As he stalks his wife's traitors from Scotland to New York City, Special Agent Pendergast discovers layers of deception and conspiracy that will shatter everything he believed to be true.
Yesterday, Special Agent Pendergast still mourned the loss of his beloved wife, Helen, who died in a tragic accident in Africa twelve years ago.
Today, he discovers she was murdered.
Tomorrow, he will learn her most guarded secrets, leaving him to wonder: Who was the woman I married? Why was she murdered? And, above all . . . Who murdered her?
Revenge is not sweet: It is essential.
About the Author
The thrillers of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child "stand head and shoulders above their rivals" (Publishers Weekly). Preston and Child's Relic and The Cabinet of Curiosities were chosen by readers in a National Public Radio poll as being among the one hundred greatest thrillers ever written, and Relic was made into a number-one box office hit movie. They are coauthors of the famed Pendergast series and their recent novels include Fever Dream, Cold Vengeance, Two Graves, and Gideon's Corpse. In addition to his novels, Preston writes about archaeology for the New Yorker and Smithsonian magazines. Lincoln Child is a former book editor who has published five novels of his own, including the huge bestseller Deep Storm.
Readers can sign up for The Pendergast File, a monthly "strangely entertaining note" from the authors, at their website, www.PrestonChild.com. The authors welcome visitors to their alarmingly active Facebook page, where they post regularly.
Place of Birth:Cambridge, Massachusetts
Education:B.A., Pomona College, 1978
Read an Excerpt
By Preston, Douglas
Grand Central PublishingCopyright © 2010 Preston, Douglas
All right reserved.
TWELVE YEARS AGO
THE SETTING SUN BLAZED THROUGH THE AFRIcan bush like a forest fire, hot yellow in the sweltering evening that gathered over the bush camp. The hills along the upper Makwele Stream rose in the east like blunt green teeth, framed against the sky.
Several dusty canvas tents circled a beaten area shaded by a grove of old musasa trees, their branches spreading like emerald umbrellas over the safari camp. A thread of smoke from a cooking fire twisted up through the cover, carrying with it the tantalizing scent of burning mopane wood and roasting kudu.
In the shade of the central tree, two figures, a man and a woman, were seated in camp chairs on either side of a table, drinking iced bourbon. They were dressed in dusty khakis, long pants and sleeves, protection against the tsetse flies that came out in the evening. They were in their late twenties. The man, slender and tall, was remarkable for a cool, almost icy paleness that seemed impervious to the heat. The coolness did not extend to the woman, who was lazily fanning herself with a large banana leaf, stirring the thick mane of auburn hair she had loosely tied back with a bit of salvaged twine. She was tanned and relaxed. The low murmur of their conversation, punctuated by an occasional laugh from the woman, was almost indistinguishable amid the sounds of the African bush: the calls of vervet monkeys, the screech of francolins and chattering of fire-finches, which mingled with the clattering of pots and pans in the kitchen tent. The evening chatter was underlain by the distant roar of a lion deep in the bush.
The seated figures were Aloysius X. L. Pendergast and his wife of two years, Helen. They were at the tail end of a hunting safari in the Musalangu Game Management Area, where they had been shooting bushbuck and duiker under a herd reduction program granted by the Zambian government.
“Care for another sundowner?” Pendergast asked his wife, raising the cocktail pitcher.
“Another?” she replied with a laugh. “Aloysius, you wouldn’t be planning an assault on my virtue, would you?”
“The thought never entered my mind. I was hoping perhaps we could spend the night discussing Kant’s concept of the categorical imperative.”
“Now you see, this is exactly what my mother warned me about. You marry a man because he’s good with a rifle, only to find he has the brains of an ocelot.”
Pendergast chuckled, sipped his drink, glanced down at it. “African mint is rather harsh on the palate.”
“Poor Aloysius, you miss your juleps. Well, if you take that FBI job Mike Decker’s offering, you can drink juleps day and night.”
