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Judas Child

4.12  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,307 Ratings  ·  148 Reviews
It is three days before Christmas, and two young girls have disappeared from the local academy. This hasn't happened for fifteen years, since Rouge Kendall's twin sister was murdered. The killer was found, but now Rouge, twenty-five and a policeman, is forced to wonder: was he really the one? Also wondering is a former classmate named Ali Cray, a forensic psychologist with ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published August 1st 1999 by Jove (first published 1998)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jonetta
Mar 04, 2014 Jonetta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jonetta by: Lauren
Two 10-year old girls disappear one afternoon from a small, upstate New York village town. The investigation resurrects the lives of those involved in a similar case from 15-years ago and involves local, state and federal law enforcement departments and agencies.

This is an extraordinary story with vividly drawn characters and venues. Heroes aren't always completely virtuous and morally challenged individuals can't be tossed aside. It's a tough subject matter that can be disturbing at times. I f
...more
Leah
May 26, 2015 Leah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, thriller, 2015
Great...and not so great...

When two children are abducted, at first it's hoped that they've been kidnapped for ransom. But the crime is similar to another that was committed fifteen years earlier, resulting in the murder of a child and the imprisonment of a local priest. Now the police have to consider if the earlier investigation got the wrong man, and if the pattern repeats, they know that both little girls will be dead by Christmas.

There are bits of this book that are great and then there's t
...more
Maria João Fernandes
"Deve ser reconfortante estarmos apaixonados por nós próprios. Não há o medo da rejeição - nunca."

O'Connell conta-nos uma história sobre um assassino de crianças, ao mesmo tempo que faz uma análise, mais ou menos profunda, do comportamento humano.

Duas raparigas desaparecem: uma filha de importantes figuras políticas e outra filha de uma família normal. Ambas mais perspicazes e criativas que as crianças da sua idade. Na investigação deste caso destacam-se o policia Rouge Kendall e a psicóloga for
...more
Joyce Lagow
Apr 20, 2010 Joyce Lagow rated it liked it
Two 10 year old girls are missing in a small village in New York days before Christmas, and the fear is that a serial pedophile/killer has kidnapped the two girls. It is a brutal reminder for Detective Rouge Kendall, whose twin sister was kidnapped and then murdered 15 years before to the day. Supposedly, her killer was apprehended. Btu the convicted man, a priest, is in prison, and no one has any idea what has happened to the two girls.[return][return]That is the bare premise of an absolutely t ...more
Kwoomac
Not something I would have chosen for myself but I received this as a birthday gift just because it has an orange cover (my current favorite color). Okay, I'm game. For the most part this was a fast-paced story about a small town, a double kidnapping, and a corrupt (and possibly dangerous) ex-cop. While I loved the kidnapping story, I felt a little overwhelmed by the number of characters and some of the side plots.
Karen Bonilla
Sep 18, 2011 Karen Bonilla rated it it was amazing
I've read this book several times and just love it. The writing is very well done and I found myself on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what happens. The ending was an awesome twist that I never suspected.
Julie
Sep 15, 2014 Julie rated it it was amazing
Absolutely my favorite mystery writer ever! This book may be 16 years old, but it will knock your socks off. It kept me guessing until the last page of the epilogue!! Carol O'Connell never disappoints!
Kristin
Apr 17, 2007 Kristin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. I was completely obsessed with it. Dark and messy. If you like a happy ending, don't read the last chapter. Nothing Carol O'Connell writes ends well with all the loose ending tied up.
Tami Lollis
May 17, 2012 Tami Lollis rated it liked it
This book took a bit to get me interested in it, but then it was a page turner. I am still unsure about the ending. Left me wondering if what I thought I read was real or not.
Kristin
Deliciously creepy. And well-done poignancy saves the ending from feeling too Sixth Sense. I'm looking forward to checking out O'Connell's earlier books.
Rachel
Apr 29, 2009 Rachel rated it it was amazing
scariest frickin' book EVER.
Lara
Feb 18, 2011 Lara rated it really liked it
Recommended to Lara by: Kristi Moore
Shelves: mystery, read-in-2011
I really did not expect to enjoy this book as much as I did. I figured it would pretty much be your typical, predictable mystery-thriller, blah, blah. And in some ways, it totally turned out that way, but in other ways? Not so much. Certain characters (Ali, Rouge, Sadie and Gwen, Father Paul Marie, Arnie Pyle, Ellen Kendall) are well-written and really interesting and likable. And there are a few really great twists. While I felt like I knew who the culprit was pretty early on, and I turned out ...more
Heidi
Apr 25, 2016 Heidi rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mysteries, 2016-goal
I read most of O'Connell's novels 6-8 years ago but I somehow missed this stand alone thriller. I used to devour mystery/thrillers focusing on creepy serial killers and other unsavory villains but at some point, I'd had enough. It's the only reason I missed this one from one of my favorite novelists.

