[...] Novel after novel, the waters are troubled, masks rearranged on the face, as Highsmith shows us an individual unencumbered by constraints of legality or morality. Ripley is truly a self-made man, bringing us to silent recognition of the selfsame treacherous longings coiled and waiting in our hearts.
These are powerful books for their compelling character and the force of their narrative, certainly, yet still more so for all that goes on underneath. On the surface, we have imminently readable, fairly straightforward novels of suspense. But lurking in depths are coded tales of repressed sexuality; ontological questions of identity; an apologue of adolescence mimicking (lying) its way into adulthood; an allegory of the creative imagination and its perils. These are not things that we take away from the reading; rather, they are the things that take us, even if unaware, ever more deeply into the reading.... -- James Sallis "''The Complete Ripley Novels'' by Patricia Highsmith" (10/26/2008)