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Acceleration by Graham McNamee


by Graham McNamee

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Acceleration is the short tale of Duncan, who lives in a low rent apartment block in Toronto called "The Jungle" and has secured, for the long hot summer, a job rooting through the lost and found objects of the Toronto transit authority. Among the assorted and unexpected detritus left behind on subways and city buses, Duncan uncovers the diary of a man who Duncan supposes is a serial killer, or at least about to become one.

Faced with police that don't seem to care and a desire to atone for the last time he failed to be a hero, Duncan feels a responsibility to seek out the author of the morbid book. As the summer wears on, Duncan and his friend Vinny embark on an ill-advised quest to find the near-felon that has haunted Duncan's thoughts ever since he laid eyes on the book. In the end, of course, Duncan gets much more than he bargained for when he decided to take the law into his own hands.

The first thought I had upon finishing Acceleration is that, in a world where a lot of YA seems to cater to a female audience, Acceleration is definitely a book that would hold a strong appeal for boys. It's a short, quick-reading mystery populated with well-written and believable male characters out to prove their worth in a world that doesn't promise much to them. For me, it required a bit more suspension of disbelief than I had to offer, but for its target audience, there is more than enough realism to satisfy.

Acceleration is also a great book for all the Criminal Minds fans out there. McNamee, it seems, wrote an interesting mystery about profiling serial killers before profiling serial killers became big entertainment. Along with offering a fast-moving story, McNamee introduces the basics of criminal profiling in a way that is instructive without being boring. While Acceleration probably won't be in the running for my favorite book of the year, Duncan's world, for one summer at least, is vivid and dangerous and makes for quick, enjoyable reading that is still highly recommendable. ( )
  yourotherleft | Sep 2, 2015 |
Duncan is 17 and lives in the Jungle, a blue collar apartment complex in Toronto. He has had a run in with the law and now his father found him summer work in the lost & found department of the city's transit authority. He also is haunted by memories of not being able to save a young girl that drowned while he was swimming nearby. As Duncan works his menial job he is rummaging through lost items and comes across a plain journal. He begins to leaf through and notices some disturbing items about animal abuse. As he looks further he sees the author of the journal starting to talk about hunting women. Duncan is concerned and begins to enlist the help of his friends Wayne & Vinny to try and unravel the mystery and find this budding psycho. He tries to alert the police but they see him as a waste of their time so Duncan decides it is up to him to redeem himself and find this possible killer before it's too late. Using clues in the journal and the help of his friends Duncan gets deeper and deeper into this disturbing situation. Will the author of the journal really kill? Is Duncan too late? Can he atone for the mistakes of his past? A great, quick read that keeps you turning the pages. ( )
  alsparks324 | Jan 27, 2015 |
guy book with fast-paced adventure peppered with sarcastic humor ( )
  lindap69 | Apr 5, 2013 |
Decent action/suspense mystery. I can see the appeal and I'll probably add it to my booktalks list, but it's not my favorite thing I've read (or listened to). ( )
  librarybrandy | Mar 31, 2013 |
I liked this fast moving, sometimes edgy mystery. It is about a young teen who finds a diary of a killer wile working in the lost and found of the transit system. The police do not take him seriously so he sets out to find the man with his two friends. Not an action that I would recommend but it works for them. ( )
  WickedWoWestwood | Mar 3, 2013 |
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For Mom and Dad, thanks for everything. And thanks to the Canada Council for the Arts for their support.
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This is a nightmare.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Seventeen-year-old Duncan takes a job at the lost-and-found station of the Toronto subway. There he discovers the misplaced diary of a budding serial killer, and realizes he must identify and stop the diarist before someone dies.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0440238366, Mass Market Paperback)

It’s a hot, hot summer, and in the depths of the Toronto Transit Authority’s Lost and Found, 17-year-old Duncan is cataloging lost things and sifting through accumulated junk. And between Jacob, the cranky old man who runs the place, and the endless dusty boxes overflowing with stuff no one will ever claim, Duncan’s just about had enough. Then he finds a little leather book. It’s a diary filled with the dark and dirty secrets of a twisted mind, a serial killer stalking his prey in the subway. And Duncan can’t make himself stop reading.

What would you do with a book like that? How far would you go to catch a madman?

And what if time was running out. . . .

From the Hardcover edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:58 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Stuck working in the Lost and Found of the Toronto Transit Authority for the summer, seventeen-year-old Duncan finds the diary of a serial killer and sets out to stop him.

» see all 2 descriptions

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