He took another thoughtful sip and gazed at his wife. It was remarkable how quickly she tanned in the African sun. “I’ve decided not to take it.”
“I’m not sure I’m ready to stay in New Orleans with all that it entails—the family complications, the unpleasant memories. And I’ve seen enough violence already, don’t you think?”
“I don’t know—have you? You tell me so little about your past, even now.”
“I’m not cut out for the FBI. I don’t like rules. In any case, you’re all over the world with that Doctors With Wings outfit; we can live anywhere, as long as it’s close to an international airport. ‘Our two souls therefore endure not a breach, but an expansion, like gold to airy thinness beat.’ ”
“Don’t bring me to Africa and quote John Donne. Kipling, maybe.”
“ ‘Every woman knows all about everything,’ ” he intoned.
“On second thought, spare me the Kipling as well. What did you do as a teenager, memorize Bartlett’s?”
“Among other things.” Pendergast glanced up. A figure was approaching along the trail from the west. He was a tall Nyimba tribesman, dressed in shorts and a dirty T-shirt, an ancient rifle slung over his shoulders, carrying a forked walking stick. As he approached the camp, he paused and cried out a greeting in Bemba, the local lingua franca, which was answered by welcoming shouts from the kitchen tent. He then proceeded into camp and approached the table at which the Pendergasts were seated.
Both rose. “Umú-ntú ú-mó umú-sumá á-áfíká,” Pendergast said by way of greeting, and grasped the man’s dusty, warm hand, Zambian-fashion. The man proffered his walking stick to Pendergast; there was a note wedged into its fork.
“For me?” Pendergast asked, switching to English.
“From the district commissioner.”
Pendergast shot a glance at his wife, then removed the note and unfolded it.
My dear Pendergast,
I wish to have a conversation with you immediately via SSB. There has been a nasty business at Kingazu Camp—very nasty.
Alistair Woking, DC
PS. Dear chap, you know perfectly well that regulations require you to have SSB communications set up at every bush camp. It is most annoying to have to send a runner like this.
“I don’t like the sound of that,” said Helen Pendergast, looking over her husband’s shoulder. “What do you think this ‘nasty business’ is?”
“Perhaps a photo tourist has suffered the amorous advances of a rhinoceros.”
“That’s not funny,” Helen said, laughing all the same.
“It is rutting season, you know.” Pendergast folded the note and shoved it in his breast pocket. “I’m very much afraid this means our shooting safari is over.”
He walked over to the tent, opened a box, and began screwing together the battered pieces of an aerial antenna, which he then carried up into a musasa tree and wired to an upper branch. Climbing back down, he plugged the wire into the single side-band radio he had placed on the table, turned on the unit, adjusted the dials to the correct frequency, and sent out a call. In a moment the irritated voice of the district commissioner came back, squawking and scratchy.
“Pendergast? For God’s sake, where are you?”
“Upper Makwele Stream camp.”
“Blast. I was hoping you were nearer the Banta Road. Why the devil don’t you keep your SSB connected? I’ve been trying to reach you for hours!”
“May I ask what’s happened?”
“Over at Kingazu Camp. A German tourist was killed by a lion.”
“What idiot allowed that to happen?”
“It wasn’t like that. The lion came right into camp in broad daylight, jumped the man as he was walking back to his hut from the dining tent, and dragged him screaming into the bush.”
“Surely you can imagine ‘and then’! The wife was hysterical, the whole camp went into an uproar, they had to bring in a helicopter to airlift out the tourists. The camp staff left behind are scared shiteless. This fellow was a well-known photographer in Germany—bloody bad for business!”
“Did you track the lion?”
“We have trackers and guns, but nobody who’ll go into the bush after this lion. Nobody with the experience—or the ballocks. That’s why we need you, Pendergast. We need you down here to track that bugger and… well… recover the remains of the poor German before there’s nothing left to bury.”
“You haven’t even recovered the body?”
