Summary and book reviews of The Vanished Man by Jeffery Deaver

The Vanished Man

A Lincoln Rhyme Novel

by Jeffery Deaver

The Vanished Man
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2003, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2004, 560 pages

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Book Summary

A brilliant thriller that pits forensic criminologist Lincoln Rhyme and his partner, Amelia Sachs, against an unstoppable killer with one final, horrific trick up his sleeve.

It begins at a prestigious music school in New York City. A killer flees the scene of a homicide and locks himself in a classroom. Within minutes, the police have him surrounded. When a scream rings out, followed by a gunshot, they break down the door. The room is empty.

Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs are brought in to help with the high-profile investigation and to ferret out a master illusionist they've dubbed "the conjurer." As the fatalities rise and the minutes tick down, Rhyme and Sachs must move beyond the smoke and mirrors to prevent a terrifying act of vengeance that could become the greatest vanishing act of all.

Chapter One

Greetings, Revered Audience. Welcome.

Welcome to our show.

We have a number of thrills in store for you over the next two days as our illusionists, our magicians, our sleight-of-hand artists weave their spells to delight and captivate you.

Our first routine is from the repertoire of a performer everyone's heard of: Harry Houdini, the greatest escape artist in America, if not the world, a man who performed before crowned heads of state and U.S. presidents. Some of his escapes are so difficult no one has dared attempt them, all these years after his untimely death.

Today we'll re-create an escape in which he risked suffocation in a routine known as the Lazy Hangman.

In this trick, our performer lies prone on the belly, hands bound behind the back with classic Darby handcuffs. The ankles are tied together and another length of rope is wound around the neck, like a noose, and tied to the ankles. The tendency of the legs to straighten pulls the noose taut ...

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Reviews

Media Reviews

The New York Times - Marilyn Stasio

Deaver is clever enough to string it out to almost unbearable limits of suspense. But in the end, all this trickery really does come down to ''applied physics, chemistry and psychology.

Kirkus Reviews

... the manhunt ends in a sprawling, anticlimactic third act. All the prodigious energy and ingenuity of a canny performer who just doesn't know when to quit.

Publishers Weekly

...giddily entertaining ... twists and twists and twists ... gyrating main story line, rich in magic lore and lingo. This is prime Deaver.

Booklist - Mary Frances Wilkens

Well-researched and exciting, this has all the elements of good crime fiction likable leads, a colorful supporting cast, fascinating scientific analysis, and a look at the secrets of an otherwise unknown world. A sure hit.

Reader Reviews

Cy Hilterman

The Vanished Man was so riviting from cover to cover. I share my books with several friends and they said the same. The usual cast of characters that Jeffery Deaver winds his stories through keeps the reader trying to figure the next move. When it...   Read More

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