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The Keepsake: A Rizzoli & Isles Novel [Mass Market Paperback]

Tess Gerritsen
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Aug. 25 2009 Rizzoli & Isles
For untold years, the perfectly preserved mummy had lain forgotten in the dusty basement of Boston’s Crispin Museum. Dubbed “Madam X,” the recently rediscovered mummy is, to all appearances, an ancient Egyptian artifact. But medical examiner Maura Isles discovers a macabre message hidden within the corpse–horrifying proof that this “centuries-old” relic is instead a modern-day murder victim. When the grisly remains of two other women are found, it becomes clear to Maura and Boston homicide detective Jane Rizzoli that a maniac is at large. Now Maura and Jane must unravel a murderer’s twisted endgame before the Archaeology Killer adds another chilling artifact to his monstrous collection.

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The Keepsake: A Rizzoli & Isles Novel + Ice Cold: A Rizzoli & Isles Novel + The Mephisto Club: A Rizzoli & Isles Novel
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From Publishers Weekly

Bestseller Gerritsen's at times lackluster series heroines prove they can shine in her solid seventh thriller to feature Det. Jane Rizzoli and Dr. Maura Isles (after The Mephisto Club). When medical examiner Isles studies an X-ray scan of Madame X, which everyone assumes is a newly discovered Egyptian mummy, at Boston's Crispin Museum, she realizes the mummy isn't a priceless artifact but a recent murder victim, gruesomely preserved. Rizzoli focuses the police investigation on Dr. Josephine Pulcillo, a young archeologist recently hired by the museum who may have something to hide. More victims soon turn up, including a tsantsa (shrunken head) in a hidden museum chamber and a corpse resembling a well-preserved bog body in Pulcillo's car. After Pulcillo disappears, Rizzoli and Isles must scramble to find her before she becomes another trophy in the killer's growing collection. As usual, Gerritsen delivers an intricate plot that will keep readers guessing. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“A frighteningly effective stunner from one of the most versatile voices in thriller fiction today.”—Providence Journal

“Disturbing and intensely mesmerizing . . . It’s shudder inducing!”—Romantic Times

“An intricate plot that will keep readers guessing.”—Publishers Weekly

“Wraps readers in a web of evil that is hard to shake . . . Once you pick up this novel, there’s a good chance you won’t be good for much else till you’ve reached its satisfying conclusion.”—Nashville Scene

The Keepsake reads at a reckless pace, drawing the reader into a twisted world of well-preserved vengeance.”—Madison County Times

“Dark, creepy and a great read.”—Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star

The Keepsake is a superb suspense novel, with twists galore . . . a beautifully constructed suspense novel with a great story.”—Toronto Globe and Mail

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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Chills and Thrills April 2 2009
This book follows the track of a gruesome, gut-wrenching thriller with plenty of disfigured bodies, blood and creepy details to keep one's mouth gaping through most of the book. The book starts off in the Crispin Museum where a mummy mysteriously appears and becomes a media event. However, the story quickly unravels into multiple murders with hideous details mostly centering on archaeological themes. The chief characters are Detectives Jane Rizzoli and Barry Frost, Josephine Pulcillo, a stunning beauty with a mysterious past first seen working at the Cripin Museum, Dr. Maura Isles, the medical examiner, and a host of colorful minor characters such as Dr. Nicholas Robinson, the museum curator. The Griffon Trilogy: Part I
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars THE KEEPSAKE May 13 2013
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
C'était mon premier roman de Tess Gerritsen; j'aime beaucoup tout ce qui est médical et policier. Évidemment que je le recommande....mais je suggère de lire les premiers volumes en premier tout simplement pour que les liens se fassent mieux.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Paige Turner Sept. 16 2010
By Chris
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Tess Gerritsen is very good at what she does. It had been a while since I'd read one of her books and I had forgotten. I looked forward every day to reading the story - unrelenting going from A to B - and read more pages per day than usual. There was one unnecessary twist, but even it was suspenseful, so who cares?

P.S. Tess, it is time for Mephisto to be spun off!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.4 out of 5 stars  264 reviews
59 of 66 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great one from Gerritsen Sept. 9 2008
By cait - Published on
When a before unknown mummy is discovered in the storage basement of the small, private Crispin Museum there is great excitement all around Boston. People love mummies, and the press is out in force as "Madam X" is transported to the hospital to be checked out by a Cat Scan. One of our favorite medical examiners, Dr. Maura Isles, dubbed by the press "Queen of the Dead", is present at the invitation of the museum curator. But things do not go as expected, because mummies do not have modern dental work or bullets in their legs. Or a very personal message for the Crispin's Egyptology expert Josephine Pulcillo, who it seems, has her own deadly secrets.

Into the investigation steps the team of Detectives Jane Rizzoli and Barry Frost, familiar from Gerritsen's previous books in the series, and before long there are other grisly discoveries for the duo to delve into. Soon there is evidence that they have a serial killer on their hands and indications that Dr. Pulcillo is very intimately tied into this macabre mystery.

Now I must confess that I was a little concerned at the beginning of the book that, between a mummy, the dottering museum director and secret hiding places in dusty basements, I might have stumbled into a game of Clue with Professor Plum in the Conservatory with a candlestick. But fear not, very quickly things took on Gerritsen's customary fast paced, suspense filled and yes, quite creepy pace. Creepy is a very entertaining thing in her skillful hands.

