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The Child

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  5,465 ratings  ·  449 reviews
My name is Simon. I’m 10 years old. I’m a serial killer. Robert Stern (Rupert Penry-Jones), a successful defense attorney, doesn’t know what lies in store for him when he agrees to meet a new client in a derelict estate on the outskirts of Berlin. Stern is more than surprised, when his old love interest and professional nurse Carina (Emilia Fox) presents him a ten year old ...more
Audible Audio
Published 2014 by Audible (first published 2007)
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Average rating 3.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,465 ratings  ·  449 reviews

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Jun 03, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: suspense
I liked the short chapters and the intriguing mystery around the 10-year-old boy pretending he killed people in a previous life. I was satisfied with most parts of the ending, but the story was sometimes confusing and too far-fatched. A fast, but forgettable read.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The only problem with reading a German book in translation is that most of its reviews are in German so I cannot read them! But many of the ratings are 4 or even 5 stars so I know I am in good company.

The child of the title is just ten years old and he claims to have murdered someone 15 years ago. He even knows all the details. Strange indeed and it just gets stranger. As someone who is not convinced about reincarnation I had a few misgivings at this stage, but things rattled along at such a pac
When defence lawyer, Robert Stern agreed to meet a client away from the office, he didn’t expect his ex-girlfriend, Carina to arrive with a ten-year-old boy – in an ambulance. Simon Sachs was chronically ill and Carina was his nurse. But strange events had begun to occur after Simon had been hypnotized on his birthday. When he told Robert that he’d murdered a person fifteen years prior – and he WAS only ten – then explained where the body of that victim would be, Robert was baffled. He definitel ...more
Jul 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers

This book has been portrayed as The Child is a darkly twisting, page-turning thriller that will make your heart pound with adrenaline and I can verify that that statement is correct!

I have been sat intently absolutely oblivious of whatever has happened around me while I have had my nose between the pages of this book. I kid you not.

It starts out Intriguing which leads onto exciting which then leads onto unputdownable because you are literally glued to the spot.

There were several times
This is a strange and compelling book. Attorney Robert Stern is waiting at an abandon industrial park for his friend Carina to show up. She sounded desperate for his help. She finally arrives in an ambulance with a 10 year old boy, Simon Sachs. Simon requested a lawyer because he knows that in a previous life, he was a serial killer; and before he reveals where the bodies are buried, he wants legal help.

And so it begins. I read this book quickly because it is such a unique premise of past lives,
Andrew Smith
May 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my second experience of listening to an Audible Original Drama, and once again I was impressed by the quality of production. Having a whole cast of actors together with additional sound effects really does enrich the whole experience.

Again, this drama was based on a Sebastian Fitzek novel. The author, I'm fast discovering, is very adept at developing unusual and gripping plots that, although complex, are very cleverly constructed. In this tale, a ten year old boy claims he murdered a nu
Linda Strong
Jan 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
Robert and his ex-wife l lost a baby to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome 10 years ago. Robert is depressed and still grieving while Sophie has moved on, remarried and is now mother to twin girls.

An ax-girlfriend who works at a local hospital contacts Robert one evening, sounding frantic. She demands that he meet her ... she has a client for him and its imperative that he see this client NOW.

Much to his surprise, the client turns out to be Simon Sachs .... he's 10 years old and he says that he killed
Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
Jun 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Crime Fiction Fans, Psychological Thriller Fans
This was one of those books where I was expecting one thing and got another, so my advice is to go into it with an open mind, a blank canvas. A child confesses to murder, okay I am in, let's go, page one...

This for me was a bit of a hybrid of crime and psychological thriller. The plot in itself sounded fascinating and was what drew me to the book in the first place.

My name is Simon. I'm 10 years old. I'm a serial killer. Robert Stern, a successful defence lawyer, doesn't know what lies in store
Jul 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: foreign-authors
Is this far fetched? Yes!
Is this a page turner? You better believe it!
I have never read so many chapters that left me hanging, wondering what next.
Only one way to find out, read the next one, and the next one, etc, etc. Fortunately the chapters are short.

When Simon Sachs, a 10 year old boy, asks Robert Stern, an attorney, to be his lawyer, Robert Stern wants to know why. Why, because Simon believes he killed a bad person 15 years ago. He now needs legal representation.
“That’s not possible” Stern
This was my first Audible Dramatization, and if the rest are as poorly produced as this one, I think I'll skip the rest.

The production felt like it only acted out part of the book, and I had the feeling I was missing huge chunks of the story. It was very jerky, like watching bits and pieces of a movie and missing the logical steps and vital details. I haven't read the actual book, but I sure hope the book isn't like this, too.

The acting was okay, but the sound effects were terrible, and often ov
Charlotte Ashcroft
Great story really enjoyed this 😊
Liz Barnsley
Blimey this is a bit of a rollercoaster read, a book that grips you from the first lines and just simply won’t let go. A dastardly, twisty turny tale that will leave your head spinning.

Robert Stern is a defence attorney, highly successful but with a huge loss in his past that drives him to work excessively and not think too much about anything else. When an ex girlriend asks him to help a dying child who believes he was a killer in another life, Robert is sceptical. But when the bodies start pil
Riju Ganguly
This one took me by surprise.
The blurb, and the first couple of chapters made me think that this is going to be a novel dealing with murder, reincarnation, and all other aspects of life/afterlife that enrich parapsychology books.
It wasn't. Instead it became one of the darkest and most brutal crime thrillers that I have read.
And, it was so full of improbable stuff, that wilful suspension of disbelief became mandatory.
At the end, everything went down in flashes, with the explanations coming thick
Laura Tenfingers
This was alright, but didn't rock my world. It was good enough that I'll definitely give the author another try though.

