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The Book of Murder

3.32  ·  Rating Details ·  927 Ratings  ·  139 Reviews
One Sunday morning in Buenos Aires, a struggling writer finds himself tangled up in the story of Luciana, a former authors' assistant whom he has not seen for at least ten years, & Kloster, a rival writer. What he discovers will make him question everything he had always taken for granted about chance & calculation, cause & effect.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published March 5th 2009 by Abacus (first published 2007)
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Paul Pessolano
This is a very difficult book to put into words. I liked it, I wasn't sure I liked it, it kept me interested, I kept turning the pages, I had it figured out, but then again I'm still not sure I figured it out.

This is a murder mystery that basically contains only three characters. Now how difficult can it be to figure ut a "who done it" when there are only three people to choose from?

Kloster is an author in Buenos Aires who writes murder mysteries and has become very successful, the narrator of t
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Carmen Daza Márquez
No sé qué me pasa con Guillermo Martínez que sus libros me gustan mucho pero no me terminan de convencer. Leí con mucho gusto Los crímenes de Oxford, pero el libro no consiguió entusiasmarme. Y me compré con mucho gusto La muerte lenta de Luciana B., lo leí con interés y casi de un tirón, pero tampoco ha logrado convencerme. El estilo narrativo del autor es muy de mi agrado, los temas que trata me interesan y el ritmo y la estructura de sus novelas suelen estar bastante conseguidos. Es en la res ...more
Trilby
Apr 22, 2009 Trilby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Goodreads describes this as a "literary" mystery, and by that they presumably mean it's not the usual formulaic whodunit. The mystery is not who did the murders, but if murders even took place. For me, the book was a flashback to Pirandello's play, "Six Characters in Search of an Author" wherein the distinction between author and character, reality and artistic creation are blurred. In this metafiction cum mystery about two novelists, one the narrator, the reader is never directly "told" by the ...more
Lori
Feb 04, 2016 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A book about books........if you enjoyed The Shadow of the Wind you will probably enjoy this book as well.
John
Oct 28, 2015 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ten years ago the novelist who's our narrator injured his hand and for a few weeks needed a secretary to transcribe his words to the computer. Luckily the older and more successful novelist Kloster was going off for a month's trip, and so our narrator was able to "borrow" the young student who'd been doing Kloster's transcription, Luciana. Now, out of the blue, Luciana reappears in the narrator's life, telling him a fantastic tale of how she sued Kloster for sexual harassment, how the suit's con ...more
Hiparquia
Jul 29, 2015 Hiparquia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Este libro me devolvió las esperanzas.
Hace un mes (más) que estoy estancada en tres libros maravillosos y que no me dan ni ganas de abrirlos, qué paradoja, oh. Sé que los voy a terminar, pero no me surgieron las ganas de tomarlos en estos días de ocio eterno (estúpida internet que les hace la contra). Me había frustrado mucho porque mis ganas de leer se habían debilitado -no iba a decir muerto, aunque lo pensé- y entonces, burlando mi ley de "si tenés tres currently reading ya es suficiente", to
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Lisa Ard
An Argentinian writer gets a call from a former secretary (Luciana), ten years after working with her for a single month. She's desperate to see him. He remembers her. That beginning pulled me in. The tension in this book from the very beginning had me turning pages.

Readers learn of the brief, but alluring relationship between the writer and Luciana, as well as her abandonment of him when she returned to the distinguished older writer Kloster. Luciana returns to the writer with an incredible st
...more
Alanna
Jul 14, 2014 Alanna rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This author seems to get off on his own knowledge of great writers as he never wasted an opportunity to let you know what " (insert famous writer here) says ..." About this or that. I also think he may be a "red pill-er" based on the inner dialogue of the main character and his superficial characterizations of the women in this book. Basically a) she was attractive, she wanted me to want her, I did and she rebuffed me, she sucks. But this is no study into the psychology of post adolescent female ...more
Agostina
Jan 11, 2012 Agostina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Me gustó mucho, mantiene el suspenso y atrapa de manera firme. Es concisa, está bien escrita y los personajes, si bien están definidos simplemente por algunas características particulares, no se notan las carencias de descripción; de hecho, hasta son mejores para que el lector se adentre y sorprenda con la lectura sin dar vueltas con detalles innecesarios.
Tal vez el final me decepcionó un poco, esperaba otra cosa, desde el capítulo 11 (son 12 y un epílogo) la historia dio un vuelco un tanto fant
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Thomas
Mar 22, 2009 Thomas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The more I think about this book, the better I like it. It's one of those. What fascinates me the most is that the crux of the plot, the solution to the mystery, is basically untenable. Clearly Martinez knows this, as does the book's protagonist who doesn't want to believe it either. It leaves us with a philosophical quandary at the end, one that we can resolve with a supernatural solution, or walk away from with questions about chance and probability. I can see why an ending like this might irr ...more
Fi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lauren
I... I don't know where to begin with this book. It puzzled me, to say the least. I wanted more, but at the same time (in some instances) I wanted less. The narrator, though part of the story, really just seemed to be along for the ride, but we didn't really get a lot about what HE though, only that he didn't know what to believe. That felt like a cop-out to me.

