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New York Times bestsellers and thriller legends John Farris and Stephen King each provided a brand-new, never-before-published tale for this unique collection of stories edited by New York Times bestselling author and mystery legend Ed McBain. The Ransome Women by John Farris: A psychological thriller that questions the role beauty plays in society and the cult of celebrity New York Times bestsellers and thriller legends John Farris and Stephen King each provided a brand-new, never-before-published tale for this unique collection of stories edited by New York Times bestselling author and mystery legend Ed McBain. The Ransome Women by John Farris: A psychological thriller that questions the role beauty plays in society and the cult of celebrity. A young and beautiful, starving artist catches a break when her idol, the reclusive portraitist John Ransome offers her a lucrative modeling contract. But how long will her excitement last when she discovers the fate shared by all Ransome's past subjects? The Things They Left Behind by Stephen King: A hauntingly moving tale of survival guilt in New York City after 9/11. Scott Staley called in sick for his job at the World Trade Center that Tuesday morning. Now in the aftermath of 9/11, he must face his guilty conscience as he begins to find the things his deceased coworkers left behind.


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New York Times bestsellers and thriller legends John Farris and Stephen King each provided a brand-new, never-before-published tale for this unique collection of stories edited by New York Times bestselling author and mystery legend Ed McBain. The Ransome Women by John Farris: A psychological thriller that questions the role beauty plays in society and the cult of celebrity New York Times bestsellers and thriller legends John Farris and Stephen King each provided a brand-new, never-before-published tale for this unique collection of stories edited by New York Times bestselling author and mystery legend Ed McBain. The Ransome Women by John Farris: A psychological thriller that questions the role beauty plays in society and the cult of celebrity. A young and beautiful, starving artist catches a break when her idol, the reclusive portraitist John Ransome offers her a lucrative modeling contract. But how long will her excitement last when she discovers the fate shared by all Ransome's past subjects? The Things They Left Behind by Stephen King: A hauntingly moving tale of survival guilt in New York City after 9/11. Scott Staley called in sick for his job at the World Trade Center that Tuesday morning. Now in the aftermath of 9/11, he must face his guilty conscience as he begins to find the things his deceased coworkers left behind.

30 review for The Ransome Women; The Things They Left Behind

  1. 4 out of 5

    Charles

    Contains two pieces, a short story by Stephen King called "The Things They Left Behind" and a novella by John Farris called "The Ransome Women." King's story was pretty standard. I liked the basic idea but it certainly wouldn't be in my top twenty-five King stories. The Ransome Women was about a painter who only paints beautiful women, who then end up disfigured. It's a very old fashioned gothic kind of tale but certainly held my interest. Definitely my favorite of the two pieces here.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Baba

    Trangressions: Novellas 7 & 8: First up is King's little mystery suspense tale of possessions of colleagues who were killed in the Twin Trade Towers on 9-11. Typical King with some neat and interesting first person storytelling, but all the tale lacks bite, or even a decent hook! . The far longer novella sees a reclusive, yet celebrity artist John Ransome seek the services of Echo as his next model. Echo's cop boyfriend is far less trusting and looks to investigate just what happened to the previo Trangressions: Novellas 7 & 8: First up is King's little mystery suspense tale of possessions of colleagues who were killed in the Twin Trade Towers on 9-11. Typical King with some neat and interesting first person storytelling, but all the tale lacks bite, or even a decent hook! . The far longer novella sees a reclusive, yet celebrity artist John Ransome seek the services of Echo as his next model. Echo's cop boyfriend is far less trusting and looks to investigate just what happened to the previous models, the Ransome Women? Being read directly after a King novella exposed just how bad he writing and formulaic the plotting was in this tale - with awful spoilery overt plot hints and very little rationale for character's behaviours. At least I know I'll never have to read another Farris novel or novella again. Awful! 1 out of 12.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Benjamin Stahl

