A nameless, beautiful woman appears to be just another corpse in the morgue. An apparent suicide, she lies on a gurney, awaiting the dissecting scalpel of medical examiner Maura Isles. But when Maura unzips the body bag and looks down at the body, she gets the fright of her life. The corpse opens its eyes.
Very much alive, the woman is rushed to the hospital, where with shockingly cool precision, she murders a security guard and seizes hostages . . . one of them a pregnant patient, Jane Rizzoli.
Who is this violent, desperate soul, and what does she want? As the tense hours tick by, Maura joins forces with Jane’s husband, FBI agent Gabriel Dean, to track down the mysterious killer’s identity. When federal agents suddenly appear on the scene, Maura and Gabriel realize that they are dealing with a case that goes far deeper than just an ordinary hostage crisis.
Only Jane, trapped with the armed madwoman, holds the key to the mystery. And only she can solve it–if she survives the night.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Dr. Maura Isles had not smelled fresh air all day. Since seven that morning she had been inhaling the scent of death, an aroma so familiar to her that she did not recoil as her knife sliced cold skin, as foul odors wafted up from exposed organs. The police officers who occasionally stood in the room to observe postmortems were not so stoic. Sometimes Maura caught a whiff of the Vicks ointment that they dabbed in their nostrils to mask the stench. Sometimes even Vicks was not enough, and she’d see them suddenly go wobbly and turn away, to gag over the sink. Cops were not accustomed, as she was, to the astringent bite of formalin, the sulfurous aroma of decaying membranes.
Today, there was an incongruous note of sweetness added to that bouquet of odors: the scent of coconut oil, emanating from the skin of Mrs. Gloria Leder, who now lay on the autopsy table. She was fifty years old, a divorcee with broad hips and heavy breasts and toenails painted a brilliant pink. Deep tan lines marked the edges of the bathing suit she had been wearing when she was found dead beside her apartment swimming pool. It had been a bikini—not the most flattering choice for a body sagging with middle age. When was the last time I had the chance to put on my bathing suit? Maura thought, and she felt an absurd flash of envy for Mrs. Gloria Leder, who’d spent the last moments of her life enjoying this summer day. It was almost August, and Maura had not yet visited the beach or sat by a swimming pool or even sunbathed in her own backyard.
“Rum and Coke,” said the young cop standing at the foot of the table. “I think that’s what she had in her glass. It was sitting next to her patio chair.”
This was the first time Maura had seen Officer Buchanan in her morgue. He made her nervous, the way he kept fussing with his paper mask and shifting from foot to foot. The boy looked way too young to be a cop. They were all starting to look too young.
“Did you retain the contents of that glass?” she asked Officer Buchanan.
“Uh . . . no, ma’am. I took a good whiff. She was definitely drinking a rum and Coke.”
“At nine A.M.?” Maura looked across the table at her assistant, Yoshima. As usual, he was silent, but she saw one dark eyebrow tilt up, as eloquent a comment as she would get from Yoshima.
“She didn’t get down too much of it,” said Officer Buchanan.
“The glass was still pretty full.”
“Okay,” said Maura. “Let’s take a look at her back.”
Together, she and Yoshima log-rolled the corpse onto its side.
“There’s a tattoo here on the hip,” noted Maura. “Little blue butterfly.”
“Geez,” said Buchanan. “A woman her age?”
Maura glanced up. “You think fifty’s ancient, do you?”
“I mean—well, that’s my mom’s age.”
Careful, boy. I’m only ten years younger.
She picked up the knife and began to cut. This was her fifth postmortem of the day, and she made swift work of it. With Dr. Costas on vacation, and a multivehicle accident the night before, the cold room had been crammed with body bags that morning. Even as she’d worked her way through the backlog, two more bodies had been delivered to the refrigerator. Those would have to wait until tomorrow. The morgue’s clerical staff had already left for the evening, and Yoshima kept looking at the clock, obviously anxious to be on his way home.
She incised skin, gutted the thorax and abdomen. Removed dripping organs and placed them on the cutting board to be sectioned. Little by little, Gloria Leder revealed her secrets: a fatty liver, the telltale sign of a few too many rums and Cokes. A uterus knobby with fibroids.
