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review 2017-03-16 16:47
My Review of Ill Will
Ill Will - Dan Chaon

Ill Will by Dan Chaon is a story that revolves around a family tragedy. That's all I could ascertain from this story. I couldn't get into the whole book being back-story. There was a lot of sexual situations. Way too many for my taste. The story was, for me, hard to follow most of the time. I had to read quite a bit of the chapter to find out whose point of view I was reading. The ending didn't reveal any true insight into the story, or have a real conclusion. I received a copy of this book through Netgalley, and all opinions are my own.

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review 2017-03-10 10:09
Ill Will
Ill Will - Dan Chaon

By: Dan Chaon

ISBN: 9780345476043

Publisher:  Random House  

Publication Date: 3/7/2017 

Format: Other 

My Rating: 4 Stars 


Psychologically complex Dan Chaon’s ILL WILL is a dark, haunting, and twisty suspense thriller full of madness, tragedy, murder, grief, and despair. Cancer, drugs, addictions, and satanic evil.

"We meet our destiny on the road we take to avoid it." —Jean De La Fontaine.

Dustin Tillman is a suburban Cleveland psychiatrist. Father of two teenage boys, Aaron and Dennis. His wife, Jill dying of cancer, and one of his patients is now recruiting him to help investigate the drownings of young men that seem to match a pattern. He is struggling with his own past. He is the survivor.

In 1983, when he was thirteen years old, his mother, father, aunt, and uncle were murdered. Dustin accused his adopted older brother, Rusty (attracted to Satanism) of the crime. Rusty was incarcerated.

What really happened with the violent murder during a summer holiday in 1983? Two unsolved crimes. Past and Present.


"In the end it is the mystery that lasts and not the explanation."—Sacheverell Sitwell, For Want of the Golden City.

Now he has been exonerated and released. Thirty some years after Dustin’s testimony put him away for murdering their parents, aunt, and uncle. Now DNA evidence clears him of the crime.

From dark family secrets and deceit, this is one creepy grisly disturbing book. Unnerving, moody and atmospheric. Emotionally wrenching and complex.

Plot-driven, the author uses impressive skill and control, as he crosses multiple narratives with different perspectives— for a mind-bending saga which will leave your head spinning. An exploration of memories, delusion, and self-deception.

". . . Every memory he thinks of now is discolored and ugly. The past suddenly has vanished from underneath him, distorted, memories turned into something he doesn't recognize, something malevolent."

The author keeps the evil, despair, terror and suspense high. Exploring humanity’s darker side. If you are looking for a relaxing read, move on. However, you if like crossing over to the darker side, and enjoy well-written complex literary/pulp fiction thrillers, you may enjoy the scary intense ride.

A special thank you to Random House, LibraryThing Early Reviewers, and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/single-post/2017/02/08/Ill-Will
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review 2017-03-07 21:32
Ill Will - Dan Chaon

Dustin Tillman had been drifting along in life . Dustin was a psychologist and had two teenage sons. Then his cousin Kate called from L A about Dustin's older adopted  brother Russell who had been sent to prison for the murder of  his parents Colleen and Dave and his Aunt Vicki and Uncle Lucky. Russell was six years older that Dustin. Dustin remembered how Russell had: shot him in the back with his BB gun. Listened to death metal, carved a pentagram into his forearm, who had destroyed a snowman Dustin had built. Russell who was delighted by  Dustin's fear of the dark and would wait until Dustin was settled in bed and turn off the light and close the door until Dustin screamed. A body had been found by some college girls his name was Peter Allingham- he was a college sophomore and one of Dustin’s patients thought it was a link to several other drownings. Dustin thought back to when he was thirteen and his parents were murdered as well as his aunt and uncle. He had been in the camper with his twin cousins Kate and Wave until the next morning when Dustin found his mother and held her for one last time. Kate told Dustin that Russell had not killed his parents or hers that three different laboratories had done independant DNA tests proving Russell’s innocence. Russell had spent almost twenty nine years in prison for this crime.

I could not get into this story it was just all over the place and even repeated itself. It  did not hold my interest in any way.

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review 2017-02-19 22:52
Ill Will - Dan Chaon

I'm not sure how to review this book. There were sometimes when this book was down to earth and readable. Then there were times when it was out there and it was like reading psycho babble from someone who was on some really heavy drugs. Of course, one of the characters was really eff'd up, so I guess during those times, we were seeing the world from Aaron's eyes. I've never done H, but he was talking like he was doing acid or something.

Anyways, for the most part, I did enjoy this book. It was crazy at times. The ending was really ccccccrrrrrrazy. I definitely did not see it coming. I still have some questions about some of it. Like why was Aaron's car in Chicago? I guess I will never get an answer to that question.

Believe me, this was an out there book. It definitely held my interest while I was trying to figure out exactly what was going on. For the most part, I didn't start to question things until towards the very end. Then it started getting really weird. I mean it was weird throughout the whole book. Three teenagers (two twin sisters and their boy cousin) whose four parents were shot to death in the house while they slept in the camper/RV while they slept right next door. The girls 17 and the boy 13. That sounds morbid, but I'm not telling you about the kids. (Hiding the spoilers)

I'm just going to say that I didn't put this book once I got into it. It was a strange one, however I was mesmerized, entertained, shocked, curious, and like a trainwreck - I could not turn away.

Thanks Random House - Ballantine for approving my request and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest review.

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review 2017-01-31 02:45
NetGalley Review: Ill Will
Ill Will - Dan Chaon

I received this book via NetGalley to give an honest review.


When I read the blurb I really was interested in what this story was going to be about. It seemed to right up my alley. Well that wasn't the case for me I was really totally lost through out the whole book. It seemed too have two different plots trying to come together, not too mention the sentences not being finished. Another thing that bothered me was the jumps between characters and I didn't know who we were dealing with at first, until I read a few pages then it clicked. 

What really bothered me is what looked like maybe journal entries??? Not really sure what too call them but they were incomplete sentences that drove me crazy. 

I really liked how it seemed that this story deals with memories and how being young you can have your memories altered which seemed to be the case with Dustin. Though we slowly learn this throughout the story. 

It seems that Dustin's adopted brother Rusty likes the dark side of things so when their parents along with two others are murdered. Rusty seems to have the murders pinned on him, though is he truly innocent? It seems that Rusty has a few things to deal with when he gets out. Now while Dustin is dealing with his brother, he is dealing with things going on in his personal life and trying to solve murders. It seems that Dustin isn't running on all cylinders. 

The twist about the murders doesn't come into play until well towards the end and at the time I kept wondering if the murder was Dustin's alter ego or maybe even a figment of his imagination. I wasn't really sure as I was just not able too keep up. 

The book has possible potential maybe a clearer plot line or if the author is going to bring two plots together do it in a way that you are left with no questions. 

As far as characters go I felt they were just one dimensional I couldn't connect or relate in any way.  

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