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First Thrills: High-Octane Stories from the Hottest Thriller Authors (First Thrills)

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3.64  ·  Rating Details ·  1,309 Ratings  ·  111 Reviews

New York Times bestselling author Lee Child and International Thriller Writers, Inc., present a collection of remarkable stories in First Thrills. Showcasing many of the organization’s bestselling authors as well as rising stars in the genre, here are twenty-five brand-new, never-before-published stories packed with murder, mystery, and mayhem.

• A cunning criminal thinks h

...more
Hardcover, 367 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Corvus (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mark Soone
I gave it 3 stars, but my average was 2.76 which is about where I would rank it for me..just below 3, but certainly above 2. There are some very good stories in this collection and I guess those alone warrant a 3 star rating, but the second half of this collection really lagged on excitement IMHO. For me the first story by Hurwitz remains the highlight of the collection.

01 The Thief by Gregg Hurwitz- 5 stars
Other than reading a short story bu Hurwitz in another ITW inc. anthology, I am not famil
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Patty Marvel
Jul 22, 2011 Patty Marvel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Run, do not walk, to your nearest library or book store or computer with Amazon.com fired up AND GET THIS!!!! This is a collection of twenty-five short stories in the "thriller" genre, about eleven of which are by well-established writers you've heard of and the remaining fourteen are by relative newcomers. That's the point according to Lee Child, who acts as editor and contributor - to have just enough goodies by people you know so you buy the book and read stuff by the new kids. Added bonus if ...more
Tim
Jun 22, 2011 Tim rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This anthology contains the writings of 12 bestsellers with 13 new writers, all of whom are associated with the International Thriller Writers, Inc. organization.

Although quick reads for the most part, several of these short stories are rather pedestrian and predictable for anyone who reads widely. Unfortunately, Editor Lee Child’s “The Bodyguard” is among these: good fast-paced action with a weak ending. But balancing this assembly is Marc Paoletti’s “Chloe,” which is not a tale for the squeam
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Wade
Mar 02, 2012 Wade rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I looked forward to this book, and was mostly happy with the short stories. I'm going to trust that the compiler/editor has a better sense of the genre that I, so I won't rate any story less than a "3". I figure 1 & 2 ratings didn't make muster with them. I obtained an average for the overall rating. Here's my rubric:

3 - not my cup of tea; never grabbed me.
4 - pretty good stuff; good story.
5 - amazing...I didn't want the story to end.

4 - The Thief, by Gregg Hurwitz
5 - Scutwork, by CJ Lyons
4
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Linda Munro
Jul 31, 2011 Linda Munro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I normally stray from anthologies, but suddenly I am finding that this is the way to introduce myself to new writers. I find myself in a less likely mode to purchase anthologies simply due to the fact that short stories lack detail and without detail, they mainly fall flat. Most of the stories in this anthology did not fall flat, yet each of them can easily be expanded upon to make either a novel or novella. This anthology contains twenty-five short stories, each will make the reader eager to le ...more
Ellen Keim
It's hard to rate a book of short stories unless they are uniformly good (or bad). Some of these stories I liked a lot, some not so much. But overall I enjoyed this book for the quality of the writing and for the imagination of the writers. Judging by this book, I will definitely be looking up the following volumes (I believe there are four more as of 2014) in this series.

The series is produced by International Thriller Writers, Inc., an organization that exists not only to promote thriller writ
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Alison C
Mar 17, 2015 Alison C rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
First Thrills, edited by Lee Child, is a curious compendium of short stories by well-known thriller writers (Jeffrey Deaver, John Lescroart, Stephen Coonts, Child himself) and first-time authors. The general theme is that of stories dubbed "thrillers," but within that category one finds hard-boiled, noirish horrors as well as spy stories, aliens-among-us tales, out-and-out horror tales, cons both large and small, vampires, ghosts and even a bit of poignancy. As with any such anthology, there wer ...more
Midnight Blue
Sep 14, 2012 Midnight Blue rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great anthology; in content, and in the very purpose of it. Lee Child has collected stories by well-known and successful writers and writers who are just getting started in the Thriller genre. The stories were all good, some were great, and there was even a Civil War era zombie story (every anthology should have a zombie story). I highly recommend this book!
Saritha
While they were all good stories, I didn't particularly care for the UFO one or the zombie one. I particularly loved Rebecca Cantrell's On the Train and Grant McKenzie's Underbelly.