And finally, when they opened the cranium, the reason for her death. Maura saw it as she lifted the brain in her gloved hands. “Subarachnoid hemorrhage,” she said, and glanced up at Buchanan. He was looking far paler than when he had first walked into the room. “This woman probably had a berry aneurysm—a weak spot in one of the arteries at the base of the brain. Hypertension would have exacerbated it.”
Buchanan swallowed, his gaze focused on the flap of loose skin that had been Gloria Leder’s scalp, now peeled forward over the face. That’s the part that usually horrified them, the point at which so many of them winced or turned away—when the face collapses like a tired rubber mask.
“So . . . you’re saying it’s a natural death?” he asked softly.
“Correct. There’s nothing more you need to see here.”
The young man was already stripping off his gown as he retreated from the table. “I think I need some fresh air . . .”
So do I, thought Maura. It’s a summer night, my garden needs watering, and I have not been outside all day.
But an hour later she was still in the building, sitting at her desk reviewing lab slips and dictated reports. Though she had changed out of her scrub suit, the smell of the morgue still seemed to cling to her, a scent that no amount of soap and water could eradicate, because the memory itself was what lingered. She picked up the Dictaphone and began to record her report on Gloria Leder.
“Fifty-year-old white woman found slumped in a patio chair near her apartment swimming pool. She is a well-developed, wellnourished woman with no visible trauma. External exam reveals an old surgical scar on her abdomen, probably from an appendectomy. There is a small tattoo of a butterfly on her . . .” She paused, picturing the tattoo. Was it on the left or the right hip? God, I’m so tired, she thought. I can’t remember. What a trivial detail. It made no difference to her conclusions, but she hated being inaccurate.
She rose from her chair and walked the deserted hallway to the stairwell, where her footfalls echoed on concrete steps. Pushing into the lab, she turned on the lights and saw that Yoshima had left the room in pristine condition as usual, the tables wiped down and gleaming, the floors mopped clean. She crossed to the cold room and pulled open the heavy locker door. Wisps of cold mist curled out. She took in a reflexive breath of air, as though about to plunge into foul water, and stepped into the locker.
Eight gurneys were occupied; most were awaiting pickup by funeral homes. Moving down the row, she checked the tags until she found Gloria Leder’s. She unzipped the bag, slipped her hands under the corpse’s buttocks and rolled her sideways just far enough to catch a glimpse of the tattoo.
It was on the left hip.
She closed the bag again and was just about to swing the door shut when she froze. Turning, she stared into the cold room.
Did I just hear something?
The fan came on, blowing icy air from the vents. Yes, that’s all it was, she thought. The fan. Or the refrigerator compressor. Or water cycling in the pipes. It was time to go home. She was so tired, she was starting to imagine things.
Again she turned to leave.
Again she froze. Turning, she stared at the row of body bags. Her heart was thumping so hard now, all she could hear was the beat of her own pulse.
Something moved in here. I’m sure of it.
She unzipped the first bag and stared down at a man whose chest had been sutured closed. Already autopsied, she thought. Definitely dead.
Which one? Which one made the noise?
She yanked open the next bag, and confronted a bruised face, a shattered skull. Dead.
With shaking hands she unzipped the third bag. The plastic parted, and she saw the face of a pale young woman with black hair and cyanotic lips. Opening the bag all the way, she exposed a wet blouse, the fabric clinging to white flesh, the skin glistening with chilly droplets of water. She peeled open the blouse and saw full breasts, a slim waist. The torso was still intact, not yet incised by the pathologist’s knife. The fingers and toes were purple, the arms marbled with blue.
She pressed her fingers to the woman’s neck and felt icy skin. Bending close to the lips, she waited for the whisper of a breath, the faintest puff of air against her cheek.
The corpse opened its eyes.
Maura gasped and lurched backward. She collided with the gurney behind her, and almost fell as the wheels rolled away. She scrambled back to her feet and saw that the woman’s eyes were still open, but unfocused. Blue-tinged lips formed soundless words.
Get her out of the refrigerator! Get her warm!
Maura shoved the gurney toward the door but it didn’t budge; in her panic she’d forgotten to unlock the wheels. She stamped down on the release lever and pushed again. This time it rolled, rattling out of the cold room into the warmer loading area.
