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The Alienist

REVIEW Ù eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ´ Caleb Carr

Derer who will kill again before their hunt is overFast paced and riveting infused with historical detail The Alienist conjures up Gilded Age New York with its tenements and mansions corrupt cops and flamboyant gangsters shining opera houses and seamy gin mills It is an age in which uestioning society’s belief that all killers are born not made could have unexpected and fatal conseuences. Prior to the twentieth century persons suffering from mental illness were thought to be “alienated” not only from the rest of society but from their own true natures Those experts who studied mental pathologies were therefore know as alienists At two am on March 3rd 1896 someone comes pounding on the door of John Moore’s grandmother’s house in New York City Not drunk nor particularly sober when called from his bed John is immediately whisked away by carriage to the site of the still under construction Williamsburg Bridge on the East River On arrival he is greeted by none other than Theodore Roosevelt yes the future president Still unsure why he is there or why his friend Dr Kreizler whose very carriage bore him there is not in attendance John casts about and around until finally he lay eyes upon it; the brutally mutilated body of an adolescent boy It will not be the last one he seesAs I was reading this I often thought that it read like an actual historic event being retold as a story After all Mr Carr first dipped his pen in the nonfiction inkwell Scattered throughout this story are actual historical figures which belong in that time and place such as Teddy Roosevelt H H Holmes and Jesse Pomeroy And that pen of which I speak spills magic as Carr deftly transports you to an atmospheric late 19th century New York City complete with the sights street vendors hawking their wares; police corruption and brutality; unwashed malnourished children running wild sounds hooves on cobblestones and smells uite disgusting reminders of time before modern day sewage systems one would expectIt is a first person narrative told through the perspective of John Moore reporter on the police beat as a recollection of events past I know there are readers out there who felt that this robbed the story of some of its tension and suspense I mean clearly John had to survive to tell the tale but it did not have the same effect on me There were plenty of other characters that Carr had me caring enough about to ensure a tight fisted grip upon the page One such character is Dr Laszlo Kreiszler psychologist or as they were then known an alienist Kreizler at Roosevelt’s reuest and with his assistance pulls together a team; including the above noted John as well as two detectives trained in and excited at the prospect of using new and modern methods such as fingerprinting and handwriting analysis as well as Sara Roosevelt’s secretary who has ambitions to rise well beyond her current role in the NYC police department ambitions which though stubbornly determined to achieve she recognizes are not even open for consideration as an appropriate role for a woman in 1896 Kreizler then leads this team together with a smattering of some of his colourful I am looking at you Stevie personal aides through the process of what we today would term as psychological profiling All very heady and compelling stuff As the profile coupled with conclusions drawn from the physical evidence available begins to take on the aspect of a real person the team closes in on an absolutely horrific monster I have also read some negative feedback on how this story comes to a conclusion Some feel it was rushed or they were cheated of further psychological details but again I cannot share those views Given the circumstances the details already unearthed and the political climate of that time and place I found the ending realistically consistent with my expectations of what would in all likelihood actually happenIf you are looking for an intelligent high spirited in depth look at the mind of a sadistic serial killer as well as a stroll through the late 19th century streets of New York City then you should most assuredly pick up The Alienist It is a thumping good read

