I think that you would like this book if you enjoy historical fiction (particularly about turn of the century NYC) and psychology. I don't think it was as suspenseful early on as The Alienist was, but it keeps you wanting to know more. And the characters were just as charming the second time around.
I read Mr. Carr because of the way he writes about New York in the early 20th centure. I feel I am there and his accuracy is due to the length of research which must go into his books! That said, I felt this was a worthwhile task for almost 800 pages! Wow! but He ties it all up in the end! Its just takes lots of reading to get there!!
What is it in human nature that draws us to a good ole "Murder" novel?? This was set in 1857--imagine, no cars --hard working people--and murder kidnapping and all this suspense. This was action packed and written to hold you glued to the pages. I kept going back to the cover and looking at it thinking, "why in that day of age where people so needed each other to survive, do they do these things?" But then so it is in the bIble also. The author made me want to go to this year and see life and listen to plottings and look into the eyes of the ones who would do such awful things. Life was supposed to be beautiful and easier then--i guess this book just blew me away--in a good aspect, as i really enjoyed it.
With The Alienist, I was hooked on the story simply by reading the plot summary on the back of the book. With Angel of Darkness, I wondered how exciting a kidnapping could really be. Don't be fooled like I was, this book is amazing.
While the killer's identity in the Alienist wasn't revealed until the final pages of the book, Angel's killer Libby Hatch is identified in the very first pages. Again, don't be fooled. The 700 pages between identity and conclusion are filled with Carr's amazing grasp of late 19th century New York in addition to all of the crime, court room drama, suspense, forensics, and brainy detective work that was so well done in Alienist.
In some ways I found this book to be even more unsettling, more quietly frightening, and more emotionally draining than the Alienist. The nature of the crimes alone are enough to make you uneasy. Libby Hatch was the embodiment of unpredictable evil hidden in plain sight, playing off society's unrealistic expectations of what it meant in those days to be a woman and a mother. In a sense, I found her to be a more frightening foe than the Alienist's killer.
If you enjoyed the Alienist, I would expect that you would enjoy Angel as well. I found it to be a very worthy sequel, a fantastic read, and well worth my time.
This is a sequel to The Alienist. The beginning of this book provides enough background information about the earlier adventure so that it stands alone. This serves two ways. First if you're familiar with the Alienist but need a bit of recall (sometime I do)and a first time Carr reader. This is one series that you can start with book two but, I'm fussy and like to start with the first. Just me.
Carr manages to portray early-day feminists and feminist theory in what seems to be an authentic fashion. I felt he accurately portrayed feminist thought in its incipient stages. Any so-called immaturity of thought on the parts of those characters seems, in historical context, appropriate.
In this book the narrator is a character found in the Alienist, Stevie. I'm learned that Carr plans to write additional Alienist volumes and put each one in a different voice. All in all, an excellent work.
The follow up book to The Alienist. Was disappointed in the book. While a very gripping story, not up to The Alienist. Carr's continued historical detail added greatly to this story but not enough for it to scare me like the previous. It was good to hear from the cast of characters but a bit dissapointing overall.
Angel of Darkness is a continuation of the Alienest story by the same author Caleb Carr, but written from the perspective of the errand boy Stevie. It takes them on the next case, but refers back to the prior case frequently. It deals with the concept of a mother's love being a natural state, or is it? When a series of deaths seem to be linked to a woman, the team works diligently to solve the case and save the kidnapped baby of a Spanish diplomat. All a the time when war with Spain seems likely and the case holds political ramifications. Then add Clarence Darrow, one of histories greatest legal minds, to the case and this one gets interesting. Very enjoyable read. I hope Carr writes another with these characters.
Very interesting. Think Sherlock Holmes meets Lincoln Rhyme. Turn of the century forensic science and post Victorian drug abuse, plus a smidge of behavioral analysis profiling. Cleverly put together. Moves along after a sluggish start.
This is the second book. I reccommend reading The Alienist first.
A compelling novel with unique and engaging characters and the ever present sights sounds and smells of 1890's New York as its stage.
550 pages into the book, I decided I couldn't read the whole book and I jumped to the last 10 pages. Then a curious thing happened. Bit by bit, I went back to find out what happened and ended up eventually reading all 200 pages I'd skipped. A light dawned.
