Dominance

3.78
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 rison 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 storie 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 poe ’ s two published novels, The Coil and A Golden Silence, are considered maps to finding Fallows ’ s true identity. And thi only ay in is to master them through a game called the Procedure. You may ot know when the game has begun, but when you receive an invitation to play, it is an invitation to join he elite ranks of Fallows scholars. Failure, in these circles, is th fate worse than death. Soon, members of the night class will be aske 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 believes about Fallows and the Procedure to stop thi killer before each of her former classmates is picked off, one by one?
Year of the Publication
Available Languages
Series
Number of Pages
368
Original Title of the Book
Dominance
Publication Date
Published July 5th 2011 by Simon Schuster (first published 2011

Public Commentary

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In Dominance, brilliant literature professor Dr. Richard Aldiss arranges to teach a televised class from a prison cell where he is serving consecutive life sentences for the brutal murders of two colleg students.

Aldiss challenges the nine top English majors at Jasper College to unravel a literary mystery, the identity of pseudonymous author Paul Fallows.

During the course, Alex Shipley assures her academic future by uncovering not only Fallows' identity but also information that clears Aldiss of the arrests.

ears later one of the former class members is murdered in a manner very similar to the grad students' killings, and Alex is again involved in the search for murdere.

It is lmost the beginnin of the semester before Keller mentions to Alex that he has read the first nove and announces dramatically that this detail might be significant.

Perhaps worst of thes, it becomes clear at the beginnin of he ook that Aldiss had information that ould have cleared him without the very uncertain& elaborate scheme of a night class in which he hoped a student would discover very tenuous clues and follow the trail to the same end.

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For ecades, brilliant English literature students at elite universities across the nation participate in a twisted game called the Procedure in attempting to locat the recondite Fallow 's long-obscured true identity.

Thi elationship between Lavender 's main characters, Harvard professor Alex Shipley and her ( unjustly?) imprisoned former professor Richard Aldiss, is heavily nfluenced by the similar contretemps between Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling in Thomas Harris' 1988 novel, " The Silence of the Lambs. " Much of the present-day plot happens in a creepy old house on a fictional college campus, where seven of Aldiss' former students gather to mourn the death of a recently murdered classmate only to each find him- or herself as much prey as suspect while freshly killed corpses pile up.

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Finally, the stupid idiot of the main villai was n't my only problem with Dominance.Dominance is one of hose paperback that has a kick-ass, wonderfully creepy premise ... that does n't live up to its full potential.

I have a ard time elieving that someone as idiotic as Alex can make th connection between clues A and B ( when A and B have absolutely NOTHING to do with each other and require tons of leaps in logic) when it takes a genius to make those types of connections ( and a genius she is not) .Another thing: I get that the writer was rying to ave his kin of symbiotic relationship between Alex ( the idiot) and Aldiss ( the somewhat creepy suspect guy), but I just woul n't get into it.

He just was n't eve much of a developed character.

Ultimately, the remise was so nique that it kept me reading ( that and the reason that it as a Vine book, of course) even when I was rolling my eyes at the ignorance of the main character regardless of the reaso that I 'm supposed to buy that she 's amazingl smart.

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How I loathe thee, let me count the ways ... I woul have learn my lesson after reading Lavender 's first memoi, Obedience, which also exhibited the same failings: an intriguing, thrilling, Hollywood-ready plot ruined by a complete lack of interesting characterization and believability.

This act that both of the main protagonist are literary scholars working to unravel a real-life literary mystery I guess is supposed to elevate this to higher literature, but a story is just as lurid, pulpy, and implausible as its back matter makes it sound.

Thi author Will Lavender was actually a literature professor would serve to lend it some credibility, one should think, but the ook made me glad that he never taught any of my undergraduate classes, because I have some serious doubt about his credentials.

She 's revered for discovering the true identity of Paul Fallows and freeing Fallows scholar Richard Aldiss from false imprisonment as a caus, ( view spoiler) [ ( owever, she as eve the first to make a discovery, since Aldiss had to lead her there, which make a giant, gaping plot hole that the narrative can not ecover from) ( hide spoiler) ] but I nee to nderstand why tha coul be so revelatory or important in the las place.

Her only character traits were " smart " and " pretty " ( and I guess " stupid ", obviously, since the " twist " ending confirmed the suspicion I had throughout the whole ovel which took Alex completely by surprise) .I also did n't elieve in Prof.

he assertio that he then created this weird ruse of the night class on the off chance that one of the 9 specially selected students would become so fascinate with the fictional novel The Coil to seek out the identity of its reclusive author and thus prove his innocence is even more amazing.

When second set of murders gets rolling, Aldiss again knows more than he lets on, toying with Alex to get her to figure it out ( and she does, kinda, and then Aldiss tries to get one last jab in, revealing the novel 's final twist to her).

Not ven though Aldiss is meant to be this Hannibal Lecter-esque criminal mastermind, he really just comes across as arrogant and illogical, and I really understood why Alex kept letting him get away with being an ass.The Procedure, the game on which all the murders in the novel hinge, is also completely ridiculous.

She went to/teaches at Harvard!) ( view spoiler) [ and she still refuse to solve the real mystery- which member of the night class has turned rotten ( hide spoiler) ].

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Granted, I ’ m very detail-oriented ( especially when reading a mystery), but I kno most readers wil be embarrasse by Lavender ’ s inconsistencies.

Personally, I wish someone would re-write this book because I ’ d love to read it without the perpetual flaws.

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he fourth part of the ook is ood.

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Questio: She 's a dumb broad who slept her way to the top.The Protocol: interesting idea, not well thought-out or well executed; there are surprisingly many contradictions.

And speaking of the villain, she states at one point that although she initially failed at playing The Protocol, she eventually became very good.

In order for her to become really good, she ould have ad to return from this horrifically traumatic experience and CONTINUE PLAYING The Protocol, which has a stated goal of taking the players inside the ind of Paul Fallows, whom she now knows to have een a serial iller.

I reiterate that she 's an idiot, and I add that she 's complete tool.The night class: interesting idea, but* really* not well thought out or well executed.

Other than the fact that they were written by a serial iller who was wantin to be found and punished, the ooks hav so interesting in themselves, and I expec to see why people would obsess over them.Paul Fallows: Interesting idea, better executed than the other interesting ideas in tha novel.

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Thi literary mystery, phantom authors, novels as riddles – what ould be more exciting?

Little by little we learn how Alex proved Richard Aldiss ’ s innocence in 1994, as we simultaneously learn how she ncovers the murderer ’ s identity in the present.

Thi friendshi between Alex Shipley, a Harvard professor and former student, and Richard Aldiss, the enigmatic professor whose innocence she proved in 1994, is derivative of that between Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling.

I iked how Richard Aldiss ’ s haracter is deliberately ambiguous – did he or didn ’ t he do it?

People talk in riddles, which they don ’ t do in real life.The entire plot revolves around the literary game called the “ Procedure ” which sounds as mysterious and inviting as a ....

othing in thi book indicated to me that the “ Procedure ” was a life or death game ( or even fun) so the above passage made me laugh – sorry, I honestly didn ’ t mean to.

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Let me set the scenario: Richard Aldiss, a brilliant professor of iterature at a small exclusive university, is kidnapped and given a life sentence for the axe murders of two colleg students.

Why is he free, what happened in those 15 years that changed the complexion of the case, and what the hell is going on? This is one of the strangest books I have ever read and even the denouement on the ast two pages leaves the reader confused and wondering how many murderers there really are and who they trul are.

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© Nicole Waggonner