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Michael Gruber was born in New York in 1940 and attended Columbia University where he studied English.
In 1984 his cousin, Robert Tanenbaum, a successful trial lawyer, called him from his offices in Los Angeles asking him to look at the first hundred pages of a book he had written at the request of the publishing house Franklin Watts (now part of Scholastic). He says "I called him, and I said, 'This is unsalvageable. It's not a novel, it has no characters, no plot, nothing.'"
In return for half the advance, Gruber rewrote the novel, they renegotiated the contract and went into business. This arrangement continued for 14 books. Gruber says he created the characters and the novels based on stories Tanenbaum told him, or transcripts of cases Tanenbaum had worked on. However, Gruber's credit was limited to a thank you on the acknowledgements page.
When Gruber realized that he would never get cover credit for his work with Tanenbaum he started writing The Witch's Boy in 1996, but was unable to find a publisher. So he started to write Tropic of Night. Tropic of Night is set in Miami, Long Island and West Africa and tells the story of a series of ritualistic murders that sweep Miami. The book has strong supernatural elements, although Gruber points out, 'there is no supernatural. It's all part of the universe, although the universe is queerer than we suppose.
He lives in Seattle in an old fishing bungalow overlooking Lake Washington and Mercer Island, with his wife who is an artist.
The Agent: In the mountain fastness of the Hindu Kush a deadly game of deception and intrigue is entering its final phase. At its heart, a man known only as the Engineer. The Analyst: In the subterranean corridors of Washington an ambitious young NSA operative receives an intercept that confirms her agency's worst fears. But she's not convinced. She thinks it's a trap. The Mother: In a fortified village high above the Swat Valley, a hostage awaits execution. She can't out-fight her captors, but can she out-think them? Can she get into their heads before she loses hers? The Son: On the other side of the world, a Special Forces soldier in a clandestine branch of the American military plans a daring rescue operation. But to save his mother he will have to betray his country. At the intersection of East and West, of faith and fanaticism, of loyalty and betrayal, New York Times bestselling author Michael Gruber has created a provocative, high-calibre thriller where one family's convoluted past is catching up with the present, where nightmares and dreams can become real, where truth and lies can be one and the same.
Conspiring theories, old manuscripts, people prepared to kill for the secret and the ‘lost’ journal in Elizabethan English presented for you to find the clues, this is intricate stuff, weaving together a contemporary thriller and an historical mystery which eventually turns into a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse.Similar this month: None but try Kathleen McGowan.Comparison: Dan Brown, Kate Mosse, Sam Bourne.
Lauded as his number-one favorite book of the year, Stephen King advised President Obama, in the pages of Entertainment Weekly, to pick up Michael Gruber's previous book, The Good Son. With an unforgettable hero, The Return is as exciting and provocative as Gruber's best work. The real Richard Marder would shock his acquaintances, if they ever met him. Even his wife, long dead, didn't know the real man behind the calm, cultured mask he presents to the world. Only an old army buddy from Vietnam, Patrick Skelly, knows what Marder is capable of. Then, a shattering piece of news awakens Marder's buried desire for vengeance; with nothing left to lose, he sets off to punish the people whose actions changed his life years earlier. Skelly shows up uninvited, and the two of them together raise the stakes far beyond anything Marder could have envisioned.As Marder and Skelly head toward an apocalypse of their own making, Marder learns that good motives and a sense of justice can't always protect the people a man loves. With a range of fearsomely real characters, from a brutally violent crime lord to a daringly courageous young woman, a roller coaster of twists and turns, and a shattering exploration of what constitutes morality in the face of evil, Michael Gruber has once more proven that he is "e;a gifted and natural storyteller"e; (Chicago Tribune) and shows why he has been called "e;the Stephen King of crime writing"e; (Denver Post).
Somewhere in Pakistan, Sonia Laghari and eight fellow members of a symposium on peace are being held captive by armed terrorists. Laghari, a deeply religious woman as well as a Jungian psychologist, has become the de facto leader of the kidnapped group. While her son, Theo, an ex-Delta soldier, uses his military connections to find and free the victims, Sonia Laghari tries to keep them all alive by working her way into the kidnappers' psyches and interpreting their dreams. With her knowledge of their language, her familiarity with their religion, and her Jungian training, she confounds her captors with her insights and beliefs. When the kidnappers decide to kill their captives one by one in retaliation for perceived crimes against their country, Theo races against the clock to try and save their lives. Combining masterful storytelling with a deeply thoughtful and provocative attention to the truth in all its permutations, The Good Son is a stellar achievement that expands the thriller genre into something wholly new and unexpected. This is a taut, multilayered, riveting novel of suspense.
