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The Kill Clause [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

Gregg Hurwitz
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31. August 2004

The series that started it all!

A riveting and explosive novel, The Kill Clause is a brilliantly inventive tour de force by a powerful new master of suspense.

Tim Rackley is a dangerous man of honor, a deputy U.S. marshal who is very good at his job—until everything he believes in is shattered by the brutal murder of his own daughter.

Betrayed by an imperfect judicial system, Rackley watches helplessly as the killer walks free on a legal technicality. Devastated, furious, and burning with a righteous need for vengeance, he is suddenly forced to explore his own deadly options—a quest that leads him into a shadowy no-man's-land between justice and the law . . . and into the welcoming fold of "the Commission."

A vigilante group made up of people like him—relentless streetwise operators who have each lost a loved one to violent crime—the Commission confronts the failings of a system that sets predators loose to hunt again, cleaning up society's "mistakes" covertly, efficiently, and permanently. But as he is dragged deeper into a deadly morass of hidden agendas and murderous justice, Tim Rackley discovers that playing God is an excruciating and fearsome task. When his new secret life starts coming unwound at an alarming speed, he is suddenly caught in the most terrifying struggle he has ever faced—a desperate battle to save his marriage, his career, his life, his soul . . . and everything left that's worth fighting for.

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  • Taschenbuch: 576 Seiten
  • Verlag: HarperTorch; Auflage: Reprint (31. August 2004)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0060530391
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060530396
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 3,2 x 10,5 x 16,8 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 49.876 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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The Kill Clause's opening pages will knot the stomach of even the most seasoned crime reader. U.S. Marshall Tim Rackley is expecting his daughter home for her seventh birthday party. Instead he finds a fellow cop at his door, bearing the news that little Ginny has been savagely dismembered, her remains recovered in a nearby creek. Only an hour or so later, reeling with shock and grief, Rackley learns that the perpetrator has been caught--and that some fellow cops have arranged a little one-on-one meeting for him at an isolated shack, complete with an untraceable gun. Rackley arrives, faces this monster, and...

But that would be giving too much away. Suffice it to say that this powerful opening launches a killer thriller, rich in both adrenaline-pumping action and thought-provoking issues of vigilantism, power, and the moral dilemmas of those sworn to uphold the law. Hurwitz's prose is muscular yet intelligent; he draws characters well, and he unrolls action scenes with amazing vividness (as well as treating us to lots of fascinating lore about lock picking, identity theft, and cell-phone technology). Occasionally his plot twists verge on the outlandish, and a few characters seem to exist only to speechify on a certain point of view. But these are minor flaws in this fine, intense, often un-put-downable tale. --Nicholas H. Allison -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.


“THE KILL CLAUSE is like a literary Law & Order, without the commercials. Bottom Line: Killer read.” (People)

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WHEN BEAR CAME TO TELL HIM THAT GINNY'S BODY HAD been found raped and dismembered in a creek six miles from his house, that her remains had required three biohazard bags to depart the scene, that they were currently sprawled on a pathologist's slab awaiting further probing, Tim's first reaction was not what he would have expected of himself. Lesen Sie die erste Seite
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Form and Function: A Literary Example 29. Oktober 2003
Not being a reader of crime novels (unless the Hannibal Lecter series included in that genre)I came to this book with some resistance. Could a story about killing and violence hold up as a novel for me? Well, in the case of the talented Gregg Hurwitz's THE KILL CLAUSE the answer is decidedly YES. This is an excellent example of what in the art world is an ongoing argument of Form following Function. Does the style justify or validate the subject? It is here that Hurwitz seems to be a master of sorts. And for opening that door of appreciation of a different writing form I am very grateful.
The story, well reviewed on these pages, is one of the grisly murder and dismemberment of the young daughter of two law enforcement people (mother Dray is a deputy and father Jim is a US Marshall with an extensive background in special agent type activities). The very clearly drawn focus of the story is how these two cope with their loss and more importantly, how they handle their roles as law enforcers when the temptation is to gut level respond to exterminating the killer. Just how this all happens and how the couple work through the moral dilemmas they face is the crux of this well executed tale.
Hurwitz' writing style is terse, succinct, and maintains forward momentum right to the end (for a 'first crime novel experience' and for a 388 page book I was surprised to read it in one day, so involved does Hurwitz keep his readers). He also has the unusual respect for the reader as to use the frequent all-cap abbreviations of law terms, which could leave the reader lost, and usually within the next sentence gently, and in context, state what these foreign terms mean.
In all, an excellent tale, though grisly, very well told. A series of crimes and actions are related in a spare, gunshot tattoo writing style that still provides full-blown character and scene descriptions while maintaining the momentum of the story.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Do you like vigilante justice? 24. April 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
Than this book (especially the beginning) is a book for you. Tim - a debuty marshall - lost his daughter. The murderer of his girl could leave the courtroom as a free man, because he couldn't understand his miranda rights when arrested; he is deaf. Tim quits his job, his marriage is at risk. Then a so called commission contacted Tim. Their goal is to look for guilty criminals, who were not found guilty by a judge, although the whole world knew, they were guilty. They kill those criminals; with a belief of a higher fairness.

