Cover image for Still life with crows
Title:
Still life with crows
Author:
Preston, Douglas J.
Personal Author:
Edition:
[Large print edition].
Publication Information:
Waterville, Me. : Thorndike Press, [2003]

©2003
Physical Description:
672 pages (large print) ; 23 cm.
Language:
English
Added Author:
ISBN:
9780786259427
Format :
Book

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Julia Boyer Reinstein Library X Adult Large Print - Floating collection Floating Collection - Large Print
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Summary

Summary

Preston and Child's latest "New York Times" bestseller finds FBI Agent Pendergast arriving in a small Kansas town where a series of grisly murders has taken place. Even more disturbing--the bodies are displayed in bizarre tableaus in the middle of endless cornfields.


Author Notes

Douglas Jerome Preston was born on May 20, 1956 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He received a B.A. in English literature from Pomona College in 1978. His career began at the American Museum of Natural History, where he worked as an editor and writer from 1978 to 1985. He also was a lecturer in English at Princeton University.

He became a full-time writer of both fiction and nonfiction books in 1986. Many of his fiction works are co-written with Lincoln Child including Relic, Riptide, Thunderhead, The Wheel of Darkness, Cemetery Dance, and Gideon's Corpse. His nonfiction works include Dinosaurs in the Attic; Cities of Gold: A Journey Across the American Southwest in Pursuit of Coronado; Talking to the Ground; and The Royal Road. He has written for numerous magazines including The New Yorker; Natural History; Harper's; Smithsonian; National Geographic; and Travel and Leisure. He became a New York Times Best Selling author with his titles Two Graves and Crimson Shores which he co-wrote with Lincoln Child, and his titles White Fire, The Lost Island Blue Labyrinth and The Lost City of the Monkey God.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

The authors of such hits as Relic (1992) and The Cabinet of Curiosities [BKL Je 1 & 15 02] bring back Special Agent Pendergast, the FBI man whose slightly archaic dialogue, unique mode of dress, and seemingly endless array of esoteric facts make him a fascinating lead character. This time out Pendergast is in Medicine Creek, Kansas, a small town that appears to be home to its very own serial killer. The novel begins with a gruesome murder, after which we're introduced to wily Sheriff Dent Hazen, a man who doesn't take kindly to out-of-towners investigating crimes on his turf. Just as we're getting to know Hazen, the pace kicks into high gear, with more bodies and a full-tilt investigation. As usual, Preston and Child deftly mix the real and the surreal, creating an atmosphere in which everything, for reasons we can't quite nail down, seems a tad off-kilter. Call it creeping paranoia, perhaps, or the dreadful certainty that something awful is about to happen. Whatever you call it, it's a recipe for success. --David Pitt


Publisher's Weekly Review

That FBI Special Agent Pendergast, one of the most charismatic thriller heroes in memory, dominates this latest novel from Preston/Child is the good news; that he's working the least interesting case of his literary career (other outings include The Cabinet of Curiosities and Reliquary) is the bad. An unusual serial killer is wreaking havoc in a small corn-growing town in Kansas; he leaves outlandish signatures, such as a mutilated body within a circle of crows on stakes and a ring of broken corn stalks. On his own initiative, Pendergast, no stranger to bizarre murders, shows up to investigate, and the authors make much hay from the contrast between the lean, infinitely refined and impossibly erudite Pendergast, a distinct descendant of Sherlock Holmes, and the down-home milieu he finds himself in. As if to emphasize his ancestry, the authors give Pendergast a Watson here: one Corrie Swanson, a rebellious, pierced and tattooed teenage girl whom he hires as his driver and guide. Further killings occur, which rumor and Pendergast tie to a 19th-century massacre of a band of outlaws by Indians. (As Pendergast explains to Corrie, he arrives at this conclusion through a "form of mental concentration, one of my own devising, which combines the memory palace with elements of Chongg Ran, an ancient Bhutanese form of meditation.") Not surprisingly, the relatively hick local cops don't like Pendergast, nor do the local politicians, who hope their town will be chosen for a lucrative experiment in genetically modified crops. When Corrie is dragged off to the killer's hideaway in a massive cave system, however, cops and Pendergast unite in an extended underground cat-and-mouse chase that will entertain readers despite their likely disappointment at the absurd, even ludicrous, identity of the villain. This may be minor Preston/Child, but it is major Pendergast; those for whom he's the cup of tea will drink deep. (July 1) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Our favorite mysterious FBI Agent Pendergast returns from his last adventure (Cabinet of Curiosities), arriving in tiny Medicine Creek, KS, just in time to investigate a series of gruesome murders. Life in rural Medicine Creek usually revolves around the local turkey-processing plant and growing corn, but all hell breaks loose when a female corpse is found in a clearing in a cornfield, surrounded by a ring of dead crows impaled on arrows. Things only get worse when a second body is displayed in another clearing, just a few feet from the horribly mauled, crumpled figure of local drifter Lonny Gasparilla-his thumb torn off and his hair pulled out by the roots. Gasparilla's dying breath names his attacker as the devil with the face of a child, and Agent Pendergast is immersed in another case rife with myth, the supernatural, and an over-the-top monstrous killer. The Preston-Child team scores another big winner, perfect for the summer; highly recommended for all popular fiction collections. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 3/15/03.]-Rebecca House Stankowski, Purdue Univ. Calumet Lib., Hammond, IN (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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