The woman’s eyes had drifted shut again. Leaning close, Maura could feel no air moving past the lips. Oh Jesus. I can’t lose you now.
She knew nothing about this stranger—not her name, nor her medical history. This woman could be teeming with viruses, yet she sealed her mouth over the woman’s, and almost gagged at the taste of chilled flesh. She delivered three deep breaths, and pressed her fingers to the neck to check for a carotid pulse.
Am I imagining it? Is that my own pulse I feel, throbbing in my fingers?
She grabbed the wall phone and dialed 911.
“This is Dr. Isles in the medical examiner’s office. I need an ambulance. There’s a woman here, in respiratory arrest—”
“Excuse me, did you say the medical examiner’s office?”
“Yes! I’m at the rear of the building, just inside the loading bay. We’re on Albany Street, right across from the medical center!”
“I’m dispatching an ambulance now.”
Maura hung up. Once again, she quelled her disgust as she pressed her lips to the woman’s. Three more quick breaths, then her fingers were back on the carotid.
A pulse. There was definitely a pulse!
Suddenly she heard a wheeze, a cough. The woman was moving air now, mucus rattling in her throat.
Stay with me. Breathe, lady. Breathe!
A loud whoop announced the arrival of the ambulance. She shoved open the rear doors and stood squinting against flashing lights as the vehicle backed up to the dock. Two EMTs jumped out, hauling their kits.
“She’s in here!” Maura called.
“Still in respiratory arrest?”
“No, she’s breathing now. And I can feel a pulse.”
The two men trotted into the building and halted, staring at the woman on the gurney. “Jesus,” one of them murmured. “Is that a body bag?”
“I found her in the cold room,” said Maura. “By now, she’s probably hypothermic.”
“Oh, man. If this isn’t your worst nightmare.”
Out came the oxygen mask and IV lines. They slapped on EKG leads. On the monitor, a slow sinus rhythm blipped like a lazy cartoonist’s pen. The woman had a heartbeat and she was breathing, yet she still looked dead.
Looping a tourniquet around one flaccid arm, the EMT asked: “What’s her story? How did she get here?”
“I don’t know anything about her,” said Maura. “I came down to check on another body in the cold room and I heard this one moving.”
“Does this, uh, happen very often here?”
“This is a first time for me.” And she hoped to God it was the last.
“How long has she been in your refrigerator?”
Maura glanced at the hanging clipboard, where the day’s deliveries were recorded, and saw that a Jane Doe had arrived at the morgue around noon. Eight hours ago. Eight hours zipped in a shroud. What if she’d ended up on my table? What if I had sliced into her chest? Rummaging through the receiving in-basket, she found the envelope containing the woman’s paperwork. “Weymouth Fire and Rescue brought her in,” she said. “An apparent drowning . . .”
“Whoa, Nelly!” The EMT had just stabbed an IV needle into a vein and the patient suddenly jerked to life, her torso bucking on the gurney. The IV site magically puffed blue as the punctured vein hemorrhaged into the skin.
“Shit, lost the site. Help me hold her down!”
“Man, this gal’s gonna get up and walk away.”
“She’s really fighting now. I can’t get the IV started.”
“Then let’s just get her on the stretcher and move her.”
“Where are you taking her?” Maura said.
“Right across the street. The ER. If you have any paperwork they’ll want a copy.”
She nodded. “I’ll meet you there.”
A long line of patients stood waiting to register at the ER window, and the triage nurse behind the desk refused to meet Maura’s attempts to catch her eye. On this busy night, it would take a severed limb and spurting blood to justify cutting to the front of the line, but Maura ignored the nasty looks of other patients and pushed straight to the window. She rapped on the glass.
“You’ll have to wait your turn,” the triage nurse said.
“I’m Dr. Isles. I have a patient’s transfer papers. The doctor will want them.”
“The woman they just brought in from across the street.”
“You mean that lady from the morgue?”
Maura paused, suddenly aware that the other patients in line could hear every word. “Yes,” was all she said.
“Come on through, then. They want to talk to you. They’re having trouble with her.”
