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Night of the Jaguar


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About the Author

New York Times bestselling author Michael Gruber is the author of five acclaimed novels. He lives in Seattle.


After the brilliant Valley of Bones comes this muddled, meandering mess of pseudomysticism and philosophy that closes the trilogy Gruber started with Tropic of Night. An Indian shaman from the jungles of Colombia makes his way to Miami to challenge Cuban land developers who want to tear down his homeland. They begin dying mysteriously at the hands of a 450-pound animal or beast. Retired detective Jimmy Paz returns to the force to get to the bottom of the killings, especially since he and his young daughter are haunted by visions of a jaguar. There are numerous subplots that offer little more than filler to an already unoriginal premise. Gruber is excellent with words and vocabulary; the visceral descriptions of the crime scenes are better than those of many of his mystery-writing contemporaries. Unfortunately, they are not enough to keep one's interest. Reader Jonathan Davis is excellent, animating many flat characters and making them more interesting than they deserve to be. Recommended only for public libraries that already carry the previous two titles. Jesse Light, Memorial Hall Lib., Andover, MA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"Superior entertainment that raises sincere, provocative questions of intellect and faith." -- Seattle Times
"Compellingly original....Prose that is efficient yet rich and hip." -- The Oregonian (Portland)
"(A) highly entertaining thriller." -- Publishers Weekly

Gruber's highly entertaining supernatural thriller completes the trilogy that began with Tropic of Night and Valley of Bones. All feature Miami cop Jimmy Paz, though the real star of this outing is the supposedly dull-witted Jenny Simpson, a gofer for the Forest Planet Alliance. When someone starts murdering Cuban-American businessmen in grisly fashion, suspicion falls on Moie, an Indian from a remote area of Colombia the victims had plans to develop. But how could the tiny Indian leave footprint evidence indicating he weighs over 450 pounds? Summoned out of retirement, Jimmy takes on the case, though he and his seven-year-old daughter, Amelia, are soon troubled by dreams of a jaguar with evil designs on Amelia. Every time Moie glides onto the page, the book shines, but it's Jenny, helping to shelter Moie, who steals the show (e.g., she's baffled that her boss would have a wife, Portia, named after a car). Hotly spiced with hit men and guns, demon gods and piranhas, this one offers more social satire than its predecessors, mostly at the expense of do-gooder environmentalists. 3-city author tour. (Apr.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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