Monday, January 16, 2012

Gideon’s Corpse by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Last January, Preston and Child took a huge gamble. After ten best-selling Pendergast novels, he duo introduced a new character, Gideon Crew. The first installment was not up to their high standards and seemed to be a set-up for future books. There was an investigation and plenty of action but over all the book had the feel of a back story. By the end, I was questioning their decision to create a new series.  The good news is that they didn’t listen to me.

Gideon’s Corpse is a huge scale, action-packed thrill ride. From the opening, where a former co-worker of Gideon’s holds a family hostage in a New York apartment building to the nerve wracking conclusion, everything in this novel is grander. There are chases through canyons, an emergency landing of sabotaged plane, pyrotechnics and even a sword fight with chainsaws. Through it all, the novel is about an unwilling hero thrust into a situation not of his making. There are many parallels between Gideon and the protagonist of most Hitchcock films.

For those Pendergast fans, don’t fear for there is another Pendergast currently at the publisher and another being written presently. I had the pleasure of attending Preston and Child’s book-signing at Barnes and Noble in Princeton, NJ. They have a wonderful relationship, poking fun at each other while discussing the book, the writing process and fielding questions from the audience.

Some of the tidbits that they shared include:
-         The new Pendergast book, Two Graves, will be released this December.
-         The next Pendergast, I believe they said the title is Bane, will focus on Corrie Swanson.
-         Michael Bay owns the rights for Gideon Crew and is planning a film.
-         They write their books 2000 miles apart, using e-mail as a major source of communication.
-         Their title for the new Pendergast book, Two Graves, was suggested by fans during a Facebook contest.
-         Lincoln Child has a new solo book, Third Gate, coming out in May while Doug Preston is writing the introduction to a book on the Amanda Knox case.

If you get the chance to see them on their tour, take advantage. They are entertaining and informative. At the majority of the remaining stop, Doug will be there in person and Lincoln will be there via Skype. If you can’t see them, make sure to pick up Gideon’s Corpse. It is a great start to what will hopefully be a thrilling year.

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