“Nobody will go out there after the bloody thing! You know what Kingazu Camp is like, all the dense brush that’s come up because of the elephant poaching. We need a damned experienced hunter. And I needn’t remind you that terms of your professional hunting license require you to deal with rogue man-eaters as, and if, it becomes necessary.”
“Where’d you leave your Rover?”
“At the Fala Pans.”
“Get cracking as fast as you can. Don’t bother breaking camp, just grab your guns and get down here.”
“It’ll take a day, at least. Are you sure there isn’t anyone closer who can help you?”
“Nobody. At least, nobody I’d trust.”
Pendergast glanced at his wife. She smiled, winked, mimed the shooting of a pistol with one bronzed hand. “All right. We’ll get moving right away.”
“One other thing.” The DC’s voice hesitated and there was a silence over the radio, filled with hissing and crackling.
“Probably not very important. The wife who witnessed the attack. She said…” Another pause.
“She said the lion was peculiar.”
“It had a red mane.”
“You mean, a little darker than usual? That’s not so uncommon.”
“Not darker than usual. This lion’s mane was deep red. Almost blood red.”
There was a very long silence. And then the DC spoke again. “But of course it can’t be the same lion. That was forty years ago in northern Botswana. I’ve never heard of a lion living more than twenty-five years. Have you?”
Pendergast said nothing as he switched off the radio, his silvery eyes glittering in the dying twilight of the African bush.
Excerpted from Fever Dream by Preston, Douglas Copyright © 2010 by Preston, Douglas. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Another book ruined by egotistical plot spoilers. You ppl shoyld be banned from posting here. A review is to tell if you liked a book or not, not ti give a dissertation or a book report or write cliff notes. Readers like to read and be surprised by what happens, but when you reveal every detail, there is no need to buy the book or even read it.
In "Fever Dream" by Lincoln Child and Douglas Preston, Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast is faced with an impossible task-solving the mysterious murder of his wife Helen Easterhazy, a medical researcher, who is ferociously eaten by a lion during their African safari after somebody, loads her gun with blanks. Twelve years later, Pendergast must re-trace the events of that fateful safari and pinpoint Helen's enemies. As Pendergast starts the investigation, with the help of NYPD Lieutenant Vincent D'Agosta, he realizes that he never really knew his wife. Returning to Africa, he learns that the lion that ate her was an elaborate set-up and most of the people involved in the original safari have since passed. Back in America, Pendergast and D'Agosta learn of Helen's mysterious obsession with famous painter John James Audubon and his masterpiece known as the Black Frame. The painting was never found, and Audubon's life ended in madness. Pendergast next discovers Helen's theft of certain parrots, and is more puzzled then ever as he realizes a local family died shortly after one of Helen's thefts. As he starts interviewing people from Helen's past, he learns of her involvement in Project Aves and the scary fates of all those who were a part of it. While Pendergast struggles to find the painting and trace Audubon's connection, the murders start. This book boasts a whole cast of creepy characters, but this only enhanced the story. One of the people most close to Helen turns out to be a traitor, while almost everyone surrounding Pendergast-including his servant Maurice, have ulterior motives. Then there's Pendergast's guardianship of Constance Greene, a young woman who descends into madness and creates a fascinating subplot. Overall, I thought the story was pretty captivating. I loved the exotic safari setting, and the ending which has a 'to-be-continued' vibe about it. The story really becomes interesting during the latter half of the book, and is hard to put down at the end. A lot of themes are touched upon, which I won't give away, but suffice to say it's a compelling read.
