This is my first excursion with Jefferey Deaver, and it left me with contradictory thoughts. The Broken Window has a nice plot involving the most sophisticated identity theft and manipulation imaginable; a paraplegic sleuth with a bitter memory that longs for sweetening; a gorgeous red-headed paramour-detective; lots of super-technological maneuvering; a plot that moves like a runaway freight. Yet, there’s something strangely unsatisfying, something superficial about the whole project. Don’t quite know why. Perhaps its the remove with which Lincoln Rhyme is forced to conduct his investigations? Perhaps the recurring exhaustive lists of evidence surrounding each suspect (I wound up just skipping most of them)? Perhaps the time we spend inside the head of the the perp, Or Unsub (unknown subject–a most inelegant, excitement-quashing term), in which his thought and behavior mirror exactly the analysis of the profiler. Perhaps the intellectual debate-style argument over the costs and benefits of universal surveillance made possible by all the data-gathering technology that now surrounds us.
Whatever the cause, I don’t feel compelled to join the throngs that have made Deever a household thriller name. Despite the sophistication of the research and the uniqueness of the characters, the thing lacks juice. I think I’d rather spend some time with Evanovich.