The Cold Moon (Lincoln Rhyme Series #7)

The Cold Moon (Lincoln Rhyme Series #7)

by Jeffery Deaver

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Lincoln Rhyme, the quadriplegic detective made famous in The Bone Collector is back in a thriller from the masterful Jeffery Deaver. When a sadistic killer leaves clocks at his murder scenes, will time run out for the criminologist and his partner Amelia Sachs?

On a frigid December night, an eerie pattern emerges from two equally brutal murder scenes, where a killer’s calling card is a moon-faced clock that seemingly ticked away the victims’ last moments. From his wheelchair, criminologist Lincoln Rhyme tracks the Watchmaker, a time-obsessed genius. With every passing second, the Watchmaker is moving with razor-sharp precision to his next act of perfectly orchestrated violence—and Rhyme can’t afford to have his trusted partner Amelia Sachs distracted by a daunting homicide case of her own. Up against a brilliant madman, Rhyme and Sachs are locked in a blood-chilling race with their deadliest enemy: time itself.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780743293266
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication date: 06/01/2006
Series: Lincoln Rhyme Series , #7
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 416
Sales rank: 25,649
File size: 5 MB

About the Author

Jeffery Deaver is the #1 international bestselling author of more than forty novels, three collections of short stories, and a nonfiction law book. His books are sold in 150 countries and translated into 25 languages. His first novel featuring Lincoln Rhyme, The Bone Collector, was made into a major motion picture starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie, which is currently being adapted for television by NBC. 

He's received or been shortlisted for a number of awards around the world, including Novel of the Year by the International Thriller Writers and the Steel Dagger from the Crime Writers' Association in the United Kingdom. In 2014, he was the recipient of three lifetime achievement awards. A former journalist, folksinger, and attorney, he was born outside of Chicago and has a bachelor of journalism degree from the University of Missouri and a law degree from Fordham University.


Washington, D.C.

Date of Birth:

May 6, 1950

Place of Birth:

Chicago, Illinois


B.A., University of Missouri; Juris Doctor, cum laude, Fordham University School of Law

Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

"How long did it take them to die?"

The man this question was posed to didn't seem to hear it. He looked in the rearview mirror again and concentrated on his driving. The hour was just past midnight and the streets in lower Manhattan were icy. A cold front had swept the sky clear and turned an earlier snow to slick glaze on the asphalt and concrete. The two men were in the rattling Band-Aid-mobile, as Clever Vincent had dubbed the tan SUV. It was a few years old; the brakes needed servicing and the tires replacing. But taking a stolen vehicle in for work would not be a wise idea, especially since two of its recent passengers were now murder victims.

The driver -- a lean man in his fifties, with trim black hair -- made a careful turn down a side street and continued his journey, never speeding, making precise turns, perfectly centered in his lane. He'd drive the same whether the streets were slippery or dry, whether the vehicle had just been involved in murder or not.

Careful, meticulous.

How long did it take?

Big Vincent -- Vincent with long, sausage fingers, always damp, and a taut brown belt stretching the first hole -- shivered hard. He'd been waiting on the street corner after his night shift as a word-processing temp. It was bitterly cold but Vincent didn't like the lobby of his building. The light was greenish and the walls were covered with big mirrors in which he could see his oval body from all angles. So he'd stepped into the clear, cold December air and paced and ate a candy bar. Okay, two.

As Vincent was glancing up at the full moon, a shockingly white disk visible for a moment through a canyon of buildings, the Watchmaker reflected aloud, "How long did it take them to die? Interesting."

Vincent had known the Watchmaker -- whose real name was Gerald Duncan -- for only a short time but he'd learned that you asked the man questions at your own risk. Even a simple query could open the door to a monologue. Man, could he talk. And his answers were always organized, like a college professor's. Vincent knew that the silence for the last few minutes was because Duncan was considering his answer.

Vincent opened a can of Pepsi. He was cold but he needed something sweet. He chugged it and put the empty can in his pocket. He ate a packet of peanut butter crackers. Duncan looked over to make sure Vincent was wearing gloves. They always wore gloves in the Band-Aid-Mobile.


