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Crooked River

(Pendergast #19)

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  1,509 ratings  ·  179 reviews

Before he can return to New York from Miami, Special Agent A.X.L. Pendergast is called to investigate something very strange that has happened on the west coast of Florida. Dozens of human feet, identically clad in blue have washed up on beaches. All exhibit unmistakeable signs of violence. Beyond that, nothing is known about the feet, except that they are fresh and

Kindle Edition
Published February 4th 2020 by Head of Zeus
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Danita L Publishers send out ARCs (Advanced Readers' Copies) to selected individuals in order to have reviews written prior to publication. I do reviews for…morePublishers send out ARCs (Advanced Readers' Copies) to selected individuals in order to have reviews written prior to publication. I do reviews for Kirkus and for many publishers myself.(less)
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Average rating 4.45  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,509 ratings  ·  179 reviews

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Feb 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddy-read, 2020
Fantastic!!! And what an epic ending!

Crooked River is the 19th book in the Pendergast series and just published this month.

Yes, you read that right!
There have been 19 books in this series and I feel like Preston & Child are still knocking them out!

Crooked River starts off with Agent Pendergast and his ward, Constance Green finally having a vacation on a secluded island. While on vacation, Pendergast's supervisor, Assistant Director in Charge Pickett comes to the island to ask for Agent
Tamara Thorne
Jan 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If Sherlock Holmes was confronted by dozens of shoes - filled with feet - washing up on the banks of the Thames, what would he do? I can only imagine that his methods would be the 19th century equivalent to Preston & Child's Agent Pendergast's.

I was attracted to Crooked River because of the severed feet. In the story, feet clad in identical shoes begin washing up on a Florida Beach. We've all seen news reports about such feet stumbling ashore, often in the Pacific Northwest, and there are
Jan 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Following the death of long term narrator Rene Auberjonois, I had doubts that Jefferson Mays could fill his impressive shoes but I have to say that he has done a stirling job of this book and I am assured the future of Pendergast is in good hands.

A classic Pendergast novel is here, more of what everyone expects wrapped around a mysterious crime that seems to have no cause or motive. Even Constance has something to do here outside her normal angst and bringing people tea, and the story is better
Feb 04, 2020 rated it it was ok
As far as being a faithful reader, I haven't missed a new Preston & Child novel since Relic; and I haven't missed a new Pendergast either.

I'm unsure how to properly comment my feelings in reading this one. The talent and voice(s) is there, but the vision seems to be muddied or perhaps lost? I loved the first Pendergast novels; Relic, Reliquary, up through Still Life...; and was blown away by the Helen trilogy. Then it seems as if the authors did a radical reset of the character. There really
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
and Captiva Islands on the Florida Gulf coast are known for their beauty and
the abundance of beautiful seashells that wash up on the pristine beaches. When
nearly one hundred severed feet clad in green shoes begin washing up on the
beach the FBI calls in Special Agent Pendergast to solve this bizarre case. A
joint taskforce is quickly gathered,
the Coast Guard is put in charge. The investigation is fraught with infighting
and jurisdictional problems. Pendergast quietly conducts his own
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A shoe complete with a severed foot inside is not what the average beachcomber is looking to find. To make matters worse the foot is not alone...soon more a hundred more bob up. Special Agent Pendergast teams up with the junior Special Agent Armstrong Coldmoon to investigate this strange phenomenon.. The source remains a mystery although Pendergast and Coldmoon come up with quirky ideas... but that isn't unusual for Pendergast. "Quirky" is a good word as any to use to describe this story as well ...more
Mae Clair
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Preston and Child deliver another outstanding Pendergast tale, this time involving detached feet that wash up on a beach in Sanibel Island. Based on actual occurrences of this strange phenomenon happening in the Pacific Northwest, P&C have spun their own twisted explanation and moved the location to southern Florida.

Pendergast, a special agent with the FBI, is unlike any other fictional detective I’ve encountered, which is why, nineteen books in, this series continues to deliver. He’s
Stewart Tame
Feb 11, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A beachcomber hunting for shells spies a shoe washing up on the beach. And there is a severed foot within! Dozens more begin to float ashore …

That macabre opening scene kicks off the latest Preston & Child novel in fine style. Naturally, special agent Pendergast is persuaded to investigate. While this definitely is not the first novel in the series, it's a decent enough place to start if you're curious. Plenty of time to delve into the history of the characters if you like this sample. The
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, 2020

I’ve been following Pendergast series for years. It had its ups and downs. Fortunately, the last installments were good. Crooked River may be the best in a long while.