This is a psychological thriller with some paranormal ideas sprinkled throughout. I felt a lot of it was pretty farfetched and distracting instead of engaging.

I probably should have started with one of his higher-rated books but I'll try one of those next.
Bon Tom
Mar 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It's a complex, fantastically well written, psychological thriller. Really, the writting is 10/10. Wow. ...more
Miss Bookiverse
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Yvonne (It's All About Books)

Finished reading: May 29th 2020

“But he wasn't afraid of burglars, only of observers: of people who might see through his carefully constructed façade of expensive suits, shiny cars and smart offices with a view of the Brandenburg Gate. If they did, they would discern the empty husk that was Robert Stern's soul.”

(view spoiler)
Description: Robert Stern, a successful defence lawyer, doesn't know what lies in store for him when he agrees to meet a new client in a derelict estate on the outskirts of Berlin. To his astonishment, the defendant is a ten-year-old boy - Simon - a fragile child with a chronic illness who insists that he was a murderer in a former life. Stern's surprise quickly turns to horror as he searches the cellar Simon has directed him to and discovers the skeletal remains of a man, the skull split with a ...more
Oct 22, 2020 rated it liked it
I must admit to buying this audio book because it was a special offer. The performances are excellent, as was expected. The story was actually believable, but unfortunately went into unexpected dark places, despite reading the basis of this book before commencing it. You have been warned.
 ⚣ Marco ⚣
Nov 05, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
~4.5 stars~
Jul 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
I listened to this as the full cast audiobook version and it was sooo good! Probably one of the best, if not THE best audiobook production I've ever listened to. I wish all audiobooks were this enjoyable. Highly recommend! ...more
Syeda Sumayya Tariq
t started out as your regular crime thriller, but it got real dark and twisty towards the end (TW for child abuse). And since it's a translation of the original German novel, I felt a bit of a hindrance in the flow of the words, but the chapters were really short and kind of ended in a surprise which made it real easy to get through.⁣⁣
Although it's a thriller, there were strong, constant hints at supernatural aspects (convenient much?), which was basically why I struggled with it a little bit.
Pat (not getting friend updates currently)
I wasn't too sure what to make of this book - was it going to be about paranormal phenomena or was there a more mundane explanation? A boy confesses to a bunch of murders in a past life. He seems to know details that he should have no way of knowing. No one seemed to be convinced by the boy's story so it was hard for the reader to "believe". It was a sort of interesting plot but not riveting or entirely convincing. I think it could have been done a bit better. ...more
Mar 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wasn't expecting to be that fast but it was so thrilling i couldnt put it away. ...more
Dec 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my second time around with this author the first being The Eye Collector. This time around we are dealing with past lives. It's a topic I have an interest in but cant quiet find my self believing in. I think it should make for good plot devise in terms of a crime book. Can we be held responsible for something we did in a past life . Or does your soul get a do over when it gets reborn.

Stern comes across as a stern defence lawyer who has seen everything in his time. He has defend some o
Jennifer Mae
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"Death is not a phase of existence but only an intermediate occurence, a transition from one form of endless being to another."

Wilhelm Von Humboldt

'Do you believe in a life after death, Herr Stern?'

The Child by Sebastian Fitzek was an endless excitement that will even make your heart race from the overwhelming mystery, crime and thrill if you're a fan of it just like me. I was glad that I took the advice of reader that I should read it empty handed like no idea of what is it that awaits for me a
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Okay, it's a dramatisation, a departure from reading or listening to audiobooks, but as far as I'm concerned one step up from 4DX, Imax, 3D, blockbusting movies. A life time of reading has retained my childhood imagination and fine tuned it, so that special effects, CGI, panavisioned, technicolored vistas are far more vivid than a flat screen can throw at me.
'The Child' is an adaptation of Germany's top thriller writer Sebastian Fitzek's 'Das Kind.' It has an A-list cast, incredible sound effect
Gillian Kaney
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Sebastian Fitzek is fast becoming one if my favourite authors and that's all thanks to Audible translating these truly gripping and fantastic stories into English so that those of us that want speak speak fluent German can enjoy them aswell.

Once again the voice actors were amazing, these audio dramas really are put together so well.

This wasn't as great as Amok or Passenger 23 but I still thoroughly enjoyed it.

can't wait for the next one!

highly recommend.
Oct 14, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I have to stop with Audible Originals but the cast on this one and the premise sucked me in. The production quality is awful and often, background noise drowned out the dialogue. It's set in Germany but everyone is British and I'm generally not sure what happened in the book. The problem is I didn't care to rewind and find out. This was a waste of my time.

Skip this one.
Kate McDougall Sackler
Fast paced thriller that I just couldn’t put down. Great characters and a bit of mystery left at the end. Looking forward to more from this author.
2019 reading challenge: a book from a genre you want to read more of
Alphabet challenge: G-Germany
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Sebastian Fitzek was born in Berlin in 1971. After going to law school and being promoted to LL.D., he decided against a juridical profession for a creative occupation in the media. After the traineeship at a private radio station he switched to the competition as head of entertainment and became chief editor later on, thereafter becoming an independent executive consultant and format developer fo ...more

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