- Series: Lincoln Rhyme Novels
- Mass Market Paperback: 560 pages
- Publisher: Pocket Books; Reprint edition (March 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0671024094
- ISBN-13: 978-0671024093
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (444 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #491,032 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Coffin Dancer (A Lincoln Rhyme Novel) Mass Market Paperback – March 1, 1999
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This return engagement for quadriplegic criminologist Lincoln Rhyme is strong on forensic details as Rhyme tracks an elusive assassin known only by the tattoo that gives this fast-paced thriller its title.
Three witnesses to a murder could put a millionaire arms dealer behind bars for good. When one of them, the co-owner of Hudson Air, is blown up in a plane bombing with the Dancer's fingerprints all over it, the FBI takes the other witnesses into protective custody. Only Rhyme can decipher a crime scene, read the residue of a bombing, or identify a handful of dirt well enough to keep up with the killer. Helped by Amelia Sachs, his brilliant and able-bodied assistant, Rhyme traces the Dancer through Manhattan streets, airports, and subways. The psychological tension builds rapidly from page one all the way to the stunning and unexpected denouement. At the same time, Jeffery Deaver slowly develops the against-all-odds love affair between Rhyme and Sachs. Fans of Patricia Cornwell and others in the growing subgenre of forensic thrillers will find a lot to enjoy in Deaver's latest. --Jane Adams --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Deaver has come a long way since his Rune novels (Manhattan Is My Beat; Death of a Blue Movie Star), and the measure of his growth as a writer is on display in this taut sequel to the bestselling The Bone Collector, starring quadriplegic forensic specialist Lincoln Rhyme. Rhyme is called in to track down a contract killer, known as the Coffin Dancer, who has been hired to eliminate three witnesses in the upcoming federal trial of Philip Hansen. The trial is set to begin just 48 hours from the novel's (literally) explosive beginning. Rhyme and his beautiful assistant, detective Amelia Sachs, have just that much time to ID the Dancer and keep him from murdering the remaining witnesses. Yet Rhyme has personal reasons to track the Dancer, which come out in just one of the revelations and reversals that punctuate this thriller like a string of firecrackers. The pace, energized by Deaver's precise attention, never flags; and if the romantic angle is a little obvious (Rhyme's seeming concern for one of the Dancer's female targets sparks Amelia's jealousy), Deaver manages to renovate many of the hoariest conventions of the ticking-clock-serial-murder subgenre. Another original renovation is his Nero Wolfe-ish Rhyme?a detective who lives the life of the mind by necessity, not choice, and who thinks of everything but can't even pick up a phone without help. Trust Deaver's superb plotting and brisk, no-nonsense prose to spin fresh gold from tired straw. Literary Guild main selection; Doubleday Book Club featured alternate; Reader's Digest Condensed Book Club.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Throughout the book I felt as though I was sitting in a movie theater, or I was actually one of the characters. There were several surprises and sudden plot twist that mentally knocked me off balance. They left me asking myself, “How did he do that?” Jeffery Deaver has proven to be an extremely clever author. He is a master of deception.
There are many scenes in the book that held me in suspense for several pages. The suspense caused my heart to race, and my hairs to stand up. In one scene I had to go to the bathroom badly, but I held it until I finished the chapter. I nearly wet myself.
The story takes place in New York City which is where the main character, Lincoln Rhyme’s office/home is located. The location made the book even better for me. Being a native New Yorker I had a very good mental picture of the scenery. Lincoln Rhymes office/home is just across the street from the famous, historical Central Park.
I didn’t feel sorry for Lincoln Rhyme in this book as I did for him in the first book of the series. There weren’t any tear jerking scenes concerning his situation. Lincoln Rhyme is a quadriplegic. Lincoln Rhyme is a brilliant criminalist, and he is well rounded, but like most men he can’t figure women out. Rhyme didn’t seem to do as much detailed investigations as he did in the first book, but it took nothing away from the book. The investigations that he did was so detailed I’m inclined to believe Jeffery Deaver has a homicide detective helping him with his work.
