Pregnant women play key roles in this bone-chilling fourth novel in Gerritsen's edgy, suspenseful series of thrillers featuring Boston Medical Examiner Maura Isles and Homicide Detective Jane Rizzoli. Both of the usually gritty crime fighters are uncharacteristically vulnerable. Rizzoli is carrying her first child, and Isles-divorced and alone at age 40 and suddenly, unsettlingly aware of her biological clock-is experiencing decidedly unspiritual feelings for her priest. As the novel begins, Isles-an adopted child who never knew the identity of her birth parents-is confronted by the corpse of a murdered woman who is apparently her identical twin. Another detective, Rick Ballard, comes forward to say that he knew the victim and is certain her killer is a powerful pharmaceutical baron known to have stalked her. Isles falls for the handsome Ballard, but she isn't convinced by his theory, and she launches an investigation into her sister's past, following the trail to a state correctional facility and a schizophrenic inmate who may be her mother. This opens the cobwebbed pages of a nightmarish family album and leads Isles to a remote cabin in Maine where the long-dead body of a pregnant woman is discovered buried in the woods. The killer, Isles discovers, has been murdering pregnant women for decades, making periodic sweeps of the country. Meanwhile, brief scenes chronicle the diabolical kidnapping of an affluent pregnant housewife who is kept buried in a crude coffin. An electric series of startling twists, the revelation of ghoulishly practical motives and a nail-biting finale make this Gerritsen's best to date.
In a house under renovation, a plumber uncovers a cellar no one knew about, and makes a rather grisly discovery – a decapitated chicken, animal bones, and cauldrons containing beads, feathers, and other relics of religious ceremonies. In the center of the shrine, there is the skull of a teenage girl. Meanwhile, on a nearby lakeshore, the headless body of a teenage boy is found by a man walking his dog.
Nothing is clear – neither when the deaths occurred, nor where. Was the skull brought to the cellar or was the girl murdered there? Why is the boy’s body remarkably well preserved? Led by a preacher turned politician, citizen vigilantes blame devil worshippers and Wiccans. They begin a witch hunt, intent on seeking revenge.
Forensic anthropologist Temperance Brennan – “five-five, feisty, and forty-plus” – is called in to investigate, and a complex and gripping tale unfolds in this, Kathy Reichs’s eleventh taut, always surprising, scientifically fascinating mystery.
With a popular series on Fox – now in its third season and in full syndication – Kathy Reichs has established herself as the dominant talent in forensic mystery writing. Devil Bones features Reichs’s signature blend of forensic descriptions that “chill to the bone” (Entertainment Weekly) and the surprising plot twists that have made her books phenomenal bestsellers in the United States and around the world.
Evil exists. Evil walks the streets. And evil has spawned a diabolical new disciple in this white-knuckle thriller from New York Times bestselling author Tess Gerritsen.
The Latin is scrawled in blood at the scene of a young woman's brutal murder: I HAVE SINNED. It's a chilling Christmas greeting for Boston medical examiner Maura Isles and Detective Jane Rizzoli, who swiftly link the victim to controversial celebrity psychiatrist Joyce O'Donnell – Jane's professional nemesis and member of a sinister cabal called the Mephisto Club.
On tony Beacon Hill, the club's acolytes devote themselves to the analysis of evil: Can it be explained by science? Does it have a physical presence? Do demons walk the earth? Drawing on a wealth of dark historical data and mysterious religious symbolism, the Mephisto scholars aim to prove a startling theory: that Satan himself exists among us. With the grisly appearance of a corpse on their doorstep, it's clear that someone – or something – is indeed prowling the city. Soon, the members of the club begin to fear the very subject of their study. Could this maniacal killer be one of their own – or have they inadvertently summoned an evil entity from the darkness?
Delving deep into the most baffling and unusual case of their careers, Maura and Jane embark on a terrifying journey to the very heart of evil, where they encounter a malevolent foe more dangerous than any they have ever faced… one whose work is only just beginning.
In this brisk, deftly plotted thriller from bestseller Gerritsen (Vanish), Boston medical examiner Maura Isles and police detective Jane Rizzoli look into the murder of 28-year-old Lori-Ann Tucker, whose body is found Christmas morning in her apartment amid an unholy mess of severed limbs, black candles and satanic symbols rendered in blood. "Peccavi," reads one word scrawled across Tucker's wall-Latin for "I have sinned." Isles and Rizzoli must sort sinner from innocent among suspects who can be found on several continents and include a group of sophisticates-scholars, an anthropologist, a psychiatrist-who are either cult members or crusaders against evil straight from the pages of Revelation. Other murders follow, all gruesome, all involving apocalyptic messages. On occasion, the action shifts to Europe, to a young woman running from a man she's convinced is descended from a race of fallen angels. Gerritsen has a knack for stretching believability just short of the breaking point-and for amassing details that produce an atmosphere in which the most terrible possibilities can and, indeed, should occur.
