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All the Beautiful Sinners

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  266 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
Nazareth, Texas
Deputy Sheriff Jim Doe plunges into a renegade manhunt after the town's sheriff is gunned down. But unbeknownst to him, the suspect--an American Indian--holds chilling connections to the disappearance of Doe's sister years before. And the closer Doe gets to the fugitive's trail, the more he realizes that his own involvement in the case is hardly coincidenta
Hardcover, 486 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by Rugged Land (first published April 8th 2003)
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(showing 1-30)
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Jan 14, 2010 Gordon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I knew this one was gonna be complex and I wanted to reduce the confusion I often suffer from smaller reading doses, so I embraced masochism and read this in three days.

Absolutely amazing. Rich prose, verby — full of velvety goodness. Even some of the subplots that at first only seem to serve as character-building devices end up being plot-relevant, so pay attention throughout. This may be the most character names ever introduced in one book, Bible excluded. . . Part of me wishes AtBS were about
Richard Thomas
Feb 23, 2010 Richard Thomas rated it it was amazing
Shelves: re-read, neo-noir
The opening of this book haunts me to this day. This is his best work, in my opinion, but that's like saying sausage is the best pizza. It is a complicated, layered, intense book and it only gets better with each read.
Jamie Grefe
Sep 01, 2012 Jamie Grefe rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literary-fiction
This was so good I almost missed my train stop, forgot to give the dogs water, had trouble sleeping, missed the afternoon rain--didn't even realize it was raining until the phone call--and still have shivers thinking about the Tin Man.

If you've read other SGJ novels or stories, you know what to expect or you know that your expectations will be challenged. He's got a sharp mind and ability to make a horror/crime/thriller shine with moments of extreme beauty and sensitivity. Not to mention, the ma
Jeremy Darby
Sep 26, 2011 Jeremy Darby rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing. It's really hard to describe without going into too many details, and if you go into fewer details, it takes away from the quality of the story itself.

The book is tagged as "thriller fiction," and the main story involves tracking a serial killer around the country, so you could say it's a crime/mystery novel as well. However, Jones incorporates a lot of unique style into his writing and bends the genre in such a way that it holds its own in the literary world (as opposed t
Colin McKay Miller
Jan 06, 2009 Colin McKay Miller rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Hardcore thriller fans
Shelves: novels
I really wanted to like All the Beautiful Sinners because I really like Stephen Graham Jones. Not just the man—he’s really nice in person—but the idea of the man: He’s incredibly prolific and writes over several genres, this book being a thriller. By the end though, all the desire I had to enjoy All the Beautiful Sinners had morphed into disappointment.

Deputy Sheriff Jim Doe, a Blackfeet Indian, chases after a killer who gunned down the town’s sheriff and has a history of abducting children. Th
Jul 21, 2014 Morgan rated it it was ok
I thought because I enjoyed films about crime thrillers, I'd also enjoy a crime thriller novel. So either I was dead wrong, or this book just wasn't that great a thriller.

Don't get me wrong, it's well written, but for some reason "All the Beautiful Sinners" could not keep my attention, and plodding through it felt like a chore. A good thriller needs to keep you on the edge of your seat, grab your attention so you can't put it down until you've read it cover to cover. And while there were definit
Nov 27, 2015 Jonathan rated it liked it
Recommends it for: people who like thrillers, fragments, what-the-fuck-plot-direction
Shelves: 2015, reread
I've read a whole heap of SGJ's short stories (He has a lot of them!) and more often than not I've loved them. However, I've only read two of his novels (It Came From Del Rio and The Least of My Scars) both of which I wasn't totally blown away by. Though I do think It Came From Del Rio needs, deserves, a second read through.

I'd heard that All The Beautiful Sinners was his best and, since, when SGJ is on form (like in the amazing, 'After The People Lights Have Gone Off') he is, to me, one of the
Jeff Rowe
Feb 09, 2014 Jeff Rowe rated it it was ok
Shelves: neo-noir
This was on someone's list of neo-noir stories. It certainly is noir. It’s pretty surreal so I guess that counts as neo. But fundamentally this story is a standard tale about cops chasing a serial killer who always stays one step ahead. That is what irked me the entire way through. The villain is pretty one dimensional. There’s no real moral ambiguity in his actions or any real way to sympathize with him. He’s insane. That’s it. There’s some explanation of his childhood which is supposed to tell ...more
Carlie George
Jun 14, 2013 Carlie George rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this more than I ultimately did. It has a great opening, and I was drawn in to the story, even when I didn't know exactly what was going on -- the writing is almost deceptively simple, but God help you if you aren't paying attention to every word -- but I felt the backstory and the plot moved from complicated to convoluted. Sometimes, it felt all over the map -- literally as well as figuratively, I suppose. I liked the main protagonist, Jim Doe, but I was often frustrated by a l ...more
Judy A
Apr 19, 2013 Judy A rated it it was amazing
With its pyrotechnic plot, I felt like I was in a twilight state while reading this thriller with a Native-American theme. Its difficult to read once without returning to the beginning to devour the tale again with the ending and whole story known. I think one almost has to read it twice and I love that about this book but others hated that. Jim Doe, a Deputy Sheriff and Blackfeet Nation Indian (same as the killer) keeps finding he is mistaken for the killer, and that he this case found him on p ...more
Kyle Aisteach
Jun 12, 2012 Kyle Aisteach rated it liked it
Definitely a compelling book, though the Kirkus review at the time it came out is spot-on that it suffers a lot in the comprehensibility department. Since the story drifts in and out of the minds of some very, very messed-up people, I'm wiling to roll with the "hard to understand" aspect of it. However, it left too many unresolved issues for me to really feel enamored of it.

