Stevie Croft, Orange County’s most successful prosecutor, is running a losing campaign for district attorney when she is assigned to the most heinous crime in the county’s history. A body is discovered composed of the severed parts from five different people, all crudely sewn together to form one grotesque corpse. Stevie has the chance to ride this high-profile case right into office. Then the killer begins leaving cryptic messages for Stevie in her home, in her office, even in her purse. Calling himself "The Tutor,” he claims that deciphering these clues will not only lead her to his identity, but save the lives of his future victims. His taunting clues target her darkest secret: since she was 10, Stevie has hyper-memory, a combination of photographic memory and total recall which causes her to precisely remember everything she’s ever seen, heard, or read. While often a strength that gives her a competitive edge, this condition is also her Achilles heelexcruciatingly painful migraines are often a by-product. As her pain escalates, so do the killer’s clues.
|Product dimensions:||6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)|
About the Author
Raymond Obstfeld is the author of more than 40 books and a dozen screenplays and a contributing editor to Writer’s Digest magazine. His book Dead Heat was nominated for an Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America, and his most recent book, cowritten with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, On the Shoulders of Giants was a New York Times and Los Angeles Times bestseller. He lives in Tustin, California.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I was afraid this would be a little dark - it is after all about a particularly inventive 'read gruesome'serial killer. But this one is equal parts terror, wit, character studies and puzzles - intellectual and psychological. I guarantee you will not guess the identity of the psychotic killer - the red herrings are more like scarlet - but you'll have a hell of a good time trying to solve the intricate riddles, and you'll pick up all kinds of quirky, fascinating information besides.
Any day in Southern California, a person can become a victim. And according to novelist Raymond Obstfeld, Stevie Croft was to become the latest. In the beginning, there was no rhyme or reason why Stevie was chosen. Her biggest worry that beautiful day was trying to win the DA position. She had no idea that the six murders prior to that day would end up turning her life upside down. In the story Anatomy Lesson, not only will Stevie become an apt pupil but to everyone who she comes in contact with, will also have to do his or her homework as well. Even though there was a myriad of characters, Stevie Croft was the main focus. Stevie a 35-year old woman, who had a reputation of being a great attorney. She was focused and driven about causes but it didn't hurt she had a secret many would want to have. At a young age, she was diagnosed with hypermnesia synthesia, a memory condition that allowed her to recall words and their origins. There were only a few people who knew but in the end The Tutor was the one who took advantage of it. All of this mayhem started with The Tutor. This despicable human being had decided that Stevie would be the perfect victim. The Tutor was constantly stalking her and placing lessons in areas that she would look. Each lesson required her to not only recall histories of words but translate it to future events. At that point, those around her started to look suspicious. From the ex-husband Davis Harper to her family and friends. People was showing up in her life constantly which made the lessons more challenging. If she decided to ask for help, not only her life but others would be in danger. As the lessons progressed, Stevie started to recognize a pattern which aided in solving. Anatomy Lesson was a thought provoking story. The plot was competent and the novelist paid close attention to detail. Every character was positioned correctly in Stevie's life which eliminated confusion. The one thing I enjoyed was the perseverance and determination Stevie's character possessed. Not once did she backed down on the lessons and the punishments that followed. I became a little bored with the memory references in the middle of the book when she started recalling inert words like rain. But all in all Raymond Obstfeld created a great piece of fiction. The readers should take in consideration of the hints made throughout the book. It will make sense in the end. Let me make note that this condition named hypermnesia synthesia was discussed on national news in January of this year. A gentleman named Brad Williams appeared on Good Morning America discussing a similar ability. He was referred to as the 'Human Google'. So Raymond Obstfeld wrote a fiction novel that focused on a touch of reality. Bravo Mr. Obstfeld. I am a witness and reference of your work. Great book club selection.
For an author that has written under a variety of pseudonyms in a variety of genres, Raymond Obstfeld does his birth-name proud with his latest novel, Anatomy Lesson: a smart, rapid thriller/mystery that takes some of the genre¿s conventions and turns them inside out. Initially, upon reading that the protagonist, Stevie Croft, was an Assistant D.A. with what Obstfeld refers to as ¿hyper-memory¿, I was a bit disappointed. For me, the detective with the photographic memory had been overplayed, beginning as far back as Encyclopedia Brown in my school days. Obstfeld, however, takes what could have easily become cliché and turns it into an imaginative, integral part of the plot. Though Obstfeld¿s portrayal of strong women seems a bit heavy-handed (the two strongest female characters in the book have traditional men¿s names: Stevie and Frank), and the dialogue, while entertaining, can be distracting (particularly when it comes to the reader¿s attention that nearly everything said in the story is witty), the fact remains that the story is engaging and well-crafted. The scenes are beautifully constructed with enough detail to create a visual while not bogging the reader down with unnecessary information. As Stevie Croft begins to investigate a murder for which her father has been framed, she is pulled into the psychotic world of a person who calls himself The Tutor. The Tutor begins challenging Stevie¿s hyper-memory with seemingly impossible clues which, if successfully solved, can exonerate her father or, if not solved correctly, can cause the punishment of a loved one. Within the first few pages, the reader is plunged into Stevie¿s life and The Tutor¿s game. Obstfeld creates a fast, even pace that compels the reader to keep reading as fast as he or she can, almost as if the lives of The Tutor¿s victims-to-be depend on it. I enjoyed Anatomy Lesson and look forward to reading more of Obstfeld¿s work.