Wow-- what an intense ride this was--filled with unique, powerful, interesting characters and lots of little cliffhangers and red herrings. Any number of the half-dozen main characters could easily b
...more
Bev
Mar 03, 2016 Bev rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was published in 1999. Yet it reads like a contemporary thriller. That’s because of the descriptive writing, well drawn characters and a story well ahead of its time.

The plot is full of suspense and lots of action. But where O’Connell really shines is in her portrayal of Gwen and Sadie, the little girls abducted. She nails this. The voices of these girls will stay in your head long after you’ve put this book down. Their courage and tenacity in the face of terrifying events is inspiring
...more
Nancy K
Mar 17, 2011 Nancy K rated it really liked it
Carol O'Connell amazes me she writes stories and creates character who are amazing and full of surprises. I always have to be in a good place to read her stories for they are dark and show the worst and best in us humans. This story centers on a serial child killer but it centers on survival and on the incredible human mind and spirit to keep on going and to fight for survival. I think what I find wonderful about her books is that I cannot predict what will happen or that I know how these charac ...more
Tasula
Oct 31, 2014 Tasula rated it it was amazing
So sad I had to blink away tears at the end. Wonderful story about a loathsome subject- sadistic pedophiliac killer. Much of the story is told through the eyes/voice of a kidnapped 10 year old girl. Fortunately for readers, there is little if any detail about the killer's actions. Besides the killer, there is another despicable character- a doctor who puts the ethics of doctor/patient confidentiality above the life of a child. I love all O'Connell's books, the Mallory series and Bone by Bone. I ...more
Beverly
Jan 23, 2016 Beverly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I really enjoyed this book, at times I though it was a little meandering. I'd be reading along and wondering how the author got here and then pages later I made the connection and had an "ah ha" moment. Maybe that's what the author intended but it was a bit distracting. Other than that though--I thought the story line was great and the premise extremely original. A serial killer has struck again. His MO is selecting 2 children--one is the Judas child who is chosen to draw the second chi ...more
Eadie
Jan 16, 2016 Eadie rated it it was amazing
Book Description:
It is three days before Christmas, and two young girls have disappeared from the local academy. This hasn't happened for fifteen years, since Rouge Kendall's twin sister was murdered. The killer was found, but now Rouge, twenty-five and a policeman, is forced to wonder: was he really the one? Also wondering is a former classmate named Ali Cray, a forensic psychologist with scars of her own. The pattern is the same, she says: a child called out to meet a friend. The friend is the
...more
Tonya
Feb 07, 2014 Tonya rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have the strange feeling I have already read this book... but can't be sure. It's not in my Kindle library - so maybe not?!? I digress... I find myself at a loss. I am not really sure what to say. I liked the plot, but it all seemed a bit too shallow for me. You never really got deep into anything... things were just left dangling - like say David, mono-zygotic twins, the "shadow" under the bed, the whole story about the scar... and did they say they "buy" kids for scholarships?? It all seemed ...more
Jeanean
May 01, 2013 Jeanean rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Darlene
Jun 11, 2016 Darlene rated it liked it
This was an ok read. At times, I found it a little confusing, the way it would jump around. I was expecting a little more riveting action. The concept of a child being kidnapped is a parents worse fear. But reading this one, I personally didn't feel the fear a child would have that was kidnapped. Yes, the children taken were smarter than normal ones and being of young ages, it's hard to phantom that one would try and outsmart an adult. Most would be petrified. That said, I felt there were too ma ...more