Then Tim found out, that life isn't so easy, as the commission wants to belief him. He abort a killing job and ... I don't want to talk to much, cause now follows the part, you have to explore.

Hurwitz is a good writer and he writes with a fast pace. Every side is thrilling and you want to know, what will happen next: will he renew his marriage, will he find a way to cooperate with his ex-partner, who is now on a hunt on him, could he stop ... (no, nothing more).

This book let you alone with a bad feeling: perhaps you could understand, how it could hurt, when you lost a beloved by a crime. But is it right, to take the law in your own hands? I belive it is not and so I'm confused by this book. And I don't know what to think about Tim, when he changes his mind about killing those criminals. O. k., but I think also, this is what Hurwitz wants. He play games with his readers. And he knows how to.

The only con of this book is its length. When you reach the last third of the book you increase the tact of pressing the forward button of your kindle. In the end it is to long with to much irrelevant contents. So I think 4 Stars will make it.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.1 von 5 Sternen  71 Rezensionen
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Gripping and compelling, you won't be able to put this down! 7. September 2003
Von coachtim - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Not usually given to superlatives, let me start this review by stating that Gregg Hurwitz' 4th novel, "The Kill Clause" is the best book that I've read in the past year! The plot takes off like a rocket from page one and never loses steam.
The story revolves around the brutal murder of the young daughter of law enforcement officers, Tim and Dray Rackley. As the Rackley's deal with a parent's greatest nightmare, things become even worse when the alleged murdered is set free because of a violation of his 4th Amendment rights during his arrest. Tim is so distraught over this turn of events, that he considers taking the law into his own hands. As he comtemplates this action, Tim is approached by an unusual band of vigilantes known as The Commission. Each member of The Commission has suffered a great personal loss along the lines of the Rackleys. And, in each of their cases as well, the perpetator has gone free because of some legal technicality.
Without giving away too much of the plot let me just say that the anguish that Tim feels over the loss of his daughter pales in comparison to the guilt that he begins to feel as he becomes the hit man for The Commission. This very human story tests the depths of many emotions, especially the relationship that a husband and wife have to deal with after a loss of this magnitude.
Hurwitz has done another outstanding job with his character development in this novel. The members of The Commission are unique in their own fashion and extremely interesting. There were a number of scenes throughout the book that I read at a blur because the action was so intense. Numerous graphic scenes definitely make this powerful book one that is not for the faint of heart.
Bravo to Mr. Hurwitz on his latest creation and attention all Hollywood execs: This would make a dynamite film! The screen play is practically written already. I can't wait to see what Hurwitz writes next!
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Don't try this at home 28. August 2003
Von Joseph Haschka - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
THE KILL CLAUSE is one of those thrillers where I almost feel guilty not awarding a High Five.
U.S. marshal Tim Rackley lives in SoCal with his wife Andrea, a deputy in the local police department. On the very first page, the two learn that the dismembered body of their 7-year old daughter, Ginny, has been discovered. Shortly thereafter, the suspected perp, a convicted child molester named Kindell, is cornered. Before the man is taken in for booking, Tim is given an opportunity by the arresting officers to execute the suspect. Left alone with Kindell, the slimeball gives Tim the hint that there was an accomplice, so Tim allows him to be taken into formal custody hoping the subsequent investigation will yield more information. But it doesn't, and the court sets the accused free on a technicality. Soon thereafter, Tim is approached by The Committee, a vigilante group of five men and one woman proposing to act as judge and jury on seven high profile murder cases where the suspect has gone free. They want Tim to join their deliberations, and then execute those condemned. The bait is the seventh and last case, which is Kindell's. Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time by all concerned.
There's much that author Gregg Hurwitz does right in this book. His prose skillfully depicts gritty and suspenseful action. The dialog is well constructed. (My pet peeve about too many potboilers is that all characters "sound" the same.) Rackley himself has a clever bag of tricks from years of military and law enforcement experience that makes him an eminently dangerous man. He knows how to booby-trap a .357 pistol so it blows off the shooter's hand, or pack an audio earpiece with explosive so it blows off a head. He can simulate infected needle tracks using a syringe full of Visine, Comet cleanser, and a crushed vitamin C tablet. He pulls metal fragments out of his body using nothing but Advil, hydrogen peroxide, and a tweezers. Don't try these parlor tricks at home.
My biggest problem with the novel, compelling me to shave off a star, is that I never felt more than indifference towards Rackley. Yes, the murder of Tim's daughter and the subsequent downward spiral of his marriage did inspire sympathy. Yes, I was riveted by his consummate and deadly resourcefulness. But there was nothing about the man that was particularly engaging. I think of other fictional action series heroes whose quirks make them endearing. Trouble-magnet Munch Mancini (by Barbara Seranella), who has a smart-mouth response to life in general. Ex-military cop Jack Reacher (by Lee Child), a rugged individualist so out of the mainstream that he hasn't a clue how to iron a shirt or manage a household budget. Or skip tracer Stephanie Plum (by Janet Evanovich), who's basically just a klutz. Even Eastwood's Dirty Harry persona had his catchy sayings ("Are ya feeling lucky, punk?") Rackley is nothing of the sort. And while this didn't prevent me from finishing the book, it would, oddly enough, keep me from buying other novels by the same author. A hero with a likability quotient means that much.
7 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Good lead character; but where were the editors 11. Oktober 2004
Von Robert Wellen - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Hurwitz creates some good characters--Bear, Dray, and Tim. However, the book is about 200 pages too long. The story had tons of potential to be a fascinating look at the Marshals and modern LA. It is neither. Instead, it is one long action sequence with some tear jerking thrown in. The murder is terirble and sad--Ginny's that is. Otherwise, the other characters are relatively two dimensional. Where were the editors? It seems the book was sold to Hollywood, which makes would be a 2.5 star action flick. Still, I hear the Program is really good...will I try Rackley again? Probably...I just hope it is better than this.
5 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Star Chamber Redux 25. Juli 2005
Von A Customer - Veröffentlicht auf
First of all, the writing is good. The author has talent and flair, but the story lacks cohesiveness. I liked the character development. I thought the main characters were well rounded and about as bright as a box of rocks.

