The Friday 56: The Alienist

I thought, for this week’s Friday Link Ups, I’d do a book that I haven’t started yet rather than one I’m already reading. So one of the books on my stack for this week is The Alienist by Caleb Carr. It’ll be the next book I start as soon as I’m done reading the first book in the Magnus Chase series by Rick Riordan.

The Alienist is a period piece, set in 1896, and the description reminds me of something out of an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel (true, the Roaring 20s are not the Gilded Age, but still. Frame of reference). I get the sense that it’s a crime thriller. I’m good with that.

bb-buttonHere’s how it begins (Book Beginnings is hosted by Rose City Reader):

January 8, 1919

Theodore is in the ground.

The words as I write them make as little sense as did the sight of his coffin descending into a patch of sandy soil near Sagamore Hill, the place he loved more than any other on earth.

From the beginning, I have no idea what I’m going to be getting into. At first glance, I’m a bit confused about the time period. The inside flap says 1896, but the journal entry is dated 1919. I didn’t think that The Alienist was an epistolary novel, so I flipped forward a chapter to find that it seems like the diary entry is being used as a frame for the novel. By the end, it might well be 1919.

I don’t want to flip ahead that far. I’m not one for reading the end before the beginning.

friday-56I will, however, flip forward to page 56 to see what’s going on there. The Friday 56 is hosted by Freda at Freda’s Voice. Hop on over there for more.

“It’s no great job to elude that which is not pursuing,” Kreisler answered. “And even if the police had taken an interest, they would have been helpless. Because they could not have begun to understand what motivates the murderer.”

So I thought I’d give you a novel this week that is a bit out of my comfort zone. I’m a huge fan of MG and YA books, but we’re reading this one in book club. This is actually the thing I love about book club – because we’re all so very different and have different tastes, I’m frequently pushed out of my reading comfort zone. I appreciate this.

What’s on page 56 in your book this week?


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