    The Things They Left Behind was about someone who, by fate, never went to the Pentagon on the infamous and tragic September 11th bombing. He suffers what they call ‘Survivor’s Guilt’, which is fair enough, and believes that either he’s losing his mind, or that he is actually seeing particular objects that belonged to his dead colleagues mysteriously turn up in his apartment. After coming to terms with this, he realizes that these objects – memorabilia, if you will – are for him to return to the The Things They Left Behind was about someone who, by fate, never went to the Pentagon on the infamous and tragic September 11th bombing. He suffers what they call ‘Survivor’s Guilt’, which is fair enough, and believes that either he’s losing his mind, or that he is actually seeing particular objects that belonged to his dead colleagues mysteriously turn up in his apartment. After coming to terms with this, he realizes that these objects – memorabilia, if you will – are for him to return to the families of those deceased. So there you have it. A fairly poignant tale about grief, and patching up broken families, loved ones, and children. Except, once again, Mr. King screws it up by infusing way too much humor into the story. Now I appreciate the importance of comic relief in such dismal stories as this, but his idea of humor is all wrong here. Where he should be focusing on the emotional reaction this protagonist must feel in regards to what is happening, we instead get constant references to masturbation and such other things that confuse me as to what the author was hoping to achieve. The contrast between serious and silly is way too muddled up. Imagine the opening to Saving Private Ryan, where the old man walks through that cemetery and breaks down in front of Tom Hanks’s cenotaph. That scene almost brings tears to my eyes whenever I watch it. But if that movie had followed the same path as this confused story does, we would probably get some misplaced prologue about him taking a shit, and then wanking over his granddaughter before heading off to pay respect to his dead comrade. You see what I mean?

  4. 5 out of 5

    Roger

    I picked Transgressions up as it featured a Stephen King story. The scoop on this series is as follows: the late Ed McBain asked a bunch of famous scribes to write novellas (longer than a short story, shorter than a novel) and he placed no restrictions on the authors regarding subject matter. The result was a multi part book series with tales from people such as Walter Mosley and Sharyn McCrumb. The volume I found featured two stories-one from King (which I have never seen anywhere else) and ano I picked Transgressions up as it featured a Stephen King story. The scoop on this series is as follows: the late Ed McBain asked a bunch of famous scribes to write novellas (longer than a short story, shorter than a novel) and he placed no restrictions on the authors regarding subject matter. The result was a multi part book series with tales from people such as Walter Mosley and Sharyn McCrumb. The volume I found featured two stories-one from King (which I have never seen anywhere else) and another story by John Farris. Farris' entry is actually more thrilling than King's though that may be because his story is several times longer-he had more time to get some traction. I intend to track all of the books in this series down if I can.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Travis Sutton

    It's ok.... I would say if you're an SK completionist check it out. But it won't blow you away.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Susan Kelley

    I picked up this book from one of my online reading groups because of Stephen King. However, I enjoyed this book because of John Farris. Go figure. Transgressions is a concept created by author Ed McBain. He invited several of his favorite thriller and horror authors to write novellas for this series. There are a total of four Transgressions books, with the Farris/King effort being the second. None of the stories have anything to do with each other, so you can read one or read them all and be a h I picked up this book from one of my online reading groups because of Stephen King. However, I enjoyed this book because of John Farris. Go figure. Transgressions is a concept created by author Ed McBain. He invited several of his favorite thriller and horror authors to write novellas for this series. There are a total of four Transgressions books, with the Farris/King effort being the second. None of the stories have anything to do with each other, so you can read one or read them all and be a happy reader. King's novella was entitled The Things They Left Behind. The main character, Scott Staley, comes home one day to find that his apartment has been invaded by things - things that were owned by his former co-workers, who all died in 9/11. Scott would have been one of them, but he called in sick that day. I was expecting something creepy, shameful, and disturbing. It's King, right? But this was a mild version of what I was hoping to read. I was of the impression that this novella was just an afterthought to King. But, don't be disheartened! The Things They Left Behind was merely 58 pages of this 304 page book. The rest belongs to John Farris and his novella, The Ransome Women. I had never heard of Farris, but I figured his story was worth a try. Echo is a young and beautiful girl working in the art world, but what she really wants is to be an artist herself. Then she gets the chance to be a model for her idol, John Ransome. She'll have time for her own art as well as receive some wonderful critiques from an artist she greatly admires. What could be bad about it? For starters, she has to spend a year with Ransome, and leave her friends, family and fiance behind. They only contact that she can have is through e-mail. But it pays so well, and an opportunity like this won't come along again. Echo takes the chance of a lifetime, but is she risking everything? Her fiance, Peter, is discovering what happened to Ransome's former models. With Echo sequestered on an island with Ransome, can Peter get to her before it's too late?

