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  • TITLE: The Alienist
  • AUTHOR: Caleb Carr
  • AWARDS: Anthony Award

    This just ain't my kinda novel. The plotting has that washed-up feeling of last summer's beached best seller. The author seems sooo concerned with atmospheric details of New York City circa 1896 that they pile up like horseshit in the street, smothering any sustained pacing. Unfortunately, this doesn't even hide the improbable action that's always bumbling between coincidental and melodramatic. Although it boasts a seriously twisted serial killer, it is not an appearance but a destination, homaging this mystery more to A.C. Doyle and Poe 's Murders in the Rue Morgue than to Thomas Harris' "Buffalo Bill" Gumb. I won't spew on the characterization because I honestly didn't give these sticks enough time on stage.

    I dumped this gussied-up brick at page 119 out of 496.

    Harsh without foundation, you say? Read my justification amidst further Rantings here.

    "Pssssst", in a quiet, whispery voice: Is that his brain author Carr is lovingly holding against his cheek in this publicity photo featured above?


    © copyright 06/10/2007 by Larry Crawford

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