The book has achieved its purpose of introducing through a story, authors that a reader may not ever come across. I will look out for McKenzie and Cantrell now.
Lori Mills
Jun 25, 2011 Lori Mills rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have not finished this book yet, but have read several of the short stories. I am really liking it. They are short and written by the best thriller writers. The stories are reminisent of the Twilight Zone stories on TV years ago.
Shaun
Oct 12, 2011 Shaun rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like Lee Child stories, this is a book of short stories along the vein of Lee Child. I found most of the stories interesting and I'll most likely check out many of the short story authors other best selling books.
Craig S.
Aug 05, 2011 Craig S. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s hard to build a “thriller” in just a few pages without going overboard or getting too quickly into the action. To their credit, all the authors in this collection do it. Highly recommended.
Jezebel Jorge
Great stories from some of my favorite writers and lots of new creepy brilliance to check out. JT Ellison's story was my favorite, but they were all entertaining and well written.
Cora Judd
Sep 21, 2010 Cora Judd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great anthology of thriller short stories - none relied on gore, shock or the predictable victim. Both new and established authors.
Jim
Dec 11, 2012 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you like great short stories then read this book! Fast, fun, and great reading
Dwayne Keller
Jul 23, 2011 Dwayne Keller rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very enjoyable; a nice collection of stories and every one a winner.
Sheila
May 06, 2012 Sheila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A compilation of thriller stories edited by Lee Child
Harry007
Mar 15, 2016 Harry007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-shories
The first 60 pages are okay (just), with more-than-adequate stories that were readable and engaging. Then something happened, and either the book went downhill or my attention span went downhill. The subtitle of the book seems deceiving - "High-octane stories from the hottest thriller writers". This really isn't a fast-reading book, and it's not energetic in any way. Saying this statement is clearly a way to sell this pile of poo. It's called false advertising. If you must read this short story ...more
Tim
Jun 17, 2011 Tim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This anthology contains the writings of 12 bestsellers with 13 new writers, all of whom are associated with the International Thriller Writers, Inc. organization. Although quick reads for the most part, several of these short stories are rather pedestrian and predictable for anyone who reads widely. Unfortunately, Editor Lee Child’s “The Bodyguard” is among these: good fast-paced action with a weak ending. But balancing this assembly is Marc Paoletti’s “Chloe,” which is not a tale for the squeam ...more
Robert
The following is a First Reads giveaway winner review:

As in all story collections you will have to take the good with the bad. Now the premise for the book I do like. A bunch of known thriller writers get together and write stories to be published for free. The reasoning is to sell a collection of stories that contains new writers they feel are going to be the next big thing. The part I found funny was that the big authors were the ones that I found that their stories sucked. Bill Camerons story
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Todd Russell
I received a complimentary review copy of First Thrills as part of the Goodreads giveaway program.

It's a nice hardcover book with the price of $25.95 US on the inside dust jacket. There are 25 stories in this collection, most of which are from thriller authors plus a couple mystery and even a little horror sprinkled in. There isn't any theme to the collection, which I think would have made it better, so if that's the only kind of collection you enjoy reading, you might want to keep looking.

It's
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James
Jul 18, 2016 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Listened to on CD. An anthology of short stories from a variety of thriller writers. Some stories were EXCELLENT, some good and some that I plain did not like. I got this primarily to see what Lee child had provided. The Child story was not a Reacher story but was very good. The first story , The Thief was especially good. I am not going to go through and rate them all. If you are looking to pick up a new thriller/mystery writer, this is a good place to start.
Scott Wright
Mar 24, 2014 Scott Wright rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
This has a whole bunch of short stories by a group from the Thriller Writers of America group. Some are from big names you know and others are new and you may have never heard of them. What I liked about this is that you could move through several authors and now I can go back and try some of those I have never read anything by. A few I did not like at all and some others were so so, but many were great if short.
Adele Wharton
Jan 03, 2016 Adele Wharton rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was really disappointed. From the reviews and the calibre of the 'known' authors I was expecting much more. But from 25 short stories there was only 1 I really enjoyed! The others were dull and very predictable at best, and somewhat ridiculous at worst, with none of the clever twists I was hoping for.
Sorry, but I really wouldn't bother if I were you!
Peppermintyl
The best story was "The Bodyguard" by Lee Child. I liked how the phrases were used. And how the ending ended along the lines that if your client has to protect you instead of the other way round, you're just a phony. Short but exciting. The rest of the stories were not that much to my liking.
Bia
Oct 18, 2013 Bia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What made me read through the collection of stories, was Lee Child's introduction. It really touched me how he and another 11 authors are giving a headstart to new writers in the short story world. And that is real nice, if I'd be writer too, I would be more than grateful to have such help. And it makes me proud to see that some of my fave authors are doing this. It makes me proud to have authors who want to keep the writing alive.

The stories were good, and they were as promised, very thrilling.
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Caroline
Feb 11, 2014 Caroline rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-kindle
I quite enjoyed this collection of tales, 25 in all. Contributers include Lee Child, Jefferey Deaver, Karin Slaughter and Ken Bruen. Murder and mayhem is the order of the day. A must read for those who like their crime fiction short and sweet.
Robyn Gibson
Jan 17, 2016 Robyn Gibson rated it liked it
Lee Child has edited this book of short stories by a number of different authors. I picked it up because I thought it was one of his, but it's not.....it's been edited by Lee Child.
Portia
Aug 23, 2016 Portia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
really a 3.5 stars, as some stories rated 5 and few rated 3.
just the intriguing, short-enjoyment i needed.
great idea for a collection, hope to see more like it.
Liam Klenk
Jul 07, 2016 Liam Klenk rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Most stories were really good. Some surprised me with their twists and turns. In between also a few I didn't like so much. But in a collection of short stories by so many different authors one can't expect to like everything. Overall a good read!
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Lee Child was born October 29th, 1954 in Coventry, England, but spent his formative years in the nearby city of Birmingham. By coincidence he won a scholarship to the same high school that JRR Tolkien had attended. He went to law school in Sheffield, England, and after part-time work in the theater he joined Granada Television in Manchester for what turned out to be an eighteen-year career as a pr ...more
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“were under the very erroneous impression that we had money. Of” 5 likes
“veterans and remarkable rookies. International Thriller Writers, Inc. (ITW) cofounder, David” 3 likes
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