"I'd say there are several answers to that," Duncan said in his soft, detached voice. "For instance, the first one I killed was twenty-four, so you could say it took him twenty-four years to die."

Like, yeah...thought Clever Vincent with the sarcasm of a teenager, though he had to admit that this obvious answer hadn't occurred to him.

"The other was thirty-two, I think."

A police car drove by, the opposite way. The blood in Vincent's temples began pounding but Duncan didn't react. The cops showed no interest in the stolen Explorer.

"Another way to answer the question," Duncan said, "is to consider the elapsed time from the moment I started until their hearts stopped beating. That's probably what you meant. See, people want to put time into easy-to-digest frames of reference. That's valid, as long as it's helpful. Knowing the contractions come every twenty seconds is helpful. So is knowing that the athlete ran a mile in three minutes, fifty-eight seconds, so he wins the race. Specifically how long it took them tonight to die...well, that isn't important, as long as it wasn't fast." A glance at Vincent. "I'm not being critical of your question."

"No," Vincent said, not caring if he was critical. Vincent Reynolds didn't have many friends and could put up with a lot from Gerald Duncan. "I was just curious."

"I understand. I just didn't pay any attention. But the next one, I'll time it."

"The girl? Tomorrow?" Vincent's heart beat just a bit faster.

He nodded. "Later today, you mean."

It was after midnight. With Gerald Duncan you had to be precise, especially when it came to time.


Hungry Vincent had nosed out Clever Vincent now that he was thinking of Joanne, the girl who'd die next.

Later today...

The killer drove in a complicated pattern back to their temporary home in the Chelsea district of Manhattan, south of Midtown, near the river. The streets were deserted; the temperature was in the teens and the wind flowed steadily through the narrow streets.

Duncan parked at a curb and shut the engine off, set the parking brake. The men stepped out. They walked for a half block through the icy wind. Duncan glanced down at his shadow on the sidewalk, cast by the moon. "I've thought of another answer. About how long it took them to die."

Vincent shivered again -- mostly, but not only, from the cold.

"When you look at it from their point of view," the killer said, "you could say that it took forever."

