for the Dead by Douglas
Preston and Lincoln Child brings back the return of their
beloved character FBI Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast. There
is a slightly new recipe for this famous crime solver with
a new boss, partner, and medical examiner.
The authors describe Pendergast as "a person out of place
and out of time. A gentleman from the Old South, specifically
New Orleans. He is looked upon as a total freak. He does things
off the books, unorthodox, wealthy, and an iconoclast. He
is like a twisted, dark Sherlock Holmes. We have fun writing
him. He is an over the top character that is eccentric. He
enjoys his comforts. He has become legendary to go rogue and
work on his own."
A welcome relief in this story has the authors moving away
from anything supernatural and deciding to stick to crime-solving,
understanding that the story and characters are riveting by
themselves. In this old-fashioned mystery, a Florida woman
while visiting her husband's grave has her dog find a human
heart with an apology note. The current victims are women
whose throats have been slit, and breastbones split open to
remove their hearts, all quickly and expertly. The killer
leaves notes at the graves of women who committed suicide
and signed it "Mister Brokenhearts." As other body
counts mount up, it becomes apparent that the notes left have
a tinge of literary verses from T. S. Eliot to Romeo &
The authors noted that this time they gave him a different
type of partner. "One thread of previous Pendergast books
is how we saddled him with lazy and incompetent law officials
that he had to work with. Coldmoon is not a boring person,
and we hope he made an impression on the reader. He looks
like a Native American with long black hair and piercing eyes.
Quietly he shows Pendergast he is an equal with the same intelligence
and observations. Pendergast as competent partner, He is one
of the finest characters we have written. Very iconic that
keeps to himself. One scene we wrote in the book shows their
different tastes. Pendergast is a terrible coffee snob while
Coldmoon likes camp coffee with that foul smell. At a certain
point, Pendergast buys his partner a fine expresso coffee.
Coldmoon takes one sip and pours it out. This shows their
differences, but they both end up respecting each other."
Unlike his past supervisor, Pendergast must now deal with
Walter Pickett, an FBI assistant director recently assigned
to the New York City field office, who is determined to keep
this maverick agent under his control by assigning him a partner,
Special Agent Coldmoon. The new partner is expected to report
back on any of Pendergast's deviations from the rules. Both
Agents are a contrast of each other. Coldmoon is part Lakota
Indian and part Italian. Pendergast dresses like an undertaker,
and always seems to have more money than the average FBI agent
preferring the luxuries of a fine hotel, private jet, and
a nice car. Soon Coldmoon realizes his partner is astute,
smart, observant, and has a way of looking outside the box.
They enlist the help of the medical examiner who is willing
to go against her supervisor to find clues.
Throughout the story, the partners get under each other's
skins but realize they are more alike than different. "Pendergast
only accepts one dollar a year because he is wealthy and is
doing the job for the enjoyment of the work. He thinks of
it as solving a puzzle. As the story progresses, his new partner
sees the reasons behind what Pendergast does. Regarding betrayal
versus loyalty Coldmoon is assigned as Pendergast's partner
with a secret agenda. As time passes, he realizes it is wrong.
He must choose loyalty to his superiors or loyalty to his
partner. Whoever he is loyal to the other will see it as betrayal.
He chose his partner."
Sorting through betrayals, lies, and deceptions, readers are
treated to a unique storyline that is highly volatile. An
added treat is the humorous banter between the characters
that is both refreshing and amusing.
of titles in this series
Cabinet of Curiosities, #3 [audio
Still Life With Crows, #4 [book]
Brimstone, #5 [book]
Dance of Death, #6 [book]
Book of the Dead, #7 [book] [audio]
Wheel Of Darkness, # 8 [book]
Cemetery Dance, #9 [book]
Fever Dream, #10 [book]
Cold Vengeance, # 11 [audio]
Two Graves, #12 [audio]
Verses for the Dead #18 [book]