This time Pendergast, helped by Constance, lands in Florida, where more than a hundred shoes containing severed human feet wash ashore Sanibel Island. He deals, as only Pendergast can, with arrogant Coast Guard commander, nefarious conspiracy, and dark secrets.

The book offers nothing new, but it gives readers what they’re craving
Feb 10, 2020 added it
Love the Pendergast series. read all of them and really enjoyed reading them. Can't wait for #20 Mystery & Thriller
I have always been a highly observant person of the world around me. Some of this is due to the fact that I have been an actor since childhood, and part of that process includes being a “student of life” and using what you have seen, heard and experienced in creating or finding your characters. What always intrigued me --- and, in the back of my mind, seemed like the perfect impetus for a horror or sci-fi novel --- were the countless single discarded shoes that I would see along the side of ...more
Denise Mullins
I'm ashamed to admit that having read two other books in the Pendergast series- and not enjoying them- I made the effort to give the series one more try. Sure, the premise of sneakered feet floating up on a small resort island beach sounded intriguing, but the effort to get to the unsatisfying reveal was a tedious struggle.
With one dimensional characters whose development remains stuck in repeated superficial descriptions of cool linen suits or otherworldly confections of chiffon from a bygone
Denyse Prendergast
Shortly after the start of the book, the residents of Captiva Island witness many severed feet, still in shoes, wash up on the beach. The police chief, in an excess of zeal, shoots a dog running off with a sneaker. The dog was his. He shot the dog to protect the evidence.

I don't believe a dog owner would kill his dog for stealing one piece of evidence among many. In fact, I can think of damn few reasons that an owner would shoot his dog, and they're all life threatening scenarios.

This episode
Feb 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Crooked River" is the 19th in the great Pendergast series...It's Interesting to note that this particular typical and horrible Pendergast crime, like the others, has few clues, cause or reason’s and is set in and around Fort Meyers where we’ll be for two weeks in March...In this one, hundreds of cheap green tennis shoes filled with severed feet wash up on Sanibel Island’s shore...Pendergast, Constance, Jack McAvoy & Coldmoon are on the case overcoming the usual over officious meddling!!!
I rounded down from 3.5 because it did not uniformly hold my interest. However, the premise of dozens of shoes holding amputated feet washing up on a Sanibel beach was certainly unique, and the action scenes were riveting.
Deirdre Lohrmann
Feb 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
When you finish a book in 2 days of borrowing it from your library... this was a good book. I love the Pendergast series and cant wait to see what is up for the Special Agent next.
Katie Whitt
Feb 05, 2020 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome as always!
Feb 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook

It was good to go back into Pendergast's world. Fun story but it felt like a transition piece where the focus was on the case and not a lot of light was shed on the characters. The last book had a note of finality on Pendergast getting involved in solving crime/etc. This one was packed with a lot of action but it was somewhat impersonal in how it did not go into Pendergast's head or the others.
Krupal Kulkarni
I must say that though it was a nice read the latest offering of pendergast has nothing new or particularly noteworthy to recommend it. The authors tried to weave a mystery out of a particular horrifying scenario but they fall short of achieving a truly electrifying read. Further more the character of Constance has been elevated to such a status that it's almost a given that if she is in the book then she will march out and rout the enemy forces like a female Rambo and rescue Pendergast. I would ...more
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Plots that border the implausible and characters who do the impossible make this series especially appealing to me. The star of the show, FBI special agent Aloysius Pendergast, and his young, mysterious ward, Constance Greene, are so intriguing that I simply can't get enough. In this one, it's clear from the outset that something grisly is afoot - literally; but while Pendergast performs his usual feats of mental brilliance, it is Constance who steals the action scenes this time around.

