by Lincoln Child
After I finished The Kraken Project by Douglas Preston, I went to look for a solo book by the other member of the Preston & Child writing team, Lincoln Child. I found this audiobook from 10 years ago, and it also had a computer program as a character in the book. Since it was written a decade ago, some of the technology seems kind of quaint, but that doesn’t get in the way of the story.
The story has good pacing and works really well in the audiobook format. I like to listen to audiobooks in the summer, since I can do yard-work, go for walks, take long road trips, or many other things while listening. Some books work better as print books, but this one worked very well as an audiobook.
It was interesting to compare the way Mr. Child handled his A.I. computer program with the rogue A.I. program that Mr. Preston developed in The Kraken Project. There were many similarities. The two partners may have discussed the plot-lines as they worked on White Fire, their last Pendergast novel. If you like an intelligent computer as a main character, then you should read both books. But don’t do like I did, read Death Match first.
Death Match is a mystery thriller, set in a high-tech company, Eden. They use a very sophisticated A.I. computer program to make the perfect match between their male and female clients. They charge $25,000 and have a money-back guarantee, but no one has ever asked for a refund. All of the matches have worked so far. Everything is great, until one of the perfect couples (They matched at 100%) ends up dead, an apparent double suicide. Eden executives are concerned, so they hire an outside consultant, a psychologist, Christopher Lash. The story unfolds from his point of view. Another perfect couple is found dead, and the book gets more intense. Why are they killing themselves, or are they?
There are plenty of plot twists and surprises to keep you reading. The story moves along at a good clip, and the reader, Barrett Whitener, brings the characters to life. I enjoyed listening to Death Match. I give it 3 1/2 Stars out of 5. The ending was a bit too predictable, but everything still worked quite well, and it was a worthwhile 14 hours. I am going search out a few more solo works by both authors, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, since the Pendergast series is one of my favorites.
Here are the book reviews for the books that I mentioned in the review.
A Review of White Fire (Pendergast) by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
A Review of The Kraken Project by Douglas Preston
Release date: May 4, 2004
Lewis and Lindsay Thorpe were the perfect couple: young, attractive, and ideally matched. But the veil of perfection can mask many blemishes. When the Thorpes are found dead in their tasteful Flagstaff living room (having committed double suicide), alarms go off in the towering Manhattan offices of Eden Incorporated, the high-tech matchmaking company whose spectacular success, and legendary secrecy, has inspired awe around the world. The Thorpes, few people knew, were more than the quintessential happy couple – they were Eden’s first perfect match.
A short time later, Christopher Lash, a gifted former FBI forensic psychologist, receives an urgent plea from Eden to perform a quick – and quiet – investigation into the deaths. Lash’s psychological autopsy reveals nothing suspicious, but inadvertently dredges up the memories of a searing personal tragedy he has kept at bay for years.
The situation changes suddenly when a second Eden couple is found dead — by all appearances, another double suicide. Now Eden – particularly Richard Silver, the company’s brilliant and reclusive founder – has no choice but to grant Lash unprecedented access to its most guarded secrets if he is to have any chance of determining what is going wrong. The hidden world he discovers is a stunning labyrinth of artificial intelligence, creative genius, and a melding of technology that does indeed, to Lash’s surprise, deliver on Eden’s promise to its clients: the guarantee of a perfect, lifelong mate. But Lash’s involvement in the investigation becomes more personal and dangerous than he could have imagined, nearly as soon as it begins.
With tremendous imagination and skill, master thriller-writer Lincoln Child renders a setting too frighteningly believable not to be real. Infused with relentless suspense and a riveting pace, DEATH MATCH is Child at his best.
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Doubleday (May 4, 2004)
Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.6 x 1.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
About the Author
Lincoln Child is the co-author, with Douglas Preston, of a number of bestselling thrillers including Relic, Riptide and The Ice Limit. Utopia is Lincoln Child’s first solo novel: he is currently at work on his second. He lives with his wife and daughter in Morristown, New Jersey.
The book description is from Amazon. Death Match