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The Cold Moon: A Lincoln Rhyme Novel Paperback – May 22 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Mantegna applies his considerable talent to this latest Lincoln Rhymes mystery. Deaver's quadriplegic detective, Rhymes and his partner, Det. Amelia Sachs, attempt to stop a sadistic serial killer known as the Watchmaker, so named because he leaves specially constructed clocks at the site of each of his murders. However, as so often happens in Deaver's stories, not everything is even close to what it seems. Mantegna gives a smooth, no frills performance. He keeps the vocal deviations for each character to a minimum, concentrating instead on making their dialogue natural and realistic. His low-key delivery works especially well when describing the point of view of the Watchmaker or when delving into the inner thoughts of the killer's sexually deviant accomplice. The scenes between the two villains as they calmly discuss the fates of their intended victims, both before and after death, are genuinely chilling in their execution. Deaver fans will be pleased to have Rhymes and Sachs back in a new intricate and compelling thriller, with Mantegna once again serving as an excellent narrator.
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.
Lincoln Rhyme, the quadriplegic criminalist, returns for a new round of crime busting. Rhyme, who has starred in a handful of very good novels, is one of the mystery genre's most interesting and out-of-the-ordinary series leads, a brilliant investigator who rarely leaves his specially equipped home. He's partnered (personally and professionally) with Amelia Sachs, a former fashion model and first-rate detective. Here, while assisting Rhyme in tracking down a sadistic serial killer who calls himself the Watchmaker, Sachs is also running her own murder investigation, her first as lead detective. Fans of the series will welcome the chance to see Sachs spread her wings, and spending time with the likably crusty Rhyme is always a delight. As always, Deaver's dialogue is exceptionally realistic, and his plotting is devilishly intricate. Recommended for fans of the Rhyme novels (naturally) and readers who like their thrillers laced with wit and sharp characterizations. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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In The Cold Moon Amelia Sachs, Rhyme's key investigator, and Rhyme must match wits with the Watchmaker, a killer that leaves a clock with each victim. In the course of the investigation, we discover that the killer purchased ten clocks leading the investigators to conclude that there is to be ten victims, not a pleasant thought given the killer's taste for suffering.
Deaver gives us more information about Amelia's history adding depth to her character. He also introduces Kathry Dance an investigator from the California Bureau of Investigation. Kathryn can smell a lie before you tell it. Deaver is a master storyteller who manages to deliver one twist after another and paces The Cold Moon with the reader in mind. I was surprised in the end.....
Chalk up another hit for Deaver.
Another character in The Cold Moon who seems to have found her way into Deaver's heart is consultant Kathryn Dance, the human lie detector who plays a key role in helping Rhyme and company frustrate the machinations of the Watchmaker. Dance, who works with the California Bureau of Investigation, is an expert in the field of kinesics, the science of body language, nonverbal gestures, postures and facial expressions by which a person manifests various physical, mental or emotional states, and communicates nonverbally with others. Deaver has told Mystery Scene magazine that he's already hard at work on a stand alone novel featuring Dance, tentatively titled The Sleeping Doll. If her solo adventure proves half as interesting and involving as the one she just shared with Lincoln Rhyme, readers should reserve their copies now.
I'm a huge fan of the Rhyme series and have enjoyed every book so far, rating each one at least four stars. However, I just can't do it for this one. My issue with this book was that all of the typical Deaver plot twists and turns and the "I didn't see that coming" occurrences were all packed into the last 1/4 of the book. In all of the other Rhyme books, there are twists throughout that keep you glued to it and turning the pages, but in The Cold Moon they just aren't there until the last stretch. Then, once you do get to the surprises, they stretch belief almost to it's breaking point.
If you're a Deaver fan, you have to read this book of course because it is the first to feature Kathryn Dance, the main character of his new series (the second book of the Dance series comes out in June 2007), who is presumably going to be taking the place of Lincoln Rhyme as the main protagonist in Deaver's books.
It isn't the best of the Rhyme books, and it hurts to only give it three stars being such a loyal Deaver fan, but it's was the low point in all of the Rhyme books in my eyes.
If anything, our immobile hero Linc takes something of a back seat (or wheelchair) to his established partner Amelia Sachs and a newcomer to the series in the form of a female kinesics expert (Kathryn Dance - note the musical innuendo again) who just happens to get deeply involved in this case while visiting New York from her native California. Come to think about it, Dance is `on her way to the airport' for the entirety of this novel, but keeps on putting it off to another day. Anyway, Sachs enjoys a new responsibility as lead detective in a suicide case that might just be murder in disguise (guess which!), and this distracts her from helping Rhyme out in his pursuit of the evil Watchmaker. This is a man who seems to have the time for ten seemingly unrelated murders and leaves a clock beside each victim as a calling card. I was relieved when this `plan' altered dramatically and we suddenly found ourselves heading in an utterly different direction, moving away from an almost boring serial-killing spree and onto the slightly more interesting subject of police corruption. That didn't last long though, oh no. Time to get nasty again, and conjure up a completely new objective for the bad guy that has nothing to do with watchmaking or bent coppers. Despite this confusion, Lincoln Rhyme miraculously sees through it all from the comfort of his high-tech town house in Central Park West and basically saves the world. Well, lots of potential victims, at any rate.
Anyone new to the Deaver style may well enjoy all these twists, but for those of us who have seen it all before - and in my case, enjoyed it a lot, to be fair - it was just a little too much. In combining presumably very accurate accounts of forensic science in the pursuit of justice with criminals and criminalists who are just too bad or too good to be true, we are left with a somewhat lop-sided mixture of authentic police procedural work and leading characters who are less than convincing in their identities, objectives and capabilities. In the real world, crime is a lot muckier and so is the solving of it.
Picture Chubby Checker being whipped away by a tornado and you have a ridiculous image of mind-boggling twisting. Or you could read Cold Moon - your impression would be much the same.
Police forensic consultant and former Detective Lincoln Rhyme as always feels immense frustration that he is not out there with his team, walking his own personally devised murder scene "grid" and so must take some satisfaction in that his best eyes and ears, Amelia Sachs, is out there to do it for him. Sachs has her eye on some future goal that might not involve police work, and this is despite the fact that she is riding her first case as Lead homicide Detective. Some of those in the department have always wanted the bright Amelia Sachs to fall from a great height and when her current case leads her down the road into her father's own policing past, she is more able to understand why.
Deaver is a master at suspense, and the ticking clock element to this novel is only a small part of that. There are always so many layers to the Lincoln Rhyme novel that it's delightful to have the knowledge that an early answer will never be THE answer; Deaver we expect to always work the suspense screws skifully right up until the final pages. This is a better novel than the previous one or two in the series which puzzled more than entertained. THE COLD MOON is more tightly crafted with greater cohesion between merging plotlines (which there always seems to be) and less extraneous elements are involved. This series isn't read for the warm and fuzzy character development and stripping it all back down to the action of the escalating hunt has made for a far better read.
On the flip side of this some of the personal issues have been dragged out too far in the series and need to be dealt with. Fans of the series need to have resolution on teasers that were introduced many novels ago, and a retrospective novel probably wouldn't be a bad inclusion either (not an original thought, but would probably be timely).
If you haven't read a Jeffery Deaver novel before, THE COLD MOON would give you a good feel for the series and Deaver makes solid work of providing enough supporting information to enable his books to be read as stand alones. A great book in a stellar series that still has no peer.