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Fifty Mice: A Novel by Daniel Pyne
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Fifty Mice: A Novel

by Daniel Pyne

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I became just as confused as poor Jay as this story unfolded---but it was interesting/intriguing enough to keep going to see if there was going to be some way to get things figured out. One surprise followed another. ( )
  nyiper | Aug 28, 2015 |
This was a wild ride. It grabs you at the beginning and keeps you saying what the heck all the way thru. It also has your mind going in so many different directions that you don't see the end coming. I great fast read that is hard to put down. And yeah I can see how this could become a Hitchcockian type movie. ( )
  marysneedle | May 17, 2015 |
We follow Jay as he is whisked away from his life as he knew it (such as it was) and put into protective custody. Jay had no desire to be placed here but his choices were pretty limited, they told him, protective custody on a beautiful island with beaches and a low stress ‘job’ or be shipped to Guantanamo. Not really much of a choice. He was paired with a mother and child who were also in the program and they all pretended to be a family.

Through flashbacks we slowly learn about Jays past. We also slowly learn about him through his interactions with the little girl as well as the shrink he has to report to every day for his sessions. The shrink is there to try and help him remember what it was he saw one night in a bar, that he claims he can’t remember. It keeps coming back to him in little flashes, but like most of his past he is actively trying to forget it.

This island seems to be filled with those in the program and those protecting the ones in the program. There are also enough regular citizens that it is important to keep up the charade. Jay chaffs under the enforced detention, even as nice as the cells are and plans on making an escape. Someone else who made the attempt, came back to a body bag, to it requires planning and surprise.

There was a lot that goes on in this book and it took me quite a while to understand most of what was happening. This can be a bit disconcerting in a book but the end tied up very nice and it was a rather ingenious little puzzle that fit together very well. This mystery isn’t for everyone but I found it to be very well done, the references to lab test mice throughout lending counterpoint and foreshadowing to the whole proceedings. ( )
  readafew | Feb 3, 2015 |
This could have been a good story, but it was written in such a weird, scrambled, sometimes indecipherable way that it got to be irritating. Jay has supposedly been a witness to "something" (criminal activity) and is taken away from his normal life, against his will, to Santa Catalina Island and put into witness protection. This island is largely home to many people under witness protection and a whole bunch of federal marshals that keep an eye on them. So this is the story of Jay trying to figure out what it is he has seen and his adventures in trying to escape. The whole thing seemed so far-fetched to me that I just couldn't take it seriously. Normally, in these situations, I get aggravated towards the characters - this time, my hostility was directed towards the author. Come on, man, stop living in your paranoid alternate universe, come back down to earth, and write something that us common folk can relate to. ( )
  flourgirl49 | Jan 18, 2015 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0399171649, Hardcover)

A gripping, paranoiac thriller about an unwilling participant in the Witness Protection Program, from star Hollywood screenwriter Dan Pyne.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:26 -0400)

"What if a man is placed in the Federal Witness Protection Program against his will? And doesn't even know what he supposedly knows that merits a new name, a new identity, a new life? Jay Johnson is an Average Joe, a thirty-something guy with a job in telephone sales, a regular pick-up basketball game, and a devoted girlfriend he seems ready to marry. But one weekday afternoon, he's abducted on a Los Angeles Metro train, tranquilized, interrogated, and his paper trail obliterated. What did he see, what terrible crime-or criminal-is he keeping secret? It must be something awfully big. The trouble is, Jay has no clue. Furious and helpless, and convinced that the government has made a colossal mistake, Jay is involuntarily relocated to a community on Catalina Island-which turns out to be inhabited mainly by other protected witnesses. Isolated in a world of strangers, Jay begins to realize that only way out is through the twisted maze of lies and unreliable memories swirling through his own mind. If he can locate-or invent-a repressed memory that might satisfy the Feds, maybe he can make it back to the mainland and his wonderful, even if monotonous, life. Set in a noir contemporary L.A. and environs, Fifty Mice is a Hitchcockian thriller as surreal and mysterious as a Kafka nightmare. Chilling, paranoiac, and thoroughly original, it will have readers grasping to distinguish what is real and what only seems that way"-- "A suspenseful, paranoiac tale about an innocent citizen whisked into the witness protection program because he knows something that he doesn't know he knows"--… (more)

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