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Publisher's Summary

Marked by tragedy, traumatized at the age of eight, Michael, now 18, is no ordinary young man. Besides not uttering a single word in 10 years, he discovers the one thing he can somehow do better than anyone else. Whether it's a locked door without a key, a padlock with no combination, or even an 800 pound safe...he can open them all.

It's an unforgivable talent. A talent that will make young Michael a hot commodity with the wrong people and, whether he likes it or not, push him ever closer to a life of crime. That is, until he finally sees his chance to escape, and with one desperate gamble risks everything to come back home to the only person he ever loved, and to unlock the secret that has kept him silent for so long.

Steve Hamilton steps away from his Edgar Award-winning Alex McKnight series to introduce a unique new character, unlike anyone you've ever seen or heard in the world of crime fiction.

©2010 Steve Hamilton (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Hypnotic...a proven master of suspense moves in a brand new direction - and the result is can't-put-it-down spectacular." (Lee Child)"I haven't read a book this captivating in a long time. The Lock Artist is gutsy, genuine and, flat out, a great read. You won't be disappointed." (Michael Connelly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • John
  • NJ, United States
  • 02-25-12

Not bad, but seemed more for a young adults?

The story had some interesting plot lines, and have to agree with the reviewers that said the info about lock-picking was pretty interesting, but the story just had this feeling that it was for a younger audience... (maybe for those under 25?). The main character is young and many of his insights seem the same. I'm not sure, but i think the narrators voice also seemed young which contributed to that... Anyway, I guess i'm luke-warm on this one. Not sorry i read it, but not sure i'd recommend it to others.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Susan
  • Laurel, United States Minor Outlying Islands
  • 01-10-12

Ugh. Clumsy and heavy handed.

What would have made The Lock Artist better?

I'm quitting this half-way through as I find the writing boring and pedestrian. Its written in a heavy, flat-footed style with obvious plot mechanics. I also find the reader to be one-noted and heavy handed.

Would you ever listen to anything by Steve Hamilton again?

Maybe.

How could the performance have been better?

More inflection and changes of tone by the reader.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Karen
  • Kinards, SC, United States
  • 11-10-11

Love story with a twist of crime

I absolutely loved this book! I got it because it was on sale, but I'm glad I did. The hero of the book is so believable and the narrator sounds exactly like he should. I don't know anything about safecracking or picking locks, but it sure seems like this author does, from the details of those feats.
I could not wait to get off work each day and see what Mike was doing (on my way home from work)! The "love story" in the book is so compelling. The book was pretty tense in places and I kept thinking that it could not have a good ending, but I was pleasantly surprised.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

Hard to believe this book won an award.

Listening to this book is puzzling. It is simply not enjoyable. The trick of having the protagonist not speak is just that, a trick. Having him be an essentially unlikable criminal only makes matters worse. And, the fact that everyone else in the book is likewise a lowlife criminal makes one wonder what kind of person would enjoy this book. The narration does not improve the material. I have listened to books in this genre for decades (although not a one of them with a lock picker as the main character), and I will not take a chance on any other works by this author. The fact that the book got a lot of attention smells to me like the New York publishing houses thought they had found a brand new gimmick that they could make a major push to publicize, something like Jonathan Franzen (is there any single writer more self-absorbed and boring?). These folks are able to foist on the reading public a number of passing fads, literary hula hoops which are bought because of the press and soon cast aside and forgotten. Don't waste your time on this, no matter how many awards it gets. The NYC publishing community is counting on readers to be sheep. Let's not.

16 of 24 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

A disappointment considering the author

I'm a big fan of Steve Hamilton's Alex McKnight series -- they are among the best in terms of characters, setting, action and most of all location. I love books set in cold places where the snow plays the part of a character -- 'Paradise, MI', certainly qualifies as that. So I was expecting more from him in this non-series book. I was disappointed. It's not a bad book, not really. It's just that I expected so much more from Steve Hamilton. His other books are among the best of the best -- how did he get messed up with this comparatively lackluster tale?

Maybe it was intended for a teenage audience, with all the 'young love' and all.... Maybe it was a slight revision of Dean Koontz 'Hideaway', which also features a main character who was resuscitated after a long period, but who survives but with unique abilities and disabilities.

There was never a moment when I thought I'd quit listening -- it's a fairly involving tale. Just one that's not really worthy of this author. I hope he goes back to spinning more adult white knuckle tales from Upper Michigan.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Thumbs Down.

I'm bewildered at the positive reviews of this book. my guess is they are fake. they are too similiar in tone and word.

The problem lies in the writing. I'm a little shocked that the adult dialogue is so stilted and predictable. There were a few pockets where the dialogue was so poorly written I almost stopped listening.. The story is interesting, but again, the writing is sort of a cheap hybrid of a bad attempt at Raymond Chandler set in modern day. Maybe the narration adds to my perception. When he does the adult voices, it's cringeworthy. As far as story goes, it's pretty good. Ok. I collected locks and keys as a kid, so this story appeals to me. The chapters bounce around in time, but are easy to follow - although toward the end that device gets a bit weary. I'm a little frustrated in writing this review, but if you have followed any of my reviews, or happened to love the same audio books - I'm positive you won't love this story.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Larry
  • Pacific Palisades, CA, USA
  • 03-02-10

The Lock Artist

I am a big fan of Steve Hamilton. His series of thrillers starring ex Detriot cop Alex McKnight set in upper Michigan near the Canadian border were suspenseful well plotted and contained some great dark humor.

I can not say the same for his latest book The Lock Artist. It is incredibly tedious, repetitive and the protaganist is a boring angst ridden teenager, who also happens to be a mute
due to a mysterious childhood trauma.

I don't want to give away any more of the plot, but if you are a fan of Steve Hamilton, I think you will be very disappointed in his latest novel.

He should get back to Alex McKnight and his buddies in Paradise, Michigan.

6 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Ken
  • Mount Vernon, WA, USA
  • 03-08-10

Not Hamilton's Best

Steve Hamiliton has written some terrific books, but this isn't one of them. Listen to the Alex McNight Series and you won't be dissapointed. I can't say the same about Lock Artist--the story seemed trite and contrived.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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sad but excellent traveling companion

The narrator is expressive, I felt like I was traveling with the characters. enjoyable keeps you wanting more.

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Kentstater72

Good story, I enjoy Steve Hamilton's writings and this is a great deversion from his regular characters. I am ready though for another McKnight novel.