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Niceville (Niceville #1)

3.22 of 5 stars 3.22  ·  rating details  ·  1,374 ratings  ·  292 reviews
Something is wrong in Niceville. . .
A boy literally disappears from Main Street. A security camera captures the moment of his instant, inexplicable vanishing. An audacious bank robbery goes seriously wrong: four cops are gunned down; a TV news helicopter is shot and spins crazily out of the sky, triggering a disastrous cascade of events that ricochet across twenty differe
ebook, 400 pages
Published June 12th 2012 by Vintage (first published 2012)
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a canadian writing southern gothic?? i am there. with bells on.

so you have a town that is smalltown, but not as inbreed-y/insular as, say,in Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone. niceville is one of those southern historically-respectful towns, with its long memory of its "four families" and the war of northern aggression, and its squinty-eyed suspicion of "the outside." oh, and it might have a haunted lake and some native american curses at work.

it is a ghost story clomped together wit
Aug 08, 2013 jo rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to jo by: Pinky
oh, i liked this book so much. so so much. it's not the story, really, but the characters, and the hard-boiled sassiness. perfect writing.

this is a book about men -- the women are few and far in between -- but it is the kind of book about men (cops and criminals) that tickles my pleasure centers to the hilt because these guys are the caricatures of masculinity i've always loved in spaghetti westerns (clint eastwood is mentioned here quite a lot as the paragon of all things cool). in my childhoo
It didn't gel for me. The author seemed to aim at somewhere between a dark comedy of errors and a ghost(ish) story in the vein of a Stephen King in the mood to tap into the history of a creepy town populated by locals with genealogies stretching back to some fatal root. It was a bit creepy, at least in the beginning. It was a bit madcap, with coincidences interweaving the major players, of which there are many. It was a bit gory. It was a bit vague.

I found myself unable to remember who certain p
Rating: 2.5 stars

Favorite Quote: "Come what may."

This book was extremely disappointing for me. I felt like it had so much potential but there were so many times that I did not even want to continue reading. The first chapter was excellent. It grabbed me right from the first sentence and hooked me with the disappearance of a young boy on his way home from school. Literally he is there one minute and gone the next. Already there were some spooky supernatural elements to the story including a haunt
This has to be one of the most bizzare books i have ever read. Just trying to describe it had me busting my brain for ages. Think a small American town called Niceville and a few days in the life of families and other people around it. The main part of the story is of a young boy named Rainey Teague who goes missing. Camera vision shows him literally disappearing from one frame to another. Police eventually find him in the grave of another person with the sight untampered and no explanation of h ...more

Few will agree with me on this one, but that's ok. As they say down here in the South (the South, not Stroud's wackadoodle Niceville South), this creeped me smooth out. Don't have time for a complete review (wifi-squatting here) but jo (and, hopefully, you) might agree: Niceville (and its sequel, The Homecoming) deserve some love.
A book that includes this passage in the first few pages is a winner: "At 1513:55, Rainey Teague is right there. At 1513:56, the kid is gone".

Sadly, that opening and the tension surrounding the disappearance of Rainey disappear in the next few chapters. There are five main strands here: Rainey's reappearance and subsequent catatonic state, the bank robbery in Gracie followed by the killing of four policemen and two reporters, the mischievous malice of Tony Brock, several disappearances of older
Michael Jensen
There was a lot to like about this book. Snappy writing, crisp dialogue, a creepy setting. Too bad it started out as a horror novel and then mixed in a crime thriller. Kept waiting for the twain to meet in some great denouement. But it never happened. Stroud desperately needed an editor to step in and ask him if the wanted to write a horror/ghost story or a crime thriller. Jamming two disparate plot lines together does not work.
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
You may also read my review here:

Niceville is a lovely little southern town. No matter if there have been a number of unexplained disappearances over the last hundred years or so. So many that they top the national average by quite a bit, in fact. Surely, though, it’s an anomaly, nothing to be too concerned about, right? When a young boy, Rainey Teague, disappears on his way home from school, however, it seems to kick off something very powerful, possibly
The town that is the setting for Carsten Stroud's "Niceville" (Alfred A Knopf 2012) is anything but. On the surface, it's sleepy, safe, small town America, but one scratch and you expose a tawdry underside where its vile secrets are slowly--over generations--tearing the place apart.