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When The Alienist was first published in 1994 it was a major phenomenon spending six months on the New York Times bestseller list receiving critical acclaim and selling millions of copies This modern classic continues to be a touchstone of historical suspense fiction for readers everywhereThe year is 1896 The city is New York Newspaper reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned by his friend. I don’t know about your shelves but my shelves of unread books have become clogged with novels I thought I wanted to read five or six years ago and now I can’t remember why I thought I wanted to read them and since I’ve now read all the ones I could remember why I wanted to read them I’m left with this scurvy crew and there they are glaring at me and muttering hey you get with the program read me And some turn on the waterworks and cry out beseechingly ohhh please mister I’ve been so patient for six years now I need to be read I feel like a right bastard but I have to be honest – why are you there I ask them Why are you taking up this valuable real estate I’m talking to you Continental Drift Tiger the Lurp Dog Imaginary Women and Smonk Smonk What the hell is Smonk But of course they don’t know No book knows why you buy it Just like you don’t know why you’re born You might think the blurbs on these books could give a clue but blurbs lie You would have to waterboard a blurb to get anything like the truth out of it but waterboarding is illegal I have stopped doing that now Course I do know why some books are there – these are the Novels I Should Have Read By Now There they stand sneering at me like undone homework – The Forsyte Saga Sister Carrie The Way We Live Now The Ambassadors Middlemarch – all big enough to bust up your big toe real bad if they fell on it Herr herr he’s scared of us they jeer Yer big JessieI just about remembered why I bought The Alienist years ago – I love modern Victorian novels like Fingersmith or The uincunx and I like a nice gruesome murder and I do believe this novel smashes these concepts together so what could therefore not be to likeI gave it the statutory 100 pages then stopped It wasn’t bad but I could see where this thing was going and a wave of tiredness came over me What we have is yet another version of the brilliant Sherlock Holmes Dr Kreizler and the tough dependable Dr Watson John Moore; plus the usual highly unlikely gaggle of helpers – a giant black guy two Jewish detectives a remarkably feisty female police secretary who packs a45 – really all from central casting Should we say all from Liberal Left Central Casting – once again all the good guys in the novel have nice progressive inclusive non racist attitudes The kind of attitudes modern readers would feel comfortable with however likely they may have been in New York 1896 And once again our heroes are faced with a giant conspiracy of the powerful who like to prey on the powerless and chop them up for fun We have been here before Many times Really it’s a little bit corny But that’s crime fiction When I listen to doo wop music or blues I know what I’m going to get When I read a big 500 page novel I don’t want to know what I’m going to get And now onto Smonk

REVIEW Ù eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ´ Caleb Carr

Dr Laszlo Kreizler a psychologist or “alienist” to view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy abandoned on the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge From there the two embark on a revolutionary effort in criminology creating a psychological profile of the perpetrator based on the details of his crimes Their dangerous uest takes them into the tortured past and twisted mind of a mur. In this battle there are many enemiesAnd that's an understatementThe darkly moving shadows seeking oblivion nameless figures shapeshifting in back alleys and roof tops The click of heels down rain soaked streets leading to nowhere and to everywhere Secrets until they are no longerNew York City in 1896 is a mecca for the meaningful and the meaningless Police Commissioner Theodore Roosevelt has been faced with the dregs of society thieves murderers brutalizers and sexual deviants They swim like river rats through the streets knowing just what hole to crawl intoBut this time there's a killer on the loose whose target is young male prostitutes His calling card is a savagely violent one Roosevelt calls in Dr Laszlo Kreizler whose command lies in the area of psychology and human criminal behavior Psychological profiling is in its earliest stages along with the newly adopted science of fingerprinting Kreizler creates a group of individuals including John Moore and Sara Howard You'll meet a cast of goodies and severe baddies who will either honestly assist or dastardly sabotage the hunt for the killer on all sides of the lawBe forewarned This is a very graphic interlude into unspeakable crimes on the streets of New York It certainly is not for everyone But the writing and storyline are stellar and will play into the upcoming series on TLC beginning soon I was nearly cross eyed from reading into the wee hours in order to be ready for the seriesAnd on the flip sideHere's hoping that these remarkable characters especially my beloved Teddy Roosevelt are handed off to worthy actors who will transform this book into a top drawer experience for those who wait anxiously Just stick to the book people and we'll all be tap dancing like the Rockettes

  • Paperback
  • 498
  • The Alienist
  • Caleb Carr
  • English
  • 13 March 2019
  • 9780525510277

About the Author: Caleb Carr

Caleb Carr is an American novelist and military historian The son of Lucien Carr a former UPI editor and a key Beat generation figure he was born in Manhattan and lived for much of his life on the Lower East Side He attended Kenyon College and New York University earning a BA in military and diplomatic history He is a contributing editor of MH The uarterly Journal of Military History an