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A psychological thriller that I enjoyed...

  • Mar 17, 2010
As part of the Amazon Vine review program, I recently selected the book The Bride Collector by Ted Dekker as one of my review items. I've not had the opportunity to read any of Dekker's works before, and the psychological thriller sounded like a decent way to spend a few evenings. Overall, the book was enjoyable. I'd have liked it to be a bit tighter in places where the action seemed to drag, but there were definitely enough characters to keep my interest.

Brad Raines is an FBI special agent who tends to end up with very complex and gruesome murder cases. In this instance, he's responsible for someone who is abducting women, gluing their naked bodies to the wall, placing a wedding veil on their heads, and letting them bleed out through two holes drilled in their heels. Definitely not your run-of-the-mill murderer... The killer's pace is accelerating, and he's not leaving anything behind in the way of forensic evidence that can be used to track him down. It's only once he starts leaving notes behind for Raines that there's any sort of trail to follow. And the trail is quite warped. He is presenting these women to God, and is working up to his perfect offering. In desperation, Raines turns to a patient who is living in an institution for the mentally ill. She is supposedly able to touch a body and see the event that killed the person. Raines isn't all that open to the possibility, but he has little else to go on. And when events start getting extremely personal and close to home, Raines is forced to confront his own demons along with those of others in order to stop the killer and save the ones he loves.

The way the story is structured, you know who the murderer is right off. The story bounces back and forth between the killer and Raines, so the payoff isn't the "who dun it" resolution at the end. Instead, it's more along the lines of seeing whether Raines will be able to stop him before he can claim his final victim. Dekker also touches on issues such as the mentally ill, spirituality, abuse, and a few other themes that will allow the reader to ponder such topics if they so choose. In the middle of the story, things slow down a bit, and it seems as if we're just killing time before the end game comes into play. I also felt as if some of the characters, especially Nikki Holden, were less developed than I would have expected. It may be that this isn't the first novel with the Raines character, in which case I could understand it. But I still felt as if I was missing something in terms of the depth of some of the people...

I'd have no problems heading over to the library and starting to catch up on some prior Dekker novels. The Bride Collector was worth reading, and if his other novels are as good as this one, I'd enjoy them.

Obtained From: Amazon Vine Review Program
Payment: Free

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More The Bride Collector reviews
review by . April 05, 2010
I have read many thrillers over the years by Jeffery Deaver, Patricia Cornwell, John Sandford and others and, while I love the genre, thrillers can tend to be rather formulaic and often push too far beyond the realm of believability. This was my first book by Ted Dekker and, while certainly there are plenty of "out there" elements to the story, it never got to the point where I was irritated by it as I have been with some books of this genre.       The thing I liked …
review by . June 16, 2010
I've been reading Dekker for years - he is one of the few decent Christian authors.  He is a very good writer and he can really get into the mind of the characters.  With other books, Dekker has woven an intense story around a Christian theme that has made me look at things in a different way.  The theme was cleverly disguised as a suspense novel.  The Bride Collector, however, I found to be predictable and lacking subtlety.       I think …
review by . May 14, 2010
This is the first Dekker book I've read, and I'm not sure I'll pick up another. Though the plot has lots of wonderful elements, they never really gel into a thriller in this book- I get more chills from an episode of Criminal Minds. Though Raines was an interesting and well-drawn character, I never really warmed to Paradise or bought into their interactions. The other patients at the hospital are interesting, more interesting than the spiritual questions they raise for Raines, but do seem to have …
review by . April 18, 2010
It took me a while to finish this book. It's not because I hated the book or the author. I adore Ted Dekker's books. And I enjoyed the story. I was just completely creeped out by the story. Not in a scared to death that I can't go to sleep way but in a "Blargh, I want to throw up because I feel creepy crawlies running up my arm" way. I have discovered that I really don't like stories that involve psychotic killers who have mental problems. My guess is that I don't like how there is no reason for …
review by . April 16, 2010
This is my first Dekker novel - don't really know why I haven't read anything by him before - but that is definitely soon to change. The Bride Collector was an edge of your seat suspenseful thriller that I really enjoyed. It started off a bit slow for me, but midway through the book I was completely hooked. I just had to know what would happen next. Raines and Paradise were both great. I enjoyed their interactions with one another. But I have to say that I was really taken by some of the residents …
review by . April 13, 2010
Quinton Gauld, aka The Bride Collector, believed himself to be a messenger of God. His task was to find the seven beautiful women God had chosen as his favorite and present them to God in an elaborate ritual that included draining their blood. Special Agent Brad Raines was trying to stop him. After three victims, though, the FBI's investigation was getting them no closer to the killer. When Quinton leaves a note with his fourth victim, Brad is given an unusual lead--a mental health facility for …
review by . February 26, 2010
Taut and well written, this is a suspenseful psychological novel. A serial killer in Denver captures beautiful women and impales them by gluing them to a wall, one woman in each of seven different sordid locations, each woman dressed in a bridal veil. Of course they are all beautiful and they are all young. The killer leaves no DNA, no fingerprints, no tire tracks, nothing that investigators can use to discover his identity. But we the readers find out who he is early in the novel, a brilliant, …
Quick Tip by . June 19, 2010
review by . May 25, 2010
The Bride Collector by Ted Dekker is another terrifying novel from the king of Christian horror. Brad Raines is tracking a serial killer who has come to be known as the Bride Collector for his posing of the victims. When the FBI runs out of leads, a letter the killer leaves behind takes Brad to a mental institution where he finds that some of the residents may have insight into the mind of the psychopathic murderer. One of the residents, Paradise, is rumored to see ghosts and be able to see the …
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Thomas Duff ()
Ranked #42
Thomas Duff, aka "Duffbert", is a long-time member of the Lotus community. He's primarily focused on the development side of the Notes/Domino environment, currently working for a large insurance … more
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'Ted Dekker is a true master of thrillers, and this is his best.' -- Nelson DeMille 'It doesn't just get under your skin. It crawls there, nests, and raises its head with a bitter tug, as if it's living within you.' -- Brad Meltzer '...a tour-de-force of suspense that demands to be read in one sitting.' -- James Rollins--This text refers to thePaperbackedition.
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ISBN-10: 1599951967
ISBN-13: 978-1599951966
Author: Ted Dekker
Publisher: Center Street

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