This is one of my favorite of the Pendergast series. Twelve years after the accidental death of his beloved wife, Helen, in Africa, Pendergast discovers she was murdered. The brutality of her murder is enough to make most men go crazy, but Pendergast sets out on a mission of revenge. Naturally he talks Vinnie D'Agosta into taking a leave of absence from his job to help him. They go to Africa first and discover clues about Helen's horrible death on a safari with her husband. Afterwards the setting is mainly centered in New Orleans at Pendergast's home. D'Agosta and Pendergast go from one clue to another slowly piecing together the reason why Helen was killed. I cannot say anymore about the plot without giving it away. What made it interesting to me is the way Preston and Child reveal the clues, some random at first, a little at a time. They slowly begin to fall into place, but just when you think you know where the story is going, you don't. There are so many twists and turns that I found the book so intriguing I felt compelled to read faster! The descriptions of some of the scenes are so chillingly described, I will never forget them. Constance Green makes a brief appearance in the book, but no more can be said about her. The ending is one of the most exciting in the Pendergast series. We get to watch Pendergast do something in the end that not only needed to be done, but it is so much fun watching him do it, you want to be there with him to enjoy it!! Once you start reading this book, you get sucked so deeply into the plot that you are forced to read it as fast as the plot goes. I just loved it!
I absolutely love the Pendergrast series - but this one really disappoints. It is like a 400 page set up for a sequel. In any series, each book has elements that add to the "big story" being told by the series. However, in this book that is all there is. The "stand alone" plot of this book was very weak, and, honestly, boring. It just doesn't have the "pop" and suspense of the other books in the series. I think it also suffers from a serious logical flaw -Pendergrast has such wonderful deductive powers, yet in this book he seems oblivious to the most obvious villain. To anyone who has not read any of the other books in this series - DO NOT START WITH THIS ONE. You will just be lost and confused. To any fan of the series, I would wait until the next book is released (because the price of this one will be lower by then) and then read Fever Dream as a 400 page prologue. Otherwise, you will just have a lot of unresolved questions.
Have read and reread all the others....wonderful books, characters, etc. Where's the old Pendergast? And what happened to our dying detective? And Constance..... A real disappointment.
If you like a good mystery with a unusual twist this is the book for you. Agent Pendergast is a different kind of FBI agent. Once you read one of the Pendergast series you will want to read them all.
I hope that this is not a harbinger of thins to come in this series. I think that this is the weakest of the series. Hopefully this will just be a fluke.
Which is highly unfortunate because A.X.L. Pendergast is my favorite fictional character bar none. Upon reading this, I thought -- this is garbage. They can do better than this. The characters were flat, they actually made some of them boring. It is pretty apparent that they're getting burned out on writing Pendergast books. There was no heart in this book, it was completely half-assed. I walked away disappointed and wishing I'd never read it at all. The ending was the worst of all. Leaving it on a cliff-hanger is understandable, but the way they wrote the characters into the cliff-hanger was not. Then a note about a new character and a new series, and I thought 'ah-ha.' Basically, I'd rather they just stopped writing Pendergast books than churn out half-ass ones. Leave it on a high-note, fellas.
They are at it again....robbing me of my beauty sleep! That book, like all the Preston/Child books, is impossible to put down. I find myself thinking "I wonder what will happen next" while I should be doing all sort of other things, like working for example ;-) It's definitely a page turner and I highly recommend it. Special Agent Pendergast is in rare form once again.
This was my first and last Pendergast book. The plot lines were so sketchy and unfinished. The book stopped in the middle of the story. I guess that readers are expected to buy the next book to learn the ending. No thanks.
Iread this book out of sequence for the story, reading number 11 before number 10. Once I finished this book, I went back and read number 11 again. This entire series is a good read and captivates you from page 1 on. Just be sure to read them in order.
