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Billy por Whitley Streiber
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Billy (original 1990; edição 1990)

por Whitley Streiber (Autor)

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2397113,760 (3.3)2
Twelve-year-old is snatched from his home by a psychopath and held prisoner under his house.
Membro:jerfjerf
Título:Billy
Autores:Whitley Streiber (Autor)
Informação:G. P. Putnam's (1990), Edition: Book Club (BCE/BOMC)
Coleções:A sua biblioteca
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Billy por Whitley Strieber (Author) (1990)

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Mostrando 1-5 de 7 (seguinte | mostrar todos)
This is probably not a book you want to pick up on accident. To say it's not light reading, even for those drawn to darker stories, is an understatement.

TW: depicts physical, sexual, and psychological torture to children
(John Wayne Gacy may have been loose inspiration)

The gist: a young boy is abducted by stranger who is a pedophiliac psychopath. He is not the first child this man has taken as you come to find out, but he is the only one to survive.

The boy's abductor sees Billy as a way to complete his family and vacillates between a disturbed fantasy of family and nurturing with torture and abuse.

At first, the child is terrified and despondent over being taken from his actual family as one would expect. Throughout the book though, his survival DEPENDS on him playing along. And he does.

There are several opportunities for his captor to be caught or for Billy to escape him. He isn't; Billy doesn't.

Without spoiling how the story ends, it's quite possible it might be the most chilling and disturbing part. And that's saying something.

This was once a NYT bestseller, which I realize doesn't necessarily mean anything. I don't recommend this. Not because it's poorly told, but because there's nothing redeeming about it. This isn't a thrill ride, it's darkness for it's own sake, no feel good about it. I gave it away when finished--it's not something I want on my bookshelf. ( )
  angiestahl | Aug 24, 2018 |
The Basics

A psychopathic kidnapper by the name of Barton sets his sights on Billy. In Barton’s twisted mind, Billy is going to be his salvation, his happy family he’s always wanted. Billy is abducted from his home, his family desperate to find him, as Barton tries to convince Billy he is the only family he’ll ever need.

My Thoughts

Wow, this book is dark. I read a lot of dark fiction, but there’s something about throwing a kid into the mix that takes it to a whole new level. This was published in 1990, and being that I was seven at the time, I can recall the bombardment of PSAs and after school specials about not talking to strangers, telling your parents when a grown-up approaches you, how to deal with all the various scenarios and everything that could go wrong. This book fits right in with the atmosphere of that time, when parents were learning to lock their doors and watch that guy who’s getting too close. Maybe Strieber was inspired by the surge in interest in educating children about the dangers of the world, but it’s definitely a more adult perspective with some very adult terrors.

The real guts of this story lie with Barton and Billy. Barton’s delusions and mood swings and Billy’s struggles to deal with his situation when he’s really too young to be asked to handle something of this magnitude. I’m not going to pretend a book this tense with this subject matter is for everyone, but if you can handle a thriller where the victim in question is a kid, it’s quite a page turner. For obvious reasons, because you’re not going to be satisfied until you know what happens to Billy, for better or worse. But it also happens to be a thriller that’s fairly well-handled and brings, well, the thrills. So many books in the genre don’t that this one stood out to me as a big victory.

My one complaint would probably be the family. We jump back to them every so often to find out how they’re doing and if they’ve found any new clues about where Billy might be. And the result is the mother completely breaks down and becomes the wretched cliche of the “hysterical woman” that I always hate to see coming in these books. Strieber insists that she’s the rock of this family, the foundation, the sturdy one, as she has one breakdown after another. It’s understandable that a parent faced with this tragedy would be inconsolable, but the number of times that she squared her shoulders and then immediately lost her cool was ludicrous. Show, don’t tell. If she’s strong, then show her being strong. Don’t tell me she is and then contradict yourself.

I admire this story for not pulling a single punch. It goes there. That’s a warning as much as it is praise, but for my part, I like a book that doesn’t flinch. Because it wants me to flinch first.

Final Rating

4/5 ( )
1 vote Nickidemus | Sep 18, 2014 |
Billy is a haunting, suspense novel that tackles the terrifying topic of stranger abduction. I tore through this book under the perception that it was based on a true story. After reading it I found it hard to believe that the sequence of events outlined could possibly be factual, especially based on the statistics surrounding abductions by psychopaths. I come to find out that it is, if anything, loosely based on John Wayne Gacy, and that it is in no way an accurate depiction of his gruesome crimes.

Regardless of whether it was a little hard to believe at times, it was still a captivating read, and although this is not a genre that I usually pick up, I enjoyed the writing and its quick pace.
  PamelaReads | Aug 5, 2011 |
Billy is a haunting, suspense novel that tackles the terrifying topic of stranger abduction. I tore through this book under the perception that it was based on a true story. After reading it I found it hard to believe that the sequence of events outlined could possibly be factual, especially based on the statistics surrounding abductions by psychopaths. I come to find out that it is, if anything, loosely based on John Wayne Gacy, and that it is in no way an accurate depiction of his gruesome crimes.

Regardless of whether it was a little hard to believe at times, it was still a captivating read, and although this is not a genre that I usually pick up, I enjoyed the writing and its quick pace.

Check out more of my reviews at BookSnakeReviews ( )
  PeachyTO | Apr 7, 2010 |
De twaalfjarige Billy Neary wordt uit zijn slaapkamer ontvoerd door de psychopaat Barton Royal. Zijn leven lang heeft Barton verlangd naar een zoon die hem bemint. Billy is dan ook niet het eerste kind dat hij ontvoert.

Billy's ouders en zusje zetten, samen met politie en FBI, een niet aflatende zoektocht in om hem uit handen van de gevaarlijke sadist te bevrijden.

De onschuldige en naiëve Billy bindt ondertussen de strijd aan met de gitzwarte krachten van het kwaad... ( )
  tantanel | Jan 16, 2008 |
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Twelve-year-old is snatched from his home by a psychopath and held prisoner under his house.

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