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Hannibal by Thomas Harris

Hannibal (original 1999; edition 1999)

by Thomas Harris

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6,091None672 (3.35)59
Authors:Thomas Harris
Info:New York, N.Y.: Delacorte Press, c1999.
Collections:Your library

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Hannibal by Thomas Harris (1999)

20th century (29) American (26) American literature (17) cannibalism (42) crime (163) crime fiction (31) FBI (36) fiction (671) first edition (18) Hannibal (30) Hannibal Lecter (144) hardcover (31) horror (349) made into movie (22) movie (26) murder (39) mystery (101) novel (69) own (29) paperback (33) psychology (24) read (95) serial killer (139) series (43) suspense (97) Thomas Harris (33) thriller (362) to-read (39) unread (35) USA (18)

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Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
This is definitely the most brilliant of the trilogy (if you can call it that with 'Hannibal Rising') I love the end... so much better than the movie. ( )
  steadfastreader | Mar 18, 2014 |
Die ersten 2/3 des Buches fand ich absolut langweilig, weil fast gar nichts passiert (das erklärt auch, warum ich mich 2 Jahre nicht dazu motivieren konnte weiterzulesen). Danach wird es aber besser. ( )
  therra | Jul 24, 2013 |
I'm realizing that I really dislike Harris the more I read him and read of him. This was most certainly the worst thing of his that I read. And, shockingly, I actually prefer a lot of the movie changes over the book.

Harris made a pretty big blunder fairly early on. The section chief of Behavioral Science asked Starling if Hannibal "liked her." Um, he's a sociopath, through & through. Sociopaths don't like people, sociopaths don't feel emotions the way the rest of us do. I sincerely hope that the chief of this department would be quite aware of this fact. Otherwise, wow, how did he ever get his job?? And then, this same issue recurs in the end, in another form. While I enjoy the series (it's rare for crime novels to focus so intently on a genius sociopath monster, and to even make him into a character you actually kind of like, and respect (albeit keeping a wary distance); it's different and intriguing), it just gets worse over time. I'm a little worried about reading Hannibal Rising, but since it's supposed to be a prequel, I guess I don't have to worry about Harris stretching trying to make the relationship between Clarice and Hannibal work somehow.

I found a lot of fault with him reading this one, which may be slightly colored by having read Monster of Florence and getting an idea of his personality (which was none too pleasing in the eyes of the Italians he offended), but it's more than that. There was a lot of things, such as his trying to use "fancy" words all the time, rather than how humans actually speak. And I don't mean Lecter, it was the narration doing it. For example Clarice (I believe) passed by a medicine cabinet and it was noted that there was lots of "unguents" instead of just saying salves, I mean come on, no one is impressed by having to find a dictionary for something that does not remotely need a special word! And then there's the fact that, while still ruthless, Lecter is completely not himself about Clarice. And the end, ack, the movie definitely had the right end; the end was so not remotely true to the characters and so frustrating.

I'd really only suggest the serious Lecter fan may want to read this, to finish the story line. But even then, you may just want to stick with the movie. ( )
  PolymathicMonkey | Apr 30, 2013 |
An engrossing book.
However, there are too many revolting and gory details that undermine the basic plot and the ending is just unacceptable. ( )
  Lauren2013 | Apr 2, 2013 |
Man, this book was just terrible. ( )
  AlCracka | Apr 2, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Thomas Harrisprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grimaldi, LauraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Clarice Starling's Mustang boomed up the entrance ramp at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms on Massachusetts Avenue, a headquarters rented from the Reverend Sun Myung Moon in the interest of economy.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 038529929X, Hardcover)

Horror lit's head chef Harris serves up another course in his Hannibal "The Cannibal" Lecter trilogy, and it's a pièce de résistance for those with strong stomachs. In the first book, Red Dragon (filmed as Manhunter), Hannibal diabolically helps the FBI track a fascinating serial killer. (Takes one to know one.) In The Silence of the Lambs, he advises fledgling FBI manhunter Clarice Starling, then makes a bloody, brilliant escape.

Years later, posing as scholarly Dr. Fell, curator of a grand family's palazzo, Hannibal lives the good life in Florence, playing lovely tunes by serial killer/composer Henry VIII and killing hardly anyone himself. Clarice is unluckier: in the novel's action-film-like opening scene, she survives an FBI shootout gone wrong, and her nemesis, Paul Krendler, makes her the fall guy. Clarice is suspended, so, unfortunately, the first cop who stumbles on Hannibal is an Italian named Pazzi, who takes after his ancestors, greedy betrayers depicted in Dante's Inferno.

Pazzi is on the take from a character as scary as Hannibal: Mason Verger. When Verger was a young man busted for raping children, his vast wealth saved him from jail. All he needed was psychotherapy--with Dr. Lecter. Thanks to the treatment, Verger is now on a respirator, paralyzed except for one crablike hand, watching his enormous, brutal moray eel swim figure eights and devour fish. His obsession is to feed Lecter to some other brutal pets.

What happens when the Italian cop gets alone with Hannibal? How does Clarice's reunion with Lecter go from macabre to worse? Suffice it to say that the plot is Harris's weirdest, but it still has his signature mastery of realistic detail. There are flaws: Hannibal's madness gets a motive, which is creepy but lessens his mystery. If you want an exact duplicate of The Silence of the Lambs's Clarice/Hannibal duel, you'll miss what's cool about this book--that Hannibal is actually upstaged at points by other monsters. And if you think it's all unprecedentedly horrible, you're right. But note that the horrors are described with exquisite taste. Harris's secret recipe for success is restraint. --Tim Appelo

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:39:37 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

A showdown between two psychopathic killers with a beautiful FBI agent caught in the middle. From his respirator, Mason Verger orders the capture of Hannibal Lecter, the man who put him there, and the bait is Clarice Starling with whom Lecter crossed swords in The Silence of the Lambs.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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