کتاب من قاتل زنجیره ای نیستم

اثر دن ولز از انتشارات میلکان - مترجم: سید حسن رضوی-داستان معمایی

John Wayne Cleaver is dangerous, and he knows it. Hes obsessed with serial killers, but really doesnt want to become one. So for his own sake, and the safety of those around him, he lives by rigid rules hes written for himself. Dead bodies are normal to John. He likes them, actually. They dont demand or expect the empathy hes unable to offer. Perhaps thats what gives him the objectivity to recognize that theres something different about the body the police have just found behind the Wash-n-Dry Laundromat---and to appreciate what that difference means. Now, for the first time, John has to confront a danger outside himself, a threat he cant control, a menace to everything and everyone he would love, if only he could.

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My reaction when a third of the way through the book “IT” happened was something like…

For those of you that have read the book, you know EXACTLY what I am talking about. For everyone else, let me explain as best I can without any spoilers.

Our story begins in a small town with a wonderful introduction to John Wayne Cleaver. John is 15 years old boy who is obsessed with serial killers. This obsession is the result of he himself having many of the traits and characteristics of a serial killer and struggling desperately against his inner “urges.” John has decided that by learning how these people act and what drives them, he can determine what actions to avoid in order to keep from killing anyone...Sounds pretty sensible to me, but then again Ive never killed anyone....well, except for food and that doesnt count.

Uh...sorry about that, just kidding..heh...heh...Anyway, to help John in his quest not to commit heinous butchery, he has developed strict rules that he follows in order to try and be (or at least appear) normal. For example, if someone makes John angry he will compliment them. If he finds himself observing someone, even unintentionally, he will make himself avoid that person for one week to avoid “stalking” them. These were very interesting and this part of the book was excellent.

Now, for those of you that read or watch Dexter, comparisons to that series are both accurate and appropriate. Apart from their age, the only significant difference between the characters is that John has not yet killed. Apart from that the similarities are certainly there. They both have “routines” they follow to be normal. They both “work” around dead bodies (Dexter is a blood-splatter analyst while John’s family are the local morticians) and they both struggle with “their inner monster.” Regardless, I was absolutely loving the book as John (like Dexter) is a fascinating character and the descriptions of his daily routines and his struggle against his inner monster were very well done.

In addition to learning about John, the central plot of the book involves the discovery that an actual serial killer is on the loose in John’s small town. It seems that some madman is killing older men and stealing parts of their body. Of course, John is fascinated and begins trying to figure out who the killer is and how he is selecting his victims.
Okay, lets just pause and take a moment to appreciate how we got to this point because the road is gonna get pretty rough ahead.
Ready to continue....Okay, so up to this point, everything about the book was excellent. As I finished the first 100 pages my rating was sitting in high 4 star and maybe even 5 star territory and I was just as happy as I could be....AND THEN...ON PAGE 121...EVERYTHING CHANGED....BECAUSE....IT HAPPENED…and the book completely:
This was a complete FULL STOP,WTF just happened moment for me that left me stunned and bewildered. It was like the “infamous” end of the movie The Crying Game, except that while that was shocking and excellent...this was just shocking and painful. Very, very painful...

Well, neither I nor the book ever really recovered from IT. IT kinda took the wind out of my sails. Now the rest of the book was not horrible and there were some interesting portions in the rest of the book. Unfortunately, after IT I was basically disengaged from the narrative. I just felt….empty…

So, overall the book was good but it could have been great if IT had not happened. Unfortunately, IT did happen and when IT happened, IT kinda ruined it for me…Oh well shIT happens!!!

P.S. For those of you who have requested to know what IT is, here you go...(view spoiler)[ The serial killer loose in the town turns out to be a DEMON which comes completely out of left field since the book was reading like a straight YA crime thriller (hide spoiler)]

مشاهده لینک اصلی
Quite possibly the best book ever written.

مشاهده لینک اصلی
What if a serial killer...doesnt want to become a murderer?

John Wayne Cleaver knows he has all the hallmarks of a serial killer - he likes to stalk people, hurt animals and fantasizes about killing friends and family. BUT before you turn away John is doing his absolute best to curb all killer-instincts AND he has a great family to support him. Its a crazy-good mixture of familial love and homicidal urges wrapped up in one book.

Fear is a ... its a weird thing, when you think about it. People are only afraid of other things, theyre never afraid of themselves.

John is afraid of himself - or at least hes afraid of what he could become. So, hes created a set of rules avoid any situation or thought that could encourage those traits. If he notices himself following someone, he will not look at them for a week. If he wants to hurt someone, he has to say something nice. He has rules to help him cope and manages quite well(ish) to pass for a normal kid.

