Summary and book reviews of The Empty Chair by Jeffery Deaver

The Empty Chair

A Lincoln Rhyme Novel

by Jeffery Deaver

The Empty Chair
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  • First Published:
    May 2000, 416 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2001, 496 pages

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Book Summary

This spine-chilling new thriller that pits renowned criminalist Lincoln Rhyme against the ultimate opponent -- Amelia Sachs, his own brilliant protégée.

From the bestselling author of The Bone Collector and The Devil's Teardrop comes this spine-chilling new thriller that pits renowned criminalist Lincoln Rhyme against the ultimate opponent -- Amelia Sachs, his own brilliant protégée.

A quadriplegic since a beam crushed his spinal cord years ago, Rhyme is desperate to improve his condition and goes to the University of North Carolina Medical Center for high-risk experimental surgery. But he and Sachs have hardly settled in when the local authorities come calling. In a twenty-four-hour period, the sleepy Southern outpost of Tanner's Corner has seen a local teen murdered and two young women abducted. And Rhyme and Sachs are the best chance to find the girls alive.

The prime suspect is a strange teenaged truant known as the Insect Boy, so nicknamed for his disturbing obsession with bugs. Rhyme agrees to find the boy while awaiting his operation. Rhyme's unsurpassed analytical skills and stellar forensic experience, combined with Sachs's exceptional detective legwork, soon snare the perp. But even Rhyme can't anticipate that Sachs will disagree with his crime analysis and that her vehemence will put her in the swampland, harboring the very suspect whom Rhyme considers a ruthless killer. So ensues Rhyme's greatest challenge -- facing the criminalist whom he has taught everything he knows in a battle of wits, forensics, and intuition. And in this adversary, Rhyme also faces his best friend and soul mate.

With the intricate forensic detail, breathtaking speed, and masterful plot twists that are signature Deaver, The Empty Chair is page-turning suspense of the highest order, destined to continue Jeffery Deaver's bestselling track record and thrill his legions of fans worldwide.

Chapter One

She came here to lay flowers at the place where the boy died and the girl was kidnapped.

She came here because she was a heavy girl and had a pocked face and not many friends.

She came because she was expected to.

She came because she wanted to.

Ungainly and sweating, twenty-six-year-old Lydia Johansson walked along the dirt shoulder of Route 112, where she'd parked her Honda Accord, then stepped carefully down the hill to the muddy bank where Blackwater Canal met the opaque Paquenoke River.

She came here because she thought it was the right thing to do.

She came even though she was afraid.

It wasn't long after dawn but this August had been the hottest in years in North Carolina and Lydia was already sweating through her nurse's whites by the time she started toward the clearing on the riverbank, surrounded by willows and tupelo gum and broad-leafed bay trees. She easily found the place she was looking for; the yellow police tape ...

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Reviews

Media Reviews

Library Journal

Although the novel takes a little longer than usual to get going compared with Deaver's previous books, when the suspense starts, the pages fly. Deaver does a wonderful job of strengthening the characters of Lincoln and especially Amelia, who is the heart of this novel.

Kirkus Reviews

Dozens of twists and a couple of first-class shocks, but it all trails off like an endless fireworks display that keeps exploding into bangs and blossoms even after you've started to look for your car.

Booklist

This new Lincoln Rhyme mystery is as intricate, well written, and enormously satisfying as its predecessors.

Reader Reviews

nadia

I had purchased two books and I read this one last because I did not think I would enjoy it. After the first chapter I was hooked. I could not put this book down. Jeffery Deaver is brilliant, his storylines are so original and so captivating. The...   Read More

Lee Kidd

A True Cat-and-Mouse Thriller.
After coming up against the ruthless urban assassin of the Coffin Dancer, criminalist Lincoln Rhyme and his understudy Amelia Sachs return as the head into the heart of the American "Moonshine" trade to hunt down the Insect Boy. Deaver ...   Read More

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