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39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keeping The Dead
This is the 7th in Tess Gerritsen Rizzoli and Isles series. For this book the latest serial killer prowling the streets of Boston has been named The Archeologist due to the fact that he is mummifying his victims, enter detectives Rizzoli and Frost and, briefly; Maura Isles. I have to agree with a previous reviewer on the fact that Maura Isles was really quite un necessary...
Published on 8 Feb 2009 by molko

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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars That Rizzoli 'edge' is missing
Known as "The Keepsake" in the U.S. this UK version is subtitled "A Maura Isles Thriller" on some covers. Slightly misleading, that, because Boston medical examiner Dr Isles really plays a rather by-the-numbers part in this story, and in any case this series hasn't always featured her at all. She first appeared in THE SINNER, which was the third of the seven to date, and...
Published on 29 Sep 2008 by OEJ


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39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keeping The Dead, 8 Feb 2009
By 
molko (Surrey) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Keeping the Dead (Hardcover)
This is the 7th in Tess Gerritsen Rizzoli and Isles series. For this book the latest serial killer prowling the streets of Boston has been named The Archeologist due to the fact that he is mummifying his victims, enter detectives Rizzoli and Frost and, briefly; Maura Isles. I have to agree with a previous reviewer on the fact that Maura Isles was really quite un necessary in this novel. I feel she can be an interesting character but the effort was just not put in by the author to progres her character and her relationship with Daniel Brophy.
And the same can be said for the family life of Jane Rizoli. Theres basically no progression on the basis that her husband Gabriel and new born daughter; Regina are barely mentioned. And this is a shame as this has been a series that has always been enjoyable due to the fact that the characters were once believable. The two leading ladies as it were had their private lives and we were privvy to that. And for that to be taken away from us seems to make the story suffer quite substantially.
The only character that seems to progress at all is Rizoli's partner Barry Frost whos been pretty one dimensional up until this book, and finally has a bit of a back story, as half hearted as the attempt was.
But does all this really matter? well to me, yes. But if you enjoy the fact that the thrills and chills are still there, theres some truly fascinating information thrown in on egyptology but to be fair the medical side that Isles bought to the table is missing and also the gruesome nature seen in some of her previous books; The Surgeon.
As always the writing style is flawless, the pace at the begining is relentless but unfortunately begins to falter and by the end of the book it turns out to be rather anti climatic. I only hope that next time around more time and attenion is paid to the characters and not just getting all the facts of foreign countrys and such which in the end turn out to be pretty un important.
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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars That Rizzoli 'edge' is missing, 29 Sep 2008
By 
OEJ - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Keeping the Dead (Paperback)
Known as "The Keepsake" in the U.S. this UK version is subtitled "A Maura Isles Thriller" on some covers. Slightly misleading, that, because Boston medical examiner Dr Isles really plays a rather by-the-numbers part in this story, and in any case this series hasn't always featured her at all. She first appeared in THE SINNER, which was the third of the seven to date, and in doing so added a bit of softer-hearted romance to what had been until then a really excellent hard-edged crime thriller series. The character of Detective Rizzoli, meanwhile, has lost some of its depth and meaning over the years and anyone buying into Tess Gerritsen for the first time might wonder what the fuss is all about. A series such as this is built around characterisation above all else, and it is so frustrating to see a very talented writer fail to develop what she has demonstrated the ability to do. In the series debut THE SURGEON (in 2001) and even more so in the sequel THE APPRENTICE (2002), Rizzoli's character was superbly created and developed, but when Maura Isles came on the scene - a character said by Gerritsen to be similar to her own personality in real life - not only has Rizzoli had to take something of a back seat but of late she isn't even called Rizzoli at all; instead the author has decided to use her first name of Jane in the narrative and this in my opinion has further diluted what was once the strongest feature of the brand.