The door lock buzzed open, and Maura pushed through, into the treatment area. She saw immediately what the triage nurse had meant by trouble. Jane Doe had not yet been moved into a treatment room, but was still lying in the hallway, her body now draped with a heating blanket. The two EMTs and a nurse struggled to control her.
“Tighten that strap!”
“Shit—her hand’s out again—”
“Forget the oxygen mask. She doesn’t need it.”
“Watch that IV! We’re going to lose it!”
Maura lunged toward the stretcher and grabbed the patient’s wrist before she could pull out the intravenous catheter. Long black hair lashed Maura’s face as the woman tried to twist free. Only twenty minutes ago, this had been a blue-lipped corpse in a body bag. Now they could barely restrain her as life came roaring back into her limbs.
“Hold on. Hold on to that arm!”
The sound started deep in the woman’s throat. It was the moan of a wounded animal. Then her head tilted back and her cry rose to an unearthly shriek. Not human, thought Maura, as the hairs stood up on the back of her neck. My god, what have I brought back from the dead?
“Listen to me. Listen!” Maura commanded. She grasped the woman’s head in her hands and stared down at a face contorted in panic. “I won’t let anything happen to you. I promise. You have to let us help you.”
At the sound of Maura’s voice, the woman went still. Blue eyes stared back, the pupils dilated to huge black pools. One of the nurses quietly began to loop a restraint around the woman’s hand.
No, thought Maura. Don’t do that.
As the strap brushed the patient’s wrist, she jerked as though scalded. Her arm flew and Maura stumbled backward, her cheek stinging from the blow.
“Assistance!” the nurse yelled. “Can we get Dr. Cutler out here?”
Maura backed away, face throbbing, as a doctor and another nurse emerged from one of the treatment rooms. The commotion had drawn the attention of patients in the waiting room. Maura saw them eagerly peering through the glass partition, watching a scene that was better than any TV episode of ER.
“We know if she has any allergies?” the doctor asked.
“No medical history,” said the nurse.
“What’s going on here? Why is she out of control?”
“We have no idea.”
“Okay. Okay, let’s try five milligrams of Haldol IV.”
“Then give it IM. Just do it! And let’s get some Valium in her, too, before she hurts herself.”
The woman gave another shriek as the needle pierced her skin.
“Do we know anything about this woman? Who is she?” The doctor suddenly noticed Maura standing a few feet away. “Are you a relative?”
“I called the ambulance. I’m Dr. Isles.”
Before Maura could answer, one of the EMTs said: “She’s the medical examiner. This is the patient who woke up in the morgue.”
The doctor stared at Maura. “You’re kidding.”
“I found her moving in the cold room,” said Maura.
The doctor gave a disbelieving laugh. “Who pronounced her dead?”
“Weymouth Fire and Rescue brought her in.”
He looked at the patient. “Well, she’s definitely alive now.”
“Dr. Cutler, room two’s now empty,” a nurse called out. “We can move her in there.”
Maura followed as they wheeled the stretcher down the hallway and into a treatment room. The woman’s struggles had weakened, her strength giving way to the effects of Haldol and Valium. The nurses drew blood, reconnected EKG wires. The cardiac rhythm ticked across the monitor.
“Okay, Dr. Isles,” said the ER physician as he shone a penlight into the woman’s eyes. “Tell me more.”
Maura opened the envelope containing the photocopied paperwork that had accompanied the body. “Let me just tell you what’s in the transfer papers,” she said. “At eight A.M., Weymouth Fire and Rescue responded to a call from the Sunrise Yacht Club, where boaters found the subject floating in Hingham Bay. When she was pulled from the water, she had no pulse or respirations. And no ID. A state police investigator was called to the scene, and he thought it was most likely accidental. She was transferred to our office at noon.”
“And no one at the ME’s noticed that she was alive?”
“She arrived while we were swamped with other cases. There was that accident on I-95. And we were still backlogged from last night.”
“It’s now nearly nine. And no one checked this woman?”
“The dead don’t have emergencies.”
“So you just leave them in the refrigerator?”
“Until we can get to them.”
“What if you hadn’t heard her moving tonight?” He turned to look at her. “You mean she might have been left there until tomorrow morning?”
