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Monkeewrench

(UK title: Want To Play?)

by P.J. Tracy

Monkeewrench by P.J. Tracy X
Monkeewrench by P.J. Tracy
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  • First Published:
    Apr 2003, 384 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2004, 432 pages

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Power Reviewer
Cloggie Downunder

A stunning debut novel.
Want To Play? (also titled Monkeewrench) is the first book in the best-selling Monkeewrench series by award-winning American mother-daughter writing duo, P J Tracy. At their office in Minneapolis, the owners of software firm Monkeewrench are almost ready to launch their new game, Serial Killer Detective (SKUD). Over five hundred gamers have been trying out the game on their test site, and advance sales are encouraging. They’re doing some final stage tweaking when they learn of a murder at Lakewood Cemetery: an exact copy of the second murder in their game.

For Detective Leo Magozzi and his partner on the homicide squad, Gino Rosleth, this is the second murder in two days, and when the Monkeewrench team contact them about the murder, they are horrified to learn that both murders are copied from the game. Worse still, a further eighteen murders comprise the game, and they are starting with a huge suspect list. They are inclined to include the Monkeewrench crew as suspects, although Magozzi’s gut feeling is that one of their number, Grace Macbride, is not involved.

Meanwhile, in a small Catholic church in Calumet, Wisconsin, a reclusive couple is discovered shot dead. To Sheriff Michael Halloran, it almost looks like a hit. The paranoia that ruled the couple’s lives, evident from a deadly stash of weapons, was apparently justified. As Mike investigates further, it seems this is not the only strange thing about the couple. Leo Magozzi and his team work around the clock trying to prevent the next murder while in Calumet, Mike Halloran tries to track down the old couple’s child. At this point, their investigations intersect.

The Tracy’s characters are appealing and their dialogue provides plenty of humour, much of it quite dark. They also use it to good effect to draw out the tension as the story heads towards an exciting climax. The story is cleverly plotted with quite a few red herrings and the odd twist that will keep readers guessing until the final, gob-smacking reveal. In itself, a novel written by two authors is an interesting concept; this one is seamless and the duo is obviously successful, if a further nine books in the series are any indication. A stunning debut novel.
Nick Walker

I'm 15 and first bought this bought this book quite a while ago. Then I had a standardized test coming up and needed domething to read. I flipped through my books and found this one. It still had the book mark in it about half way through the book. I started over and what had taken me a few months to read, was done in about 3 days, and then 2 days later I was finished. It can become such a rush of excitment and many time I was scared enough to turn on all of my lights and sometimes i laughed hard enough to disturb others in the room. It also had very believable characters and the plot was just the same. I would love to read other books just like this one.
Mark Lawlor

I received the book as a christmas present,discovered that my favourite author Harlen Coben had recommended it so jumped in and could not put it down .Great plot genuinely likeable characters even though Grace could chill out a bit.Both detectives are going to be around for a long time. .Mightily impressed and passed on to my book devouring sister to much joy.Cant wait to read live bait .These two ladies have a great literary future.
Alex

I am 16 years old, and i absolutely LOVE to read. I usually dont read books from the adult section, but i just happened to be looking around. I know that people say to not judge a book by its cover, but i usually do. If the cover looks cool, or appealing to me, ill usually read it, even though i have no idea what its about. I saw the cover for Monkeewrench, and i thought it looked pretty cool, so i checked it out at the library. When i got home, i read the summary for the book and it seemed very interesting. I finished the book in 2 days. This is my absoultely favorite book. It's written so perfect, that an adult or a teen could read it. I thought i wasnt going to be able to read it, but i was hooked after the first chapter. At the end, i wont say which part, since im not allowed to. Lets just say that at the climax of the story, i didn not put the book down. I was so into it. It was so exciting, all of the things that were happening in the story. Wonderful, wonderful book. It's an A plus.
jacqui

great book.... i actually lived the cliche of not being able to put it down, reading it in a single night! alot of great humor and with alot of interesting and complex characters. usually because of all the murder mysteries i read i have a slight idea who the killer is, this one completly surprised me!
Richana Gaskin

Once I picked it up, it was hard to put down. The ending was fantastic I was on the edge of my seat and utterly surprised to know the culprit wasn't who I suspected. Not since, Tami Hoag and John Grisham was their a perfect page-turner for me. I eagerly await their next book.
Peter F

Haven't finished it yet but am over 3 quarters of the way, I am hard to please when it comes yo books but this one has pleased me immensley (hope the neding is as good as the rest of the book!)
sadie

exellent must read
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