As for this particular story, it eventually reminds me a little of the previous Rizzoli/Isles outing THE MEPHISTO CLUB, in that the writer thought of an exotic interest around which to wrap a murder mystery, and come the conclusion the reader wonders why the esoteric backgrounds needed to be there at all. In this case the background is the Egyptian art of body preservation or mummification. There is detailed information within the story about what it is, where it originates and how it can be done, but ultimately it really hardly matters in the big scheme of things because its meaning and significance withers away to almost nothing before the rather familiar bam-bam you're dead finale. A mother and daughter have been on the run for twelve years after a life-changing (OK, life-ending) event when the daughter was but a teenager. Living separate lives under new identities, they are hiding from those who seek retribution for the acts of a dozen years earlier. Not surprisingly, the story is basically about what happens when their cover is blown and the baddies track them down. The first half of the tale, which is steeped in archaeology and vivid descriptions of mummified bodies, is very good reading and at the time I thought Gerritsen was back on top form. What I then wanted, based on past experience, was some character development of either Rizzoli or Isles, but it just never happened. Rizzoli is now a married mother, and once again it's a shame that her husband - FBI Agent Gabriel Dean - barely features at all because he was great in THE APPRENTICE but here we are four novels later and he is as good as forgotten about. There's no point to his existence any more. As for Maura Isles, well this was really the poorest aspect of the tale, because the object of her affections - dog-collared Daniel - doesn't feature at all, and this is a man who we have been struggling to get to know for four novels now of the five that Maura Isles has featured in! Basically, he's just 'not there for her', but this has been the way from the outset it seems, and it's getting rather pointless. Maura's love-life is touched upon here and there in a thread that suggests that it will have some meaning and relevance later on...but nothing happens at all, and Maura is pretty much forgotten about for all of the concluding chapters.

The writing style is of a high standard throughout, however, as I guess we should expect from an author of such fame, fortune and experience. Yes, there's a decent story here and it's well told, but what let it down for me was the surprising lack of characterisation. Most of the surprise twists were very predictable and broadly speaking this was just another 'safe' publication by Tess Gerritsen, a story without any risks or shocks apart from the imagery on and around the autopsy table, where she is always at her most confident and imaginative. I enjoyed the beginning and the middle but it rather fizzled out into a neatly-tied ending and I felt a little short-changed as a result. Tess Gerritsen can do better than this, and having read all seven novels in this series I would suggest that next time around Maura Isles is demoted to just bit-part character (as she is already, but unintentionally) and 'Jane' returns as 'Rizzoli' and in the tough-cop guise she came on to the scene as six years ago. Perhaps Gabriel Dean could return; for too long there has been too much emphasis on female characters, and this series was at its best when there was a balanced gender split among the leading players.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, 29 Aug 2009
By 
Ms. M. Cheung (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) (Paperback)
This is the first Gerritsen book I've read, and I was really quite impressed. A quick pace, interesting developments in the plot, believable characters and a feasible story all made me want to keep turning the page. The initial hook on the blurb (mummy with bullet) was intriguing, and Gerritsen did not disappoint with her array of preserved bodies.

I was a bit confused by the priest as I've not encountered Rizzoli or Isles before, but in no way did it detract from my overall enjoyment of the book. I would say to those who have never read Gerritsen before that it would probably be better to read the series in order, but not essential in my view - I thoroughly enjoyed the story despite not knowing the character's backgrounds.

I'm really looking forward to reading more of Gerritsen's books, and I also found it really interesting that she put a few pages at the end to describe her own experience of knowing someone who was a murderer - absolutely fascinating!
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not sure what to think of it, 12 Nov 2008
This review is from: Keeping the Dead (Paperback)
I love all the previous Tess Gerritsen books so I didn't think twice about buying it.

When you think The Mephisto Club is a strange storyline, this is even stranger. The plot is quite thin and foreseeable compared with other novels like The Apprentice or Body Double.

The main characters, Maura Isle, Decetive Rizzoli and her husband, are barely there and I miss the complex study of their emotional develpment the previous novels had.

