Book Reviews

Book Review: Red Dragon

Title: Red Dragon

Author: Thomas Harris

Publisher: Dutton

Publication Date: November 16 1981


A second family has been massacred by the terrifying serial killer the press has christened “The Tooth Fairy.” Special Agent Jack Crawford turns to the one man who can help restart a failed investigation: Will Graham. Graham is the greatest profiler the FBI ever had, but the physical and mental scars of capturing Hannibal Lecter have caused Graham to go into early retirement. Now, Graham must turn to Lecter for help.


Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

I’m going to start off by saying that this book is dated and as result there are a few lines that are or can be considered offensive.

This book could’ve been a five star read but unfortunately there were multiple small details that I didn’t want to ignore but it was still a great read. The biggest problem I had with this book was the way it was structured, especially speech. Often times it was difficult to tell who was saying what until way down in the conversation. It is almost never said which character said what thing, this could be ignored but a line said by Character A would often time be put in the same in as the description of what Character B is doing.

Another issue I had was that the Point Of View would sometimes which in the middle of an action and I wouldn’t notice until I read a line that says the characters name. Another issue I had with the P.O.V.’s was that we know who the killer is pretty early on in the story because we’re reading from the his P.O.V. quite often and very close to the beginning of the book.

While I have an issue with this, I also like and appreciate it at times. It was pretty interesting to read his thought processes and reading about his past as well as what he does when he’s not, you know killing people, added a layer of depth that I think would’ve been a bit of work to added without his P.O.V. I also appreciate that the fact that Thomas Harris didn’t even try to attempt to get us to sympathize with The Red Dragon. He shows the traumatic experiences the character went through at a young age but he also show that the character has also been this dark. One thing I really loved about reading Red Dragon’s past was the way his young mind processes his dark thoughts and urges.

Reading from Red Dragons’ P.O.V. results in another negative thing. My frustration was multiplied by I don’t know how much because I knew who it was and I knew how close they were to catching him but they wouldn’t listen to me and-

Reading Will’s “normal” thoughts and the way he works out a crime scene etc in his mind was mostly fascinating for me for two reasons. The first reason was seeing how he takes the way his mind works and uses it in the way he does and the second reason is because it is similar to the way my mind works at times and it was exciting to see something like what happens in my mind in words, on paper.

The process of trying to catch the killer was also very enthralling.

The relationship between Will and his wife Molly was refreshing at times and just really nice to read about. (Most of the times). The ending was definitely my least favourite part of the book, but I understand why it was done.

That’s All I Got, Danielle.

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