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Plum Island

Overview

The hair-raising suspense of The General's Daughter... the wry wit of The Gold Coast...this is vintage Nelson DeMille at the peak of his originality and the height of his powers...Wounded in the line of duty, NYPD homicide cop John Corey is convalescing in rural eastern Long Island when an attractive young couple he knows is found shot to death on the family patio. The victims were biologists at Plum Island, a research site rumored to be an incubator for germ warfare.Suddenly, a local double murder takes on ...

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Plum Island (John Corey Series #1)

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Overview

The hair-raising suspense of The General's Daughter... the wry wit of The Gold Coast...this is vintage Nelson DeMille at the peak of his originality and the height of his powers...Wounded in the line of duty, NYPD homicide cop John Corey is convalescing in rural eastern Long Island when an attractive young couple he knows is found shot to death on the family patio. The victims were biologists at Plum Island, a research site rumored to be an incubator for germ warfare.Suddenly, a local double murder takes on shattering global implications — and thrusts Corey and two extraordinary women into a dangerous search for the secret of PLUM ISLAND....

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Biological warfare, hidden treasure, romance, and, of course, murder lie at the heart of DeMille's devilishly sharp and suspenseful Plum Island. When two Long Island biologists are found with bullets in their skulls, NYPD Detective John Corey investigates. Little does he know that this puzzling local crime will soon fester into a crisis of cataclysmic proportions.
Library Journal
While investigating the murder of a young Long Island couple, an NYPD detective is stunned to find that they may have been involved in dealing genetically altered viruses.
Library Journal
While investigating the murder of a young Long Island couple, an NYPD detective is stunned to find that they may have been involved in dealing genetically altered viruses.
Kirkus Reviews
Since The Charm School (1988), DeMille's page-turning skills have only improved, peaking with The Gold Coast (1990), faltering on Spencerville (1994), and returning to form with this trip back to the Long Island venue of The Gold Coast.

This time, DeMille limns not the Fitzgeraldian wealth of Oyster Bay but rather the North Fork's comfortably well-off—but less-fancy citizens. An NYPD homicide detective, John Corey, has moved into his uncle's fine digs overlooking Great Peconic Bay. Restlessly recuperating from wounds received in the line of duty, he's happy to answer the summons of the Chief of the Southold Town PD, an old friend, who hires him to consult on the double murder of Tom and Judy Gordon, biologists who worked on (nonfictional) Plum Island, the site of animal disease research for the Department of Agriculture. Were the Gordons murdered because they'd stolen some valuable new vaccine, or even a dreaded virus? They'd obviously far outspent their income, living high on the hog and buying a very expensive and speedy powerboat as well as an acre of bluff overlooking the bay. Had they been running drugs? Corey doesn't think so, although an ice chest missing from their boat points to something forbidden being hauled from Plum Island. He teams up with Beth Penrose, a Southold detective working her first homicide. Their visit to the Plum Island research facility and the Gordons' labs reveals only that the FBI and CIA have sanitized the place and have run up false information for public consumption. Corey also falls in with the star-crossed Emma Whitestone, a researcher of historic artifacts and an expert on Captain Kidd's lost treasure, which is thought to be buried somewhere nearby. Among the murder suspects is nasty viniculturalist Fredric Tobin, a smoothie who lures the ladies with champagne and Concorde jets.

Heavy wisecracking keeps the fun flowing as DeMille cranks up a thrilling, entertaining plot.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781455581788
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 1/27/2015
  • Pages: 608
  • Sales rank: 590,377

Meet the Author

Nelson DeMille is the author of 18 acclaimed novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Night Fall, Plum Island, The Gate House, The Lion, and The Panther. His other New York Times bestsellers include Wild Fire, The Gold Coast, and The General's Daughter. For more information on the author, you can go to www.NelsonDeMille.net.

Biography

Nelson DeMille has a dozen bestselling novels to his name and over 30 million books in print worldwide, but his beginnings were not so illustrious. Writing police detective novels in the mid-1970s, DeMille created the pseudonym Jack Cannon: "I used the pen name because I knew I wanted to write better novels under my own name someday," DeMille told fans in a 2000 chat.

