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The Red Room
 
by
Nicci French
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The Red Room

3.53 of 5 stars 3.53  ·  rating details  ·  2,208 ratings  ·  109 reviews
Interviewing people in police custody is part of Dr. Kit Quinn’ s job. But when Michael Doll, a disturbed derelict caught hanging around a London schoolyard, breaks a mug and tears up her face during questioning, he also cracks her composure and self-confidence. The incident leaves her with recurring dreams of a red room, where nightmares become real.…

Three months later,
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ebook, 384 pages
Published August 7th 2001 by Mysterious Press (first published 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Oddmonster
In the Sebastian-I've-found-some-matchsticks vein of PD James, this book takes the gruesome out of multiple murders and replaces it with a blushing, fleeing, overwhelmed forensic profiler who ignores her own demons in favor of a booklong musing on mothers and daughters. This does not a snappy read make.

However, French has a smooth and fluid writing style (always a plus) and does well at painting portraits of emotionally distant adults attempting to screw up their lives with as much Look at Me!
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Jayne Charles
Successful career women with faintly unsatisfactory private lives seem to be the speciality of this double-headed author. In this book we meet Kit Quinn, a doctor who is persuaded by the police to help on a murder investigation; her main qualification in this respect apparently being the fact that the chief suspect glassed her only a few months back.

I really wanted to like this novel, but despite a good writing style and some interesting nuggets of insight and wit, I found I couldn’t buy into t
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Srinivasan
It’s hard not to like pretty, well-meaning psychologist Dr. Kit Quinn, though some are certainly willing to give it a try. Detective Chief Inspector Oban, for instance, anoints her “the most bloody-minded woman” he’s ever had to work with. That being said, however, he admires the quirky/dazzling quality of her insights. Which is why he asks for her help in the matter of Michael Dall, the no-account he’d like to nail for a bothersome unsolved murder. Hoping to augment flimsy circumstantial eviden ...more
Rosalind
"Nicci French" is, of course, a collaboration between husband-and-wife team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French, and this looks very much like writing by committee. It's well-enough put together but the whole thing seems to have crafted according to a publisher's template. There's lots of food and shopping - every item described in loving detail. There's the requisite bonk at about halfway; in the antepenultimate chapter the protagonist is in imminent danger of a messy demise but is saved in the nick ...more
Cat
I seem to be having a bit of a Nicci French marathon at the moment, I inadvertantly bought three of her books at a charity book sale a while ago, and after reading "Land of the Living" I am truly hooked.

This is another great book by her. Again her characters are realistic, messy, selfish, stubborn - like the rest of us really. The story has some twists and turns and is unrelenting right until the surprising end. I enjoyed the characters of Dr Quinn (I would like to read more about this troubled
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JoAnne
I found this book impossible to put down. Although that is somewhat unusual, what is more odd is that I know I've read this book before, probably when it first came out. I knew what was happening, page by page --almost like being in a dream -- but kept going. Terrified, I got to the end and remembered the pair of killers. I wasn't sure I could say that Michael's life should not have been taken. I do know that my heart finally opened to him once again. As for Will, I've known one or two shuttered ...more
Inge
De eerste 30 pagina's zijn 'saai', maar dan wil je toch wel weten wie achter de moord zit en leest het boek als een trein.
Juliej
How strange, I have loved every other Nicci French book that I have read, but just couldn't get into this one at all.

I felt that we were being asked to suspend rational thought. Here is this psychologist who has had a life-threatening adverse experience at the hands of a criminal. On her very first day back at work after several months recuperation she is asked to see him again in a professional capacity. No way. And that's not all, she is asked to see him in the company of the same policeman wh
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Stacie Evans
As a former psychology student myself, I really appreciated the character of Kit. I appreciated her attitude that "different does not mean dangerous". In this world, people are often too quick to judge, and they fear the strange and unexpected. That's why, when Kit refused to cave in to police pressure and testify against Michael Doll just because he was mentally unbalanced, I respected her. That's why, even when all the evidence pointed towards Doll yet she stood by her statement that he was no ...more
Anja Zegeling
Inmiddels heb ik de boeken van Nicci French allemaal al gelezen. En herlezen, want het blijft een genot. Heerlijk hoe mijn favoriete schrijversduo hun verhalen neerzet. Tegen de achtergrond van London door andere ogen dan die van de gemiddelde toerist. Op een manier die maakt dat ik heel graag eens naar London wil om te kijken op de plekken die ze beschrijven. Om het echt te beleven. Een verhaal met veel feiten en boeiende, levensechte personages. Je moet echt je aandacht erbij houden en je gehe ...more
David Proffitt
An interesting but hardly compelling novel, Red Room has a formulaic feel about it. Husband and wife team Nicci French have an interesting plot and a good character in Psychologist Kit Quinn, but somehow the book never really captured my imagination.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the book, but felt that there was something missing.

