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Julie Sarkissian blogs about the problems facing the protagnist of her debut novel, DEAR LUCY

Something's Wrong With Lucy - But What?

Lucy is different – that much is clear. She speaks like a child, doesn’t recognize social boundaries, flies into rages, and treasures rotten food. Her cognition is impaired, her vocabulary is very limited and she cannot read or write. But what – precisely – is wrong with her is left up to the reader. Lucy is the protagonist of my novel, DEAR LUCY, and from the first sentence of the book I ever wrote it was obvious that Lucy was cognitively different. The way Lucy describes herself is as “missing too many words.” Her mother calls her “difficult.” Readers of early drafts of the book had a few theories as to Lucy’s condition; autism, Williams Syndrome, Down Syndrome. But Lucy’s mother has kept her from going to school and Lucy has never seen a doctor. So in the fictional reality of the book there is no official diagnosis. But as the novel progressed I wondered – should I have one? I was torn. If Lucy was presenting enough symptoms to point to a real condition, was I ignoring the obvious not to fold that condition into my development of her character? Was it insensitive of me to allude to aspects of certain real, life-altering conditions but not assign a specific condition to Lucy? I worried about appropriating aspects of serious conditions without treating those conditions with proper respect and acknowledgement. And though any clinical diagnosis would probably not be explicit in the novel, I wondered if I would be ignoring an opportunity to bring attention to a real disorder when people asked me about Lucy’s condition, the way The Curious Incident of The Dog in the Night-time did for autism. On the other hand, I had concerns that if I chose a diagnosis for Lucy, I would be ascribing to her qualities that she wouldn’t have otherwise presented. Lucy had her own will over my writing and over the novel. I didn’t want to yoke Lucy’s expression by keeping her behavior and abilities consistent with a clinical condition. Accuracy would also become a critical issue if Lucy’s condition was named. Ultimately I chose not to diagnose Lucy, though I worry the artistic freedom provided by that decision comes at the price of being judged for being too liberal with my treatment of cognitive disorders. Now that publication is a few months away, I am apprehensive of how my treatment of Lucy’s cognitive limitations will be judged. I have yet to talk to a reader who has a learning different child, or works with learning different people, and that conversation is one I will be honored, and not a bit anxious, to have.

Hodder Paperbacks

The Sleeping Doll

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

The Steel Kiss

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

How do you catch a killer who can reach you anywhere - without going near you? The twelfth chilling Lincoln Rhyme thriller which will leave you looking over your shoulder. Detective Amelia Sachs is in pursuit when she hears the scream.Stopping to help a man trapped in a horrific accident, Sachs has to let a suspected murderer get away.But was it really coincidence? Did the killer make it happen?Sachs and Lincoln Rhyme are facing a new kind of opponent:Someone who can kill by remote control.Someone watching every move they make... 'A tightly plotted masterpiece' Sun 'Flawlessly constructed and paced' The Sunday Times 'The king of suspense is back and he's done it again' Glasgow Herald

Hodder & Stoughton

The Lincoln Rhyme Collection 5-8

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

Solitude Creek

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

The fourth electrifying thriller in the Kathryn Dance series from master of suspense Jeffery Deaver.One mistake is all it takes.Busted back to rookie after losing her gun in an interrogation gone bad, California Bureau of Investigation Agent Kathryn Dance finds herself making routine insurance checks after a roadhouse fire.But Dance is a highly trained expert in body language: her most deadly weapon is her instinct, and they can't take that away from her.And when the evidence at the club points to something more than a tragic accident, she isn't going to let protocol stop her doing everything in her power to take down the perp.Someone out there is using the panic of crowds to kill, and Dance must find out who, before he strikes again . . .

Hodder & Stoughton

The Skin Collector

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

They have never seen a murder like it - but something about this killer is all too familiar... A new type of serial killer is stalking the streets of New York - one more devious and disturbing than ever before. A talented tattoo artist is using poison instead of ink. His victim is a young woman. And on her skin he's left a message: 'the second'. Processing the scene, NYPD detective Lincoln Rhyme and his associate Amelia Sachs find just one trace of evidence. A scrap of paper that connects this case with one they will never forget: the killer they called The Bone Collector...'Outstanding . . . Deaver proves himself a grandmaster of the genre as each surprise leads to an even bigger surprise, like a series of reverse Russian nesting dolls.' - Starred Review, Publisher's Weekly

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Trouble in Mind

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
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The Bone Collector

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder Paperbacks

The Coffin Dancer

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

The October List

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

DEAVER. DANGEROUSLY GOOD.You wait, desperately, for news of your daughter.At last, the door opens.But it is not the negotiators, or the FBI.It is her kidnapper.And he has a gun . . .Two days ago, life was normal.How did it end like this?Every crime scene begins at the end. To know what happened, you must work backwards, piecing together the events that came before. The ultimate thriller writer, Jeffery Deaver puts your brain - and your nerves - to the ultimate test with The October List, in a masterful mystery that unfolds from the end back to the beginning with many a breath-taking twist along the way.'Deaver's most fiendish thriller ever. . . as the pace quickens and the story continues to backtrack, solid evidence, established plot points and sturdily built characters all begin to come undone, until what started out as an interactive game becomes a truly unnerving exercise in deception' New York Times

Hodder & Stoughton

The Kill Room

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

The tenth novel in the critically acclaimed Lincoln Rhyme series, from Number One bestselling author Jeffery Deaver.They are calling it the 'million-dollar bullet': a sniper shot from a near-impossible distance.But there is no crime scene investigation, no evidence, and no co-operation from the local Bahamian police.Ambitious New York district attorney Nance Laurel won't let it go. This murder has all the hallmarks of a contract killing, and she has evidence that the order came from the highest levels of the US government.Putting her career on the line, she calls in independent investigators: Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs. No strangers to controversy, their reputation for seeing what others miss is unparalleled, and she knows they will risk everything - even their lives - to seek the truth . . .