One sign of good suspense story is that we, the reader, are kept on our toes. Just when we think we have it figure out, the rug is pulled out and we are happily dragged around another series of twists and turns. And be assured there are ample twists and turn in this latest appearance of the excellent characters of Isles and Rizzoli to keep we reader on the edge of our seats. The Keepsake is a taut, action packed, suspense story that will not disappoint Tess Gerritsen's many deserved fans.
32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I would like to have seen the author dig deeper Oct. 20 2008
By J. Norburn - Published on
I enjoyed this novel for the most part. I appreciate the archeology and science angles that Gerritsen incorporates into the novel. These historical / scientific elements are interesting and, while I'm no expert, appear to be well researched. Who doesn't want to know how to make a mummy or shrink someone's head?

Unfortunately, these elements are really just window dressing for a pretty standard 'obsessive stalker turned serial killer' tale. The object of a killer's obsession is driven into hiding with her young daughter. Years later, the daughter, now fully grown and working in an obscure Boston museum, finds herself the object of a killer's obsession and the body count rises - except the victims were all killed decades earlier, their bodies preserved in bizarre ways. The bog bodies, shrunken heads, and mummy's that are found add an intriguing element when they are first introduced, but about mid way through the novel, these elements are largely abandoned as the traditional cat and mouse game plays itself out. I would have liked to have seen these elements integrated into the story in a less superficial way - but, at least they were there.

I found the characterization a little light. As can always be expected with series novels, a certain amount of time must be devoted to update regular readers on the personal lives of central characters. The ME's doomed romance with a priest had no bearing on anything else and is touched on so briefly it barely seemed worth mentioning. Thankfully, the author does show restraint here as well, avoiding the inevitable tendency most series authors have to fill their novels with the mundane details of a character's personal life.

The plot had the requisite twists and turns, all of which can be anticipated by veterans of crime fiction. I had actually anticipated a few extra twists that didn't come to fruition, something that arguably showed admirable restraint on the author's part. I did find that when the pieces all came together, not all of them fit very well. There are a few holes in the plot that I think the author probably could have addressed with small changes to the story. The plotting just wasn't as tight as it could have been.

Despite the fact that I sound like I didn't like this novel, the truth is, I found it pretty entertaining. Mostly I think I just see how much better it could have been. How the characters could be fleshed out a little more, how the plot could have been tighter, and how the archeology elements could have been integrated more fully into the story. I think this could have been an excellent novel, and instead Gerritsen opted to play it safe.

To play on the archeology theme: I think she could have dug a lot deeper and discovered something remarkable. 3 1/2 stars.
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Cold Case for Rizzoli and Isles Sept. 9 2008
By R. King - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
When the ancient Egyptians mummified their dead, they often layered amulets and jewels within the linen wrappings. Finding such treasures in a 2000-year-old mummy is not unusual, but "Madam X" is full of surprises.

After a CT scan reveals a bullet in the mummy's leg and modern dental work in the jaw, medical examiner Maura Isles and Boston PD Detective Jane Rizzoli have a murder investigation on their hands. The mummy was recently discovered in an unlabeled crate in the basement of the Crispin Museum, a small family-run museum in the Boston area. When Jane and her partner Barry Frost uncover more preserved human remains in the museum's storage area, they realize they have a very intelligent and unorthodox serial killer on the loose.

The discovery leaves them with more questions than answers. What is driving the Archaeology Killer (as the murderer is dubbed by the press)? Why does he go to such lengths to preserve his victims? What is his connection to Egyptologist Josephine Pulcillo -- a woman who, like Madam X, is harboring many secrets of her own? Most importantly, how do they stop him before he claims another victim?

As someone who has had a lifelong love of archaeology (in particular, Egyptology), I greatly enjoyed the archaeological elements in The Keepsake. The book was so vividly atmospheric and creepy that I found myself looking over my shoulder more than once during my reading - just in case.

Tess Gerritsen has created another chilling, fast-paced thriller that is sure to delight fans of the Rizzoli/Isles mystery series. Readers new to Gerritsen's writing will also find The Keepsake very accessible and enjoyable.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Takes stalking to new heights Oct. 16 2008
By Linda Pagliuco - Published on
Jane Rizzoli is one of the strongest female detective characters in the genre, and, after having her baby girl, she's back in action. Jane shines in this serial killer/stalker/confused identity thriller, as she struggles to unkink the many tangled lines in these crimes. Gerritsen appears to be attempting to show Jane as a whole person - mother, partner, cop, friend - and it's refreshing to see her uncertain at times, empathizing with other parents at others, trying to be supportive of her soon to be divorced detective partner. And the crimes in this installment are ingenious. While it's possible to make good guesses as to what "went down", there are some gratifying zigs and zags along the way, and at the conclusion, to keep the reader absorbed. 5 stars.
17 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "The Keepsake" is a Keeper! Sept. 14 2008
By Brian Baker - Published on
In her latest crime thriller featuring crack Boston Homicide Detective Jane Rizzoli, Tess Gerritsen's found a creative new wrinkle in the genre, blending archeology, psycophathy and obsession in this captivating new novel.

From the gripping opening chapter right through to the last pages, this book never lets up. Fast-paced with rich characterizations; flawless plotting and pacing; fascinating science; and not a wasted word anywhere.

If you're like me, and try to anticipate the twists ahead while you're reading, you'll find yourself regularly surprised as the story unfolds.

This is, flat out, one of the most entertaining books I've read all summer. Get it!
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