The story itself centres around the investigation into a seemingly straight forward murder case. But Dr Quinn becomes convinced that there is more to the case and find
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Judy
An English mystery. I really liked the police psychiatrist, Kit Quinn as she struggles with job and life after being slashed by a man she was interviewing who is later considered a suspect in another case.
Kirsty Darbyshire

I've been disappointed with Nicci French's last couple of books but I'm glad to report that I enjoyed this one. This is probably because it's more of a straightforward whodunnit and less of the mess-with-your-head psychological suspense thriller type thing that her last few books have tried to be. (I know it's a-he-and-a-she team but I'll keep calling her "her" as that seems to be the sensible thing to do and the books themselves don't give away the fact that they are team efforts, no reason why

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Sarah Goodwin
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robert Beveridge
Nicci French, The Red Room (Mysterious Press, 2001)

I've heard a number of times that The Red Room is just plain not as good as French's previous blockbuster, the much-loved Beneath the Skin. I don't really agree. While The Red Room is marred by something of a weak ending, the novel does its thing just as well as Beneath the Skin did. And the latter was such a cleverly-executed concept that expecting any mystery novel to hold up in comparison is probably a bit unfair.

The plot centers around a psy
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Shannon3k
I like Nicci French books but sometimes wish the protagonists were not so malleable. In this story DR. Kit Quinn apparently narrowly escapes death during an encounter with a criminal, yet agrees to interview the same person again. Is anyone really this adventuresome, or stupid? These are also some rather unbelievable leaps of logic, and the actual villains are easily predicted. Not the best French mystery, but a bit better than "Complicit."
cathepsut
Kit Quinn, our heroine, is a psychologist dealing with the criminally insane. In the opening chapter we see her evaluating a suspect at a police station. She is attacked and injured... Some months later she gets drawn into a murder case that has her attacker, again, as the main suspect. Reluctantly she gets involved. Kit refuses to believe the obvious solution and finds other suspects and links to other murders. The police does not believe her conclusions and everybody begins to think that she c ...more
Elsje
Oorspronkelijk heet het The red room, en het is de vijfde thriller van het schrijverspaar Sean French en Nicci Gerard, uit 2001. Ik las de vertaling van Molly van Gelder.

Waar dit paar altijd goed in is, is in het opbouwen van spanning. Ook in dit boek begint het met een horrorachtige scene: de jonge psychologe Kit moet een vermoedelijke moordenaar ondervragen. De man raakt over zijn toeren en verwondt Kit ernstig, waardoor de kamer rood ziet van haar bloed. Als zij, na een periode van herstel, w
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Rosalind Mitchell
"Nicci French" is, of course, a collaboration between husband-and-wife team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French, and this looks very much like writing by committee. It's well-enough put together but the whole thing seems to have crafted according to a publisher's template. There's lots of food and shopping - every item described in loving detail. There's the requisite bonk at about halfway; in the antepenultimate chapter the protagonist is in imminent danger of a messy demise but is saved in the nick ...more
Lis
Very well done - a not-to-be-put-down book. (But based on the cover and the blurbs on the back cover, it wasn't yet known that Nicci French is actually a husband and wife team? - references are to "she".)

