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Genre: Fiction

The classic thriller of Dr. Josef Mengele’s nightmarish plot to restore the Third Reich.

Alive and hiding in South America, the fiendish Nazi Dr. Josef Mengele gathers a group of former colleagues for a horrifying project. Barry Koehler, a young investigative journalist, gets wind of the scheme and informs famed Nazi hunter Yakov Liebermann, but before he can relay the evidence, Koehler is killed.

Thus Ira Levin opens one of the strangest and most masterful novels of his career. Why has Mengele marked a number of harmless aging men for murder? What is the hidden link that binds them? What interest can they possibly hold for their killers: six former SS men dispatched from South America by the most wanted Nazi still alive, the notorious “Angel of Death”? One man alone must answer these questions and stop the killings—Liebermann, himself aging and thought by some to be losing his grip on reality.

At the heart of lies a frightening contemporary nightmare, chilling and all too possible.

Genre: Fiction

By the author of , a horrifying journey into a future only Ira Levin could imagine.

Considered one of the great dystopian novels—alongside Anthony Burgess’s and Aldous Huxley’s —Ira Levin’s frightening glimpse into the future continues to fascinate readers even forty years after publication.

The story is set in a seemingly perfect global society. Uniformity is the defining feature; there is only one language and all ethnic groups have been eugenically merged into one race called “The Family.” The world is ruled by a central computer called UniComp that has been programmed to keep every single human on the surface of the earth in check. People are continually drugged by means of regular injections so that they will remain satisfied and cooperative. They are told where to live, when to eat, whom to marry, when to reproduce. Even the basic facts of nature are subject to the UniComp’s will—men do not grow facial hair, women do not develop breasts, and it only rains at night.

With a vision as frightening as any in the history of the science fiction genre, is one of Ira Levin’s most haunting novels.

Genre: Fiction

When published in 1967, Rosemary's Baby was one of the first contemporary horror novels to become a national bestseller. Ira Levin's second novel (he went on to write such fine thrillers as A Kiss Before Dying, The Stepford Wives, and The Boys from Brazil), Rosemary's Baby, remains perhaps his best work. The author's mainstream "this is how it really happened" style undeniably also made the novel his most widely imitated. The plot line is deceptively simple: What if you were a happily married young woman, living in New York, and one day you awoke to find yourself pregnant? And what if your loving husband had-apparently-sold your soul to Satan? And now you were beginning to believe that your unborn child was, in reality, the son of Satan? Levin subtly makes it all totally plausible, unless of course, dear Rosemary-or the reader-can no longer distinguish fantasy from reality! A wonderfully chilling novel, it was later faithfully transformed into an equally unnerving motion picture

A Kiss Before Dying not only debuted the talent of best-selling novelist Ira Levin to rave reviews, it also set a new standard in the art of mystery and suspense. Now a modern classic, as gripping in its tautly plotted action as it is penetrating in its exploration of a criminal mind, it tells the shocking tale of a young man who will stop at nothing—not even murder—to get where he wants to go. For he has dreams; plans. He also has charm, good looks, sex appeal, intelligence. And he has a problem. Her name is Dorothy; she loves him, and she’s pregnant. The solution may demand desperate measures. But, then, he looks like the kind of guy who could get away with murder. Compellingly, step by determined step, the novel follows this young man in his execution of one plan he had neither dreamed nor foreseen. Nor does he foresee how inexorably he will be enmeshed in the consequences of his own extreme deed.

Genre: Fiction

The wives in Stepford are not exactly what you might call feisty, but they do keep nice homes. They wax and vacuum, and clean and dust all day long and late into the evenings, but they never complain. They are rather pleasing to look at too these Stepford ladies. They are round and shapely in all of the right places and in many ways they are model wives.

When the Eberharts move to Stepford Joanna finds it hard to settle in the town. She finds the town's women weird. Not one of them ever seems to have time to pop over for a cup of coffee. They are much too busy keeping house. They do find time to go out every once in a while though, to do the shopping, and even that is done neatly; every item is perfectly stacked in their trolleys.

Fortunately Joanna does manage to find a couple of friends who are normal. In fact one of them, Bobbie, is refreshingly slob-like. The other one, Charmaine, exudes elegance and is obsessed with tennis. She even has her own court in the garden, and so things are not, perhaps, so bad in Stepford after all. Or so it seems. But when Charmaine suddenly sacks her maid, and dons the pinny herself, Joanna is shocked. And when she discovers that her tennis buddy is ripping up her tennis court so that her husband can have his own putting green, Joanna realizes – for a fact – that something very strange indeed is going on in Stepford

The Stepford Wives is a much shorter read than I had anticipated. My copy is only 116 pages long, but it achieves a lot in those few pages and bulking out of the story would only have spoiled it. I would describe this as being a quietly scary story. The real nasty stuff always happens just out of sight, never right there in your face. If you have ever watched any really old films, you might remember how scenes sometimes ended with the loving couple closing the bedroom door. What happened next was left to the viewer's imagination. In a similar way the nasty stuff in The Stepford Wives is left to the reader's imagination. In the final pages, there is a scene where the Stepford men-folk usher Joanna into Bobbie's kitchen and Bobbie, who really doesn't seem like Bobbie anymore and is holding a knife, calls her over to the sink so that she can prove to her that she isn't a robot. What happens next in that kitchen is left to the reader's imagination. The horror is not depicted in glorious Technicolor and if the claret flows it flows unseen, but it is still a very scary scene indeed and possibly one of the best ones in the book.

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