The story opens with Special Agent Pendergast and his beloved wife Helen on safari in Africa where Helen was mauled and killed by a lion. We have heard bits and pieces of Helen in other books but we never really knew the whole story other than she had died. Now we find out all the details. Pendergast enlists the help of another old friend, Vincent D'Agosta to help him get to the bottom of things. I loved this book! I love all the books in the Pendergast series but some touch me more than others and this was one of those. In all the years I have been reading and cheering Pendergast on, I have always wondered about Helen, how they met, what happened to her and why he doesn't like to talk about her. In this book we see that "soft" side of Pendergast. Of course he is still following his own rules and doing things his own way which is why we love him isn't it? We see that Helen may not be the woman her husband thought she was, or is she? It's not easy to describe the book without giving away goodies so you will have to trust me, it's good, great even. I enjoy the camaraderie between the police lieutenant, D'Agosta and the FBI agent, Pendergast. We see a heated and at times comical interaction with Laura Haywood, D'Agosta's girlfriend and Pendergast, who she is not fond of. We have the classic cliffhangers of Preston and Child that make us want the next book right now. As in most books in the series, there are stories within stories and never a dull moment. The book moves along at a quick pace and holds your interest from page one. While they say the books can be read as stand alone books, I feel that knowing the characters and the back stories always make them a more enjoyable read. I don't think I would start with this one if you haven't read the others but that is just my opinion. If you like quirky characters that you can't really figure out, stories within stories and being entertained pick up this or any of these books and fall in love with Special Agent Pendergast, I sure did.
For the first time, I feel dissatisfied after reading a Pendergast novel. I never felt the same amount of entertainment in this novel that I have in previous novels of this series. The beginning of the book is great, and I was very excited to know where the mystery about his wife's death would lead. I felt no sense of resolution by the end, and I the whole time I was reading the story, I kept waiting to feel the same suspense that I usually feel in Pendergast stories that really gets me hooked and entertained. Although I appreciate a new mystery at the end of a book that hints at an exciting sequel, this book's main storyline was not concluded satisfactorily. I will read the next Pendergast novel in hopes of getting some resolution to this novel. The small thread about Constance was also a bit dissatisfying, but I hope there will be a better explanation in the next novel about her behavior and situation. This book is still worth reading for anyone who is a fan of Pendergast.
This book starts out in Africa with Agent Pendergast and his beloved wife, Helen, on a mini-safari. A German photographer is killed by a lion at a nearby lodge, and Agent Pendergast is called to the scene.Pendergast, Helen, and a native guide go through the stand of Fever trees to hunt the lion down, as Helen is herself a formidable force with a gun. When the lion attacks, both Pendergast and their guide are injured, and Helen is dragged off after shooting at the attacker and apparently missing her target. Pendergast later finds what remains of her body and, in turn, shoots and kills the lion that attacked them.Cue to 12 years later. Agent Pendergast is still mourning the loss of his wife when he sees that her gun, which he has kept meticulously preserved in a display case, has a spot of rust showing on it. As he takes it down to clean it, he opens the barrels and finds wadding inside: wadding that shouldn't be there. This means that she didn't miss her target when she shot at it - the gun was purposely rigged to shoot a blank round. Up to this point, Agent Pendergast seemed to have come to a sort of peace with his loss, but finding that his wife's gun was deliberately sabotaged shatters that illusion of peace. He then embarks on a cross-continent quest to find his wife's murderer.Here is where I wish I had true writing skills. This book is a work of art, with evocative imagery and description that paints a true picture in one's mind of each setting and of all of the action therein. It is multi-faceted and multi-layered, with even side characters fully fleshed-out and brought to life. It is superbly read by Rene Auberjonois, who skillfully allows the listener to know exactly which character is speaking with his many voices. Even the side storylines are interesting and informative. I was especially intrigued with the storyline about Pendergast's ward, Constance, who is accused of tossing her child overboard on a sea voyage. If I could get more fully in-depth without spoilers, I would. This book provides everything that a literary hound looks for.By the end of the book, we know that there will be another, hopefully equally as enjoyable, book to follow. Bravo to Child and Preston for a book that offers so much more than a mundane murder mystery.
This was provided for review by Hachette Book Group. There were so many things going on in this one I don't even know where to start... It was such a good book. I can truly say that I didn't see anything coming. The characters were pretty good. Being that this was an audio book I didn't get the same connection to the characters that I do when I read the book myself. But they were well developed characters none the less. Pendergast was an odd person, and that's putting it lightly. I liked Hayward the most I think. She seemed to be the most level-headed.The story itself was fantastic. Right from the beginning the action starts and it doesn't really let up. Like I said it wasn't at all predictable. There were so many twists to the story that I was shocked by many of them. The twists weren't cheesy either. Each of them really added something to the story. It wasn't like they added a twist just for the sake of adding a twist. The narrator was great. Rene Auberjonois did a great job with this one. I loved his voice, even when I used to watch Deep Space Nine I always liked his character, his voice was soothing then. Again he is fairly well known, but I didn't "see" his known characters while he was reading. Again I LOVED this one. Although it was a little long I was kept drawn into the story the whole way!
