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Kill Me (2007)

Kill Me (2007)
3.9 of 5 Votes: 5
0451220714 (ISBN13: 9780451220714)
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Kill Me (2007)
Kill Me (2007)

About book: As I read this I told friends: I’ve been reading a really great book and as I was getting deeper and deeper all I could concentrate on was the hope that writer—and this was my first time reading him—didn’t fuck up the ending after doing such a great job on the premise and build up of the story. It was poised on thebrink for quite some time. It really could have gone poorly. I am VERY pleased to announce though, that I was not disappointed in the slightest and the ending of the book was not what I thought/expected it might be—good or bad—and most importantly, I walked away from the book truly glad that I’d read it and very satisfied with the entire thing.The book is Kill Me. Here’s the premise: This guy, this incredibly rich, successful guy goes on a ski trip with his buddies and has a terrible accident. He’s VERY fortunate to survive with only minor injuries but that accident and the combination of a friend of his recently having another thrill-seeker accident that left him in a vegetative state in a hospital bed prompts him to sincerely tell his friends that if that ever happens to him that he wants one of them to kill him. They hem and haw as guy friends will when a serious topic is forced upon them during play time, but it’s a serious request. So, one of his friends approaches him later and tells him about a secret organization he knows about who is set up to do just what he’s asked. You set the parameters and if you cross the threshold of those parameters, they will kill you.Our hero, a control freak, jumps at the chance and signs up. He is also hasty and foolish in setting his parameters, which isn’t wise because once payment is made, the contract cannot be cancelled or revoked. I don’t want to give the whole plot away so I’ll stop there but I’ll tell you that this book is one you should find and read immediately. There were a lot of things that impressed me about it. The storytelling is impeccable. It’s a really great story. It’s interesting, it makes you think; it’s exciting; it’s mysterious. The story alone is worth the read. This is a book where the writing and the structure of the book are amazing as well and they actually play a part in the storytelling. This book is not told in sequential order. It’s not a linear plot. You jump all over the place in time and this is a DANGEROUS writing style because in the hands of a poor writer, or one that doesn’t know where he or she is going in the end, it almost always becomes a distraction and screws up the flow of the story.In the hands of a good writer though, it can be brilliant. In this case, it is brilliant. Every time you can’t wait to turn the page and see what happens next in a linear context, White moves you to another time and place and once he gets you going, you go from cliffhanger to cliffhanger and can’t even be disappointed about leaving one story arc because you get to find out what happened in the last one. I just can’t even stress how well it’s done. And in this case, the excellent technical writing plays a major role in the excellent storytelling and the combination makes for a brilliant book.I think the thing that impressed me most was the way this book brought up so many great issues and classic literary themes: man’s inhumanity toward man, the value of life and hope, it’s a morality play, it’s a Greek tragedy—it’s so full it could have easily burst but it never does. And all this in a serial book! All this in the 13th book in a series where, in most cases, it’s nothing more than formula writing, rehashing an old story in a new way. That’s not the case here. This is fresh and new. You can drop in, never having read another book in the series and not miss out on anything. In fact, Dr. Alan Gregory plays only a very minor role in this book—and important one, but a minor one. This isn’t his story.If this hadn’t been part of a series, it would have been received quite differently. And for all I know it was well received—I truly don’t know. But this book should be MUCH more popular than it is now. There should be a movie—a movie is a no brainer here. Steven Soderbergh needs to direct it. The name of this book should be as easily recognizable as the Dan Brown books that were such a rage a few summers ago. I know a lot of people think that was crap writing, but the story was compelling and it captivated people. This book is superbly written and the story is just as compelling and it has all those elements people love (though nothing religious or spiritual) in a good book and it honestly needs to be more popular than it is now.

I found this book on a library's used-book shelf. I had forgotten how much I liked White's reading- I had read a few of the Alan Gregory novels a few years ago and really enjoyed them. I very much enjoy recurring characters normally (I'm very much into the John Lescroart Dismas Hardy-Abe Glitsky series). This installment was the most unusual I've read to date. White takes some chances here, which is good to see, but with mixed results. The story revolves around an interesting premise: a person able to afford it can end their life on their own terms by enrolling in a program that will kill you once certain parameters are crossed (i.e. accident leaving that person in a vegetative state, terminal/chronic illness, etc. The main character is a patient of Alan Gregory, and after learning that one of his friends would do no better than live in a vegetative state, he enrolls in the program. He winds up having a horrible accident while skiing, and shortly after enrolling in the program develops a brain aneurysm that would be very difficult to operate on. The early part of the book reads faster than the later part, which features some adventure scenes. The early part is more psychological, and it is fascinating to read about the thought process of someone enrolling in a program- could someone enrolling in this program be called a coward? How would such a program work without arousing suspicion? Overall, it's a good-but-not-great read. The lead character is well-written and fleshed out, and the story of his long-lost son definitely makes the plot more fascinating, but I'm not sure about the use of Alan Gregory in this novel. Gregory is a background character, and it almost seemed as if White was forced to include him.
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Cool setting - Denver! I think that my enjoyment was increased as I recognized many of the settings in the text. The chase scene through the Eisenhower Tunnel on I-70 was quite exhilarating, if memory serves. I did not have too much sympathy for the main character - I am rather tired of men behaving badly. I am glad I found this review in my other book, as I shared then that I would read more from this author. I shall add him to my summer reading list - perhaps there are some ebooks that I can get on my Nook from Mr. White.
Greg Van Vorhis
This book raised some really good questions, like how you would face death if you were given "bad news," and is there ever NOT unfinished business? When do you let go? When should you live for others and when should you die for yourself? And many more.The problems with the book were also many. For instance, as a middle-class American, I failed to have much empathy at all for the main character. It's difficult to do that when you are struggling to pay the mortgage in this economy while the story's main character spends most of his money on jet fuel and adventure vacations.Another problem is the main character's disconnect from his family. Sure, he talks about them a lot, and with nothing but honor and love. He is even faithful to his wife despite temptation. But still, there is no real relationship there. They are just people in the guy's life, people in the narrative, like the paper boy or the guy who spends his Sundays sitting in the local box store people-watching in anyone else's story. His family - with the exception of the Prodigal Son - are made of paper and nothing more.And still, there were jaw-dropping, breath-catching moments. Predictable, yes. But jaw-dropping nonetheless. I caught my breath for a full 60 seconds when I figured out the book's big reveal about 50 pages before it happened.Worth reading once, but not worth the second look.
“Kill Me” has an interesting premise – an insurance that you will be killed if you cross a defined health threshold. Whether that threshold is the final stages of cancer or an accident that leaves you a living vegetable – you decide. Once that threshold is crossed, the “company” to which you paid lots of money takes you out. “The End” is usually staged as an accident or natural event to avoid suspicion. This service of Death Angels is for the very wealthy, so in this tale we have a wealthy man i
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