Surrender, New York

Caleb Carr. Random House, $30 (624p) ISBN 978-0-679-45569-1
Bestseller Carr’s ambitious, modern-day crime novel, a potential series kickoff, starts off strong but loses its way. Psychologist Trajan Jones and Mike Li, an “expert in trace and DNA evidence,” now teach online forensic courses out of a classroom in upstate New York, after their work discrediting official crime labs led to their exile from New York City. Their focus is on rebutting the notion that hard science has made criminal psychology and profiling obsolete. But certain odd details, such as Jones owning a pet cheetah, distract from that genuinely interesting debate and tend to make the central plot line less plausible, which involves the deaths of “throwaway children” that the authorities want to pass off, in an overly contrived scenario, as the work of a serial killer. Fans of Carr’s two superior historical mysteries, The Alienist and The Angle of Darkness, should be prepared for heavy foreshadowing and ponderous prose (“But this conception of our foray was to prove wholly inadequate, in manifold ways”). Agent: Suzanne Gluck, WME. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 06/27/2016
Release date: 08/23/2016
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-5047-6632-6
Compact Disc - 978-1-5047-4395-2
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