Yet, if another serial killer comes to town...what would be safer? Following his rules or allowing himself to indulge his killer tendencies and hunt down a murderer? There is a fabulous twist that brings the term @serial killer@ into a whole new light.

And to top it all, theres a cute girl at school and his mom is trying to hook them up. He doesnt know whats worse, that its his mom whose facilitating this girls interaction with a potential serial killer or the fact that he likes her back.

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مشاهده لینک اصلی
John Wayne Cleaver lives in a mortuary. But before you go thinking this is all fun and games like My Girl (well, at least before Thomas J and the bees), you should know that John Wayne is a killer. Well, at least he thinks he is. As a teenager, his internal monster makes life considerably harder, especially because John feels no connection to his peers and little to no emotion. I Am Not A Serial Killer follows John as he deals with having a serial killer in his town--Will being so close to an actual killer cause John to lose control of his own monster?

At times, Dan Wells debut novel seems a bit too juvenile. Anyone who knows my reading habits knows how much young adult literature I read. My expectations of this work were that I was going to be reading Dexter Lite. In actuality, this book had very little gore and it read like someone did research on serial killers, found out about the Macdonald Triad and then just wrote a book about it. I dont meant that to sound harsh but I honestly feel that it couldve been so much better. John is in high school but it felt like a middle reader book. (as much as a book about serial killers can)

In terms of the storyline, I was trucking along until page 103, when a total WTF moment pops up. Without spoilers, Ill just say that I thought I was reading a book about a serial killer in reality. Turns out, I was reading a book with a supernatural/paranormal element. Major buzzkill. There were just too many @no way@ type moments for me in this story--the one that kept popping up (much to my dismay) was the fact that John simultaneously shovels snow several times a week yet also bikes everywhere (even to a lake outside town). If there is enough snow to be shoveling more than once a week, you are not bicycling. Especially in a small town where there is less traffic to melt the snow on the roads. (Yes, I know it is possible and some people enjoy biking in winter but I dont buy it here) [note: More @no way@ moments below but with spoilers]

There are tons of glowing reviews for this book on Goodreads, so maybe it is just me. And thats great. But this book is the first in a series of three--I will definitely not be reading any further. I see that a few of my friends on here gave up on this one and to them I say--Cheers on a choice well made:-)

And to Linda, whom I still trust for recommendations, I was excited to read this one. You were right to recommend it. But I need more blood and guts in my killer novels!

****************SPOILER ALERT************

Also, and this is a huge also, if a freaking demon has been killing people for decades, Im pretty sure hed catch on to a high school kid who keeps leaving notes for him. Someone that is used to stalking prey will not just go on with every day life (la-la-la) while someone is trying to expose them. Are you kidding me? Theyd spy back and figure out who it is.

A large part of me thinks the paranormal element mightve been added in because the book is YA and, for some reason, either the publisher or the author felt like it would be too gruesome to have a regular human doing all the killing and body part snatching. To them, I say, yeah right. Have you read YA these days? Bring on the regular serial killers!

مشاهده لینک اصلی
Ever since Hannibal Lector flirted with Clarice Starling by telling her about his favorite recipes, it seems like every other thriller features some kind of deranged but brilliant serial killer. It’s gotten beyond boring, but occasionally some writer will manage to come up with a fresh perspective on the genre. Jeff Lindsay’s Dexter series put a unique twist on the notion of the serial killer. (Or at least he did until he wrote the utterly crappy Dexter in the Dark.) Now Dan Wells is taking a new approach to the concept.

John Wayne Cleaver is a teen-age boy who lives with his mother at the funeral home she runs with her twin sister. John has had a history of bed wetting, killing small animals and starting fires, and he’s very fond of helping prepare the dead bodies for funerals. He’s also obsessed with serial killers, and his reading about them has made him realize that he’s already showing all the classic signs of becoming one.

John sets strict rules for himself to keep from becoming a killer, but he’s still considered an outcast and a freak by his classmates. He also has to see a therapist who he tells about his efforts to not engage in mass murder. However, when a string of grisly murders occur that terrify the town, John can barely contain his excitement that a serial killer is operating nearby. However, John will find out that this killer is worse than even his deranged mind can imagine.

The first third of his book had me completely intrigued. I loved the notion of someone fighting against their own inclinations. John has so fully accepted the idea that he is a serial killer, that he never stops to question why he’d work so hard to avoid becoming one if he truly is a sociopath.

However, the book takes a wild turn that I didnt really enjoy. Plus, I could never get entirely over the similarities to the Dexter series.

It’s a quick read and the first in a planned trilogy. It was good enough I’ll check out the second volume, but I was far more interested in John’s psychology than the plot.

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