Like settling down with a Gabriel Garcia Marquez novel-if it was rewritten by James M. Cain. -Denver Post Michael Gruber's Night of the Jaguar-like his earlier novels featuring Miami detective Jimmy Paz (Tropic of Night, Valley of Bones)-transforms the conventional thriller into something extraordinary, taking the crime novel to a place it has never gone before. Combining a grisly murder investigation with chilling supernatural elements and provocative thought, Night of the Jaguar is a bravura display of the originality and artistry that has won Gruber the title, the Stephen King of crime fiction while inspiring the Washington Post Book World to name the Jimmy Paz trilogy, among the essential novels of recent years.
An artist born outside his time, Chaz Wilmot can paint like Leonardo, Goya, Gainsborough-and he refuses to shape his talent to fit the fashion of the day. His unique abilities attract the attention of Werner Krebs, an art dealer with a dark past and shadier present, and soon Wilmot is working with a fervor he hasn't felt in years. But his creative burst is accompanied by strange interludes-memories that are not memories . . . and he begins to wonder if he is really the person he believes he is. When a previously unknown masterpiece by the Spanish painter Velazquez is discovered, the artist suddenly finds himself lost in a mirrored house of illusions-and propelled into a secret world of greed, lies . . . and murder.
Taking Nietzsche's infamous 'death of God' as his starting point, Michael Gruber confronts the emergence of terror as a major force in our world. He examines how we have devalued beauty and truth, and how that has contributed to our current situation. In response, he draws from the work of Nietzsche, Heidegger and Steiner to offer a insightful way forward: an awakening to spiritual ideas which can lead to moral freedom and a new destiny.
Chaz Wilmot makes his living cranking out old-master parodies for ads and magazine covers. When he's offered a job restoring a Venetian palace fresco, he is at first, skepticalhe immediately sees it is more a forgery than a restoration. But he is soon seduced by the challenge and throws himself into the work, doing the job brilliantly.This feat attracts the attention of Werner Krebs, a shady art dealer who becomes Wilmot's friend and patron. Wilmot is suddenly working with a fervor he hasn't felt in years, but without warning, he finds himself reliving moments from his pastnot as memories but as if they are happening all over again. Soon, he believes he can travel back to the 17th century where he lived as the Spanish artist Diego Rodriguez de Silva Velazquez. Wilmot begins to fantasize that as Velazquez, he has created a masterpiece and when the painting actually turns up, he doesn't know if he painted it or if he imagined the whole thing.Little by little, Wilmot enters a secret world of gangsters, greed and murder, with his mystery patron at the center of it all, either as the mastermind behind a plot to forge a painting worth hundred of millions, or as the man who will save Wilmot from obscurity and madness.Miraculously inventive, this book cements Gruber's reputation as one of the most imaginative and gifted writers of our time.
Lump, the ugliest boy in the world, is abandoned in the forest, where he is found and taken in by a witch. With a bear for a nanny, a genie as a servant and only a cat to talk to, the household is a strange one, but Lump grows up knowing nothing but love. Until one day he has to go out and face the world - and meets rejection at every turn. This is the story of Lump's difficult journery to adulthood, his craving for the magical powers of his mother and his search for love and acceptance, set against the backdrop of a world full of natural magic in delicate balance, where the slightest disturbance can be catastrophic.
Jane Doe was a promising anthropologist, an expert on shamanism. Now she's nothing, a shadow living under an assumed identity in Miami with a little girl to protect. Everyone thinks she's dead. Or so Jane hopes.Then the killings start, a series of ritualistic murders that terrifies all of Miami. The investigator is Jimmy Paz, a Cuban-American police detective. There are witnesses, but they can recall almost nothing of the events, as though their memory has been erased -- as if a spell has been cast on each of them. Equally bizarre is the string of clues Paz uncovers: a divination charm, exotic drugs found in the bodies of the victims, a century-old report telling of a secret place in the heart of Africa.These clues point Paz inexorably toward the fugitive, Jane Doe, and force Jane to realize that the darkness she has fled is hunting her down. By the time her path intersects with Jimmy Paz's, the two will be thrust into a cataclysmic battle with an evil unimaginable to the Western mind.Performed by Margaret Whitton.