  7. 5 out of 5

    Abby

    This collection comprises two novellas: The Things They Left Behind by Stephen King, and The Ransome Women by John Farris. The Things They Left Behind combines the idea of survivor's guilt with King's signature sense of creepiness. Scott Staley is a rural accountant who decided to play hooky work one day, something that would be an otherwise unremarkable event. Except that one day was September 11, 2001, and Scott works at Light and Bell Insurance on the 110th floor of the World Trade Centre. Th This collection comprises two novellas: The Things They Left Behind by Stephen King, and The Ransome Women by John Farris. The Things They Left Behind combines the idea of survivor's guilt with King's signature sense of creepiness. Scott Staley is a rural accountant who decided to play hooky work one day, something that would be an otherwise unremarkable event. Except that one day was September 11, 2001, and Scott works at Light and Bell Insurance on the 110th floor of the World Trade Centre. The story picks up a year later, when objects belonging to his late colleagues mysteriously appear in his apartment, whispering to him, refusing to go away. The story has an interesting premise, but is very short, too short to really develop any real character development or mystery. John Farris is an author that I hadn't come across previous to this novella. The Ransome Women started off like that one episode of Are You Afraid of the Dark with Jewel Staite (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cN45... for those that want to watch it - it turns out the story is nothing like this one). Farris does a great job creating a psychological thriller that keeps you on your toes about the intentions and motivations of the main characters. John Ransome is a reclusive and eccentric painter who only emerges once every few years with a few paintings of a beautiful exotic woman. Echo Halloran is a art appraiser for an auction house who catches Ransome's eye. He proposes that she become his next muse, with the condition that she lives on his secluded island for a year. Though Echo is initially hesitant, she agrees to go, much to the chagrin of her detective fiance, Peter. Following his gut feeling, Peter tracks down the other women that have posed for Ransome (the Ransome Women) and finds that his mysterious past has harsh implications for his future. The characters are well developed and the story is compelling.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    A ghost story of sorts, inspired by the tragic events of 9/11.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    I bought this book solely for the Stephen King story and was deeply disappointed. The story was a bit odd and disjointed to me... The second story was by John Harris and was a page turner. I expected it to be horror since it was paired with Stephen King, but it was more of a mystery. The story was about a beautiful woman who is approached by an artist to who wants to paint her under the condition that she live with him for a year and have no contact with the outside world. Her boyfriend is a cop I bought this book solely for the Stephen King story and was deeply disappointed. The story was a bit odd and disjointed to me... The second story was by John Harris and was a page turner. I expected it to be horror since it was paired with Stephen King, but it was more of a mystery. The story was about a beautiful woman who is approached by an artist to who wants to paint her under the condition that she live with him for a year and have no contact with the outside world. Her boyfriend is a cop and of course abhors the idea. He ends up doing some detective works and finds some mysterious happenings surrounding the artist. I utterly disliked the main character finding her vain and selfish, but nevertheless the story kept me enthralled with what would happen next.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Funk

    Each of the books in this collection are well suited to the short story genre. Short stories are a marvelous medium to explore an idea without needing to belabor any particular point. 'The Ransome Women' takes a story that could have been told in more detail over several hundred pages and condenses it down to a wonderfully short and sweet story that is 'just the good stuff'. 'The things they left behind' explores 9/11 survivors guilt and the metaphysical ramifications in one particular individual Each of the books in this collection are well suited to the short story genre. Short stories are a marvelous medium to explore an idea without needing to belabor any particular point. 'The Ransome Women' takes a story that could have been told in more detail over several hundred pages and condenses it down to a wonderfully short and sweet story that is 'just the good stuff'. 'The things they left behind' explores 9/11 survivors guilt and the metaphysical ramifications in one particular individual's life. It is just enough to be explored without needing to be elaborated. Both stories benefit from the format so that what might have been 3-star novels, I can happily rate as 4-star short stories.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Armada Volya