Maura felt her cheeks flush. “Yes,” she admitted.
“Dr. Cutler, ICU has a bed available,” a nurse said. “Is that where you want her?”
He nodded. “We have no idea what drugs she might have taken, so I want her on a monitor.” He looked down at the patient, whose eyes were now closed. Her lips continued to move, as though in silent prayer. “This poor woman’s already died once. Let’s not have it happen again.”
From the Hardcover edition.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A "Jane Doe" is brought to the morgue.Suddenly, her eyes open. Having been rushed to the hospital, regained consciousness, the mystery woman jumps up and grabs a security guard's gun. She shoots and kills him, then barricades herself along with several hostages, one being the very pregnant Jane Rizzoli. Now it's up to Jane's husband, FBI agent Gabriel Dean to get his wife and child out of this alive. A page-turner, for sure! The best!
Dr. Maura Isles is doing paperwork on an autopsy late one night. She needs some information to continue and goes into the Cold Room to locate it. There, she hears a noise coming from one of the body bags. Upon opening it, Maura is horrified to discover that the woman is still alive! Shortly thereafter, Maura goes to the hospital to follow up on her Jane Doe. She enters Doe's room just in time to see Doe kill a security cop. Doe ends up barricading herself and six other people in the Diagnostic Imaging area. ...................... Jane Rizzoli is a Homicide Detective with Boston Police Department. She is also about to deliver a baby. She naps on the exam table and wakes up to find herself one of six hostages. Then a stranger walks past the police and SWAT Team members without anyone noticing until it is too late. Doe and the stranger know each other. They are on the same side. Rizzoli's husband is FBI agent Gabriel Dean, who is outside the hospital worried about his wife. He becomes frantic when he learns that the stranger is a specially trained black-ops agent, Joseph Roke ... and Joe is NOT on the police's side this time. No one knows what these two, seemingly crazy people, could possibly have in common. ...................... When the crisis is over, Dean, Rizzoli, and Maura cannot seem to drop all their unanswered questions. They begin their own investigation. Soon they realize that Doe and Roke may not have been crazy after all. Sometimes there are secrets so terrible that powerful people will stop at nothing to keep quiet. .......................... ***** You have GOT to read this one! Author Tess Gerritsen has created a story that I can only classify as a 'Medical, Detective, & Political Thriller'. This novel covers all of them. The scariest part about the story is that what it describes, the lost girls, is totally true. These girls ARE out there. And more are added to their numbers daily. ............................ Make sure you do not begin reading this novel until you have a couple days off work with no pressing plans. Once you start reading, you will not be able to stop. Highly recommended reading. *****
This was the first book that I read by Tess Gerritsen, I'am looking forward to reading more of her books. This thriller is one of the best I've ever read. This book pulled me into the story immediately and the twist of the plot gave me chills and kept me turning page after page. I was always dying to know what will happen next. Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles were great characters. I also could feel the fear and anger of Olena and Mila. I found myself looking around the room as I read. It was distrubing at times...because it felt so true to life. I read it in one day...very difficult to put down. A great suspenseful thriller that I recommended to our book club. I recommend this book to those who love thrillers that keep your heart pounding.
I didn't know this was part of a series when i bought it. One of the best books iv eread
This is probably the third or fourth book that i've read from Ms. Gerritsen and undoubtly one of the best. Although the book is read and done, the scenes in the book still lingers in my mind. There is a movie made on the LIFETIME channel that is VERY VERy similar to this book. The movie, HUMAN TRAFFIKING, aired about 2 years ago, and you can probably find it in hollywood videos or blockbuster now. I suggest that you watch the movie also. the movie does not relate to this author in any way but will give you insight as to how much of a reality this book actually is. I actually had went to rent this movie while i was reading the book because of how much the book reminded me of the movie. So enjoy!
One of the best thrillers I've ever read. I didn't think she'd match Life Support or The Surgeon, but she has. This is a great book that I've recommended to my book club.
