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The Empty Chair.

The Empty Chair

Jeffery Deaver

Simon & Schuster

1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020

0684855631 $TBA www.simonandschuster.com

Quadriplegic, criminalist Lincoln Rhyme, accompanied by his lover, investigator Amelia Sachs and his assistant Thom, is in Avery, North Carolina, where he hopes to undergo experimental surgery to aid with spinal cord regeneration. His first day there, Rhyme is visited by Jim Bell, sheriff of Paquenoke County, where two women have been kidnapped and a young man killed by 16-year-old Garrett Hanlon, nicknamed the Insect Boy because of his interest in bugs. Garrett's on the run and Bell wants Rhyme to help find him before he kills the two women he kidnapped. Sachs talks Rhyme into looking into the case and the two begin their unique investigating: Rhyme examining the forensic evidence in a lab with Sachs doing the legwork. They eventually track Garrett through forensics and he is arrested but refuses to reveal the whereabouts of the two women. Sachs thinks there is more to what's going on than they've been told, so she lets Garrett go under the condition he will lead her to the two women. Now Sachs is in a world of trouble with the law and Rhyme's trying to trace her whereabouts, fearing she will be shot either by Garrett or law enforcement.

Rhyme and Sachs are two very likable characters who mesh well together. Rhyme, frustrated with the physical limitations he is forced to endure, seeks a way to become whole again while Sachs secretly wants him to remain a quadriplegic, fearing he will not want her once he is mobile. As with each book in the series, the forensics investigation is fascinating. The mystery of Garrett and his reason for kidnapping the women is well-done, as is the suspense as Sachs and Garrett are pursued.

Christy Tillery French

Reviewer

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Author:French, Christy Tillery
Publication:Reviewer's Bookwatch
Article Type:Brief article
Date:Sep 1, 2009
Words:307
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