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Psychologist Dr. Alan Gregory is back for one last outing, and this time he's the one on the couch. Reeling from a shooting (Line of Fire) that has left his wife in a coma, White's beloved, flawed protagonist is also coming to terms with potential betrayal from his most trusted friend and trying desperately to maintain his own sanity with the help of his own personal psychiatrist, Dr. Lila Travis. What he can't (or won't) tell her may be the biggest obstacle to healing, but that can wait. First, he has to solve the mystery of the motive behind the shooting and clear his own name from the list of suspects in the attempted murder of his wife, Lauren. Verdict White ends his epic series that spanned 20 separate novels and 22 years with a satisfying conclusion. Most of the series titles can be read as stand-alone novels, but this one is a continuation of Line of Fire (2012), and probably should be read first. Due to the popularity of the series, demand will be high.-Cynthia Price, Francis Marion Univ., Lib., Florence, SC (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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At the start of bestseller White's engrossing 20th and final novel featuring Boulder, Colo., psychologist Alan Gregory (after 2012's Line of Fire), Gregory gives evasive answers to his new, inexperienced therapist, Delilah Travis, when she asks him about witnessing Diane, his professional partner and best friend, shooting his wife Lauren, an attorney. Meanwhile, Boulder cop Sam Purdy, another friend of Gregory's, may be leaving him at the mercy of a vindictive Boulder County DA, who is Lauren's boss and who considers Gregory a suspect in three murders. The shocking finale confirms White's central metaphor, drawn from the local story of tightrope walker Ivy Baldwin, who frequently crossed a half-mile canyon on a wire without a net and sometimes at night: life for the tormented psychologist is a fearful balancing act, where the only absolute is his desire to protect his children. He may survive, but at what cost to his soul? Agent: Robert Barnett, Williams & Connolly. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
This is the twentieth and final Alan Gregory mystery. It opens soon after the end of Line of Fire (2012) and finds the Colorado psychologist's life in disarray: his wife, Lauren, was seriously wounded in an attempt on her life; his practice is shrinking, adversely affected by the publicity surrounding recent events; and someone has surfaced with key evidence in an old case that could put Alan and his friend, police detective Sam Purdy, behind bars. Unlike many long-running series, which sort of just peter out, this one is coming to a deliberate conclusion. But this is no neat wrap-up of the psychologist/sleuth's story: at the book's end we feel that Alan's life is simply veering off in a new direction, to a place where we will not be permitted to eavesdrop. This is an excellent wrap-up to a consistently excellent series, but it may be, at least for some readers, a difficult book to read, because finishing it means saying goodbye to an old friend. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: White's Alan Gregory series has had a long and very successful run, and its publisher will be pulling out all the stops to ensure that Gregory goes out with trumpets blaring.--Pitt, David Copyright 2010 Booklist