Niceville: Book summary and reviews of Niceville by Carsten Stroud

Niceville

A Novel

by Carsten Stroud

Niceville
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  • Published in USA  Jun 2012
    400 pages
    Genre: Novels

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About this book

Book Summary

One fine spring day in Niceville, a young boy named Rainey Teague disappears on his way home from school. Literally disappears - security camera footage captures the moment of his instant, inexplicable vanishing. The search for the boy is led by ex-Special Forces veteran Nick Kavanaugh, now a detective with the local police and no stranger to lowlifes and their criminal hijinks. In the nightmare that follows Rainey's disappearance, Nick and his wife, Kate, a family practice lawyer, find themselves drawn into a shadow world between life and death, where they will come face-to-face with an ancient malevolent power that lies beneath Niceville, darker and older than the mountain forest surrounding its source: a 1,000-foot-deep pit known as Crater Sink.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"In this unnecessarily convoluted mind-bender, Stroud introduces key players without sufficient backstory, making differentiation difficult." - Publishers Weekly

"Stroud's combination of the supernatural with the hyperrealistic never quite jells, but, on balance, he literally gives plenty of bang for the buck. A generous collection of memorable villains, tight action sequences, and an occasional bit of black humor are enough to keep readers turning pages." - Booklist

"Stroud's latest is booming..." - Library Journal

"Terrific dialogue, oddball characters, and a wild story make this a great read." - Elmore Leonard, author of Get Shorty and Out of Sight

"Carsten Stroud's hard-boiled and engrossing Niceville rockets around its deceptively staid southern town, pulling bad guys and worse guys and long-ago misdeeds into a widening and unfolding tale about every kind of wickedness. Somehow it manages to get tighter, nastier, and more delightful as it rolls along toward its lovely and completely black-hearted final pages." - Peter Straub

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Reader Reviews

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Kelly H. (Martinsville, IN)

Niceville-I don't think so!
Wow! What a crazy, creepy, fun read! Took me forever to pick up this book, but once I did, I could not put it down. I have never read anything like this, but now I want more! Stroud is an amazing storyteller. This book has a lot of characters and a lot going on, but Stroud manages these characters and events flawlessly. I did not think this book would be for me, but I loved it, and will be passing it on.

Nancy C. (Newton, KS)

Niceville: Not So Nice
It is impossible to put this book down. Carsten Stroud has woven a fascinating plot that manages to keep multiple characters and their stories from losing their way. This novel is a blend of great fiction with a twist of the supernatural. A missing boy, a well planned bank robbery and a secret weapon combine to to hold the readers attention. The characters are well developed as the plot unfolds. I can't help but wonder if Stroud plans to write a sequel to tie the lose ends together. Regardless, this is a book that will stay with you for a long time.

Debb R. (Grand Island, NE)

A New Favorite Author!
Niceville is a scary,exhilarating ride! I loved every minute of it! Rainey Teague is one frightening little boy and his world will keep you keep you reading until the wee hours. A bit reminiscent of Dean Koontz in intensity and so entertaining. Carsten Stroud, Hats off to you,I am a new fan!

William E. (Honolulu, HI)

"unputdownable"
Not a word but describes my reaction to the book! I agree with Mr. Leonard when he wrote that it's a great read! Reminded me of a Robert Altman film with all kinds of unharmonic convergences on many different planes. Am at a loss to describe my reaction but I highly recommend it for a wild ride in anything but Niceville.

Paula W. (Winfield, IL)

10 Thumbs Up
Startling. Creepy. Violent. Funny. Unique. Unpredictable. Puzzling. I could not put this amazing tale down. If only Josh Whedon would make it into a movie! It's not for the faint-hearted, but it's a rollicking good read.

Heather K. (Brooklyn, NY)

Not is all it seems in "Niceville"
Not by a long shot (pun intended, which you'll certainly "get" if you read this novel!). And should you read "Niceville?" Why yes, you should, and here's why: it is terrific!

It's a novel of bank robbers and moral bankruptcy, revenge and retribution, honor and deceit, plus a decades-old betrayal and the dreadful, supernatural manner in which some characters are paying for that treachery. Throw in international intrigue and treason. Blackmail. Inexplicable disappearances. Perversion. I know it sounds like a chaotic mess ... but it's not.

Despite numerous characters, and several plot-lines, Carsten Stroud keeps his novel rolling along at a quick pace, and his characters are so well-designed and developed you never feel lost in the book. You've got good guys -- detective Nick Kavanaugh and his wife Kate, Kate's dad, Nick's police partner, Beau; and you have some seriously bad guys, including another cop named Coker, and Byron Deitz, Nick's brother-in-law. You have ghostly, menacing characters bent on revenge.

And you have terrific dialogue, really likable characters (including some of the bad guys -- while you aren't exactly rooting for them at least they show they have some decency under certain situations!), layers of mysteries, and a very satisfying conclusion. Well done, Mr. Stroud! Great book, fun to read, highly recommended!

...15 more reader reviews

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Carsten Stroud is a seasoned writer of fiction and nonfiction, including the true crime account Close Pursuit, a New York Times best seller when it was published almost twenty-five years ago. His novels include Sniper's Moon, Lizard, Skin, Black Water Transit, Cuba Strait, and Cobraville. Visit him online at www.carstenstroudbooks.com.

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