This book is the STAR CHAMBER only with Deputy Marshals instead of judges. The main character Tim Rackley approaches apparent injustices in the criminal justice system by taking the law into his own hands and whacking the bad guys (it just isn't clear if there any good guys in this tale).

The initial enthusiam for vigilante justice degrades to what-have-I-gotten-into to something akin to I've-written-300-pages-and-how-do-I-end-this book. Personally, I would have killed off the main character rather than go through the strained, improbable and fixed ending.
4 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Exciting and thoughtful 22. Januar 2004
Von booksforabuck - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
When his seven year-old daughter is killed, U.S. Deputy Marshal Tim Rackley's life comes apart. The local police arrange a fake suicide for the quickly caught child-molester but Tim decides to let justice run its course. The man is clearly guilty and Tim believes that the law and justice coincide. But in this case, a terrible botch in procedures sets the man free and Tim has to decide what to make of his life--as his marriage unravels. Out of the blue, a group approaches him--they are all victims of similar breakdowns in the justice system. They've set up a Commission that intends to redress justice failure and are looking for a point man--an executioner. Tim is their choice but can he turn his back on a lifetime of beliefs? The bait is almost impossible to turn down--they promise the full evidence on his daughter's case.
THE KILL CLAUSE addresses a common perception in America--that our justice system gives too much protection for criminals and too little to the victims and to society. For many, the idea of retribution is attractive and the Commission makes all of these arguments to Tim. That their arguments are flawed isn't really the point and author Gregg Hurwitz knows it.
Hurwitz solid and fast-paced action--both in the U.S. Marshal scene where Tim shoots several badguys and in the Commission scenes where Tim must confront some of the deadliest killers on the planet while on the run from the police himself. The depiction of Tim's marriage breaking down was moving and troubling as two people in love stand by helpless to do anything to prevent it.
Although the novel was mostly effective and compelling, at times Hurwitz's beliefs were presented in almost lecture form. The bar scene with the frustrated defense attorneys came off that way for me. The story would have been more powerful if Hurwitz had chosen to bring out his points solely through the story. And for me, the ending was just a bit too pat--so much so that it defeated much of the point of the book. Still, Hurwitz's writing is strong and THE KILL CLAUSE makes for an exciting and thoughtful read.
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