To be honest, this is one you really just have to read and figure out for yourself. There's no explaining it.
Rachel
Luciana comes to the unnamed narrator of the book with a story of how the author Kloster has slowly been murdering everyone in her family. Her boyfriend drowned, her parents ate poisoned mushrooms and her brother was murdered. When the narrator confronts Kloster he tells a completely different story. This book was very odd and I'm not sure how I feel about it. I'm interested in what the other members of my Olympics challenge group end up thinking about this book.
Sara Gran
Sep 02, 2010 Sara Gran rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Guillermo Martinez's books are unique, almost to the point of being experimental--this book is as spare and elegant as any I've read. Fast and fun to read. After this I went back and read every backlist title I could find. HIghly recommended.
Julia
Nov 01, 2015 Julia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
Un libro con un caso escalofriante. Me dejó con ganas de más de este autor.
No le pongo más nota porque el final me descolocó un poco-bastante.
Stevie
Dec 27, 2016 Stevie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, crime, german
Interessante Geschichte um zwei Autoren, die sich in den Bann einer jungen Frau ziehen lassen, jedoch auf völlig unterschiedliche Weisen.
Leider hat mich das Buch an sich dann nicht in seinen Bann gezogen - Schachtelsätze, die man erst nach mehrmaligem Lesen versteht, sehr dialoglastig, eindimensionale Charaktere und wenig spannend erzählt. Schade, die Geschichte hätte mehr hergegeben.
Carrie Kellenberger
This was an excellent read. I wasn't sure I'd like it, but I'm so glad I read it because once I got started on The Book of Murder, I couldn't put it down.

Guillermo Martínez is an Argentinean author that excels in murder mysteries, which are not my favorite book genre, but I am enticed to read his other works now that I've finished The Book of Murder.

What especially appealed to me about this book is that it was written by an Argentinian author, which appealed to me for a year-end book for 2016.
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Nicole
Dec 21, 2016 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another spectacular suspense-crime fiction novella. The language was sophisticated and each chapter was moreish. The only reason I didn't give this 5 stars was because I thought the ending was a little obscure and somehow dampened the storyline, which was a shame. Exploring the inside of Kloster's thoughts as a writer and a person was particularly intriguing.
Faedyl
Feb 06, 2014 Faedyl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
copante, copante!
-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-/-

Entrada en el diario 10 de Faedyl desde City Bell, Buenos Aires Province Argentina en domingo, 11 de octubre de 2009
Este libro no ha sido valorado.

Uy yo también me colgué para ingresarlo, lo tengo desde hace mucho en mi poder pero la lista era larga y quería cumplir con los anillos primero. Hace mucho leí comentarios de esta obra y me intriga y por eso quiero leerla, ya emitiré mi parte, GRACIAS A TODOS!

Fae

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M M
Apr 27, 2013 M M rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A few years ago, I read the mathematics-tinged The Oxford Murders by the Argentinian writer Guillermo Martinez, and found that somewhat irritating in its insistence of mysticism around logic and set theory. The writer now comes up with an even more fantastic tale in The Book of Murder, in which, it appears, characters are killed by a mad author and nobody is able to establish that fact. The narrator is approached by a distraught Luciana, a secretary who had briefly worked with him a decade earli ...more
Puteri Nurfaiqah
I love this booooooooooook! just bought it randomly from Oxfam last week , and didnt have any idea the author is actually the book writer ( which then adapted to movie ' The Oxford Murder' ) . the storyline is interesting , and keep making me go through pages and pages (and done reading the whole novel within 5-6 hours! ) gosh i have no idea it would get me questioning what's gonna happen next and who's the murder. to be honest i really thought Luciana is a lunatic , like she makes everything up ...more
Ria
Oct 17, 2015 Ria rated it it was amazing
An inventive thriller / murder mystery.
When a struggling writer receives a desperate phonecall from a girl he knew ten years before that he worked with for a while as a secretary taking dictation for his novel it sets in train a whole series of events that changes his life.
He first met Luciana when he requested a temp to help him in his work, she was at the time working for the great author Kloster and this was just a temporary arrangement.
Things go well and he finds himself half in love with he
...more
Sarah Sammis
The Book of Murder by Guillermo Martinez is another of those long time wishlist books, on the list since the book was first published. Since it's an Argentinean mystery, I either learned about it via NPR or BBC radio. Regardless, I'm glad I added it to my list.

