killer, dubbed Mr. Mercedes, isn't done though; and so, King takes readers on a wild race against time in a desperate attempt to keep the killer from completing his next act of domestic terrorism.

    King has a penchant for creating characters that range from the truly good to the entirely depraved, and he has a knack for writing them in a manner so thorough as to leave the reader disgusted. In Mr. Mercedes, I was thrilled to find myself once again encountering a character whose point of view was utterly revolting. Brady Hartsfield is a character I loved to hate, and King does an excellent job of writing from his point-of-view. In complete contrast, Bill Hodges and his team of unqualified partners are good, upstanding (for the most part) citizens that sate the need for a "hero" with little to be left for wanting.

    One of the things King does well in his books is foreshadowing, and Mr. Mercedes is no exception. When something bad is going to happen, King says so: only things don't happen the way you expect them to. In Mr. Mercedes, this creates a constant feeling of dread, a constant expectation that certain things will, undoubtedly, happen, and that it is only a matter of when and how. Every page is filled with anticipation of the next big event, some of which bring utter horror while others brought with them tears.

    Needless to say, I don't really have any complaints about this read; it was worth the wait. Now, I just have to wait for my turn with Finders Keepers. I'm excited to see how this trilogy continues!
  • (4/5)
    Stephen King's "Mr. Mercedes", is a brilliant example of what an amazing writer he is even if he isn't writing horror or supernatural. He gets you to care about characters in just a few simple paragraphs, which is why when bad things happen to them (and it's an SK book, so you know they will) it hurts so much. Mr. Mercedes is a brutal killer. Retired detective Bill Hodges didn't catch him before retiring. A year after, Hodges is contemplating suicide when Mr. Mercedes reaches out, taunting him. With a renewed sense of purpose, Hodges is determined to catch this maniac and put him away for good. It was taunt and suspenseful and just plain *good*. This is the sort of book he writes occasionally that makes me sad that he's labeled a "horror" writer. Although it doesn't seem to matter too much these days, he's pretty universally popular.
  • (5/5)
    Really super King book. Excellent writing. Super suspense. A treasure. Can't wait to read #2.
  • (4/5)
    I enjoyed this book, but I felt it was missing some important King elements. For one I am a huge fan of King and I really enjoy when he adds a forward to the book, talking personally to the reader. I feel it pulls you into the story before even beginning to read it. For me this was a greatly missed King element. I found a few parts of the book slow, but the image of Brady's mother marching still sticks with me even weeks after reading the book. Although this was not my favorite King book it was still enjoyable and I am looking forward to reading the next two books in the series. I did develop a relationship with the characters and I am looking forward to seeing where he goes with the next book. Not the greatest Stephen King book I've read but still warrants 4 stars and its enough to pull me in for the next installment. I feel like I can't say too much about any of the characters or actions without giving away important plot points in the book. Overall very well tied together and although not as edge of your seat as some of his books still enjoyable.
  • (4/5)
    There was nothing original in this plot, retired alcoholic policeman - check, insane serial killer taunting police detective - check, weird mother son relationship - check, IT literate sidekick - check, bizarre romance - check. SK is always readable and it was enjoyable enough but Michael Connelly has done this sort of plot a lot better.
  • (4/5)
    This book had a fairly slow start and didn't really warm up until some two-thirds through. it centred around a retired detective, Bill Hodges, and his obsession with finding the mass killer who had been nicknamed 'Mr Mercedes'. Brady, aka Mr Mercedes, was a strange and troubled person who was planning one final mass murder. Hodges accompanied by his young friend, Jerome, and Holly, the cousin of Hodges murdered newly found girlfriend, set about to stop Brady's attempt to blow up a pop concert in a local football stadium.It was tense towards the end of the book and basically a good read but King appears to have lost some of his zing.
  • (4/5)
    I was a little worried about reading this. Stephen King is the master of horror and the only other book I read by him gave me weird dreams. But Mr. Mercedes is pretty much a straightforward detective mystery -- just creepy sociopaths and no characters with bizarre paranormal powers. It is a bit of a chess game between the creepy sociopath killer and the retired detective, Bill Hodges. The plot moves along very quickly - almost too fast to have any significant depth to the characters - but I found it easy to race through this book. And I'll definitely check out the other 2 books in this series.
  • (4/5)
    Started off with a bang, literally and then it slowed down for a bit. Once the story picked up it kept going. Talk about a sadistic, sick person. Brady was a freaking lunatic and his mother was worse. What an enabler. Hodges started off as just a sad individual until Brady put that spark back in his life. What a way to get your life back together.
    Overall a good storyline. I'm curious to see what happens in the next two books.
  • (5/5)
    Excellent read. Shorter and far more straightforward than a typical King novel, with not a single supernatural element in evidence, this felt a bit off-kilter but is probably the closest thing to a "normal" story Uncle Steve has written in many-a-year. Hugely enjoyable & highly recommended.
  • (4/5)
    Look forward to reading the sequel (the title of which eludes me now! - bing: Finder Keepers!). This was good; twists and turns and the usual King scene setting and detail. I've never touched any of his 'horror' novels (not my scene that sort of thing!), but everything else I have read has been first class.
  • (5/5)
    Excellent book!
  • (4/5)
    Completely satisfying read from start to finish. I always wish King's books could be a little shorter (say 300 instead of 400+ pages), but I can never see any padding of the story line (as I can see in some other lesser writers). King is a masterful storyteller and a master of his craft. However, I'll still hold off reading the next volume in the trilogy (Finders Keepers) due to it also being 400+ pages.
  • (5/5)
    great tale