SIGNED. Boards clean, unworn and not bumped, corners sharp, pages bright and unmarked. spine square and tight with upper edge pushed. Dust jacket has edge and shelf wear along spine and corners. Shipped in bubble wrap. Bookseller Inventory #
Synopsis: November 1978. Britain is on strike. The dead lie unburied, rubbish piles in the streets -- and somewhere in West London a black woman dies in a rain-soaked gutter. Her passing would have gone unmourned but for the young woman who finds her and who believes -- apparently against reason -- that Annie was murdered, for the police record the death as a simple RTA. But whatever the truth about Annie -- whether she was mad as her neighbours claimed, whether she lived in squalor as the police said, whether she cruelly mistreated the cats found starving in her house -- something passed between her and Mrs. Ranelagh in the moment of death which binds this one woman to her cause for the next twenty years. But why is Mrs. Ranelagh so convinced it was murder when, by her own account, Annie died without speaking? Why does the subject make her husband so angry that he refuses to talk about what happened that night? And why would any woman spend twenty painstaking years uncovering the truth -- unless her reasons are personal?
Review: Minette Walters is as much exterminator as novelist. With uncomfortable accuracy, her novels bring to the surface those creepy, crawly parts of the human psyche that most of us would rather keep hidden. Articulate, clever, and acutely observant, she eschews the standard trappings of psychological suspense and presents characters both vulnerable and deeply unpleasant.
Twenty years ago, M. Ranelagh found her Graham Road neighbor dying in a gutter. "Mad Annie" Butts, long persecuted for being black and for suffering from Tourette's syndrome, had had her skull shattered. So deeply did Annie's death--ruled an accident--affect M. that she has spent the last two decades secretly amassing proof that it was murder, and that the murderer lived in Graham Road. Her collection of evidence faithfully teases out the serpentine deceptions--and self-deceptions--woven into Annie's death; husband Sam, neighbors, friends, family, police, all are grist for the mill of M.'s occasionally unscrupulous research:
I suppose everyone has a pet subject that triggers their anger--with me it was my mother's wicked talent for stirring, with Sam it was his fear of Mad Annie and everything her death represented: the mask of respectability that overlaid the hatreds and the lies. He always hoped, I think, in a rather free interpretation of the karma principle, that if he refused to look beneath a surface then the surface was the reality. But he could never rid himself of the fear that he was wrong.
Although M.'s investigations focus on her neighbors (who range from eccentric to downright evil), they reveal just as much about her. Crafty, manipulative, and seething with rage, she carefully constructs her revenge on an unidentified murderer--and, one suspects, on the frustrations and limitations that define her own life.
The Shape of Snakes is both a gripping thriller and a stunning novel. Don't be surprised if it works its way into your library of favorites. --Kelly Flynn
Title: The Shape of Snakes
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication Date: 2000
Book Condition: Very Good
Edition: 1st Edition
Book Description Book Condition: Good. Tanning to page edges. Creases and wear to dust jacket edges. Bookseller Inventory # T008393
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Included. Sent within 24 hours. Expedited UK delivery available. Bookseller Inventory # BBI365225
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: Very Good. Very Good condition with no significant faults. Clearly used but very few minor defects. Will look good on your book case after reading but may not be suitable as a present unless hard to find elsewhere SECURE DAILY POSTING FROM UK. 30 DAY GUARANTEE. Bookseller Inventory # mon0002225674
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Book Condition: Fair. This is an ex-library book and may have the usual library/used-book markings inside. .This book has hardback covers. In fair condition, suitable as a study copy. Dust Jacket in fair condition. Bookseller Inventory # 3698152
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Book Condition: Good. This is an ex-library book and may have the usual library/used-book markings inside.This book has hardback covers. In good all round condition. Dust Jacket in good condition. Bookseller Inventory # 4644174
Book Description Bookseller Inventory # mon0001467453
Book Description Macmillan 20/10/2000, 2000. Book Condition: Good. Will be shipped promptly from UK warehouse. Book is in good condition with no missing pages, no damage or soiling and tight spine. There may be some dog-eared pages showing previous use but overall a great book. Bookseller Inventory # 9053-9780333748602
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: Used; Good. **SHIPPED FROM UK** We believe you will be completely satisfied with our quick and reliable service. All orders are dispatched as swiftly as possible! Buy with confidence!. Bookseller Inventory # mon0001647473
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: Used; Good. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000011897
Book Description Macmillan, 2000. Hardcover. Book Condition: Used; Good. Dust jacket is damaged. Page colour - ?discoloured in accordance with book age. Bookseller Inventory # 1950875