The Killer Inside Me Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
|New from||Used from|
Audible Audiobook, Unabridged
|Free with your Audible trial|
In The Killer Inside Me, America's "Dimestore Dostoevsky" Jim Thompson goes where few novelists have dared to go, giving us a pitch-black glimpse into the mind of the American serial killer years before Charles Manson and Brett Easton Ellis's American Psycho, in the novel that will forever be known as the master performance of one of the greatest crime novelists of all time.
Everyone in the small town of Central City, Texas loves Lou Ford. A deputy sheriff, Lou's known to the small-time criminals, the real-estate entrepreneurs, and all of his coworkers - the low-lifes, the big-timers, and everyone in-between - as the nicest guy around. He may not be the brightest or the most interesting man in town, but nevertheless, he's the kind of officer you're happy to have keeping your streets safe. The sort of man you might even wish your daughter would end up with someday.
But behind the platitudes and glad-handing lurks a monster the likes of which few have seen. An urge that has already claimed multiple lives, and cost Lou his brother Mike, a self-sacrificing construction worker fell to his death on the job in what was anything but an accident. A murder that Lou is determined to avenge - and if innocent people have to die in the process, well, that's perfectly all right with him.
People who bought this also bought
Related to this topic
|Listening Length||7 hours and 16 minutes|
|Narrator||Kevin T. Collins|
|Audible.ca Release Date||November 01 2011|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #71,364 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#250 in Hard-Boiled Mysteries
#2,250 in Hard-Boiled Mystery (Books)
#2,437 in Crime Fiction
Top reviews from Canada
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
No doubt it would have blown peoples minds in the 50's, though!! Can't think of reading a novel from the 50's that was this gritty and violent. That alone deserves credit.
Oh, I skipped it, but apparently Stephen Kings foreword has spoilers in it, Skip it until you're done the book.
The novel begins as Lou investigates, abuses, and falls in love with Joyce, a prostitute. Lou becomes involved in a contorted blackmail and double-cross under which he and Joyce are to receive $10,000 from a wealthy construction magnate, Conway, whose profligate son has fallen in love with Joyce and plans to elope with her. Lou has a motive for killing young Conway as his father had years before arranged for Mike's murder. Lou kills Conway and Joyce as well and attempts to cover his tracks. The novel describes his efforts, further killings, and growing mental deterioration. The book focuses more on Lou's character than on the taut suspense resulting from the investigation of the murders.
Thompson's novel delves into Lou's tormented, vicious, yet strangely sympathetic character. The residents of Central City regard him as "that dull good-natured guy who couldn't do anything bad if he tried." Lou speaks slowly, smiles a great deal, uses many cliches, and appears to be well-liked. He has a childhood sweetheart, Amy, whom, apparently he plans to marry. Lou's outward demeanor covers a high intelligence not to speak of murderous impulses. Lou does have a compassionate side as well as he befriends a young man, Johnny Pappas, who, as are many adolescents has a propensity for trouble. He shows a sense of identification with people who, as Lou did himself,"started the game with a crooked cue." This sympathy does not stop Lou from acts of great brutality.
The graphic detail, and forethought, of Lou's crimes belies his exterior image. Lou's character is developed through reflections on his boyhood. The housekeeper had sexually abused the child, and Lou developed a lifelong anger towards women which he calls "the sickness". His adopted brother Mike had served a term in the reformatory after taking the blame for sexual abuse of a young girl that Lou had perpetuated. Thompson develops Lou's psychopathic character skillfully and convincingly from Lou's early sexual experiences.
Lou's character is developed through his biting, pithy observations of people and places. In observing what he sees as mismatched couples,Lou observes: I've loafed around the streets sometimes, leaned against a store front with my hat pushed back and one boot hooked back aroun the other -- hell,you've probably seen me if you've ever been out this way -- I've stood like that, looking nice and friendly and stupid, like I wouldn't p.. if my pants were on fire. And all of the time I'm laughing myself sick inside. Just watching the people."
Lou is convinced, with reason, that his guilt is strongly suspected from the beginning. His self-understanding increases even as his mind deteriorates. The final sections of the book show a highly demented person, replete with illusions, feelings of guilt, and claustrophobia.
"The Killer Inside Me" is a internalized work that captures a psychotic soul. The book formed the basis for films in 1976 and 2010. The author, Jim Thompson (1906-1977), was a prolific author of noir novels and of screenplays. This book is his masterpiece. It is available in this paperback edition or in the Library of America's compilation Crime Novels: American Noir of the 1950s: The Killer Inside Me / The Talented Mr. Ripley / Pick-up / Down There / The Real Cool Killers (Library of America) (Vol 2) of five noir novels from the 1950's. This is an excellent novel, irrespective of genre.
Top reviews from other countries
Lou's boss, Sheriff Bob Maples, thinks the world of young Lou but questions his lack of ambition and his apparent contentment in living in a boring, one-horse town where nothing much happens. Then things do start to happen, the local big-shot's son is found dead at the side of the local hooker who has been horribly battered beyond recognition.
It's difficult to say much more about the plot without risking a spoiler but suffice to say this is an intelligent novel, the language is rich and colloquial and the reasoning behind the murderer's motives is so chilling yet logical at the same time that I found myself lulled into a kind of calm which added to the shock when the same tone is used to describe a very violent murder in a very graphic way. Excellent stuff.
This is my first Jim Thompson book but he has written dozens of well known novels and The Getaway,The Grifters and this one, The Killer Inside Me, have been made into films.
If you don't mind graphic violence on paper this is an excellent book.
An intensely inteligent man who was destined for bad things from childhood, Lou is affected by the "sickness".
A real good read for fans of pulp, noir and suspense thrillers. The reader can't help but empathise with the main character who so desperately wants to be normal but is trapped by circumstance (real and imaginary) in a downward spiral of ever decreasing circles.