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The Snow Garden

3.77  ·  Rating Details ·  4,374 Ratings  ·  256 Reviews
In the darkening chill of winter, three Atherton University freshmen are being mysteriously drawn together by fate, and a compulsion they cannot comprehend. Though they come from vastly differing backgrounds, the college holds the promise of a better life for each of them -- and an opportunity to break away from the anguish and desolation of their former lives.
But the pa
Paperback, 534 pages
Published January 1st 2004 by Pocket Star (first published 2002)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mauoijenn ~ *Mouthy Jenn* ~
*Net Galley book for review*

First off, I liked the story line about an HIV infected person running around on a college campus. Second thing, I find some of the things that happened in this book a little too far fetched. I just don't understand why Rice tries so hard in his books. This one was just overly written to the point I was just glad when it came to an end.
Matt Garcia
Mar 28, 2014 Matt Garcia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Snow Garden is a fast paced mystery/thriller with plenty of intrigue and suspense. The various twists and turns throughout the novel made for a wild ride to the finish. Excellent character development and harsh dose of reality infused into the characters as well. This novel will astound you in parts with its multi faceted layers of secrets and deceptions. Christopher Rice manages to perfectly capture the monotony and experiences that come with being a college student. He delves into the inne ...more
Jun 29, 2009 Max rated it it was ok
I want Christopher Rice to be better than he is. And really, from what I've read of his trashy bestsellers, he knows how to crank out a page turner. And this is dirty, trashy fun. It's ridiculous and melodramatic, but in an unintentional sort of a way. And so I gladly demolished it in the space of a couple of days, but in full knowledge that it wasn't really very good at all. These characters are all a little too damaged-and-broken-underneath their Prada-and-sunglasses to be legitimate people, w ...more
Jan 29, 2013 Schmacko rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
K.Z. Snow
Jul 27, 2011 K.Z. Snow rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is my second Christopher Rice novel. They were both okay. Not great but not bad either. Both books had a few different plots going all at once and it got confusing with so many characters going every which direction. Now that I'm finished with The Snow Garden I still can't say I'm 100% sure wtf just happened. I'm left with a few questions that may or may not have been answered during the overwhelming last few chapters. I was barely able to keep up with all that was happening and being revea ...more
Oct 20, 2007 Brian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery fans, gay fiction fans
Shelves: favorites
Of his three works of dark fiction thus far, The Snow Garden is Christopher Rice's best. Full of twists and turns, this mystery is gripping and addictive, and it's just so delightfully twisted.
Terrie Purkey
Sep 05, 2012 Terrie Purkey rated it it was ok
Son of author Anne Rice, I had high hopes for this book. But, it was a struggle to get through. This book is kind of dirty, trashy nonsense. Another reviewer said, "It's ridiculous and melodramatic, but in an unintentional sort of a way. These [mostly gay] characters are all a little too damaged-and-broken-underneath their Prada-and-sunglasses to be legitimate people, which would be totally okay if this was a satire. But it's not." That's a pretty clear depiction - set on a college campus, these ...more
Oct 05, 2010 Cupcakencorset rated it really liked it
So, remember in my blog post about the J.D. Robb mystery I’ve been reading over several trips to the bookstore, rather than buying it, in which I said that her books are almost completely plot- and character-driven (not in those words), but not literary in style? Well, read this book and you’ll immediately see what I mean. Like the Robb mysteries, this book has a strong plot and distinctive characters, but the tone, the writing, the use of language rise above “common” mystery novels to be modern ...more
Jun 01, 2010 Woowott rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 09, 2011 Andres rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I'm hurriedly reading Rice's books to determine whether or not to attend a function at which he'll be speaking. It's a great excuse to try to read all of someone's books at one quick go (to which I'm grateful he only has five so far).

This book is an improvement over Rice's first book (the writing isn't as clunky as some parts of 'Density', the characters less in number but more finely drawn across the board). The book is mix of genres, though, with the first half being a detailed psychological m
Dec 27, 2016 Jool rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic read - the plot has a lot of twists and turns to keep the reader guessing. I will choose Christopher Rice over Anne any day.
Emily Crow
I think my actual rating is closer to 2.5 stars, but I did really enjoy some parts of this book so I am rounding up to three. Also, I've been really harsh with my ratings this year--maybe it's my mood or maybe I'm just choosing the wrong books, who knows, but I've really been nit-picking everything as I read. So, knowing this I am giving the benefit of a doubt with three stars.

The novel is a murder mystery, of sorts, that takes place amongst the privileged but tormented youth of an Ivy League co
Mira Ali
Sep 20, 2015 Mira Ali rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lgbtq
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I have to confess that this is technically a re-read for me, although I read it so long ago that I no longer remembered anything that happened. Only that it was about a group of college students from Atherton. This was the first book I ever read by Christopher Rice back in the day, and though the events of the novel were fuzzy, I remembered adoring it. Then I read The Vines, and OMG what a train wreck of a novel. So when I saw CR's earlier novels on NetGalley, I had to grab them to see if I stil ...more
Joy Castagna
Jul 22, 2011 Joy Castagna rated it liked it
Before reading this story, I had never heard of Christopher Rice. I can't say I loved this book but I've decided to give one of his other novels a try.

