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The Fallen: a book

T. Jefferson Parker's police thriller about a Human Lie Detector

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Fall for This Book

  • Jul 7, 2010
  • by
T. Jefferson Parker is my new favorite author! I don't understand why his novels haven't been snapped up by Hollywood and turned into movies because I'm sure they'd be blockbusters. 
The Fallen is about San Diego homicide detective Robbie Brownlaw, who sees the words that people speak as colored shapes. Synesthesia is what it's called and Detective Brownlaw acquired his remarkable ability as the result of a fall - a long fall out of a window.  Once Brownlaw learns to accept that certain shapes always mean certain things - red squares are lies, yellow triangles are fear, etc. - he finds it can be used to his advantage in dealing with suspects.  He knows when they're lying. No question about it. 
From the opening sequence that describes Brownlaw's accident and the events leading up to it, I was hooked.  His description is mesmerizing. Parker writes about Southern California with the unmistakable ease of someone who knows his location intimately. People and places are drawn swiftly and completely, effortlessly it appears, making the world appear through his character's eyes and emotions and becoming as real as one's own.  As the reader, one comes to accept the detective's unusual perception of the world around him.  It isn't something anyone can see so he appears normal on the outside.  And synesthesia is a very real syndrome.
Parker is a skillful storyteller and has twice won The Edgar- the most prestigious award there is for a mystery writer.  Read any of his books and you’ll understand why.  Once I read my first book by Parker I wanted to read everything else he'd written and I anxiously hope for his newest book to come out as soon as I'm done reading the last one.  Unfortunately for Parker's fans, it doesn't happen that fast. 
One of the things I like best about Parker's novels are his characters.  They are definately NOT the James Bond, suave, super hero type.  Not that I don’t like James, but Parker’s characters are all flawed in some way, as Brownlaw is with his synesthesia.  In other words, they're human - they come across as real people, not characters. 
If you’re in the mood for a crime novel or a mystery – a GOOD one – I highly recommend Mr. Parker. 

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November 20, 2010
Well said, M. I agree with your observations.
More The Fallen: a book reviews
review by . November 20, 2010
The color of lying
Robbie Brownlaw is high on life, working at the job he's always wanted and married to the girl of his dreams. He's about to learn one of life's most important lessons, however; everything can change in the blink of an eye. Brownlaw is one of the most interesting fictional detectives on my reading list. As The Fallen opens, he's literally taking a fall, from the 6th story of a burning San Diego hotel. He survives, but develops synesthesia. In his case, Robbie can see colors representative …
Quick Tip by . June 29, 2010
T.Jefferson Parker is my newest favorite author. His characters are real, not suave, sophisticated clones.
review by . December 09, 2009
   This book was unbearably slow with virtually no suspense as the main character (Robbie Brownlaw) is never in danger during the entire story. I kept expecting the something bad to occur to him as he was investigating corruption within the police and political arena while trying to solve a murder. Additionally, Robbie has the ability to tell when people are lying (he sees red triangles coming out of the speaker's mouth when they are lying) but that ability comes into to play very little. …
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Member Since: Jun 28, 2010
Last Login: Jan 16, 2011 05:12 PM UTC
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