The master of the medical thriller returns with his most heart-pounding tale yet.
Twenty-eight-year-old Sean McGillin is the picture of health, until he fractures his leg while in-line skating in New York City 's Central Park. Within twenty-four hours of his surgery, he dies.
A thirty-six-year-old mother, Darlene Morgan, has knee surgery to repair a torn ligament in her knee. And within twenty-four hours, she has died.
New York City medical examiners Dr. Laurie Montgomery and Dr. Jack Stapleton are back, in Robin Cook's electrifying twenty-fifth novel. Last seen in Vector, the doctors confront a series of puzzling hospital deaths of young, healthy people after successful routine surgery.
Despite institutional resistance from her superiors, as well as from those at Manhattan General, Laurie doggedly pursues the investigation. Though it seems impossible to determine why and how the patients are dying, she comes to suspect that not only are the deaths related-they're intentional, suggesting the work of a remarkably clever serial killer with a very unusual motive, involving frightening ties to both developing genomic medicine and the economics of modern-day health care.
Then Laurie is dealt a double blow: While coping with Jack's inability to commit to their relationship, she discovers she carries a genetic marker for a breast-cancer gene. As her personal life continues to unravel, the need for answers becomes more urgent, especially when Laurie is pulled into the nightmare as a potential victim herself. With time winding down, she and Jack race to connect the dots-and save Laurie's life.
With his signature blend of suspense and science, Robin Cook delivers an electrifying page-turner as vivid as today's headlines.
From Publishers Weekly
If Cook's skills as a writer were as finely tuned as his sense of timing, his 14th medical thriller (after Terminal) would be a lot more rewarding. Current political events guarantee that a suspense novel centering on health care management will be topical and at least potentially fascinating. Unfortunately, stock characters, stilted dialogue and improbable heroes and villains make for difficult reading here. Idealistic young doctors David and Angela Wilson take positions at a state-of-the-art medical center in a small Vermont town partly because they see it as an ideal spot for their daughter, who suffers from cystic fibrosis. But the town is not as idyllic as it seems, and the hospital is in a desperate financial bind due primarily to its contract with a local HMO, David's new employer. Worse still, patients are dying unexpectedly almost daily, and no one seems to care very much. The deaths are not normal, of course, and astute readers will quickly determine who is behind them, why and-most likely-how. Cook raises troubling questions about the conflicts between medical and financial priorities in managed care (albeit in a somewhat distorted fashion), but it's difficult to get emotionally involved in a scenario as improbable as this one. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selection; Mystery Guild alternate; Reader's Digest Condensed Book.
From Library Journal
Recent medical school graduates David and Angela Wilson find the perfect setting for both their careers and family in rural Bartlet, Vermont. Not even the recent suicide and disappearance of two other physicians dampen their enthusiasm as they begin their jobs and buy their dream house. David's confidence is soon shaken, however, as his patients begin dying-not from their terminal diseases but from a mysterious illness. The deaths, coupled with attacks in the hospital parking lot, give the Wilsons the uneasy feeling that Bartlet is not what it seems. When a gruesome discovery prompts the Wilsons to hire a private investigator, the lives of several patients-and they themselves-are in danger. Physician and writer Cook once again terrifies and intrigues with this realistic and intense-to-the-end thriller, which is enhanced by actor Barry Bostwick's remarkable range of voices. For most popular collections.
With billions of dollars at stake, every scientist in America is fighting to discover the next Prozac, the latest "feel good" drug. Using bacterial mould first uncovered during the Salem witch trials, Edward Armstrong isolates a stunningly effective anti-depressant.
From Publishers Weekly
Critics (and publicists) often compare Reichs to Patricia Cornwell, as both are women who write bestselling thrillers featuring a female forensic expert. There's a significant difference between them, though. Reichs brings to her grisly novels a scientific detail and authenticity that Cornwell rarely matchesAa virtue arising from Reich's background as a top forensic anthropologist for the governments of North Carolina and Quebec, a background mirrored by that of her heroine, Tempe Brennan. But CornwellAa journalist before she turned novelistAis a more accomplished writer than Reichs, and her more fluid prose and plotting support a heroine who exudes a vitality that Brennan doesn't. Reichs's strengths and weaknesses are apparent in this third novel (after Death du Jour) featuring narrator Brennan, which finds the crime fighter tangling with outlaw motorcycle gangs in Montreal. The novel opens as Brennan, "sorting badly mangled tissue" in an autopsy room, is interrupted by the arrival of another body: that of a girl, nine, caught by a bullet that one gang, the Heathens, had intended for a rival Viper. The mangled tissue belongs to two Heathens who'd been en route to bomb the Vipers' headquarters: war is raging among bikers in Montreal, and Brennan is soon caught in the battles, not least because her visiting nephew, Kit, is enamored with bikersAincluding some involved in the war. The narrative carries Brennan to assorted bikers' hangouts, and to much forensic digging, all of which Reichs handles with an admirable intensity and veracity. Still, the novel has a stiff, storyboarded feel, with a subplot involving Brennan's cop loverAhas he turned gang member?Aparticularly intrusive. The pacing is lopsided, laborious in front and action-stuffed at the back, and the narrative spreads its message about the malfeasance of outlaw bikers with a heavy hand. Overall, the novel works, but the gears show one time too many. Agent, Jennifer Rudolph Walsh at the Writer's Shop. Major ad/promo; 6-city author tour.