I think I will not rush to buy the next book straight away but wait a bit to see if it is worth buying. Sadly a lot of authors continue to write stories for their main characters just to continue but at a loss of a good story and good development, like Kathy Reichs or Elizabeth George.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Absorbing read!, 26 Feb 2009
By 
This review is from: Keeping the Dead (Paperback)
Okay, it might not be her best book, but when you've put the bar so high with the Surgeon and some of her other best sellers, its going to be hard to get a 5-star review ever time!
This is a great read. Yes i agree that Maura Isles really wasnt needed in the book - in fact there is a slightly ludicrous chapter near the end where the killer draws her in - but why and what for is never really explained?! Rizzoli isnt as hard nosed as ealier books - but then she's been married and had a child since the Surgeon, so i disagree with other reviewers that she needs the same single minded intensity - that wouldnt be character development!
The plot is fabulous. Very fast paced, the details are woven in well and she places her red herrings so well, that its very difficult to figure out who the killer is.
There are a few similarities to her previous books, but it all depends what you want out of a read. Tess doesnt waste time with meaningless police procedure details that bore a lot of thrillers - she rockets the story along and why change a winning formula? There are some very creepy chapter endings and as ever she keeps you hooked.
The final twist at the end was slightly overkill, but fans of hers wont mind the artistic license. I'm a fan of STORY over CRAFT. By that i mean, i'd rather read a gripping thriller which was 95% a great story rather than 95% procedural and detailed, with a good story.
A great read, she is still the best thriller writer out there and if you're a fan, you will not be disappointed!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keeping the Dead, 16 Sep 2009
By 
Nikki - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) (Paperback)
Great page turner, loved it! I have read all of Tess Gerritsen's books but this one could be read as a stand-alone book. Great, edgy thriller, I would highly recommend.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Classic ''Who Dunnit'', 27 Aug 2009
This review is from: Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) (Paperback)
Oh I loved every minute of this book and constantly switched my mind with the classic 'Who Dunnit'. One minute thinking it was one person, and the next it was no no, it's him. A fantastic book as always from Tess Gerritsen. A+++++
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable, 22 April 2010
This review is from: Keeping the Dead (Paperback)
This is my first Tess Gerritsen novel. I grabbed it from shelves of my local library in a hurry before going on holiday and I could not put it down. This is really rare for me. It has been so long since I have found a novel I enjoyed as much as this. It grabbed me from the beginning and held my attention right through to the end. I have two young kids and am very easily distracted so this is unusual! I am fairly stunned to read some reviews below that criticise it - obviously I have not read any other books in the series but I certainly am going to now. The reasons it has been criticised seem to be lack of characterisation. I have just been explaining to my husband the reason I loved it so much was because of the pace of the narrative and the fact it doesn't get bogged down in the personal life of the characters. It just deals with the crime and gets on with it. I really don't want to know much about the personal lives of the central characters!! I find that detracts from the plot development and pace. For me it has been a perfect read and I can't wait to read more of the same. My husband is off to read it now!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Keeping the Dead aka The Keepsake, 4 Nov 2009
By 
This review is from: Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) (Paperback)
I found the "The Keepsake" -or "Keeping the Dead" as the UK title is, a great read! If you like medical thrillers, I'd definitely recommend this one! I couldn't put it down, read it in three days. It kept me hooked.

It was the second of Tess Gerritsen's books I read (first one was "The Bone Garden"). So in this sense, I had never heard of the Maura Isles and Jane Rizzoli duo. So the story dropped a few bombs on me (Oh, she has a husband and a daughter, oh, she's seeing a priest.) This of course was completely my own fault, for not reading the rest of Tess' books! Nevertheless, it wasn't annoying in any way, just asked for a slight adjustment of my reader's mind. In fact, it only made me want to read all the other books as well as this one was so great!
So, if you haven't read any of Tess' other Maura Isles and Jane Rizzoli books, this book can still be read, though I might suggest you start at the beginning of the Maura and Jane series (The Surgeon, The Apprentice, Body Double, Vanish etc, all of which I still have to read.)

Nevertheless, I very much enjoyed "The Keepsake"! I loved the historical and medical aspects, the "behind the scenes"-look of the ME profession. The writing is awesome and the characters very lovable, believable (and creepy!). There wasn't a dull moment in the whole book. After each chapter I would look at the clock and though it was time to go to bed, I kept thinking "oh, one more chapter, I wanna know what happens next!!!" That's what makes a good book.

Tess Gerritsen is definitely on my list of favorite writers now and I'm going to read ALL of her books!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Not a bad read., 24 Aug 2009
By 
Dean Kellham - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) (Paperback)
As far as a crime thriller goes it's not bad. At some points it's a little predictable, and can seem to all be a little coincidental, but then it does follow suite for Gerritsen. As a standalone novel it's a good read. You could pick it up having never heard of Gerritsen before, which is all well and good.

I have however read all the previous books from the Rizzoli/Isles series and I will agree that the characters aren't as developed in this story as in the previous books. Daniel Brophy and Gabriel Dean scarcely make an appearance, and as for Maura, she's not exactly integral to the plot; a generic ME would have served her purpose.

As with Gerritsen, her stories include a lot of knowledge from areas that interest her personally, with aspects of archeology coming into that, which does make a nice change from the over-used Medical jargon used in previous books.

As for the storyline itself, it does provide the usual aspects of Gerritsen's thrillers, providing intertwined life-lines of characters along with subtle character development regarding Frost.

If you've read this far along the series then it's a fair follow-on which almost goes back to the style of the surgeon and apprentice, focusing more on the case at hand than the character's personal lives (allbeit with a couple of chapters splashed in to mention the characters at home). If you've not read the others and are after a book you can pick up and read without any prior knowledge of the characters this will serve you fairly well, althout there are a couple of referrences to previous cases that aren't explained, but virtually all referrences to former characters or storylines are explained. If you haven't read the others in the series however, and are interested, I'd greatly recommend you go for it, as it's not a bad series to read at all. Begins with the Surgeon.
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Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7)
Keeping the Dead: (Rizzoli & Isles series 7) by Tess Gerritsen (Paperback - 17 Aug 2009)
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