Lawrence A. Beer
Feb 05, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As an avid follower and admirer of the Agent Pendergast series, I eagerly awaited this next book in the exciting series. I always rate the newest book using the original introductory novel, The Cabinet of Curiosities, as the gold standard for this well-read collection. This latest edition in the exploits of the main character featuring a more pronounced involvement of his ward Constance Green and a newly introduced agent from a prior story but without his butler, Proctor rates 4 stars. The first ...more
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Crooked River continues on straight after the events of the previous book 'Verses for the Dead.' Agent Pendergast is called in to assist an investigation in Florida where a large number of human feet have washed up on a beach. No one can figure out where they have come from and he soon calls in his ex-partner Coldmoon to help him with the case which seems to be turning more and more deadly the more they investigate.

I definitely enjoyed this book however, I did find it dragged a little at times.
Dan Snyder
Feb 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast, and surprisingly enough, his most recent "assistant" Agent Coldmon, and his ward Constance Greene, return in the new decade in the 19th installment in the suspenseful, and thrilling mystery series written by Douglas Preston, and Lincoln Child. This story, a tale of dismembered feet, is just the addition I would hope for, even with my lack of expectations, with the usual mannerisms of our favorite FBI agent, and the all-too-thick plot that the collaborators ...more
Joshua Johnson
First, let me state my disappointment with the authors for following the formulaic 80s action movie villain recipe, and for breathing a little life into this story only to have it lead to such a disappointing resolution (for me). In large part, my irritation is driven by a view that well-written antagonists are made the same way as well-written protagonists. A character usually benefits from character development, interesting and plausible motives, has realistic drives, and exhibits quirks or ...more
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Preston and Child are really good at keeping this series true to its roots. That's because they created a wonderful character FBI Agent Aloysius Pendergast and the other characters that circulate around him. In this installment they have created a very strange phenomenon that creates a mystery (or in this case mysteries) that is hard to imagine where it will lead when its introduced in the first few chapters. Once again the relatively new character, Agent Coldmoon serves as Pendergast's partner ...more
Jerry Baird
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Inspector Aloysius Pendergast and Constance Greene are my favorite mystery characters. This read was very difficult to put down. As always, edge of your seat drama, great character analysis and not only dealing with investigations into the macabre, but also into ghosts and paramilitary demons. I felt the character analysis of the evil Dr. with authoritarian powers was taking us for a ride similar to our current POTUS. What evil can they do next.

Took two days, but at their best again. This is a
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Crooked River is the 20th book in the Agent Pendergast saga and it is a fast-moving, exciting, action-packed, creative explosion like most of the others. While you may read it as a stand-alone, many of the characters in this story reemerge from previous advantures, and being familiar with them helps to get the full subtext of their characters. Pendergast and his ward Constance appear in most of the books and both of them surprise the reader with their variety of skills, intelligence and ...more
Don LeClair
Feb 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
At this point I believe I have read every book by Preston & Child together and individually. The Pendergast series is far and way my favorite.

This 19th Pendergast novel is set in Florida. Agent Pendergast is once again joined with Agent Coldmoon while investigating a bizarre incident where 100 shoes, with human feet in them, float ashore in Florida. The case intrudes on a vacation that Pendergast and Constance Greene are having, and eventually pulls her into its wake too.

The story has
Darius Ostrowski
Feb 16, 2020 rated it liked it
Enjoyed this book, although it seems like Pendergast is kinda drifting into more conventional mysteries.

Although identical shoes washing up on a beach with dismembered feet still in them is not really completely conventional if I'm being honest. But it's interesting enough to pull Pendergast and his ward Constance Green away from their vacation and off to investigate. Along the way we get a couple of side stories involving a haunted house and a reporter dealing with a drug gang, a couple of
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Douglas Preston was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1956, and grew up in the deadly boring suburb of Wellesley. Following a distinguished career at a private nursery school--he was almost immediately expelled--he attended public schools and the Cambridge School of Weston. Notable events in his early life included the loss of a fingertip at the age of three to a bicycle; the loss of his two ...more

Other books in the series

Pendergast (1 - 10 of 19 books)
  • Relic (Pendergast, #1)
  • Reliquary (Pendergast, #2)
  • The Cabinet of Curiosities (Pendergast, #3)
  • Still Life With Crows (Pendergast, #4)
  • Brimstone (Pendergast, #5; Diogenes, #1)
  • Dance of Death (Pendergast, #6; Diogenes, #2)
  • The Book of the Dead (Pendergast, #7; Diogenes, #3)
  • The Wheel of Darkness (Pendergast, #8)
  • Cemetery Dance (Pendergast, #9)
  • Fever Dream (Pendergast, #10)