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The Bone Collector: The First Lincoln Rhyme Novel Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 1998

4.4 out of 5 stars 595 customer reviews
Book 1 of 11 in the Lincoln Rhyme Series

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The hero of Jeffery Deaver's thriller The Bone Collector is Lincoln Rhyme, a forensic scientist known to his peers as "the world's foremost criminalist." Rhyme will need all his reason--and his considerable stock of high-tech tools--about him to solve this latest brain-twister: a serial killer with method to his madness. In tried and true thriller fashion, the killer's crimes are described in lurid detail, as is the astounding technological equipment with which Rhyme examines the evidence--everything from an energy-dispersive x-ray unit to a mass spectrometer.

Every fictional detective has his or her gimmick, from Sherlock Holmes's violin to Nero Wolf's orchids, and Rhyme is no exception. He is a quadriplegic who can move nothing but a single finger. Gadget-philes will be in seventh heaven reading about Lincoln Rhyme's tools; other readers might feel the book could do with a few more plausible characters and a little less technology. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Deaver (A Maiden's Grave) is too fond of gimmicks. They range in this novel from the extreme (his detective here, Lincoln Rhyme, is a quadriplegic who can move only one finger) to the moderately eccentric (beautiful policewoman Amelia Sachs, who acts as Rhyme's arms and legs, suffers from arthritis). And his villain, a serial killer who models his crimes on ones he finds in a book on criminal life in old New York, has an uncomfortable way of slaying each of his victims in ways guaranteed to stop the heart or turn the stomach: buried alive, flayed by high-pressure steam, eaten by hungry rats, burned alive, attacked by mad dogs. All this takes place in the course of one busy New York weekend as the killer helpfully leaves playful little clues as to where he's going to strike next and Rhyme uses his immense savvy (and a battery of computerized testing tools) to figure it out. The whole affair, in fact, is incredibly silly, though the headlong narrative, with Sachs arriving in the nick of time (driving at 80 mph through New York streets) to perform rescues that seem to belong in a comic strip rather than a novel, never lets up, and there is plenty of genuine forensic knowledge in evidence. There are dramatic switcheroos up to the very last page, and a climactic battle to the death that might make even teenage boys wince. For it seems to be at that kind of readership?uncritical and doting on violence?that the novel is aimed. 100,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo; film rights sold to Martin Bregman and Universal Pictures; simultaneous Penguin audio. (Mar.) FYI: An HBO movie of A Maiden's Grave, starring James Garner and Marlee Matlin, will air in January 1997.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Lincoln Rhyme Novel (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Signet (April 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451188454
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451188458
  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 1.1 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (595 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #377,292 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In The Bone Collector, the first in a series featuring Lincoln Rhymes, we are introduced to probably one of the best criminalist minds that have ever been written about. Perhaps it's because the main character, Lincoln Rhymes, does not have the day to day trivialities that cloud up one's mind on a daily basis. Rhymes is a quadriplegic and can only move one finger. He is a former NYPD criminalogist whose spine was severely injured while working a crime scene. Now he is confined to his townhouse apartment in Manhattan where, with the help of some state of the art electronics and equipment, he is still able to help the NYPD solve some gruesome crimes.
Enter Amelia Sachs, a beautiful policewoman, who becomes Lincoln's protege, possible love interest and eyes and ears on upcoming crime scenes. I read this book after the movie trailers were out so it was easy to picture Denzel Washington as Rhymes and Angelina Jolie as Sachs. Deaver is a master at explaining and detailing police procedure and is so adept at analyzing a crime scene that by the time I was finished, I felt as if I could "walk the grid" and "bag the evidence". The homicidal maniac in this book is as evil as they come but Lincoln is able to stay one step ahead of him. If there is a book that can honestly be termed a "page-turner", this is it. Upon its completion, however, I don't know if I'll ever be able to ride in a NYC cab and, if I do have to and I see some little toy hanging from the rear view mirror, "I'm outta here".