Amanda Patterson
Dec 05, 2009 Amanda Patterson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-remember
Terrifying. This was Room before Room was even conceptualised.
An excellent example of third person viewpoint attached. Two girls are abducted. How do they survive? Trapped by a monster in a greenhouse, the one girl protects the other.
So well crafted that the ending will leave you breathless.
Trina Hollis
Nov 12, 2014 Trina Hollis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Really good who dunnit that kept me guessing right to the end and then finishes with an extra surprise I definitely didn't see that coming.
Stacy
Feb 21, 2009 Stacy rated it really liked it
Suspensful story of fiction about how child predators will use one child as bait for the real object of their desire. A lot of research must have been done into the mind of child predators and what motivates them. This one will have you on the edge of your seat.
Christi
Jul 17, 2010 Christi rated it liked it
I thought this was a clever "stand-alone" novel by Carol O'Connell. Some of it was predictable, but other pieces threw me for a loop. I felt guilty reading this one--it does have a certain pulp fiction quality, but it's enjoyable all the same.
Joe Stamber
On the face of it, Judas Child is about the disappearance of two young girls, but O'Connell develops it into something more. The plot has several connected threads that have been cleverly constructed. From the very beginning, I found the style quite abstract, which I took to be an attempt to keep the reader in the dark. Of course, writers of mysteries and thrillers often want to keep the reader in the dark to a degree, but at times I found it distracting. O'Connell has created an interesting bun ...more
Darcy
Sep 15, 2014 Darcy rated it really liked it
Enjoyed the characters. Story-line difficult but the read was a good one.
Daniela
Sono un po' perplessa su questo romanzo. Da un punto di vista è molto bello, ma c'è qualcosa che non mi convince fino in fondo.
A tratti l'ho trovato confuso, con troppi personaggi. Ho perso il filo più di una volta.
Mentre invece le fasi con le bambine le ho trovate appassionanti.
Alti e bassi che non mi fanno andare più su delle tre stelline.
Le indagini mi sono sembrate troppo superficiali, tante cose capitano un po' per colpi di fortuna un po' perchè tutti sembrano avere un sesto senso al di sop
...more
Stefania
Jul 14, 2015 Stefania rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intanto, sarebbero settordici voti in meno solo per il titolo. Che senso ha il titolo? Nessuno. Ha una così grande rilevanza la storia di Susan nel romanzo? No. Esiste in sottofondo, ma non potrei definire Rouge un protagonista assoluto, ci sono troppe voci narranti in questo romanzo a fare da contrasto. Quindi perché tirare fuori un titolo del genere dall'originale "Judas Child"? Boh. Mistero. Al solito.
Arrivando al dunque, l'ho trovato un romanzo strano.
Più volte mi sono ritrovata a mettere in
...more
Sam Woodfield
I was actually surprised by how much I liked this book. I have found that some of O'Connells other novels have been lacking something but this was actually very well constructed with well developed characters. I also really liked the twists which come out at the end - the wrong suspects, the truth about the scar and what really happens in the cellar! I dont think I really expected anything which occurred in the final stages of the novel, which to me is a really well written crime novel.

I will be
...more
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Born in 1947, Carol O'Connell studied at the California Institute or Arts/Chouinard and the Arizona State University. She lives in New York City.

Series:
* Kathleen Mallory

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