    I was reading this book on my way to work and it was often hard to put it dawn when I would reach my stop. For the most part I enjoyed The Ransom Women, by John Farris. It was a very intriguing tale that appealed to me as an artist as well as a lover of good stories. The Things They Left Behind is the reason I'm giving this book four instead of five stars. I love Stephen Kings novels, but I haven't found a lot of his short stories that I'd actually like. It's just not his writing style. He ends I was reading this book on my way to work and it was often hard to put it dawn when I would reach my stop. For the most part I enjoyed The Ransom Women, by John Farris. It was a very intriguing tale that appealed to me as an artist as well as a lover of good stories. The Things They Left Behind is the reason I'm giving this book four instead of five stars. I love Stephen Kings novels, but I haven't found a lot of his short stories that I'd actually like. It's just not his writing style. He ends up spending so much time to look into the character that this story looks more like a character study. The things They Left Behind is short, only 58 pages, so you'd mostly be getting The Ransom Women, which is definitely worth reading.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Laura Buechler

    I had read King's "The Things They Left Behind" previously and quite enjoyed it, so my decidedly "meh" review is for Farris' "The Ransome Women". Maybe it's partly my own fault for expecting something more supernatural/suspenseful, but the feeling I am left with after reading this story is "There's three days I'll never get back." Predictable, pointless, and populated with characters that we don't get to know well enough to give a crap about ... meh. Meh, I say.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie Jachymek

    I'm basing this on the Farris novella The Ransome Women, because I have previously read the King one. To put it simply, the writing was bland, the story was predictable and the characters fell flat. I didn't care about any of them, but being the type of person that can't not finish a book, I trudged my way through. I would be hard pressed to reccomend this to anyone. I am unaware if any of his other works are decent, but I'm most assuredly not going to find out soon.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    Two short stories. The first, by Stephen King, is about a survivor from 9-11 who starts to find tokens from the office he should have been in had he not been playing hooky. In the second story, a famous artist uses beautiful women as models, and then awful things start happening to them. A thrilling story.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Dawn

    The Ransome Women was as suspenseful as it was creepy, but The Things They Left Behind by King was hauntingly heartbreaking, especially if you were either close to NYC after 9/11, knew anyone that was near there, or knew anyone directly affected by the horrific terrorist attack.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tanvir Muntasim

    I have read the King novella in one of his short story collections, and it is quite touching. The Farris novella was pulpy trash, and inflated to fill up the pages. I doubt I will check his fiction any further.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn B

    Not his best, not his worst...reading this reminded me how much I used to LOVE King's writing and how long it's been since I sunk my teeth into one of his novels...I should really do that again some day...

  18. 5 out of 5

    Edward Davies

    A sad and slightly supernatural tale of what happens when a man starts finding souvenirs of his colleagues who died in the terror attacks of 9-11. One of the more thought provoking stories in ‘Just After Sunset’.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Donald

    For me, the jewel here is Stephen King's "The Things They Left Behind". It's a poignant tale of a man and his post 9/11 experiences. Of course, as it is Mr. King, it's a tad creepy, but it really pulled at my own heart strings. For all of the characters. Even Mr. Yow, Git Down.

  20. 5 out of 5

    MaryAnn

    wasn't thrilled with either story. Farris's was OK - formulaic & predictable. S King's was written because they asked him, quite obviously. Wouldn't have missed a thing not reading it.....this from one of his "Constant Readers". wasn't thrilled with either story. Farris's was OK - formulaic & predictable. S King's was written because they asked him, quite obviously. Wouldn't have missed a thing not reading it.....this from one of his "Constant Readers".

  21. 5 out of 5

    Matt

    the king story was really good. the farris story wasn't.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Craig Rettig

    Certainly not bad, but nothing special for either tale.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Stephen King's story was one of the worst I've ever read. Farris on the other hand, was pretty good - could have had a better ending though.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Statikpulse

    it was alright, i think the stephen king one could have been longer and John Farris could have been shorter, i wasn't overly impressed but it was an alright read.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie

    I liked both these stories

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marina

    I enjoyed the Stephen King story more, it was very touching. The John Farris story was disturbing & not in a good way. I enjoyed the Stephen King story more, it was very touching. The John Farris story was disturbing & not in a good way.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bryn

    Decent Novella by King, but definitely not his best work. The Farris Novella is totally pulpy trash, but not very enjoyable. Kind of a core to get through.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Sylwia

    The kind of (short) stories I love the most. Both were brilliant! Am eager to read more books in the series.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mary Follis

    SK's is short--58 pages. Makes me want to read more by Farris.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jared Tipton

    Two really great stories!

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