Medical examiner Maura Isles is called to examine the body of a beautiful, nameless woman but she gets the shock of her life when the corpse opens her eyes... The woman, who mistakenly was pronounced dead, is rushed to the hospital where doctors scramble to help her, but things turn deadly as she steals a guard's gun, kills him, and takes hostages. One of the hostages is none other than detective Jane Rizzoli who is on the verge of going into labor. As things begin to spiral more out of control, the crazed woman calls a local radio station with a simple message 'The die is cast.' Now it's up to Jane's husband, FBI agent Gabriel Dean to use all of his negotiating and investigative skills to get his wife and child out of this alive. 'Vanish' is the best novel Tess Gerritsen has written and one of the finest thrillers to come out in a long time. From page one the reader is pulled into a tension filled novel that surprises with each new plot twist. Combining well-drawn characters with expert plotting 'Vanish' is a novel that begs to be read in one sitting. This is a page-turner of the first order and a definite MUST read. Nick Gonnella
Boston Homicide Detective Jane Rizzoli is about to give birth but she still performs her job by testifying against a man she arrested. The man goes berserk and Jane gets off the witness stand, restrains and cuffs him. Her water breaks and she goes to the hospital where her doctor sends her to Diagnostic Imaging for an ultra sound. In another part of the hospital, a Jane Doe kills a security guard and ends up in Diagnostic Imaging where she keeps Jane and five other people hostage. The Feds take over the operation citing national security reasons and before the hostage situation ends the woman and her accomplice is dead. The Feds confiscate the notes and all evidence related to the two dead people. The last thing that the woman says to Jane is ¿Mila knows¿. The woman is traced back to a house where five women were murdered, four of whom w were kept against their will in a white slavery ring. Even though Jane just gave birth she is determined to find Mila and expose the people running the ring who erase all traces of their existence when things get too hot. The Jane Doe was found in the morgue by Medical Examiner Maura Isles. The woman was declared dead when she was fished out of the ocean but revived when she warmed up. She is determined to make her story known to the American people even though people highly placed in law enforcement and government won¿t be stopped until she is dead. Jane is determined to find out her motivation because during the takedown of the hostages, actions were taken that didn¿t make sense. --- Tess Gerritsen writes another exciting and mesmerizing crime thriller that is frightening because it is based on fact. VANISH is the type of novel that is written only rarely, one that appeals to reads who like plenty of action and realistic characters in their novels material. The love between Jane and her husband Gabriel, an FBI agent is so strong that it adds heart and soul to a work that would otherwise have too much tension for the plot to sustain.--- Harriet Klausner
forced prostitution. . . conspiracy theory. . . high government officials. . . big defense industry. . . murder mystery. . .betrayal. . . . . . Put a pregnant cop and her FBI husband in charge of solving the mystery, and you're in for some action.
Vanish is the fifth of Tess Gerritsen¿s Rizzoli/Isles series. The story starts with Maura Isles discovering a female in a body bag, an apparent drowning victim, who isn¿t dead. Transferred to the hospital, the woman becomes violent, shoots a security guard and takes hostages. Jane Rizzoli, about to give birth, happens to be in the wrong place and becomes one of the hostages. Her husband, FBI Agent Gabriel Dean, her Boston PD colleagues and Maura Isles spare no effort trying to track down the woman¿s identity and her reasons for the siege. Once again, Gerritsen brings the reader a gripping drama, with Jane Rizzoli providing many lighter moments. In the court scene, Rizzoli conclusively proves that, even at 9 months pregnant, she is still a cop. As well as exploring Rizzoli¿s doubts about her mothering ability and her concern with her lack of maternal instinct (topical for many first-time mothers), Gerritsen touches on subjects as diverse as sex slave trafficking, war profiteering and sieges and negotiators. As always, an excellent plot with a few twists makes this book hard to put down. Gerritsen at her finest.
Since reading Gerritsen's new book [Ice Cold] here at Librarything, I've been a fan. I love the new series on TNT based on Rizzoli/Isles. Everything I have read by this author has capitivated me and [Vanish] was no exception. I don't generally shed tears in the books that fall in this genre but I found myself crying for Mila and Olean on more than one ocassion. Very good read!
Just finished this one this morning. This was the book immediately prior to Mephisto Club, the first book by Tess Gerritsen that I have read. I plan to find the rest of her novels as soon as I can. Good story and an interesting cast of characters make this series a compelling read.