Now I want to go back and read everything they wrote, and perhaps things they wrote separately as well.
Lisa (scarlet21)
It might be a similar formula (as has been suggested) to other books by Nicci French but it works for me. I like the way the suspense builds up with lots of possibilities that keep you guessing until the end and this book was very good at that, I was miles off. Kit was a likeable character, remaining slightly troubled and lost from her own childhood loss which impacts on her involvement in the murder case. There may a bit of over emphasis on detail, ie, 'she dressed in pale brown t shirt with sh ...more
Alexandra Sokoloff
I'm addicted to Nicci French - perfect suspenseful, sexy summer reading. I've worked my way through the excellent Frieda Klein series and now am revisiting some older novels. Found it very interesting how The Red Room is clearly an early version of the Frieda series.
Anne Murray
Didn't enjoy, predictable. it seems that when they write about the Police they do so portraying them as incompetent and foolish. Tried others from their range and found them all quite poor
Kaethe
The victims aren't just victims, nor are they total bastards; they become three dimensional. Even the weird, creepy, disturbed, and disturbing guy comes in for a bit of sympathy.
Arwen Fowler-jonsson
I have now read several books by this author and I love them. The stories are rich as well as the characters and the ending always has a twist. Can not wait to read more from this author!!
Beth
Psychologist Kit Quinn is asked by London police to evaluate a disturbed young man, Michael Doll. While interviewing him Doll lashes out and slashes her face with a broken mug. Recovering from the attack Kit has a recurring nightmare of a room full of blood -- the "red room." When Doll is arrested after a series of murders Kit, partly to face her fear, visits him and becomes convinced that he isn't guilty. But the police won't listen and Kit decides to investigate on her own. This puts her once ...more
Roger
I really enjoyed The Red Room-this is a psychological thriller by Nicci French (really a husband and wife writing together.) The language French chooses makes for an interesting read, and Kit Quinn is a well nuanced character I enjoyed reading about. The only reason this book does not have five stars is the unbelievable stupidity of some of the other characters. Specifically I am referring to the police force as portrayed in this book-I understand Kit is tenacious and smart but did that mean tha ...more
Roos Boum
I read the Dutch translation.

Ik heb een soort haat-liefdeverhouding met NF. Ook van dit boek vond ik veel goed. Het concept van hoe je iets gruwelijks in je dromen verwerkt vond ik sterk. De karakters zijn levensecht en eigenlijk niet prettig, maar dat kom je vaak in het leven tegen, nietwaar? De suspense in het boek is ok. Je gaat je toch afvragen of Doll het wel gedaan heeft. Wat ik tegen dit boek had, was het onwaarschijnlijke optreden en houding van de politie. Echt er is geen een politieche
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Jennifer K
Feb 24, 2012 Jennifer K rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes crime or mysteries
Recommended to Jennifer by: I found it online
I liked it. I am going to read it again. It had a very unique premise. Her recurring dream of the Red Room that she goes to when she dreams about being attacked by a patient is a unique way of processing something very traumatic. She doesn't dream about the event itself. Instead, she has created a space in her mind for the incident. She is asked by the police chief to re-interview her attacker who now stands accused of murder, and upon interviewing him, she is not so sure he did it.

A complex tw
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April
I found this book at the Rockefeller Conference facility in Bellagio, Italy. I'd run out of novels on a long trip - so I was close to desperate. Some previous conference participant had left it behind with a kind note, saying "help yourself", and now I think I know why. It was good enough to get through, and kill some time, but I wouldn't recommend it - in fact, if I were still in Bellagio, I'd probably leave it behind with a kind note also. Too many implausible twists and turns - and the charac ...more
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  • Blauw water
  • De Verbouwing
  • Rendez-vous
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  • Daglicht
  • Vrijdag
  • Cel
  • De Vlucht
  • Disordered Minds
  • Under the Beetle's Cellar
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Note: (Nicci Gerrard and Sean French also write separately.)

Nicci Gerrard was born in June 1958 in Worcestershire. After graduating with a first class honours degree in English Literature from Oxford University, she began her first job, working with emotionally disturbed children in Sheffield. In that same year she married journalist Colin Hughes.

In the early eighties she taught English Literature
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More about Nicci French...
Blue Monday (Frieda Klein, #1) Killing Me Softly Beneath the Skin Tuesday's Gone (Frieda Klein, #2) Secret Smile

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“I wake in the night. Or sometimes I don't wake in the night. It hardly seems to make a difference.” 7 likes
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