I fell in love with Rhyme’s partner Amelia Sachs in the first book. Although, I am still in love with Amelia I have reason to believe she has cheated on me in this book. Amelia didn’t seem to be as introverted in this book as she was in the first book. I got to know Amelia a little better in this book; I saw the real Amelia Sachs. She did all the things a typical women that is in love would do. I saw Amelia’s Jealousy and temper tantrums. Amelia is an extraordinary women. She’s a courageous sharp shooter, and she is becoming a good criminalist. Amelia actually solved some of the puzzles in the investigations by herself. I love the way the author revealed how she has developed in time.
The sub characters seemed to be more involved in this story then the first one. Fred Dellray, a federal detective was a character in a plot twist that left me scratching my head. Detective Bell was involved in a suspenseful, nerve racking shoot out with the villain.
There were a few farfetched scenes; I won’t spoil it for you. I’ll just say, “There’s no way it could have happened like that.” At one point the characters were in trouble while on an air plane. In order for me to get a good understanding of the amount of trouble the characters were in I would have had to have had some aviation knowledge, and be quick with arithmetic. I was confused. I had to stop and do the math several times. That took a lot away from the story. At that point I was prepared to give the story three stars.
Near the end of the story when I found out who the villain in the story was I forgot all about the arithmetic, aviation, and farfetched scenes. I sat there in front of my kindle with my jaw slacked, and eye lids wide open in surprise. I had to give the two stars back. Jeffery Deaver is a brilliant author. I just want to shake his hand.
Make no mistake, Deaver is still one of my favorite authors, despite his wild twists. I wasn't aware THE COFFIN DANCER existed until Amazon recommended it. I thought I somehow missed it as the publication date read 2015, but it was actually written in 1998, according to the paper back I read. I started reading Deaver after I saw the movie, THE BONE COLLECTOR with Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie in the title roles, and I've been looking forward to the next Lincoln Rhyme ever since. There are at least a dozen in the series, if not more. Almost forgot; Lincoln Rhyme is a paraplegic who overcomes his handicap time and time again.
But if Madelyn Warcholik is an editor, she should be fired. There are two characters, who happen to be villains, that are too much alike, and they are involved in an unbelievable twist toward the end of the book that almost ruined the whole novel for me. There's just no suspension of disbelief. Authors can usually handle this sort of hang-up by planting a believable event or characteristic earlier in the book. Deaver does it by explaining why the characters are so similar. I have three letters taped to my computer: RUE, resist the urge to explain. You can do it by doing the above or hinting that things just might not be the way they seem.
The plot is similar to other Rhyme novels. There's a criminal mastermind who's been hired to kill three witnesses who all happen to be pilots. They saw a man load three duffel bags into a plane and take off when the airport was closed. This man was under an FBI indictment. The criminal mastermind is a hit man who solves the problem by planting a bomb on the plane of one of the witnesses. Two of them remain, the wife and one of the other pilots. They are in financial trouble, but they have a contract to deliver medical transplants in a very short timeframe. So the clock is ticking.
Lincoln and the hit man set up the ticking clock when the wife is determined to make a delivery when she should be hidden away in a safe house. The hit man also seems to have paranormal foresight as he repeatedly figures out where the witnesses are hidden. He's also a dead shot and he uses explosive charges in the bullets. Amelia Sachs, Lincoln's detective partner, is so scared during one gun battle that she doesn't dare return fire, and she can't forgive herself for what happens next.
Okay, so despite my misgivings regarding two of the characters, would I recommend THE COFFIN DANCER? Hell yes. Deaver uses extensive research to show how Lincoln Rhymes uses forensics to match wits with these masterminds. That research will bother some people as it slows down the pace, but when you learn something from a mystery novel, I think you're ahead in the ballgame. I'm actually surprised Denzel and Angelina haven't done another Lincoln Rhyme movie.