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The Cutting Edge: A Lincoln Rhyme Novel

Review

The Cutting Edge: A Lincoln Rhyme Novel

It isn’t just what Jeffery Deaver does that makes his books bestsellers that appear on countless must-read lists. It’s that he does what he does so well repeatedly. Cracking the binding on a new Deaver novel is the sound that heralds anticipation of a wild day’s ride of surprises, suspense, and information about at least one topic (and usually more) that initially you may not have cared about. That changes quickly. Deaver is well into his third decade of putting his skills on display, but it is his series featuring consulting criminologist Lincoln Rhyme that has given him his due.

THE CUTTING EDGE is one of Deaver’s best Lincoln Rhyme novels (there really isn’t a bad one), and is both a perfect introduction to Rhyme and his partner, Amelia Sachs, and an important link in the continuity of the series. It begins with a horrific triple murder at a store in New York’s iconic Diamond District, where the owner and an engaged couple who were purchasing a diamond are gunned down. An employee who happened to walk in on the crime escapes, but is immediately pursued by the killer.

"[T]he best elements of the book are the multiple mysteries, the pursuit of the Promisor, and, of course, Rhyme and Sachs. You will not be disappointed. Ever."

Rhyme and Sachs are called in as consultants, given that multiple murders in the Diamond District are not something that the powers that be in New York want to see occurring, even on an infrequent basis. One of the immediate questions raised in the wake of the murders is the killer’s motive. Evidence at the crime scene demonstrates that the shooter stole a large uncut diamond worth millions of dollars. As more incidents follow, though, it becomes clear that the culprit --- who, following public communications, becomes known as the Promisor --- is hunting engaged couples.

Meanwhile, the police and the Promisor continue to look for the employee, who may have at least a partial key to the killer’s identity. Rhyme and Sachs pursue the madman over the course of a very long four-day period, contending with a sudden series of earthquakes in midtown Manhattan. The investigation puts the team on a complex trail that (as longtime readers might expect) twists and turns unexpectedly through a series of events, leading to a string of conclusions that, like Russian nesting dolls, continue to reveal a new player beneath each facade.

In THE CUTTING EDGE, Deaver demonstrates the results of his considerable research chops. His target here is the diamond industry, from the time that the gem is dug out of the ground to the moment that it finds its way onto someone’s finger. It is a fascinating topic in Deaver’s hands; at the very least, it will tempt readers to visit New York’s Diamond District for a stroll along the one-block area, or (more than likely) to do one’s own additional research into what does --- and does not --- occur there. Also included is information about word puzzles and explosives, among other things. However, the best elements of the book are the multiple mysteries, the pursuit of the Promisor, and, of course, Rhyme and Sachs. You will not be disappointed. Ever.

Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub on April 13, 2018

The Cutting Edge: A Lincoln Rhyme Novel
by Jeffery Deaver

  • Publication Date: April 10, 2018
  • Genres: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • ISBN-10: 1455536423
  • ISBN-13: 9781455536429