Taking Lives

Publisher: Vintage
Martin Arkenhout found his true calling on a lonely Florida highway -- with a sharp rock to the skull of an injured friend. He didn't just take the boy's life; he went on to live it. When that life became too risky, he found another, and another, changing his name, papers and style at will, until he chose the wrong life -- a scholarly thief on the run from the determined and troubled John Costa. The two men will meet, and there will be murder. But there is something much worse: the sweet seduction of taking another's life to be your own. Chillingly suspenseful, brilliantly executed and truly disturbing, Taking Lives is an entertainment to make you think and shiver.


Two boys ride the bus through Florida. One of them won't be alive much longer.

This is summer, 1987. Hot skies going basalt, boiled air. A road straight and bone-colored through grass and marsh.

Neither of the boys belongs here, you can tell. They stare out of the windows, but they don't want to be caught...
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"Riveting and horrifying. . . . A memorable, unsettling book.”—USA Today

''A highly unusual psychological thriller... a dimension of suspense of which most writers in the genre are never aware"—Chicago Tribune

“A dangerous game of cat and mouse in which none of the usual rules of fair play apply. . .[combining] pyschological insight with Hitchcockian suspense.”—The New York Times

''Exceedingly clever... Taking Lives is good, if bloody entertainment.—The Washington Post

“A damned good thriller... exceptional story-telling. Pye takes an over the top idea and brings it to exquisite fruition...featuring art, politics, secrets and lies... and a deep sense of what men whose ives are built on lies feel when no one appears to be watching.”—The Baltimore Sun