An author on a deadline has to hire a typist when he breaks his wrist. He's sent Luciana, a young, beautiful and efficient typist. The author meets his deadline and that's the last he thinks of her for a decade, until she reappears with an
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Nikos79
The "Book of Murder" I think is a book that can satisfy a wide range of audience. A book Ι assume, it will be likable by the majority of readers, regardless of the kind of books they prefer to read. And this because it's a very accessible work without any special difficulties and with a plot that I couldn't miss describe it as interesting.

But through its simplicity the author will make you concerned by the different angles -with which he approximates the whole story. Τhey will contribute in make
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Dominiek Leenknecht
Dit boek had me keihard mee. Geniaal vertaald, een mysterieus verhaal waarin de lezer continu op zoek gaat naar "wat is er nu eigenlijk aan de hand?". Geen whodunnit, eerder een whathashappened :)

De verteller van dit boek ("de auteur") heeft het over een plotse herinnering die terug in zijn leven opduikt: zijn vroegere typiste/secretaresse komt na 10 jaar weer boven water en ziet er bijzonder slecht uit. Zij beweert dat haar leven geterroriseerd wordt/werd door Kloster, een mysterieuze Argentijn
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Amy
Jan 25, 2014 Amy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first Martinez book and I think he does an amazing job. I felt this wasn't quite a mystery or a thriller but a little bit of both. It is the kind of book that really makes you think, trying to figure out what is going on, what the truth is. And just like the narrator, I felt as though I was still trying to figure that out when the book ended. I am generally the queen of happy endings and having things all tied up in a neat little bow, and this book offers neither but I liked it anywa ...more
John
Mar 02, 2008 John rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
From last December through this February, I only read Spanish. I started a few novels and a few political volumes, but I actually finished (and enjoyed!) this novel by Guillermo Martinez from Argentina. La Muerte Lenta de Luciana B. is a very creepy psychological thriller. I read it in Quito, while Ramona and I were down there in January. I felt like I was watching a Hitchcock movie the whole time I was reading it. One of Martinez’ earlier novels has been converted to a movie, so maybe I’ll be a ...more
Mafaldine
Hier lagen nog enkele aankopen, gedaan op een Boekenfestijn vorig jaar, te wachten om gelezen te worden. Ik begon eigenlijk eerst aan een ander boek, maar toen ik het wilde toevoegen aan mijn Goodreads-shelf las ik in de reviews dat veel mensen de tweede helft ervan niet zo geweldig vonden. Omdat ik datzelfde al aan de hand had bij het laatste boek dat ik las, en ik geen zin had in de herhalig daarvan, begon ik dan maar eerst aan 'De langzame dood van Luciana B.'
Ik las het snel uit. Het idee ac
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Karen
Jun 03, 2009 Karen rated it really liked it
from the back cover:

"One sleepy Sunday morning in Buenos Aires, a struggling writer receives an unexpected phone call that draws him into the tangled story of Luciana, an old acquaintance, and Kloster, a rival author. What he discovers will make him question everything he has always taken for granted about chance and calculation, cause and effect.

One by one, Luciana's loved ones are dying -- and she or her sister could be next. She's convinced that Kloster is behind the deaths, punishing her for
...more
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Play Book Tag: The Book of Murder Guillermo Martinez 3 stars 1 6 Aug 06, 2016 09:11AM  
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Guillermo Martínez is an Argentine novelist and short story writer. He gained a PhD in mathematical logic at the University of Buenos Aires.

After his degree in Argentina, he worked for two years in a postdoctoral position at the Mathematical Institute, Oxford.

His most successful novel has been The Oxford Murders, written in 2003. In the same year, he was awarded the Planeta Prize for this novel,
...more
More about Guillermo Martínez...

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