That said, I appreciated the way Jones wove a great deal of Native American mythos into a modern serial-killer tale. The en
May 03, 2013 Joey rated it it was ok
I think this might actually be a genre preference issue. I appreciated that the plot was complex and unexpected, but I think I might just not enjoy serial killer mysteries. I read this right after The Autobiography of Malcolm X and it's fictional murders seemed contrived and staged in comparison. The dialogue, particularly when the villains spot, was especially contrived. I was even distracted by hot rapidly the book moved, which most people would complain about. I guess I'm just not used to thr ...more
Dec 07, 2013 Cheryl rated it really liked it
whoa. Don't read before going to bed...but then, I couldn't help myself because I couldn't stop reading. Complex, beautifully written. I borrowed a copy from the library, but am going to buy a copy to keep here at home.

Tornadoes, disappearing children--both dead and alive--FBI, serial killers are all in this mystery/horror/thriller/hard to pin into one category (a good thing) novel.

For me, hard to pin down words to accurately describe this novel, which means--you need to read it for yourself. :
Jan 17, 2014 Charisma rated it it was ok
Good cop bad cop shinanigans that is a little unsettling because of the act of the killings but.. meh. I don't know if I should ease it with watching cop series or maybe I didn't like it.

Although this written good. Very calm if I may say. It feels like walking along the road on a calm, sunny day. That's how I felt reading this. He was intricate in making it feel like he got you where he wants to.

But still slightly boring. It almost felt like everything was prolonged.

Sep 30, 2014 Kathryn rated it it was ok
I couldn't get into it; a lot of violence, but the writing--though good--felt dense and confusing, with many time shifts, and I couldn't find a character to anchor me in the story, so I gave up. Maybe I just don't have the patience right now. Might be a good book for somebody, sometime, but not me.
Mauoijenn ~ *Mouthy Jenn* ~
Stephen Graham Jones does not disappoint with this book. I enjoyed this a lot. His writing just sucks me in and grabs on for dear life. I couldn't put this one down. Looking forward to reading more of his work.
Joe Buckler
Jan 05, 2015 Joe Buckler rated it it was amazing
They don't get much better than this. Quit reading reviews and start reading this book.
Jun 08, 2014 Luke rated it it was amazing
Jon Edgar
Oct 22, 2014 Jon Edgar rated it really liked it
Mr Jones is a great and versatile author. This is his first novel. He can write anything: Crime, hooror, suspense, name it! JE
Charles Dee Mitchell
Jan 13, 2010 Charles Dee Mitchell rated it it was ok
Shelves: contemporary-lit
Far too long. The absurdly complicated story is made even more so by its structure and the prose itself.
Erinhill Hill-Dowdle
Jul 09, 2013 Erinhill Hill-Dowdle rated it it was amazing
Disjointed, haunting and thrilling. This is the story of mass murder, Stockholm-syndrome at its worst and what we do for those we've lost, including ourselves.
Jun 06, 2007 Rosie rated it it was ok
Pretty disturbing, very hard to understand. Did not enjoy this book very much.
Mar 21, 2007 Katie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
it was difficult to get into this book, you def. have to be a fan of thrillers
Jun 13, 2012 Rebekkila marked it as to-read
I registered a book at!
Apr 05, 2010 Glenn rated it liked it
Had a decent plotline but was a very difficult book to follow.
Greg Marullo
Greg Marullo rated it really liked it
May 08, 2014
Jake Rigby
Jake Rigby rated it really liked it
Jan 28, 2012
Bob Pastorella
Bob Pastorella rated it it was amazing
Jan 21, 2011
K rated it did not like it
Aug 08, 2015
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I'm confused... 3 5 Jan 02, 2015 06:28PM  
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Stephen Graham Jones is the author of fifteen novels and six collections. He really likes werewolves and slashers. Favorite novels change daily, but Valis and Love Medicine and Lonesome Dove and It and The Things They Carried are all usually up there somewhere. Stephen lives in Boulder, Colorado. It's a big change from the West Texas he grew up in. He's married with a couple kids, and probably one ...more
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