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Deep as the Marrow Mass Market Paperback – March 15, 1998


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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Physician/novelist Wilson (Implant, LJ 7/95) spins another fast-moving thriller, this time around the issue of legalizing drugs. When President Thomas Winston announces a plan to attack the drug problem by making drugs legal, he's met first with public outrage, then with an assassination plot involving his boyhood friend and personal physician, Dr. John VanDuyne. In a plan masterminded by a Colombian drug lord, six-year-old Katie VanDuyne is kidnapped to persuade her father to give the president an antibiotic that will destroy his bone marrow. The kidnapping goes awry early on, because of the doctor's ethics and a kidnapper's attachment to Katie, but Wilson spins out the action to the last pages, making some persuasive arguments for drug legalization along the way. Readers may quibble with an occasional unlikely plot device, but they'll keep turning pages to the end. A sure bet for popular fiction collections.?Michele Leber, Fairfax Cty. P.L., Vir.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

What would actually happen if the president decriminalized drugs? The drug lords certainly would not let a tax-free, $50 billion annual income disappear without a struggle, would they? In Wilson's exciting yarn, John VanDuyne, the president's personal physician and longtime friend, is put in an excruciating position when his patient broaches drug legalization: if he wants to get his kidnapped daughter, Katie, back, VanDuyne must give the president a potentially fatal drug. With confederates in high government places and an assistant given to sending gruesome "persuaders" from kidnapped victims to keep their family members and friends on mission, drug boss Carlos Salinas foresees no problems for his scheme to stay in business. Problems do, of course, arise in the White House and elsewhere. High-tech electronics, the kidnappers' failure to discover beforehand that Katie needs daily medication for epilepsy, and VanDuyne's somewhat insane ex-wife are just some of them. The concluding, brilliantly conceived chase in the New Jersey pine barrens should leave many readers exhausted, happily. William Beatty --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; 1st edition (March 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812571983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812571981
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,126,736 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I was born toward the end of the Jurassic Period and raised in New Jersey where I misspent my youth playing with matches, poring over Uncle Scrooge and E.C. comics, reading Lovecraft, Matheson, Bradbury, and Heinlein, listening to Chuck Berry and Alan Freed, and watching Soupy Sales and horror movies. I sold my first story in the Cretaceous Period and have been writing ever since. (Even that dinosaur-killer asteroid couldn't stop me.)

I've written in just about every genre - science fiction, fantasy, horror, a children's Christmas book (with a monster, of course), medical thrillers, political thrillers, even a religious thriller (long before that DaVinci thing). So far I've got about 33 books and 100 or so short stories under my name in 24 languages.

THE KEEP, THE TOMB, HARBINGERS, and BY THE SWORD all appeared on the New York Times Bestsellers List. WHEELS WITHIN WHEELS won the first Prometheus Award in 1979; THE TOMB received the Porgie Award from The West Coast Review of Books. My novelette "Aftershock" received the 1999 Bram Stoker Award for short fiction. DYDEETOWN WORLD was on the young adult recommended reading lists of the American Library Association and the New York Public Library, among others (God knows why). I received the prestigious Inkpot Award from San Diego ComiCon and the Pioneer Award from the RT Booklovers Convention. I'm listed in the 50th anniversary edition of Who's Who in America. (That plus $3 will buy you a girly coffee at Starbuck's.)

My novel THE KEEP was made into a visually striking but otherwise incomprehensible movie (screenplay and direction by Michael Mann) from Paramount in 1983. My original teleplay "Glim-Glim" first aired on Monsters. An adaptation of my short story "Menage a Trois" was part of the pilot for The Hunger series that debuted on Showtime in July 1997.

And then there's the epic saga of the Repairman Jack film. After 14 years in development hell with half a dozen writers and at least a dozen scripts, THE TOMB is finally moving toward production as "Repairman Jack" from Beacon Films and Touchstone. The plan is to make Jack a franchise character. (Gotta tell you: all the years of this has worn me out.)

I've done a few collaborations too. One with Steve Spruill on NIGHTKILL, and a bunch with Matthew J. Costello. Matt and I did world design, characters, and story arcs for Sci-Fi Channel's FTL NewsFeed, a daily newscast set 150 years in the future. An FTL NewsFeed was the first program broadcast by the new channel when it launched in September 1992. We took over scripting the Newsfeeds (the equivalent of a 4-1/2 hour movie per year) in 1994 and continued until its cancellation in December 1996.

We did script and design for MATHQUEST WITH ALADDIN (Disney Interactive - 1997) with voices by Robin Williams and Jonathan Winters, and the same for The Interactive DARK HALF for Orion Pictures, based on the Stephen King novel, but this project was orphaned when MGM bought Orion. (It's officially vaporware now.) We even wrote a stageplay, "Syzygy," which opened in St. Augustine, Florida, in March, 2000.