A woman is taken to the morgue and one evening as Dr. Isles is working she hears noises. She is surprised to find that the dead woman is actually alive and she is taken to the hospital in a very agitated state. At the same time, Jane Rizzoli is going into labour and about to be admitted to the hospital. The dead woman (now alive) grabs a security guard's gun and shoots him, then takes hostages and Jane just happens to be in the room that the panicked woman has taken over.Another fabulous entry in this series! I couldn't put it down. The narrative alternates between the present hostage situation and the story of a Russian teenager who was brought to America as a slave and prostitute. The two stories eventually converge. This is an intense ride of illegal immigration, government conspiracy, a hostage situation, murder and torture. Fans will be pleased with more of what they have come to expect from Gerritsen. As an added bonus I was thrilled to see the return of Thomas Moore (from The Surgeon), even if it was just a small part.
I tend to read Tess Gerritsen books when I feel a reading slump coming on. They're just the perfect books to curb them since they're quick books that have you turning pages at an alarming speed. Anyway, that's why I picked up Vanish. I've been in final project hell and needed something that I would get into right away. While Vanish wasn't my favorite in the Rizzoli and Isles series, it definitely didn't disappoint. Vanish doesn't so much start off with a bang, but rather a creepy and effective beginning. Mila's story was heartbreaking and enthralling that I found myself wanting the Rizzoli and Isles parts to be over faster just so I can get back to her story. However, the middle was where I started having some issues. I felt that it lagged just a bit with the whole "Jane is a hostage" situation. It wasn't as heart-pounding as I thought it would be. Also, I felt that it was veering towards political thriller territory and that just isn't my cup of tea. Soon afterwards, my fears were quenched and Vanish went right back to the heart-pounding thriller that I expected it to be with a satisfying ending for some and heartbreaking endings/beginings for others. While there were a few bumps in the road, I enjoyed Vanish immensely. I also found that I'm not getting sick of the leads. Usually after I've read more than a few in a series, I find that there are certain things that are starting to bother me about the main characters. Just little quirks that are starting to become more apparent after so much time together. This hasn't happened with the Rizzoli and Isles series yet. It's quite the opposite actually. An example of this is when I read the plot for the upcoming book (I believe it's the 8th in the series) and my heart hurt just a little at the thought of what's coming up for Maura. Hopefully, it won't end the way I think it will and there will be another worthy plot twist that won't have me in tears. Anyway, not only did Vanish curb said reading slump, but it got me that much more excited for the upcoming Rizzoli & Isles series on TNT. So much that I'm now counting down the days until July 12th. So even if Book 8 ends up the way I hope it won't, I'll still have the series there. Unless of course, the people at TNT (I'm not calling the idiots...yet) cancel the show before it's time and then I'll go back to the books and realized they sucked and the show was better...I doubt this will happen. It's not like Tess Gerritsen is James Patterson and the Rizzoli & Isles series is the Women's Murder Club...
Dr. Maura Isles has barely had time to recover from the startling revelations about her family in ody Double (2004) when she discovers one of the corpses in her morgue is very much alive. The young woman is rushed off to the hospital, where the doctors are able to save her life. Maura pays the young woman a visit only to witness the woman grab a security guard's gun, shoot the man, and take Maura hostage. Maura manages to escape, and the woman flees into the bowels of the hospital, where she takes six other people hostage, including Detective Jane Rizzoli, who is about to give birth.
This was the first book by Tess Gerritsen that I have read. I got in in a box of books from my brother I believe. Later i leanred it was part of a series featuring Jane Rizzoli. A Boston police detective, she and her counterparts, as well as the coroners office take on a group of "terrorists" who attempt to kill a woman in one of Boston's hopsitals. Later they discover in fact they are not dealing with terrorists, but rather the traffiking of female "slaves." These women/girls are brought into the US from Russia and sold into sexual slavery in brothels, etc. One hell of a thriller, and the author does an amazing job of ratcheting up the suspense.