Between 1966 and 1969, Nelson DeMille served in the U.S. Army in Vietnam. When he came home, he finished his undergraduate studies (in history and political science), then set out to become a novelist. "I wanted to write the great American war novel at the time," DeMille said in an interview with January magazine. "I never really wrote the book, but it got me into the writing process." A friend in the publishing industry suggested he write a series of police detective novels, which he did under a pen name for several years.

Finally DeMille decided to give up his day job as an insurance fraud investigator and commit himself to writing full time -- and under his own name. The result was By the Rivers of Babylon (1978), a thriller about terrorism in the Middle East. It was chosen as a Book of the Month Club main selection and helped launch his career. "It was like being knighted," said DeMille, who now serves as a Book of the Month Club judge. "It was a huge break."

DeMille followed it with a stream of bestsellers, including the post-Vietnam courtroom drama Word of Honor (1985) and the Cold War spy-thriller The Charm School (1988) Critics praised DeMille for his sophisticated plotting, meticulous research and compulsively readable style. For many readers, what made DeMille stand out was his sardonic sense of humor, which would eventually produce the wisecracking ex-NYPD officer John Corey, hero of Plum Island (1997) and The Lion's Game (2000).

In 1990 DeMille published The Gold Coast, a Tom Wolfe-style comic satire that was his attempt to write "a book that would be taken seriously." The attempt succeeded, in terms of the critics' response: "In his way, Mr. DeMille is as keen a social satirist as Edith Wharton," wrote The New York Times book reviewer. But he returned to more familiar thrills-and-chills territory in The General's Daughter, which hit no. 1 on The New York Times' Bestseller list and was made into a movie starring John Travolta. Its hero, army investigator Paul Brenner, returned in Up Country (2002), a book inspired in part by DeMille's journey to his old battlegrounds in Vietnam.

DeMille's position in the literary hierarchy may be ambiguous, but his talent is first-rate; there's no questioning his mastery of his chosen form. As a reviewer for the Denver Post put it, "In the rarefied world of the intelligent thriller, authors just don't get any better than Nelson DeMille."

Good To Know

DeMille composes his books in longhand, using soft-lead pencils on legal pads. He says he does this because he can't type, but adds, "I like the process of pencil and paper as opposed to a machine. I think the writing is better when it's done in handwriting."

In addition to his novels, DeMille has written a play for children based on the classic fairy tale "Rumpelstiltskin."

DeMille says on his web site that he reads mostly dead authors -- "so if I like their books, I don't feel tempted or obligated to write to them." He mentions writing to a living author, Tom Wolfe, when The Bonfire of the Vanities came out; but Wolfe never responded. "I wouldn't expect Hemingway or Steinbeck to write back -- they're dead. But Tom Wolfe owes me a letter," DeMille writes.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Jack Cannon; Kurt Ladner; Brad Matthews; Michael Weaver; Ellen Kay
    2. Hometown:
      Long Island, New York
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 22, 1943
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, New York
    1. Education:
      B.A. in political science, Hofstra University, 1974
    2. Website:

Table of Contents

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Interviews & Essays

Before the live bn chat, Nelson DeMille agreed to answer some of our questions:

Q: Please provide us with your favorite recipe and tell us where you got it from.

A: There's a tradition in my family that on the first day it snows, you eat polenta. I don't have a recipe, per se, but basically you make the polenta, which is cornmeal mush, according to the package directions, then you spread it out on a wood board and top it with tomato sauce, mozzarella, sausage, mushrooms, peppers, or whatever you like. It's sort of like making your own pizza, except instead of pizza dough, you use cornmeal. Then you put the board with everything in the oven for about ten minutes, remove with a spatula, serve, and watch the snow.

Q: How do you develop your characters? Do people in your life influence your writing?

A: I've rarely met anyone interesting enough to base an entire character on, so most of my characters are composites of people I've met.

Q: What, to you, is the most important day of the year?

A: As an optimist, I'm partial to January 1st. I actually make a list of resolutions, and I believe I'll succeed at accomplishing everything I resolve. By March, however, I have to modify my resolutions, but I did stop smoking on January 2nd, two years ago.

January 1st is also a good time to look back, and January is, of course, named after the two-faced Roman god Janus, who looks forward and back.


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