The Twelfth Card
Jeffery Deaver. Simon & Schuster Audio, $39.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-7435-4433-7
The popularity of Deaver's novels about quadriplegic police detective Lincoln Rhyme and his legwoman Amelia Sachs depends mightily on their personal stories (i.e., their romantic relationship, their struggles with depression and physical impairments) and the ingeniously twisted crimes they solve. Both elements have been served better in the past. While the plot is properly perplexing (why is a 16-year-old Harlem high schooler being stalked by a ruthless killer?), fans will be baffled by Deaver's decision to move series supporting player NYPD lieutenant Lon Sellitto closer to center stage, thus significantly limited Rhyme's presence in the story. Boutsikaris, an accomplished theater and film actor, and one of the better audio performers, provides a crisp narrative that moves the story quickly enough to build and maintain a fair amount of suspense, even through several lengthy plot recaps. He exhibits both versatility and imagination in finding the right voice for most of the characters, from the impatient, almost fussy Rhyme to the gruff and emotionally conflicted Sellitto.
Reviewed on: 06/06/2005