Det. Rizzoli and Dr. Isles return again for another adventure, however, the main characters in this book turn out to be victims of sexual slavery. Sex slaves are kidnapped and brought into Northern Virginia (near DC). Gerritsen does a phenomenal job of following their progress and showing the horrors of their life. The descriptions are graphic and disturbing, as is the reality of this crime. Gerritsen switches between the story line of some girls brought into Virginia, and Det. Rizzoli (9 1/2 months pregnant) being kidnappped. Eventually the story lines overlap with Dr. Isles playing detective, looking into the DC power players.
Once again it's Rizzoli and Isles to the rescue. When Jane becomes a hostage, Maura and Gabriel do everything to get her back alive -- and since things are never easy, the hostage standoff is just the start to a cover-up that will expose secrets that are trying hard to stay hidden.
Another page-turner only this time Detective Jane Rizzoli is pregnant and in labor when the hospital is taken hostage by two nameless people.
This one has a lot of fast paced action. In fact this is one of the best parts of the book. The author has a good grasp on pacing and things never slow down for long. The logic and the plot take a hit several times as the book needs a jolt of action and the plot is forced through changes that are somewhat illogical, but the action is well done. Another positive in the book is the authors use of the new Dept of National Intelligence and how the new agency redefines the usual conflict between the FBI and the local police force. The DNI turns out to be nobodies friend and that tension is used to good effect throughout the book. There is also another good plotting device that is done well where the author uses Eastern Bloc girls who are being smuggled into the country and then being forced into prostitution. In fact there are a lot of good things in this book and it could have gotten a lot higher rating from me except......Jane, the heroine, is having a baby. And as it turns out, the birth of this baby is not a happy event (at least not for Jane), it is in some ways the opposite. The baby becomes more and more an obstacle and even more than that, an irritating impediment to Jane who wants to abandon the baby repeatedly to go back to catching bad guys. She does not appear to bond with her child even once in this book. This is actually a great premise for a book (professional woman having a baby and having conflicting feelings about her career and the birth of her child), one that this author would appear to be uniquely qualified to write about since the dust jacket says that she gave up her career as a physician to be a full time mother and writer. But this book actually only sees it as a plot device that helps to increase the frustration that the heroine feels throughout the book. In fact it ends up making you feel creepily like you might in some ways be observing the author's sub-conscious way of working out her own misgivings about her choice to give up her profession. The way in which Jane is so outraged that her husband would try to keep her from being a part of the investigation just because she has had a baby is well done but it is also clear that no bonding is occuring for the mom. And her choice at the end which puts her child in harm's way feels unfortunately like the author trying to ratchet up the tension so she can have a slam-bam finish to her book. It really felt manipulative to me.
Now we're talking! I really enjoyed this fifth installment in the Rizzoli & Isles series. This one was a nice blend of Jane & Maura action, although for some reason I still have a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that Jane is both married and pregnant! (I blame the TNT series for this!!)I loved the beginning of this book, where Maura is at work late and hears noises from the storage cooler...only to find a body that isn't so dead! That shocking open leads us into a tangle of government conspiracy, a hostage standoff, Jane in the hospital, and everyone looking for a woman named Mila!I dug all of the twists in this story from the back-and-forth in the beginning to tell the backstory of Mila and Olena, to the new chapter for Jane as she finally finds her footing in the role of wife and mother, to the final whodunnit. This was what I'd been waiting for in the past few books: lots of suspense, plotlines with BOTH Maura and Jane, and an ending that I had to wait until the last minute to figure out! Great read!!
Fantastic roller coaster of action and thrills that never stop.
Vanish is book #5 from the Jane Rizzoli & Maura Isles Series. A very fast paced, exciting novel. The Surgeon and The Sinner are still my favorites from the series, so far. I would like to see, in the upcoming novels in this series, some romance for Dr. Maura Isles. She leads a very dull, boring life. All the books in this series would make good movies.
Jane Rizzoli is in the hospital for a routine checkup, she's heavily pregnant, when she ends up being part of a kidnapping. The Kidnapper is a woman who was brought to the morgue, but was found to be alive. When the kidnapper and her helper are killed instead of ending the situation it only adds to the confusion.Full of twists and turns and a lot of conspiracy this is quite interesting. It just somehow lacked a certain something to bring it from being a reasonable read to a good read, in my eyes anyway.
Halliburton like intrigue with Det. Jane Rizzoli and Dr. Maura Isles