Concerning this novel, I found myself wondering what the ultimate intention was with this story. Though the story touched on many topics, it lacked real depth in any one of them. As such, this story was about little more than entertainment. The storyline seemed untethered to any real end goal, drifting along in a mildly entertaining dirty, day-ti
Mar 02, 2010 S rated it it was ok
Oh, I had high hopes for this book, since I enjoyed his first so much. And it started out promisingly enough with strong characters and interesting dynamics between them. For almost 200 pages I was absorbed, curious, excited, engaged, trying to figure out how it was all going to pan out, rooting for certain characters--it was good.

Then the cult showed up and people started revealing their weirdness, and it really just got too improbably weird for me. If Rice had kept away from all the murder stu
Jan 18, 2009 Beverly rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Overwritten and unintentionally campy murder mystery set on a northeastern university campus. Has qualities of a YA novel - overwrought emotion, 18 year old protags., fun of sex and drugs coupled with disapproving attitude. Slow all the way through with an over-the top-ending that reveals all kinds of implausible, if not impossible, surprises. The story focuses on gay prostitute and college student Randall Stone and his best friend Kathryn Parker. Randall's involvement with an older married prof ...more
I liked this book. The part about the guy on campus intentionally going around spreading HIV is like a nightmare fantasy / cautionary ghost story myth.

The part I didn't like so much was the over-the-top ending when the college roommate disappears and then (spoiler alert) his body ends up encased in a wax sculpture in some ultra-rich psycho's living room. I was unable to suspend my belief that far. The living room is lush and luxurious and the only thing that my interior decorator friend remember
Jay Kovach
Aug 11, 2010 Jay Kovach rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone, young adult and older.
This was my second time reading it (see "A Density of Souls" review). This is not as monumental as his first, but a great read still. I would say that I was a little disappointed that it lacked the depth of his first, but books cannot be systematically wonderful. The discoveries that you make along the way though are awesome, but if I was to suggest one of his works to get someone into his writing it would definitely be "A Density of Souls." I think what let me down was the ending, it didn't hav ...more
Mar 13, 2008 Cassiel rated it it was ok
Shelves: popfiction, 2008
The concept of the book: Many subplots flailing around, some of them not very interesting, vying for attention (although I believe that they were all resolved, more or less).

The writing: Rice relies on too much explanation. Apparently, his writing isn't deft enough to reveal the thoughts and motives of the characters without packaging everything for the reader.

The payoff: Urban-gothic horror and violence and a little sex.

Pretty silly.
Terrance Bond
Oct 02, 2007 Terrance Bond rated it really liked it
Christopher Rice is the master of the UNANTICIPATED plot twist. I can truly say that every time the story changed directions, I didnt see it coming, and I found that extremely refreshing. And he has great ability to create characters that make you, well.....enthusiastic, lets say. I love the way he builds dramatic tension.
Ramoths Own
Nov 22, 2015 Ramoths Own rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really was very disappointed in this book, it had a good premise but I found it very overwritten and just draggy.
Saya Hashimoto
Jan 30, 2009 Saya Hashimoto rated it it was ok
Utter trash, made worse by the assumption on the part of the author that everyone is likely to be shocked by stuff that's not very shocking.
May 11, 2011 Erica rated it it was ok
I felt the plot meandered around too much. I felt it could have been much better.
Jan 11, 2012 Cathie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the few hardcovers I covet.

Interesting read. A definite!
Dec 04, 2014 Ghostrunner rated it really liked it
Shelves: winter, scholarly
a little difficult to get into, but worth it for how completely fucked up it gets.
The Badger
Review: tolerable. Had I realized this was the same microdermabraded author of "The Vines," I would've skipped this book.

Granted, while I didn't get through even a quarter of "The Vines," this book was more promising. It reminded me of my first year at my very small liberal arts undergrad. (Except we had these scheduled gatherings we referred to as "classes.")

The book was incredibly promising until the end (both of them), when Rice went all Stephen-King-post-head-injury and made everything weir
L.A. Douglas
Nov 30, 2016 L.A. Douglas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Andria Bergstrom
Jan 18, 2017 Andria Bergstrom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting mystery!

Never having read Christopher Rice before I had no idea what the book would be like. I found the book by accident having given up long ago trying to find anything he had written at my local libraries. This book was an amazing mystery. Lots of twists, the characters were very complex and real. This book also makes you think of your own views on touchy subjects. I hope to be able to find more of Christopher Rice's books soon.
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Goodreads Librari...: Hardcover page number needs to be added 2 11 Mar 22, 2016 06:39PM  
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By the age of 30, Christopher Rice had published four New York Times bestselling thrillers, received a Lambda Literary Award and been declared one of People Magazine's Sexiest Men Alive. His two novels of dark supernatural suspense, THE HEAVENS RISE and THE VINES, were both finalists for the Bram Stoker Award. He recently entered the erotic romance genre with three works in all new series called T ...more
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