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THE PROCEDURE HAS BEGUN . . . Fifteen years earlier. Jasper College is buzzing with the news that famed literature professor Richard Aldiss will be teaching a special night class called Unraveling a Literary Mystery--from a video feed in his prison cell. In 1982, Aldiss was convicted of the murders of two female grad students; the women were killed with axe blows and their bodies decorated with the novels of notoriously reclusive author Paul Fallows. Even the most obsessive Fallows scholars have never seen him. He is like a ghost. Aldiss entreats the students of his night class to solve the Fallows riddle once and for all. The author's two published novels, The Coil and The Golden Silence, are considered maps to finding Fallows's true identity. And the only way in is to master them through a game called the Procedure. You may not know when the game has begun, but when you receive an invitation to play, it is an invitation to join the elite ranks of Fallows scholars. Failure, in these circles, is a fate worse than death. Soon, members of the night class will be invited to play along . . . Present day. Harvard professor Alex Shipley made her name as a member of Aldiss's night class. She not only exposed the truth of Paul Fallows's identity, but in the process uncovered information that acquitted Aldiss of the heinous 1982 crimes. But when one of her fellow night class alums is murdered-- the body chopped up with an axe and surrounded by Fallows novels--can she use what she knows about Fallows and the Procedure to stop a killer before each of her former classmates is picked off, one by one?
Un enigmático profesor de lógica propone a sus alumnos descifrar el siguiente enigma: Polly, una joven con un largo historial de agresiones sufridas por su pareja, ha desaparecido; si los alumnos no consiguen descifrar su paradero, Polly morirá. Aunque en apariencia el enigma no parece más que un juego de razonamiento, las primeras pesquisas pronto revelarán extrañas conexiones con la realidad: una joven ha desaparecido en circunstancias muy parecidas. ¿Dónde acaba el juego y empieza la realidad? Los alumnos pronto se verán atrapados en un juego de difícil solución.
"With superb confidence, Lavender constructs a brilliant fictional web of lies, inventively warping the psychological thriller to fit the confines of a scholarly investigation." --Kirkus Reviews When the students in Winchester University's Logic and Reasoning 204 arrive for their first day of class, they are greeted not with a syllabus or texts, but with a startling assignment from Professor Williams: Find a hypothetical missing girl named Polly. If after being given a series of clues and details the class has not found her before the end of the term in six weeks, she will be murdered.At first the students are as intrigued by the premise of their puzzle as they are wary of the strange and slightly creepy Professor Williams. But as they delve deeper into the mystery, they begin to wonder: Is the Polly story simply a logic exercise, designed to teach them rational thinking skills, or could it be something more sinister and dangerous?The mystery soon takes over the lives of three students as they find disturbing connections between Polly and themselves. Characters that were supposedly fictitious begin to emerge in reality. Soon, the boundary between the classroom assignment and the real world becomes blurred--and the students wonder if it is their own lives they are being asked to save.