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Vanishing Act by Thomas Perry

Vanishing Act

by Thomas Perry

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This book is the first I have read in the Jane Whitfield series. She specializes in helping to hide people who need to disappear from abusive husbands, gangsters, whatever. I don’t know about the other books in the series - yet - but the man she is helping in Vanishing Act has no trouble finding her, has lots of skills that would appear to help him hide himself, and comes with bags of cash. This one however, turns out to be the opposite of her usual client.

One criticism of the book might be that it waffles between being an escape thriller and a didactic lecture (hmmm, is that redundant) on Native American culture and history. Whitfield is Seneca and while I found the discourses and snippets of Indian language interesting, they seemed totally out of place with the rest of the book. On the other hand, once you get past some of the dream sequences, which reveal ALL of the rationale and motivations of the other character (that was a bit much,) her use of Indian lore and skills to overcome her adversary in the woods, was intriguing. Loved that part. ( )
  ecw0647 | Sep 30, 2013 |
3.5 stars. ( )
  Aelianna | Jun 5, 2013 |
First in the Jane WHitefield series. The main character is a guide who helps people " disappear". The author includes a lot of details about native Americans and the new York area but sometimes all the details slow down the plot. ( )
  dalexander | Apr 5, 2013 |
The Native American frame adds an extra element to this, although it was clear pretty much from the beginning that something was not quite right with the situation surrounding John Felker. I also really enjoyed the puzzle element where Jane was trying to piece together the sequence of events. I'll probably read the rest of these eventually, but not right away. ( )
  JenJ. | Mar 31, 2013 |
A very different type of mystery/thriller. Jane Whitefield, the main character, helps people disappear into another identity. Her clients are not always of stellar character but have some evil menacing person out to locate them. Jane is of Seneca Indian heritage and that plays a part in the narrative but mostly in understanding Jane and her reason for doing what she does so well. The book is slow to start but then takes off and the reader is on a riveting ride to the finish. I thoroughly enjoyed this book because the writing is very good and the characters are well designed and explained. Jane is a strong persona but she has her own flaws to deal with. A well written and entertaining read. ( )
  kmmt48 | Dec 6, 2012 |
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There is nothing in which these barbarians carry their superstition to a more extravagant length, than in what regards dreams...in whatever manner the dream in conceived, it is always looked upon as a thing sacred, and as the most ordinary way in which the gods make known their will to men.

For the most part, they look upon them either as a desire of the soul inspired by some genius, or an order from him; and in consequence of this principle, they hold it a religious duty to obey them; and an Indian having dreamed of having a finger cut off, had it really cut off as soon as he awoke, after having prepared himself for this important action by a feast...

The affair becomes still more serious, should any one take it into his head to dream that he cuts the throat of another, for he will certainly accomplish it if he can; but woe to him, in his turn, should a third person dream that he revenges the dead.

Pierre de Charlevoix,
Journal of a Voyage to North-America,
For Isabel

With love to Alix and Jo
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Jack Killigan used the reflections in the dark windows to watch the woman walk quickly up the long concourse, look at her high heels so she could take a few extra steps while the escalator was carrying her down, and then hurry around the curve so she could step onto the conveyor.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0804113874, Mass Market Paperback)

--The New York Times
Jane Whitefield is a Native American guide who leads people out of the wilderness--not the tree-filled variety but the kind created by enemies who want you dead. She is in the one-woman business of helping the desperate disappear. Thanks to her membership in the Wolf Clan of the Seneca tribe, she can fool any pursuer, cover any trail, and then provide her clients with new identities, complete with authentic paperwork. Jane knows all the tricks, ancient and modern; in fact, she has invented several of them herself.
So she is only mildly surprised to find an intruder waiting for her when she returns home one day. An ex-cop suspected of embezzling, John Felker wants Jane to do for him what she did for his buddy Harry Kemple: make him vanish. But as Jane opens a door out of the world for Felker, she walks into a trap that will take all her heritage and cunning to escape....
"Thomas Perry keeps pulling fresh ideas and original characters out of thin air. The strong-willed heroine he introduces in Vanishing Act rates as one of his most singular creations."
--The New York Times Book Review
ONE THRILLER THAT MUST BE READ . . . .Perry has created his most complex and compelling protagonist."
--San Francisco Examiner

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:43:53 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Jane Whitefield, a Native American woman whose job is to help people disappear, uses her expertise to assist those looking for a new identity, until she is confronted with a new client, John Felker, who is not what he seems.

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