I couldn't finish, I realized, because of the overwhelming feeling of dread, of impending doom that hung over the earnest, well-meaning players in the tale. I couldn't take the tense suspense! Once I knew the outcome, I had to go back and read how and why and fill in the gaps to the story.
That's one heck of a book, don't you think?
The Alienist was definitely better. The characters in The Angel of Darkness are interesting enough, but they are rather flat. None of them have real dimension and stereotypes (as well as anti-stereotypes) rear their ugly heads. Additionally, the plot has serious credibility issues. Finally, the author's attempt at period dialect is awkward and inconsistent. That said, I finished it and was mildly entertained.
I read the first book, The Alienist, and enjoyed it thoroughly. Thus, when I saw there was a sequel, this book, The Angel of Darkness, I was excited to read that as well. I was not disappointed. Both books are engaging. Mr. Carr does have a talent for these early century historical, crime thriller type stories.
With historical casting,Clarence Darrow is a rising courtroom wizard from Chicago, hired to defend Libby Hatch, a villan whose cunning is nearly equal the detectives in this tense upstate New York murder trial
"as winning a historical thriller as The Alienist...The reader keeps right on turning the pages." The New York Times
"GRIPPING...Carr is at his strongest, exploring the dark underside of the human psyche and ferreting out the terrors and tragedies that drive men...and women...to kill...In Libby Hatch. Carr has created a villain whose cunning is nearly equal to his detectives' crime-solving prowess...The mystery is plotted with military precision.
In one of the most critically acclaimed novels of the year, Caleb Carr -- bestselling author of The Alienist -- pits Dr. Laszo Kreizler and his colleagues against a murderer as evil as the darkest night...
In one of the most critically acclaimed novels of the year, Caleb Carr--bestselling author of "The Alienist"--pits Dr. Laszlo Kreizler and his colleagues against a murderer as evil as the darkest night...
Wonderful, suspensful book.
From Library Journal
Dr. Lazlo Kreizler, protagonist of The Alienist (LJ 3/1/94), is back with his idiosyncratic companions in Carr's latest mystery thriller. Set in 1897 New York and told through the voice of the doctor's young ward, Stevie (a former "delinquent" nicknamed "Stevepipe," after his weapon of choice), the story centers on the kidnapping of the baby daughter of a Spanish diplomat just as tensions between Spain and the United States have reached the boiling point. Soon our investigators discover something even more sinister: Their chief suspect seems to have been involved in the murders of several other young children?including two of her own?and to be willing to take any measures necessary to cover her tracks. It becomes a race against time to save this latest victim. The exciting tale is full of the requisite twists and turns and involves such historical figures as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Clarence Darrow, and Teddy Roosevelt. It also makes the point that when it comes to questions of good and evil and the motivations behind seemingly horrific behavior (a la Susan Smith), there are no simple answers. Highly recommended for all public libraries and any others where good mystery writing is in demand.
-?David W. Henderson, Eckerd Coll. Lib., St. Petersburg, Fla.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc
It is June 1897. A year has passed since Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a pioneer in forensic psychiatry, tracked down the brutal serial killer John Beecham with the help of a team of trusted companions and a revolutionary application of the principles of his discipline. Kreizler and his friends - high-living crime reporter John Schuyler Moore; indomitable, derringer-toting Sara Howard; the brilliant (and bickering) detective brothers Marcus and Lucius Isaacson; powerful and compassionate Cyrus Montrose; and Stevie Taggert, the boy Kreizler saved from a life of street crime - have returned to their former pursuits and tried to forget the horror of the Beecham case. But when the distraught wife of a Spanish diplomat begs Sara's aid, the team reunites to help find her kidnapped infant daughter. It is a case fraught with danger, since Spain and the United States are on the verge of war. Their investigation leads the team to a shocking suspect: a woman who appears to the world to be a heroic nurse and a loving mother, but who may in reality be a ruthless murderer of children.
Backcover: "In one of the most critically acclamed novels of the year: Caleb Carr-bestselling author of The Alienist-pits Dr Lazlo Kreizler and his colleagues against a murderer as evil as the darkest night..."