Hodder Paperbacks

Carte Blanche

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

'The face of war is changing. The other side doesn't play by the rules much any more. There's thinking, in some circles, that we need to play by a different set of rules too . . .'Fresh from Afghanistan, James Bond has been recruited to a new agency. Conceived in the post-9/11 world, it operates independent of Five, Six and the MoD, its very existence deniable. Its aim: to protect the Realm, by any means necessary.The Night Action alert calls Bond from dinner with a beautiful woman. GCHQ has decrypted an electronic whisper about an attack scheduled for later in the week: casualties estimated in the thousands, British interests adversely affected.And 007 has been given carte blanche to do whatever it takes to fulfil his mission.

Hodder & Stoughton

Edge

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

DEAVER. DANGEROUSLY GOOD.Henry Loving is a 'lifter', hired to extract information from his victims. He is very, very good at it.His next target is a Washington, D.C. detective, whose family are immediately put under government protection. The man assigned to their case is protection officer Corte: uncompromising, relentlessly devoted to protecting those in his care and a brilliant game strategist. He knows just how brutal the lifter can be - six years earlier, Loving killed someone close to him.As tension increases inside the family, the situation escalates into a deadly contest between the hunter and his prey. As the lifter closes in, Corte must decide whether to protect his charges, or use them as bait in the name of personal revenge...'The twists and turns from devilish Deaver will have you burning the midnight oil, then using it to set fire to the candle you'll be burning at both ends until you finish this.' Sun

Hodder & Stoughton

Praying for Sleep

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

The Lesson of her Death

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

DEAVER. DANGEROUSLY GOOD. When Detective Bill Corde looks at the beautiful face of the murdered girl in the mud, he does not know his own life is about to turn into a terrifyingly real nightmare. For the girl's killer is now on the trail of Corde and his unsuspecting family: his wife, teenage son, and imaginative but vulnerable daughter, Sarah. Sarah, who alone knows the identity of the killer...The lesson Bill Corde is about to learn - the lesson of her death - is an education that no one will ever forget.'The best psychological thriller writer around' The Times

Hodder & Stoughton

Speaking In Tongues

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

The Empty Chair

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

The third of the bestselling Lincoln Rhyme series sends the detective deep into North Carolina on the trail of a desperate kidnapper... You've followed a killer into a swampHopefully you'll find him before he gets to his next victimsBut you'd better watch out - The Insect Boy doesn't need his own hands to kill...Sick of his debilitating injuries, Lincoln Rhyme has travelled to a world-famous spinal cord injuries center in North Carolina for some risky, experimental surgery. It may make him a tiny bit better; it may kill him. But before he has a chance to undergo the operation, the local police department draft Rhyme and his partner Amelia into a shocking new case. Using their forensic skills the pair desperately try to track down two women kidnapped by a psychotic young man known locally as the Insect Boy.After a cat-and-mouse game through the abandoned swamps of North Carolina, Lincoln and Amelia finally manage to find him - except suddenly Amelia, convinced of his innocence, breaks the boy out of jail. And it's left to Lincoln to find them both, while Amelia uses all the skills her mentor and lover has taught her to evade him.But her actions are to have more disastrous consequences than either of them could anticipate ...'The most creative, skilled and intriguing thriller writer in the world . . . [Deaver] has produced a stunning series of bestsellers with unique characterisation, intelligent characters, beguiling plots and double-barrelled and sometimes triple-barrelled solutions.' - Daily Telegraph

Hodder & Stoughton

A Maiden's Grave

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder & Stoughton

The Cold Moon

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver

Jeffery Deaver is the award-winning author of two collections of short stories and 29 internationally bestselling novels, including the latest James Bond novel Carte Blanche. He is best known for his Lincoln Rhyme thrillers, which include the number one bestsellers The Vanished Man, The Twelfth Card and The Cold Moon, as well as The Bone Collector which was made into a feature film starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie. The first Kathryn Dance novel, The Sleeping Doll, was published in 2007 to enormous acclaim.A three-time recipient of the Ellery Queen Reader's Award for Best Short Story of the year, he has been nominated for an Anthony Award and six Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America. He won the WH Smith Thumping Good Read Award in 2001 and in 2004 won the Crime Writers' Association Steel Dagger for Best Thriller with Garden of Beasts, and their Short Story Dagger for The Weekender from Twisted.Jeffery Deaver lives in North Carolina and California.Visit his website, www.jefferydeaver.com, Facebook page, www.facebook.com/JefferyDeaver, and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JefferyDeaver.(P)2006 Hodder & Stoughton Audiobooks

Hodder & Stoughton

The Twelfth Card

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver
Hodder Paperbacks

The Blue Nowhere

Jeffery Deaver
Authors:
Jeffery Deaver