Copyright © 2006 by Jeffery Deaver

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The Cold Moon (Lincoln Rhyme Series #7) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 77 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
mazda502001 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As always Deaver is the master of contemporary thrillers. His books are real page-turners and his Rhyme/Sachs series are not an exception.Back Cover Blurb:On a freezing December night, with a full moon hovering in the black skies over New York City, two people are brutally murdered - their prolonged deaths marked by eerie calling cards: clocks ticking away the victims' last minutes on earth. Lincoln Rhyme and his team have only hours to stop the icy-cold, brilliant Watchmaker, whose obsession with time drives him to plan his carnage with the precision of a fine timepiece.Amelia is not only Lincoln's eyes and ears on the Watchmaker investigation. She's now lead detective on her own first homicide - a case that sets into motion clockwork gears of its own.A case with consequences which will endanger many lives, as well as Lincoln and Amelia's future together....
WeeziesBooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
"Cold Moon" by Jeffery Deaver was a good mystery with 'the watchmaker' emerging as a the villain in this story, another in the Lincoln Rhyme series by Jeffery Deaver. Combining Rhyme¿s talents with those of his partner Amelia Sacs, and Kathryn Dance, who is an expert in the field of kinesics and is a visiting expert from the Monterey Peninsula at the California Bureau of Investigation. Trying to solve the clues in the ongoing murders, where the Watchmaker¿s murders leaves a moon faced clock ticking at each crime scene. The team finds a trail of confused clues that seem to leave to the conclusion that there might be an attempt to steal a precious timepiece and the victims are just collateral damage. However, the leads all seem to go to the wrong places and the story keeps turning up bodies and possible complications, such as police involvement in all the wrong ways. This is another enjoyable read for fans of police and detective mysteries.
memasmb on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Excellent book! Fast paced and the twisting plot is never ending... but Deaver pulls it all together in the end. Reminds us to always question what you see and what you hear.Am looking forward to Deaver's next book.
she_climber on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Another great Rhyme and Sachs novel. I love the detail and the twisted plot. Deaver is meticulous in closing the holes. The characters are all like family and I enjoy each book reading their interactions.
Stacers1973 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have read several of the Lincoln Rhyme novels ... this one was probably one of my least favorites. There were passages that seemed repetitive and there was alot of over-explaining. I often have a degree of disbelief at the end of a story, but this one was pretty far out there.
kd9 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I've read several of the books in this series, but not all. I probably missed some of the undercurrents and byplay, but since this book is more about plot twists than character studies, you can skip over most of character interactions.It's amazing to me how formulaic a twisted plot like this can be. First there is evidence of two brutal murders, but in one -- no body. Then a killer is cornered and apprehended, but wait, he's just a simple minded accomplice. Then the real killer steps forward, but in the first case there WAS no murder, so the killer is not really a killer. But wait, yes he is a notorious hit man, but his goal is the death of more than one person. But our fearless (and bedridden) detective figures out the plot and saves the possible victims. After all that buildup, the clever criminal is allowed to escape so that he can bedevil our heroes again another day.Yes, the plot is clever. But every twist seemed telegraphed pages ahead of the event. The people involved seemed sketched, not drawn. I'll probably wait a couple of books more in this series before picking up another one.
netedt on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was drawn in by the criminal, The Watchmaker, and all the horological tidbits. I did not like the plot which seemed far too contrived, though clever. I counted four levels of intrigue, making for an equal number of twists in the plot. It was very much plot driven with little development of character. I think if you have been following these characters through previous novels there would be enough here to keep you engaged.
jules80000 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Excellent!!!On top form with plenty of twists and turns!!
wispywillow on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not one of my favorites of the Lincoln Rhyme novels, but there were enough twists and whatnot to keep me interested in it. As always, Lincoln is snarky, sarcastic, and in general a fun-as-hell character to read. Amelia Sachs is wonderful as well. I also enjoyed the new character (at least, I think he's new... I don't know if he showed up at all in any other Lincoln Rhyme novels I haven't gotten to yet), a rookie named Pulaski; he's incredibly adorable in his attempts to be as good a cop as he can be.I'm looking forward to my next Deaver novel. Most of his I have loved; The Cold Moon fell a little short for me, though.
Bookmarque on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Once again, he got me. I should have remembered the lessons I learned from the last book and applied them here. Nothing was what it seemed. The villain was devious, brilliant and crafty and the only one who got away. I bet we see him reappear when we least expect it. I also had an intense déjà vu moment at one point and I went searching in the older Rhyme novels for what set it off, but I never did find it and the intensity of the feeling faded out.Again Deaver presents us with a very elaborate main plot with a few side stories thrown in. Amelia's running a case of her own, something no one expected her to get results with and when she does, she encounters a lot of problems with other cops. Eventually she's presented with information about her father that upsets and disillusions her so much she decides to leave the force. Rhyme is devastated and counsels her to wait before making such a final decision. She starts training her replacement who is competent enough, but green and he'll be an interesting addition to the team if he survives.Eventually, the two cases do come together as we knew they would. I couldn't see how and the solution surprised me greatly although I should come to expect it by now. One thing that wasn't mentioned much was the movement that Rhyme was able to achieve at the end of the last book. I wanted to hear about his progress, but I didn't get any of that. Of course his big brain defeats the equally big brain of the bad guy. This time the answers were more facile than I would have liked. It was as if it wasn't even a stretch for him this time.Another big brain was introduced here in the form of Kathryn Dance; an expert in kinesics the study of body language and other cues to determine a person's real motivations, etc. I'm not sure if I like her or not. She seems enormously smug to me. I think if I had read this book before buying Deaver's latest, I might not have bought it after all since it features Dance. I thought it would be another stand alone, but it's a new series apparently.
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1dachsmom More than 1 year ago
AWESOME MYSTERY. Jeffrey Deaver at his best! Have read all of his Kathryn Dance and Lincoln Rhyme masterpieces, but this one tops them all. It is so full of twists and turns. Just when you think "now I know the real plot"....along comes another huge twist. Lost a lot of sleep over this book but it was so worth it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another excellent story in this Lincoln Rhyme series, maybe one of the best. The plot twists were fantastic.
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Absolutely loved this book. It kept my attention all the way through. Very good!!!
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