"Niceville" is the story of an easy-going layback town with a fifty year string of murders/disappearances/deaths that comes to a head when first a teenage boy disappears, then his mother, and then, well, more townspeo
NICEVILLE didn't live up to my expectations of an intense thriller with significant horror elements. Instead, it turned out to be a slow burning, complicated (and admittedly complex) crime/mystery story with subtle horror on the side. The exposition takes up half of the book (I listened to the unabridged audio version), and new characters and/or events are introduced every other chapter. It's very difficult not to lose track of who's who and how they relate to each other. NICEVILLE ended up bein ...more
Volevo leggere un semplice romanzo di intrattenimento e, infatti, questo ho avuto. Non sarebbe stato neanche male come thriller. Peccato che l’introduzione della vena horror, peraltro del tutto irrisolta, l’abbia condotto a un finale che fa venire il latte alle ginocchia. Se si vuole imitare Stephen King, a mio modesto avviso bisogna averne, anche solo parzialmente, il talento. It, pur con tutti i limiti del caso, è un “signor” romanzo. Questo è solo una stupidaggine.
Alicia Nieman
By nature I am a reader, not a writer, and I like it that way. I must say something about this novel, though. Read it. This was a real page-turner! Absolutely descriptive and imaginative; and the story had me completely engrossed. I have not read anything written by Carsten Stroud; however, I am certainly going to be checking out some of his other works. This book was just the right amount of eerie, freaky, chilling, spooky, and completely entertaining--these are the types of books I most enjoy ...more
Es gibt Polizisten; es gibt ehemalige Polizisten; Und es gibt ehemalige Soldaten, manche von ihnen sind jetzt Polizisten. Sie alle sind größtenteils austauschbar: harte Kerle, die den Tod nicht fürchten und nach einem Lungensteckschuss am liebsten eine Zigarette rauchen und einen Whiskey trinken. Sie sind die Figuren in Niceville und alle verstrickt in eine Spirale der Gewalt, die kein Ende kennt. Hauptprotagonist aber ist das Böse selbst.
Und bald ahnen wir, dass es etwas damit auf sich hat, das
Rating: 3 of 5

A boy, walking home from school in broad daylight on a busy street, vanished (literally!) and an old southern town with a dark history were the two reasons I chose Niceville. Had I know it was the first in a trilogy (does anyone write standalone books anymore?!) I might not have borrowed it.

That's not to say I was disappointed with Niceville just ... underwhelmed.

Stroud hooked me from the first chapter (crafty devil) and ended each chapter with just enough to keep me turning the pa
Carsten Stroud

Quick summary...

A young boy disappears on the way home from school...this seems to set the pace for about a million other odd and unexplainable things happening in the town of Niceville.

My thoughts...

This book contains a whole lot of crazy. Fabulous, fascinating, heart pounding crazy!!! the beginning...the chapters do not seem all that connected. But as I got deeper and deeper into the heart of this book...there were tons of amazing connections. The charact
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rebecca Martin
What the heck IS this book? So many genres criss-cross here and the tone is so hard to peg that I never figured out why this book was even written. It has--in no particular order--the supernatural, people with Dickensian names (Mavis Crossfire, and others), brutal modern violence of the gun variety, a setting that seems like it is out of time and place, though people drive "Cayennes" and moms get zoned out on Oxy and it is in the "Deep South," and places with names that even Dickens would shy aw ...more
I was excited to read Niceville because I thought the synopsis sounded very interesting. About a quarter of the way into the book, I wasn't so excited anymore. Niceville was a disappointment to me. It think it tried to be too many things at once. The ghost story was really cool and had it been the main focal point of the story, I would have liked it a lot more. For me, there were too many characters to keep track of as well as too many points of view. The bank robbery really had nothing to do wi ...more
A little boy disappears. Actually a lot of children disappear in this lovely little town. The little boy is found, just after his mother disappears (looks like suicide), and becomes catatonic just before his father blows off his own head. There is a mysterious mirror in the mix. And that's the introductory story. After this it gets weird and dark.

People disappear left and right. A bank is robbed. The internet is used for evil. And more. This is a very dark book. There might be some "good guys" o
Way too many characters and I didnt like one of them :)
Sue Moro
Found this one a little disjointed. I don't know, is that a word?? It's best how I would describe it. Started out promising with the misterious disapperance of a boy, but then a seemingly unassociated story about a bank robbery is tossed in there, and suddenly I was wondering if I was still reading the same book. By the time the author got back to the interesting story about all the other disappearances in the town of Niceville, the story seemed to end rather abruptly.
Tamary Anderson
what in the fucking fuck?

last time i EVER make an impulse buy at barnes & noble before checking with goodreads first.

i couldn't even finish it. i wanted to like it. i loved the beginning story about the kid who disappeared and ended up in a crypt. and then BAM! a whole bunch of random characters. people setting up some kind of robbery or something... a crazy mirror... whatever else there was that i already forgot.


thats how i feel.
I had super high hopes for this book! This was what I wanted and received for Christmas this year…


I think you will like this book…if you are a man.
The writers voice is nearly unreadable for a woman, or at least this feminine woman. It is all details about who is driving what kind of car, and cops and robbers and some guy who takes nasty pictures of his daughters. What the author did is put three completely different stories into the same book and didn't blend them together..AT ALL.

