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Faces of Fear    by John Saul order for
Faces of Fear
by John Saul
Order:  USA  Can
Ballantine, 2008 (2008)
Hardcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

What could be worse than your father leaving your mother for another man? Fifteen year-old Allison Shaw is coming to terms with that rather well when her mother marries again. This time she weds THE plastic surgeon of the Beverly Hills scene. In the background, someone is stealing body parts, killing and mutilating his victims to obtain what he wants or needs.

With Faces of Fear as his thirty-fifth novel, author John Saul is no novice to the thriller scene. How he keeps up the pace with one gripping plot after another - and manages to have his readers locking their doors more securely at night and watching their loved ones more closely - is a question only Saul can answer.

Faces of Fear is another winner but, to my mind, not quite as suspenseful as others of his chillers. Somewhere I've read a plot close to his can't remember where. That's not a problem. He brings his own slant to this work and produces a good read. Mother always told me that comparisons are odious. Good to remember.

Anyway, as pieces of women's faces are carved away lips, eyebrows, noses, ears the tension mounts. We can all guess why, just not who - at least in the beginning. It becomes clear not too far into the story. And another culprit is involved. That one is a surprise. There is a question or two that aren't answered for me. But the blockbuster ending is well worth the read.

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