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Jeffery Deaver is one the great writers of today -his thrillers are wonderfully twisted, intelligent and fast paced.
This was recently made into a movie which did not do the book justice. Lincoln Rhyme, the NYPD's best and considered to be the world's foremost criminalist - is paralyzed in an accident and seeks solace in silence yet the police desperately need him.
Walking the beat, Amelia Sachs discovers a body buried beneath an overpass (all but his ring finger) and she seals the area off in hopes of salvaging what clues might be left. This action brings her to the attention of Lincoln. The NYPD teams them up to hunt down what might be the cities most deranged killer.
This book was fabulous - but it had a major flaw -it ended! I fell in love with Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs and I couldn't put the book down. It was thriller through and through - and as a bonus it was well written and the characters were so real that you almost felt like you were there with them.
I can't wait to see where Jeffery Deaver takes us next
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Wow-- a top forensic police officer working from his bed as a quadriplegic. Such a great idea that has NEVER been thought of before!
And from the very beginning, where police find a man buried alive with one hand sticking out of the ground, a finger shaved of skin and wearing a woman's ring, the depraved of New York City shine through this book about a serial killer/kidnapper. A beautiful woman must help our "crip," as he calls himself, solve each crime, for which the killer leaves clues to the next victim, before the victim dies.
A great suspense novel, one which I wanted to read before I saw the movie with the gorgeous Denzel Washington playing the quadriplegic and newcomer Angelina Jolie playing the red-headed "partner" for this forensic, bedded genius.
Deaver has created two superb characters who work together with superb sexual tension between them. Readers should check out the next book, "The Coffin Dancer," which features the same players. Hopefully Deaver has more coming for us.
Deaver is Patricia Cornwell caliber, a hard task to accomplish!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the first Deaver book I read. Now I'm on a mission to read them all. The story behind this book is simple. A madman is on the loose in NYC, kidnapping victims and leaving clues behind for the police to find the victims. If they are not found in time, they meet with a horrible death.
Knowing this, the police turn to an ex-cop, Lincoln Rhyme, famous criminalist who was retired after a spinal column injury. Now a quadriplegic, he is forced back into service knowing he is the only one who can catch the madman. With the assistance of a team he assembles, including the beautiful Patrolwoman Amelia Sachs, they set out on the villians trail.
This book was a page-turner. The charcters are developed quickly and in depth. You are immediately swept up into action and it doesn't end until the end. I didn't find one thing boring about this book. The only disappointing part was the ending which seemed a little far fetched. But I still recommend this whole-heartedly!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is an especially suspenseful thriller made more so by the personal angst of the main character, Lincoln Rhyme. A quadriplegic, forensic ex-detective for the New York City Police Department, Rhyme is brought out of retirement by the police department to assist them in the apprehension of an apparently psychopathic killer who is loose on the streets of New York.

The forays into bits of arcane New York history, as well as the sleuthing done almost entirely through the application of forensics and deductive reasoning, make for a very interesting read. While at times it seems that no one could be as uncannily accurate as Rhyme in deciphering the meaning of the physical evidence, this contrivance does serve to move the plot along. With the story line so engrossing and the crime scenes horrific, as well as ingenious, it is the kind of book that is hard to put down, because you simply cannot wait to see what happens. The surprise ending is the icing on the cake.

Assisting Rhyme with his work is Police Officer Sachs who, while not as compelling a character as Rhyme, is essential to the story. It is her character who does the 'heavy lifting' so to speak. Highly intelligent and resourceful, with an innate appreciation of the importance of physical evidence, she inspects and preserves the crime scenes, as well as gathers the physical evidence from which Rhyme ultimately weaves his magic. She also serves as somewhat of a Deus Ex Machina in that she saves the day in more ways than one.

Sachs is a wonderful foil for Rhyme in that she runs hot to his cold.
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