I've been following the adventures of FBI Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast since Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child's first collaboration. Fever Dream is the tenth book in the series.Pendergast has just uncovered evidence that points to murder, not an accident as was accepted, in the death of his wife Helen almost 12 years ago. Pendergast is a bit of an enigma - he plays his cards close to his chest, so learning more about his personal life is a revelation. He calls on his dependable sidekick NYPD Detective Vinnie D'Agosta to help him. Vinnie agrees against the wishes of his girlfriend, Homicide Captain Laura Hayward.Inexplicably, it seems that Helen engineered meeting Pendergast to use his connections to a folio of works by the famed artist John James Audubon. As the pair dig deeper, following a trail that leads to the bayous of Louisiana, Pendergast finds himself knowing less and less about the woman he married, but still determined to avenge her death.There's a great subplot involving Pendergast's mysterious ward Constance Green as well.I love this character, from his slow southern drawl to his mysterious powers of deduction and his seemingly inexhaustible store of knowledge. The cases usually involve interesting pieces of history as well. The books are definitely action and plot driven. They're great fun for escapist reading or listening.I listened to Fever Dream. Réne Auberjonois has quite a few books in this series and his voice conjures up Pendergast perfectly.The ending is happily set up for the next in the series!
Tense story, open ending leading to the next book. Glad I didn't read this one until I had COLD VENGEANCE in hand! I like the way these two authors write together, seamlessly, and their development of strong continuing characters. In this story, Laura Haywood took a giant step from "Pendergast detractor" to "Pendergast fan," and it scared her! Wishing a quick & total recovery to Vince D'Agosta!
Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child have done it again. Fever Dream marks their tenth thriller - holy cow! Is it really ten? Mental roll call: Relic, Reliquary, Cabinet, Still Life, Brimstone, Dance, Book of the Dead, Wheel, Cemetery... Definitely tenth! - featuring their Sherlock Holmes-esque hero Special Agent A.X.L. Pendergast, and it is another great work.The latest adventure begins with a flashback set in Africa chronicling the events surrounding the death of Pendergast's wife Helen. Longtime Preston & Child fans will appreciate this glimpse into the secretive history of Agent Pendergast's past but there's little surprise to be found that evidence arises indicating what was once declared an accident may have actually been murder. In present day, the search for answers leads Pendergast and his frequent partner Vincent D'Agosta from New York to New Orleans to seek out the truth.Much like the previous Preston & Child collaborations, this action-oriented story blends sleuthing with science in an intelligent and multi-faceted mystery. Fever Dream is full of suspense and surprises and is definitely one of the best entries in the Pendergast series. As usual, the door has been left wide open for future adventures and in my opinion, the eleventh book can't come soon enough!
The story opens with Special Agent Pendergast and his beloved wife Helen on safari in Africa where Helen was mauled and killed by a lion. We have heard bits and pieces of Helen in other books but we never really knew the whole story other than she had died. Now we find out all the details. Pendergast enlists the help of another old friend, Vincent D'Agosta to help him get to the bottom of things.I loved this book! I love all the books in the Pendergast series but some touch me more than others and this was one of those. In all the years I have been reading and cheering Pendergast on, I have always wondered about Helen, how they met, what happened to her and why he doesn't like to talk about her. In this book we see that "soft" side of Pendergast. Of course he is still following his own rules and doing things his own way which is why we love him isn't it?I enjoy the comaraderie between the police liutenant, D'Agosta and the FBI agent, Pendergast. We see a heated and at times comical interaction with Laura Haywood, D'Agosta's girlfriend and Pendergast, who she is not fond of. We have the classic cliffhangers of Preston and Child that make us want the next book right now. As in most books in the series, there are stories within stories and never a dull moment. The book moves along at a quick pace and holds your interest from page one.While they say the books can be read as stand alone books, I feel that knowing the characters and the back stories always make them a more enjoyable read. I don't think I would start with this one if you haven't read the others but that is just my opinion.
