cover image The Midnight Ride

The Midnight Ride

Ben Mezrich. Grand Central, $29 (304p) ISBN 978-1-5387-5463-4

The suspenseful opening of this uneven thriller from bestseller Mezrich (Seven Wonders) finds a mysterious young woman, MIT applied math PhD student Hailey Gordon, in a Boston casino, where she’s card-counting in hopes of winning enough at blackjack to help pay her tuition and rent bills. But once security notices what she’s doing, Hailey flees into the adjoining hotel, where she hides in a room in which she stumbles on a man with a bullet hole in his head. Moments later, ex-con Nick Patterson enters the room. Nick was hoping to meet a fence there about a lead he recently came across to the 30-year-old unsolved theft of multimillion-dollar paintings from the Gardner Art Museum. The pair end up allying with Prof. Adrian Jensen, an expert on Paul Revere, who has obtained a copy of a paper from a colleague purporting to announce a world-changing discovery. Mezrich doesn’t flesh out his characters, and the reveal about the professor’s discovery doesn’t pass the giggle test. With any luck, the intriguing Hailey will return in a sequel with a more convincing plot. Agent: Eric Simonoff, WME. (Feb.)