Just when you thought it was safe to eat a hamburger again, Robin Cook – master of medical mysteries, deadly epidemics, and creepy comas-returns with an all too likely villain drawn right from current headlines: the American meat industry. If you've ever wondered where the E. coli bacteria comes from, and exactly how it can ravage the human body, destroying everything in its path, this is the book for you. As usual, Cook delivers solid information, well-researched medical arcana, and a scathing indictment of managed health care.
His protagonist, Kim Regis, is an all-too-typical ego-driven surgeon, whose arrogance and invulnerability set him up to be brought low by the deadly toxin that takes the life of his young daughter. Sparing no time and barely a paragraph to reflect on his loss, Regis goes right after the culprit, a meat-packing behemoth that brings dead and diseased animals to the slaughterhouse, breaking every health regulation in the book. The scenes set on the killing floor and in the boning rooms will make a vegetarian out of the most confirmed red-meat eater. Toxin is a heart-pounding thriller that hits very close to home.
It's the second-to-last day of archaeological field school. Dr Temperance Brennan's students are working on a site of prehistoric graves on Dewees, a barrier island north of Charleston, South Carolina, when a decomposing body is uncovered in a shallow grave off a lonely beach… The skeleton is articulated, the bone fresh and the vertebrae still connected by soft-tissue; the remains are encased in rotted fabric and topped by wisps of pale, blond hair – a recent burial, and a case Tempe must take. Dental remains and skeletal gender and race indicators suggest that the deceased is a middle-aged white male – but who was he? Why was he buried in a clandestine grave? And what does the unusual vertical hairline fracture of the sixth cervical vertebrae signify? While Tempe is trying to piece together the evidence, her personal life is thrown into turmoil. When a bullet – intended, perhaps, for her – puts Tempe 's estranged husband Pete in hospital, her unexpectedly emotional response complicates her on-off relationship with Detective Andrew Ryan… But before long, another body is discovered – and Tempe finds herself drawn deeper into a shocking and chilling investigation, set to challenge her entire view of humanity…
From Publishers Weekly
Gerritsen leaves the urban hospital setting of her first two successful thrillers (Harvest; Life Support) and steps into Stephen King territory?the troubled Maine town of Tranquility?with mixed results. The former doctor's ability to create credible characters and make medical details accessible and exciting provide the book's strongest moments, as Dr. Claire Elliot?recent widow from Baltimore?tries to make a go of her new life in Tranquility, where she has moved to get her son Noah, 14, away from dangerous influences. Irony of ironies: the country turns out to hold more savage dangers for the teen than the city ever did. Claire's struggles with the boy, her failure so far to win a place for herself in the hearts of prospective patients and a possible romance with the town's police chief are straightforward and moving. Harder to swallow is the book's premise?that savage outbreaks of violence among Tranquility's teenagers occur every 50-odd years, caused by natural or even supernatural factors. It's Claire who makes the connection between recent murders and older attacks, and of course there's the old "enemy of the people" subplot about not scaring off the tourist trade. The fact that Tranquility's teenage problem has a scientific solution lets Dr. Elliot have a final moment of triumph, but you can't help feeling that King would have made the story more powerful?and more fun. Major ad/promo; author tour; Doubleday Book Club and Literary Guild super release; Mystery Guild main selection; simultaneous Simon Schuster audio.
From School Library Journal
YA-Tranquility, ME, sounds like the perfect place for Dr. Claire Elliot to relocate with her teenage son and help him deal with his father's death. However, as she begins her practice, so begins an epidemic of teen violence. The shooting of the school biology teacher and the violent ending to the big dance have Claire and the town police chief, Lincoln Kelly, searching hard for clues and answers. Are the blue mushrooms growing in the forest where local teens hang out the cause? Or is the mysterious green phosphorescence that appears on the lake where many of the young people swim the culprit? Claire's son suddenly and mysteriously becomes as wild and uncontrollable as his friends. This is a gory medical thriller that will keep YAs totally engaged.
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