Great read. Who knew Angent P had been married. This book takes us on the journey of their life together and what happened to her. Very interesting.
Agent Pendergrast realizes 12 years later that his wife was murdered. What follows is his re-tracing her footsteps both before and during their marriage, finding out that he really didn't know her as well as he thought. Lt. D'Agosta and even Captain Laura Hayward, help him discover the secrets leading to the people behind his wife's death.
Wow, absolutely GREAT book! I mostly read romance books, but I also really enjoy suspense thrillers. Fever Dream took me on a winding trail of suspense and intrigue. The twists and turns in this story were not expected and I marvel at the well thought out detail. I look forward to the "Gideon Crew" series coming in 2011.
I've been reading the Pendergast series since it came out and became quite a fan of the characters and the fictional world. Until this one.It is as if the authors started with a great idea, wrote a great plot synopsis, and then left for the beach. The first few chapters (some only a page or a few pages each) create a compelling twist on the ongoing saga around FBI agent Pendergast, who learns that his lovely wife wasn't as lovely has he always thought and that her death was a carefully staged event. As usual the authors added some nice historical detail revolving around the famous natural history illustrator: Audobon, and they do handle that part of the material very carefully and appropriately. After we find out almost exactly in the middle of the book how the plot is stuck together, we are left with a car chases, out of character posturing by all of the cast and a carelessly written side-plot revolving around the mysterious relative of our Special Agent: Constance Green.Usually when I read a Pendergast novel I can't quite put my finger on where they get their corroborative detail, as in how do they know what trees grow in Africa, or what kinds of flowers you can find in the deep jungle. That's what keeps my interest going a lot of the time when the plot thins and the characters fall apart. With this novel the suspension of disbelief falls apart because every detail is carefully chosen and randomly placed in the text. When I read about the choir of loud cicadas in Africa they still had me, but when I read about the same choir of loud cicadas in New Orleans they lost me. Even though these insects appear in both places apparently, it just felt contrived and lazy.It was almost as if the authors had their minds set on a new detective series and quickly rattled out a new novel in their successful series. I therefor wasn't surprised to see a message at the end of the book by the Preston and Child that we can expect a brand new detective series soon with a new cast and a new fictional world. Too bad, they could have made something of the one they already had.
I'm glad to see that the Agent Pendergast books seem to be getting back on track. This was another enjoyable story in the series. I loved that we get to see more of Pendergast's past and it was kind of strange to think of him as being married at some point. I wish we could have seen more of the interaction between he and his wife but it still gave him a more human side as he tried to figure out why his wife was murdered. I'm glad that D'Agosta also played a large part in this story as it's always fun to see the contrast between Pendergast's and D'Agosta's methods. Then in the end we also see D'Agosta's girlfriend Captain Hayward get involved which is an even greater contrast. There are some great confrontations going on through out the book that made me laugh.The only part I did not like is that there is a small side story regarding Pendergast's ward, Constance. I never really enjoyed that story line and it did not really fit at all in this story so I just found it irritating. Still this is another great book for all you Agent Pendergast lovers out there!As a little bonus the authors mention a new character they are introducing in their next book. While I'm excited to see how this new character turns out the end of Fever Dream leaves you hanging a bit and I really cannot wait to find out what happens next.
Loved this book! I've always liked Agent Pendergast and appreciated his rather unique investigative approach, but this is probably the best Pendergast installment so far.12 years after the loss of his wife, Pendergast discovers that the lion attack that killed her while on safari in Africa was not an accident but a planned murder.The book is extremely well paced and very difficult to put down. I heartily recommend this book!