Strange Piece of Paradise

Strange Piece of Paradise

Book - 2007 | First Picador edition.
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In the summer of 1977, Terri Jentz and her Yale roommate took a cross-country bike trip. As they lay sleeping in the central Oregon desert, a man in a pickup truck deliberately ran over their tent and proceeded to attack them with an axe. The horrific crime was reported in newspapers across the country, but no one was ever arrested. Fifteen years later, Jentz returns to the small town where she was nearly murdered and makes an extraordinary discovery: the violence of that night is as presentfor the community as it is for her. Shockingly, many say they know who did it, and he is living freely in their midst.

Powerful, eloquent, and paced like the most riveting of thrillers, Strange Piece of Paradise is a startling profile of a psychopath, a sweeping reflection on violence and the myth of American individualism, and a moving record of Jentz's brave inner journey from violence to hope.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007.
Edition: First Picador edition.
ISBN: 9780312426699
Branch Call Number: 364.1555 JEN
Characteristics: 729 pages :,illustrations


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May 22, 2016

I expected a dry recitation of a fruitless search for the bad guy but this was so well written and exciting that I was drawn along with the author in her investigation. I was impressed with her persistence and patience for her years long search for the perp and his motivation.

Mar 20, 2015

Beautifully written and too scary to read alone in bed at night. A moving and courageous memoir.

Dec 06, 2014

I read this book when it came out, and remember it vividly. I agree with the above comment that it starts out slowly, but for me, the pace reflected the buildup of fear. And the author's attention to detail is an essential part of her determination to understand her experience. And thank you, Fionaenzo, for telling me about the documentary!

Dec 24, 2012

Very slow in the beginning, but picks up - hang in there. Way too much biographical information about herself before her assault - not interesting. Informative as to a dynamic healing process. She needed a better editor to help her focus on her message. This is connected with the documentary, "Forgiveness." Recommend the documentary highly. so powerful -- cannot get this book out of my mind. it is a sociological observation - resultingfrom her tireless research and interviews - of community dynamics. why do we stay silent expecting authorities to do their job when it is apparent they are not and community through inaction allows an evil person to violate women, children, men, pets year after year. amazing story as she tried to heal through action to obtain answers.

Dec 20, 2012

Insufferable! This book needed to be edited an half of it's content tossed out. An Amazon Reviewer said it well so I'm quoting: The most terrifying thing about Jentz's "Strange Piece" is its painfully overwritten, amateurish, self-indulgent literary style. Although Jentz's real life ordeal was profound, she manages to beat every angle of her story to death, making the reader care less and less about the eventual outcome. What could have been a spell-binding 250 page account of the author's experience and, in larger context, a worthy criticism of the statute of limitations for attempted murder is turned into a heavy handed, repetitive narrative about a night (and a suspect) you come to know way, WAY too well.

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