Fiction Mark Burnell The Rhythm Section

ISBN 13: 9780006513377

The Rhythm Section

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9780006513377: The Rhythm Section

The debut of an extraordinary new author – a novel of how a woman, pushed over the edge by the violent deaths of her family, survives only by taking other identities.

Stephanie Patrick’s world was destroyed by the Atlantic aircrash. Falling into a downward spiral of prostitution, drugs and drink, she is picked up by a journalist who has discovered that it was a bomb that caused the crash. And it is his murder that pulls her out of herself.

The Rhythm Section is not a thriller about the hunt for a terrorist, although that is the path Stephanie takes, and it’s not a story about revenge, although justice for her family is her initial motivation. Rather, The Rhythm Section is the story of Stephanie’s attempt to reclaim herself. She has to rediscover who she is through a series of roles that she is forced to play; she is never herself. As a prostitute, she is Lisa, the chemical blonde. Later, she is Petra Reuter, German anarchist turned mercenary terrorist. Sometimes, she is Marina Gaudenzi, a Swiss businesswoman, or she’s Susan Branch, an American student, or Elizabeth Shepherd, an English management consultant.

But whoever she is, she’s never herself because her life depends on her being someone else. This is the way she is trained by the intelligence service that recruits her, but it’s also the way she’s taught herself to be; being someone else has always worked for her and so it does now, until she begins to fall in love for the first time with Frank White. This undermines her completely and poses new questions: which of the many people she has become is the one to have fallen in love? Stephanie? Petra? Or one of the others? With whom has Frank fallen in love? Marina? Or the real Stephanie? More than anything, The Rhythm Section is about a catastrophic crisis of identity.

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About the Author:

The author was born in Northumberland and grew up in Brazil. On returning to Britain, he tried various sensible careers, but has always wanted to write. This is his first novel. He is at work on his second.

From Booklist:

After the death of her parents and brother in a plane crash over the Atlantic, Stephanie Patrick descends into a life of prostitution and dissolution. She begins to pull herself together when a journalist tells her that the crash was no accident, that it was a terrorist bombing covered up by the world's intelligence agencies. Then the journalist is murdered, and Stephanie is recruited into a shadowy law enforcement agency to become a killer. If the plot of this first novel sounds a little like the movie and TV series La Femme Nikita, that's understandable. But Burnell manages to inject some new life into the tired premise. Stephanie is a tough, resilient heroine, seriously challenged by the multiple personalities she's forced to don, while focused laserlike on avenging her family's death. Even the terrorists emerge as more than cardboard cutouts, especially in the climactic scene in which Stephanie confronts her antagonist. What begins as a B-movie knockoff ends as an entertaining meditation on the futility of terrorist brinkmanship. George Needham

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Mark Burnell
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The debut of an extraordinary new author - a novel of how a woman, pushed over the edge by the violent deaths of her family, survives only by taking other identities. Stephanie Patrick s world was destroyed by the Atlantic aircrash. Falling into a downward spiral of prostitution, drugs and drink, she is picked up by a journalist who has discovered that it was a bomb that caused the crash. And it is his murder that pulls her out of herself. The Rhythm Section is not a thriller about the hunt for a terrorist, although that is the path Stephanie takes, and it s not a story about revenge, although justice for her family is her initial motivation. Rather, The Rhythm Section is the story of Stephanie s attempt to reclaim herself. She has to rediscover who she is through a series of roles that she is forced to play; she is never herself. As a prostitute, she is Lisa, the chemical blonde. Later, she is Petra Reuter, German anarchist turned mercenary terrorist. Sometimes, she is Marina Gaudenzi, a Swiss businesswoman, or she s Susan Branch, an American student, or Elizabeth Shepherd, an English management consultant. But whoever she is, she s never herself because her life depends on her being someone else. This is the way she is trained by the intelligence service that recruits her, but it s also the way she s taught herself to be; being someone else has always worked for her and so it does now, until she begins to fall in love for the first time with Frank White. This undermines her completely and poses new questions: which of the many people she has become is the one to have fallen in love? Stephanie? Petra? Or one of the others? With whom has Frank fallen in love? Marina? Or the real Stephanie? More than anything, The Rhythm Section is about a catastrophic crisis of identity. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780006513377

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The debut of an extraordinary new author - a novel of how a woman, pushed over the edge by the violent deaths of her family, survives only by taking other identities. Stephanie Patrick s world was destroyed by the Atlantic aircrash. Falling into a downward spiral of prostitution, drugs and drink, she is picked up by a journalist who has discovered that it was a bomb that caused the crash. And it is his murder that pulls her out of herself. The Rhythm Section is not a thriller about the hunt for a terrorist, although that is the path Stephanie takes, and it s not a story about revenge, although justice for her family is her initial motivation. Rather, The Rhythm Section is the story of Stephanie s attempt to reclaim herself. She has to rediscover who she is through a series of roles that she is forced to play; she is never herself. As a prostitute, she is Lisa, the chemical blonde. Later, she is Petra Reuter, German anarchist turned mercenary terrorist. Sometimes, she is Marina Gaudenzi, a Swiss businesswoman, or she s Susan Branch, an American student, or Elizabeth Shepherd, an English management consultant. But whoever she is, she s never herself because her life depends on her being someone else. This is the way she is trained by the intelligence service that recruits her, but it s also the way she s taught herself to be; being someone else has always worked for her and so it does now, until she begins to fall in love for the first time with Frank White. This undermines her completely and poses new questions: which of the many people she has become is the one to have fallen in love? Stephanie? Petra? Or one of the others? With whom has Frank fallen in love? Marina? Or the real Stephanie? More than anything, The Rhythm Section is about a catastrophic crisis of identity. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780006513377

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