I'm tired of talking about myself, so I'll close by saying that I live and work at the Jersey Shore where I'm usually pounding away on a new Repairman Jack novel and haunting eBay for strange clocks and Daddy Warbucks memorabilia. (No, we don't have a cat.)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 3, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Wilson weaves a tale like very few writers can. The believability in the choice the Doctor faces, to kill one of his oldest friends, the President of the United States to save his childs life is gripping and tense and you feel in the middle of it all. You are taken away and left emotionally drained as you can't stop turning pages. I find myself recommending everything Wilson writes!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By DougPaz on November 20, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
My first Wilson title starts out with an great idea about the President legalizing drugs and the Drug Lord's response. I can feel the terror that Dr. John VanDuyne experiences in the choice between his kidnapped daughter and his old friend, the President of the US. The story is flying along well until it peaks with a major disagreement between the kidnappers. It quickly runs downhill after that with the adding of a crazy ex-wife and hillbilly relatives. It becomes predictable and unbelievable at that point. I was sorely dissappointed at the end.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on April 24, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In a bold move, President Thomas Winston proposes legalizing drugs, thus subjecting them to regulation, while at the same time removing their glamour. This proposal causes predictable reactions: liberals are ecstatic, conservatives are outraged. The media, pleased with the ongoing dispute, fan the flames of controversy at every opportunity.

Columbian drug lord Carlos Salinas, perceiving danger to his criminal empire, launches a plan to eliminate the President. Having gained access to Winston's confidential medical history, he knows that the President can be disabled or killed with a dose of chloramphenicol, a little used antibiotic which almost killed him at age three. Salinas arranges to have the young daughter of the President's personal physician, Dr. John Van Duyne, kidnapped, hoping to blackmail the doctor into administering the drug.

Although the actual kidnapping goes off without a hitch, the situation soon becomes very complicated. The architect of the kidnapping, Mike MacLaglen (known in criminal circles as "Snake"), is not aware that Katie Van Duyne has a potentially fatal seizure disorder, a form of epilepsy. Additionally, the people he has hired to "baby-sit" Katie, Paul DiCastro and his girlfriend, Poppy Mulliner, almost immediately have second thoughts about kidnapping a child. Snake's problems are multiplied by John Van Duyne 's unwillingness to sit tight while his daughter is in danger, coupled with his reluctance to harm his life long friend.

Deep as the Marrow has a lot of things going for it--among them believable characterization and an incredibly even handed discussion of a controversial social issue--but readers will probably be most impressed by Wilson's deft plotting. The action, which begins in Washington D.C.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Should the United States legalize marijuana? The question is valid and there are many compelling arguments that support such legislation. Sadly these arguments are usually difficult to hear due to all the noise being thrown up by the opposition, noise that doesn't really further the debate in a meaningful way and instead uses scare tactics to divert attention from the real issues at hand; the most successful of which always uses the `protect the children of America from harmful drugs' approach. And then of course they also like to paint the supporters of legalization (or decriminalization) as hopeless dope heads themselves because obviously the only people that could support such a thing are those that use it on a daily basis, right? Wrong. I'm a perfect example. I've never touched the stuff, yet I think legalizing it would be good (same thing with prostitution and several other `vices'), not because I want to start using it myself (hell, I don't even drink), but because I know its not going away and would rather see it regulated and taxed. Plus, after looking at the statistics on how much of our tax dollars goes into prosecuting those who have been arrested for such crimes, and then goes toward keeping them alive in a jail cell during their imprisonment, I can't help but think that the money could be put to better use. In the novel Deep as the Marrow by F. Paul Wilson the president of the United States feels the same way, and takes steps to start the decriminalization process. Little does he know just how far some will go to keep him from reaching this goal.

Without warning John VanDuyne has found himself in a horrible position, one which no parent would ever want to experience.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
F. Paul Wilson's novel, "Deep As the Marrow" practically jumps off the first page and grabs the reader by the throat, not letting go until the exciting conclusion. Wilson, who is better known for his medical novels ("Implant", "Mirage", "The Select") and the "Repairman Jack" series, is at his best in this political thriller.

The book revolves around the decision of President Thomas Winston's plan to decriminalize the use of drugs in the United States. (Reviewer's note: OK, it's a little tough to buy this premise, but it is an intriguing concept as conceived by Wilson.) When crime lords, including Columbian drug king Carlos Salinas, realize that the President's plan would in essence kill their cash cow, they decide that the President must be stopped before putting the plan into fruition. A diabolical scheme is concocted to kidnap the daughter of the President's physician and best friend, John VanDuyne. VanDuyne becomes a helpless pawn who is forced to decide between the life of his daughter and that of the leader of the free world.

As the plot unfolds, we are introduced to some great characters (each of the kidnappers are broadly written). The reader can't help but empathize with VanDuyne as he agonizes over the plight of his daughter. Conspiracy, murder, chills, and suspense all abound throughout "Deep As the Marrow" as a number of plot twists keep the action flowing until the last page.

This reviewer highly recommends this novel to all Wilson fans and any lover of political suspense novels!
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