Devo dire che il mio giudizio su questo romanzo è stato altalenante, ballerino, credo di averlo cambiato almeno tre volte nel corso di un solo pomeriggio.
Ho letto diverse recensioni su Niceville, e per quanto io stessa abbia incontrato qualche difficoltà, le ho trovate esageratamente negative.
Partiamo dal presupposto che l’autore è stato spacciato come il nuovo Stephen King. E già qui le aspettative dei futuri lettori erano alte, una buona tecnica di marketing per acchiappare quel target che si
Rich Rosell
Niceville may look like an idyllic Southern town, but there's weirdness aplenty here. Stroud populates this town with a batch of hard, violent characters and enough convoluted, intertwined family history that sometimes it was tough to remember who was related to who. But amidst child abductions, kiddie porn, bank robberies and corporate espionage there's trouble from the "outside", and in Stroud's world that means some kind of alternate plane of existence or ghosts or something else entirely.

Review originally published here:

Niceville is probably the strangest, most boring book I’ve ever read. Why is it boring? Because it makes no sense. It starts out interesting enough with a boy disappearing from Main Street in broad daylight, while he was glancing through a mirror in a pawn shop. One moment he’s there, the other moment he’s not. When I read this part of the synopsis, I was hooked. Then they find the boy inside a tomb, which hasn’t been open
Carsten Stroud can really write. His prose is excellent and his descriptions are really vivid, as are his characters. This literary/suspense/horror novel kept me interested throughout, and I didn't have too much trouble keeping track of the myriad plot threads, even though I was reading a couple of other books also. The ending didn't really leave me wholly satisfied, however, and I thought that some of the plot threads were left dangling. Other plot rhreads were left open to interpretation, whic ...more
Melissa Rochelle
Niceville is not a nice place to live. That's what I gathered from this book. When I first read the book's description, I thought it was just a mystery/thriller...I didn't catch on to the horror elements until someone said, "There are dead people that come back to life."

OK...yes. There is a mystery to solve, but it is SCARY. At one point, I thought about putting the book in the freezer.

I didn't really understand why some of the characters were introduced or why some events occurred, but the ove
I won an ARC of this from First Lit giveaways.

4.5 stars rounded up to five. An intense, crazy, wicked fun read combining crime, mystery, horror,and the supernatural. The story masterfully weaves together the disparate lives and histories of Niceville's residents--good and bad, past and present. Cliffhangers abound throughout, compelling the reader to keep reading. The writing itself is exemplary in its crackle and wit. I had some trouble following the characters and plotlines at first, but they
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Huntsville-Madiso...: Staff pick -- Niceville 1 11 Aug 04, 2012 04:35PM  
Huntsville-Madiso...: Staff Pick - Niceville by Carsten Stroud 2 6 Jul 26, 2012 04:47PM  
  • The Broken Ones
  • Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone
  • Chasing the Dead
  • The Year of the Storm
  • Immobility
  • The Unseen
  • Every House Is Haunted
  • Horror Story and Other Horror Stories
  • Twisted Wing
  • Dark Echo
  • The Dwelling
  • The Uninvited
  • The Man from Primrose Lane
  • Breeding Ground
  • Eutopia
  • Mice
  • Husk
  • Wild Fell
Carsten Stroud is the author of the New York Times bestseller Close Pursuit, and the award-winning Sniper's Moon, both set in the New York City Police Department. He lives and writes in Thunder Beach, Ontario, Canada.

* Arthur Ellis Award Best First Novel (1991): Sniper's Moon
* Arthur Ellis Award Best Novel (1993): Lizardskin
More about Carsten Stroud...

Other Books in the Series

Niceville (3 books)
  • The Homecoming
  • Niceville: La resa dei conti
The Homecoming Black Water Transit Cuba Strait Sniper's Moon Cobraville: A Novel

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“when it came to Missing Persons, Niceville had a stranger abduction rate five times higher than the national average.” 0 likes
“She gets away from you, I am. She’s as big as a lynx. Look at” 0 likes
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