Watchlist: Two Serial Thrillers in One Killer Book Mass Market Paperback – 7 Dec 2010
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Top customer reviews
The Chopin Manuscript, a novel based on an idea by Jeffrey Deaver, was written, initially as an audio book, by Deaver and 14 other thriller authors for the International Thriller Writers organisation. The main character is Harold Middleton, a former war crimes investigator who now lectures in music in Washington DC. Middleton is given a previously unknown Frederic Chopin manuscript, a document he believes to be a forgery, by a piano tuner in Warsaw, who is found murdered the next day. Soon enough, Middleton has good reason to worry about the safety his family and his former war crimes investigative colleagues. This is a novel where the plot twists so many times, it will leave the reader dizzy; very few of the characters are what they first seem; subjects as varied as artwork purloined by the Nazis, war crimes, nerve gas, embedded secret codes, terrorism, airport security, abortion drugs and of course, music, are all touched on. I found it fascinating how each different author took the story and ran with it for their chapter, yet the story moved seamlessly forward. Definitely a page-turner.
The Copper Bracelet is the second in the Harold Middleton series by Jeffrey Deaver and 15 other thriller authors. Like The Chopin Manuscript, it was first published as an audio book. It is set two years after The Chopin Manuscript and features characters from that novel: Harold Middleton, Charlotte Middleton, Eleanora Tesla, Jean-Marc Lespasse and Felicia Kaminski. The story this time centres on Devras Sikari, the Kashmiri recipient of educational support from someone only known as The Scorpion. After the events of the Chopin Manuscript, Middleton has reformed his Volunteers, and they actively seek Sikari as they are convinced of an international terror plot with dire consequences for Pakistan and India and possibly the rest of the world. This time, authors touch on the subjects of copper poisoning, heavy water, patent legislation, thermobaric explosives, chicken breeds and coding and encryption. The action jumps from Nice to London, Moscow, Paris, Tampa and Kashmir. The plot is convoluted and the politics rather intricate; the melodramatic climax is rather contrived. And it seems that several of the authors didn't read the previous book (giving Charlotte a "late" husband instead of an imprisoned one) or even the previous chapter (crediting Felicia with knowledge of events that happened while she was unconscious). Altogether, rather a disappointing sequel to The Chopin Manuscript.
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