(Special Agent Pendergast Series #12)
by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
If you have enjoyed reading the previous novels in the Pendergast series, then you will like this one. Two Graves is the third in the Helen sub-series, and you should have already read the first two, Fever Dream and Cold Vengeance, before reading this. There are enough plot twists, sub-plots, and inter-twined characters to keep a Pendergast fan entertained or maybe confused at times. It may just be me, but I had a hard time keeping everything straight. I figured it all out in the end, but sometimes these Pendergast novels nearly make my brain ache.
I give this book 3 1/2 stars out of 5. The story was good, but I may just be a little over Pendergast.
I received this e-book for free from NetGalley.
Release Date: December 11, 2012
For twelve years, he believed she died in an accident. Then, he was told she’d been murdered. Now, FBI Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast discovers that his beloved wife Helen is alive. But their reunion is cut short when Helen is brazenly abducted before his eyes. And Pendergast is forced to embark on a furious cross-country chase to rescue her.
But all this turns out to be mere prologue to a far larger plot: one that unleashes a chillingly-almost supernaturally-adept serial killer on New York City. And Helen has one more surprise in store for Pendergast: a piece of their shared past that makes him the one man most suited to hunting down the killer.
His pursuit of the murderer will take Pendergast deep into the trackless forests of South America, to a hidden place where the evil that has blighted both his and Helen’s lives lies in wait . . . a place where he will learn all too well the truth of the ancient proverb:
Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves.
Hardcover: 480 pages
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (December 11, 2012)
Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.7 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
About the Authors
The thrillers of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child “stand head and shoulders above their rivals” (Publisher’s Weekly). Coauthors of the famed Pendergast series, their books Relic and The Cabinet of Curiosities were chosen by readers in a National Public Radio poll as being among the 100 greatest thrillers ever written, and Relic was made into a number one box office hit movie. They are also the authors of Fever Dream, Cold Vengeance and Gideon’s Sword. Preston’s acclaimed nonfiction book, The Monster of Florence, is being made into a movie starring George Clooney. Lincoln Child is a former book editor who has published four novels of his own, including the huge bestseller Deep Storm. The authors welcome e-mail from their readers; you can visit their website at www.prestonchild.com.
Douglas Preston was born in 1956 in Cambridge, MA, was raised in nearby Wellesley (where, by his own admission, he and his brothers were the scourge of the neighborhood!), and graduated from Pomona College in California with a degree in English literature.
Preston’s first job was as a writer for the American Museum of Natural History in New York — an eight year stint that led to the publication of his first book, Dinosaurs in the Attic and introduced him to his future writing partner, Lincoln Child, then working as an editor at St. Martin’s Press. The two men bonded, as they worked closely together on the book. As the project neared completion, Preston treated Child to a private midnight tour of the museum, an excursion that proved fateful. As Preston tells it, “…in the darkened Hall of Late Dinosaurs, under a looming T. Rex, Child turned to [me] and said: ‘This would make the perfect setting for a thriller!'” Their first collaborative effort, Relic, would not be published until 1995, by which time Preston had picked up stakes and moved to Santa Fe to pursue a full-time writing career.
In addition to writing novels (The Codex, Tyrannosaur Canyon) and nonfiction books on the American Southwest (Cities of Gold, Ribbons of Time), Preston has collaborated with Lincoln Child on several post-Relic thrillers. While not strictly a series, the books share characters and events, and the stories all take place in the same universe. The authors refer to this phenomenon as “The Preston-Child Pangea.”
Preston divides his time between New Mexico and Maine, while Child lives in New Jersey — a situation that necessitates a lot of long-distance communication. But their partnership (facilitated by phone, fax, and email) is remarkably productive and thoroughly egalitarian: They shape their plots through a series of discussions; Child sends an outline of a set of chapters; Preston writes the first draft of those chapters, which is subsequently rewritten by Child; and in this way the novel is edited back and forth until both authors are happy. They attribute the relatively seamless surface of their books to the fact that “[a]ll four hands have found their way into practically every sentence, at one time or another.”
In between, Preston remains busy. He is a regular contributor to magazines like National Geographic, The New Yorker, Natural History, Smithsonian, Harper’s, and Travel & Leisure, and he continues with varied solo literary projects. Which is not to say his partnership with Lincoln Child is over. Fans of the bestselling Preston-Child thrillers can be assured there are bigger and better adventures to come.