Heather's Reviews > The Third Twin

The Third Twin by Ken Follett
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's review
Dec 07, 2009

it was ok
bookshelves: mystery, suspense, 2009, never-read-again

** spoiler alert ** An interesting concept, and one that showed much potential, but overall fell flat.

My first guess was that Steve was a schizophrenic or had multiple personality disorder - I think this would have been a more more interesting turn of events, considering Jeannie's research into criminality and nature vs. nurture. Could someone who appeared good have the capabilities to do evil? I guess that was the author's point throughout the novel, anyway, but I wish he would have delved deeper into the nature vs. nurture argument instead of focusing so deeply on Barrington & Co. and the clones.

One thing I noticed is that Follet likes to tell, not show. His characters come to some conclusion, and this conclusion ends up being the right answer. I get that a few of his characters are very intelligent, but I would have much rather been shown why the conclusion in question was correct rather than have the character go "OMG this is what happened" and that be the end of it. It was anticlimactic. For example, when Jeannie realizes that there must me more than three twins and jumps immediately to the conclusion that the "twins" are really clones. Interesting , and her theory is later proved correct, but I would have liked more insight into the cloning process, more educated proof and back story, rather than the great lengths Barrington, Barck, and Proust went to to cover up their ethical blunder.

Overall, too much time was focused on the characters themselves rather than what caused their actions (which isn't a bad thing, sometimes, but it retracted from the scientific back story of the clones, as stated previously). And again, not enough time was given to the more scientific aspect of cloning and genetics, in general. As that was a huge part of the novel concerning the clones, it should have been given more air time.

Other things that annoyed me (mostly from the beginning of the book):

Why is Jeannie so sure Steve didn't rape Lisa. He's a complete stranger to her! There's really nothing in his defense for Jen to be so sure he's innocent. And then, when it's discovered that Steve is a clone, Jeannie isn't sure she can trust him - not knowing if he's really Steve or one of the clones. Hot and cold much? I get that Jen is unpredictable, putting on different facades in the lab and out, and that she does things that seem uncharacteristic or contradictory, but I kind of wanted to smack her. She got very annoying after a while.

Why wasn't the room where Lisa and Jeannie questioned Dennis under surveillance, so someone would know if something went wrong? Having one security guard in a room with a murderer and two strange women makes no sense. So Dennis was free to stick a knife to Jean's eye whilst the (incompetent) guard was frolicking with the loose rat, and thus demand she take off her panties. I find it hard to believe there were no cameras in the room to see that.

Also concerning Dennis and his need for panties; Why didn't Jen tell the guard that during his escapade to kill the rat, all that Dennis did? MAKES NO SENSE. Dennis made a plan before she even arrived to take her panties by force and she does nothing to ensure he's punished for that. All because she doesn't want to be stuck at the jail filling out paperwork and she doesn't want the warden to see her underwear. Okay, so she's shook up from the ordeal, okay. But still. For a scientist, she's kind of dumb and illogical.

Needless to say, I'll be returning this book. Thankfully it was free from a thrift shop, whence it shall return.
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Reading Progress

December 7, 2009 – Shelved
December 7, 2009 –
page 65
December 7, 2009 –
page 65
10.59% "Brings up a lot of questions concerning the twins (Steve and Dennis). Now to see if the questions will be answered..."
December 7, 2009 – Shelved as: mystery
December 7, 2009 – Shelved as: suspense
Started Reading
December 13, 2009 – Shelved as: 2009
December 13, 2009 – Finished Reading
May 31, 2011 – Shelved as: never-read-again

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