Friday, January 30, 2009

The Bodies Left Behind

Jeffery Deaver's Bodies Left Behind starts off with a home invasion at an isolated vacation house. The couple who own the house are killed but the husband starts off an incomplete 911 call, which brings an off-duty cop Brynn to the scene. Surprised by the bad guys, Brynn runs off into the forest and is soon joined by Michelle, a friend of the couple, who was in the house at the time of the killings.

Most of the story follows Brynn and Michelle as they trek through the forest with the bad guys behind them. The two are as different as oil and water with Brynn being quick-thinking and street-smart and Michelle being rich and spoiled. The chase is initially interesting and tense as the two women begin to bond and try to outwit their enemies. But things get repetitive very soon as the sequence of ' the women trick the men; the men recognize the trap and evade it; the men set their own trap; the women recognize the trap and evade it' happens over and over again. The traps are too complicated and so the fact that one side can think them up and the other side can anticipate them becomes unbelievable after a certain point. Deaver's trademark twist comes a little late in the proceedings. The author has a lot of experience at covering his tracks and setting us up and so the twist does come as a good surprise. The ending after that feels rushed and the sense of closure is not complete.


At 4:16 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Balaji, I thought you would have outgrown all this pulp stuff by now and gone onto something heavier :-)
Not necessarily non-fiction, but something more richer in prose which and serves more than being just a page-turner

At 9:00 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

vijay, that's exactly what i've been telling myself too. I'm currently reading another pulpier book but I've promised myself that the book after that will be something richer in prose :)


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