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Vanishing Act Mass Market Paperback – Mar 2 1996


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Fawcett; Reissue edition (March 2 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0804113874
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804113878
  • Product Dimensions: 2.6 x 10.9 x 17.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 181 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #274,762 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Jack Killigan used the reflections in the dark windows to watch he woman walk quickly up the long concourse, look at her high heels so she could take a few extra steps while the escalator was carrying her down, and then hurry around the curve so she could step onto the conveyor. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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By Martin A Hogan TOP 100 REVIEWER on June 21 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book was a happy accident for me and I am glad to have discovered Thomas Perry's novels. "Vanishing Act" is an amazing, original story of a half-white, half-Native American woman who acts as sort of a one person "Federal Protection" guide. She helps innocent people in danger disappear. There are several successful clients she meets in the first part of the novel and the dialogue is a true as can be. There is a constant tense feel to the narrative, as not only is this job dangerous, but Jane must prove herself each time, given her race and gender. The ultimate client she helps to disappear turns out to be other than she suspected and she is left to resolve a dangerous and deadly situation. Most impressive in Perry's writing is his attention to detail. Not only are all the Native American rituals and survival techniques explained in detail (and implemented), but his knowledge of the Adirondack Mountains is as accurate as a compass. Jane travels through real existing lakes, ponds, rivers and mountains. It's the kind of book that keeps you up well past midnight just so you can reach the climax and resolution.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Jane Whitefield has to be one of the most original and interesting characters I have yet to come across. Though she did seem a little lacking in the personality department, I'm hoping that will change as the series progresses.
While in college, Jane helps a fellow Native American, of questionable integrity, escape some bad guys with even less and stumbles on a career. After performing a string of successful disappearances, Jane is duped into compromising a client's identity. It takes her quite a long time for her to figure out who the bad guy is, most readers of this genre will figure it out right away, but once she does, she gets right on the trail. While the methods she employs to do this all make logical sense, they do require gigantic leaps of faith on the part of the reader. Still, one can't help but to admire her tenacity. The showdown is exciting and suspenseful.
The pacing of the story is a little uneven in places. This is a flaw I've found in every Perry novel I've read, this is my third. In spite of this, I do find him to be an original and entertaining storyteller and will continue to seek out other titles.
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By A Customer on May 13 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
While the idea of a female non-detective protagonist is a neat twist in the genre, this female has a personality which is neither attractive nor repelling. She is a zero. It is hard to identify with her. She is humorless. Her next door neighbor is totally implausible once he decides to join the chase. The plot was destroyed by the characters. I was hoping Jane Whitefield would get whacked and save me some pain.
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By Cheryl on Aug. 23 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I could not finish this book.It started out so promising but I found all the detail about the American Indians distracting and so i got bored and quit reading it.When i find myself skimming through parts of a book to read faster then i know I shouldn't read any further.I hate quitting a book but I just couldn't get past all the detail about the native history. Some would find this interesting but i didn't.I might try this author again...
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
It all starts good and interesting, however, the plot is centered around dumb actions of the good girl and on otherwise unfounded expectations of the bad guy that she will do exactly these stupid things, it is so annoying that it is almost impossible to read this book once you realize this.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The novel introduces Jane Whitefield when she switches places with another woman and beats the daylights out of a sleazy bounty hunter who thinks he is kidnapping a runaway wife. It illustrates how people can completely disappear and start life over as a new person. The story digresses a lot to discuss American Indian lore, and that can be distracting. One gets the impression that the author is trying to show off his knowledge of the subject.
Jane is willing to commit criminal acts to obtain her objectives (the end justifies the means), and some of the people she assisted are not outstanding citizens. Dealing with the wrong side of the law will eventually get you into trouble. Jane makes an error in judgement which could get her killed, and compounds that by wanting to operate as a lone wolf with no backup. Her opponent makes an even bigger mistake, i.e., if you are trying to disappear you do not return to your home area.
Overall, the plot is interesting, but I considered it a somewhat average mystery.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
The first Jane Whitefield novel, *Vanishing Act*, offers a unique protagonist, a brilliant premise, non-stop action, and a conclusion that will have you treading softly the next time you go looking for Bambi. Perry is a superb craftsman, whose novels are always literate, challenging, and thoughtful. He seems to have lost interest in Jane after six novels, three of which attempt to retire her. Too bad. Even though he is right, that sustaining a character through decades is hard work and perhaps not even very interesting, she is missed.
Read *Vanishing Act*, *Shadow Woman*, and *Dance for the Dead*. These are the must-haves of the series. Perry manages to create a believable Seneca world while maintaining a respectful distance, and his intricate plotting sustains each book. Read for the plot, read for the Indians: either way, you'll be happy.
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