We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
The Alienist Audiobook

The Alienist

The year is 1896, the place, New York City. On a cold March night New York Times reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned to the East River by his friend and former Harvard classmate Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a psychologist, or "alienist." On the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge, they view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy, a prostitute from one of Manhattan's infamous brothels.
Regular Price:$28.30
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

The year is 1896, the place, New York City. On a cold March night New York Times reporter John Schuyler Moore is summoned to the East River by his friend and former Harvard classmate Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a psychologist, or "alienist." On the unfinished Williamsburg Bridge, they view the horribly mutilated body of an adolescent boy, a prostitute from one of Manhattan's infamous brothels.

The newly appointed police commissioner, Theodore Roosevelt, in a highly unorthodox move, enlists the two men in the murder investigation, counting on the reserved Kreizler's intellect and Moore's knowledge of New York's vast criminal underworld. They are joined by Sara Howard, a brave and determined woman who works as a secretary in the police department. Laboring in secret (for alienists, and the emerging discipline of psychology, are viewed by the public with skepticism at best), the unlikely team embarks on what is a revolutionary effort in criminology-- amassing a psychological profile of the man they're looking for based on the details of his crimes. Their dangerous quest takes them into the tortured past and twisted mind of a murderer who has killed before. and will kill again before the hunt is over.

Fast-paced and gripping, infused with a historian's exactitude, The Alienist conjures up the Gilded Age and its untarnished underside: verminous tenements and opulent mansions, corrupt cops and flamboyant gangsters, shining opera houses and seamy gin mills. Here is a New York during an age when questioning society's belief that all killers are born, not made, could have unexpected and mortal consequences.

©1994 Caleb Carr (P)2012 Simon & Schuster Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (763 )
5 star
 (358)
4 star
 (280)
3 star
 (86)
2 star
 (20)
1 star
 (19)
Overall
4.2 (679 )
5 star
 (322)
4 star
 (243)
3 star
 (76)
2 star
 (23)
1 star
 (15)
Story
4.4 (678 )
5 star
 (391)
4 star
 (212)
3 star
 (58)
2 star
 (8)
1 star
 (9)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Stevon Tempe, AZ, United States 05-23-15
    Stevon Tempe, AZ, United States 05-23-15 Member Since 2015

    I love books!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    634
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    492
    355
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    96
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "really good book"

    First time author, Caleb Carr, set in 1896 New York City. The author is a native New Yorker so knew a good bit of NYC history and was able to relate it in an interesting way. The story itself was good as the team works on at the time evolving theories and techniques. Understanding mental illness, serial killers, evidence techniques were all in their infancy at this time but the team used as much of it as they could in trying to track down the killer. This is one of those books that was a bit longer but had great character development and a very involved story, the kind of story you can really dig your teeth into if you like these kinds of books. It was an enjoyable listen. And, you can't beat George Guidall as a narrator.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Veronica Kearns 03-30-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "did not want it to end"

    slow start but picks up quickly. definately totally engaged me. will listen again because i know i did not pick up on some smaller details.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janna Wong Healy Los Angeles, CA 02-08-15
    Janna Wong Healy Los Angeles, CA 02-08-15 Member Since 2013

    I've spent my entire life around the written word - writing it, editing it, teaching it. So, it's no wonder I also love to read it!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    66
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    65
    46
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING A FAVORITE"

    I really liked the opening of this novel -- the setting, the scenario, the narration were all nicely done and set an appropriately gloomy mood. But, then the story takes one detour after another and I couldn't wait until it was over.

    But, getting to the end was the worst part...I hated the way the author completed his story. It was unsatisfying and even somewhat hokey.

    This was one of my least favorite books.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim N Chicago, IL 08-31-14
    Jim N Chicago, IL 08-31-14 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    248
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    320
    52
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    23
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An Enjoyable Procedural"

    My expectations may have been too high going into this novel. It's an entertaining book but I found it overly long, bordering on tedious at times, especially because in essence, it's a pulp novel filled with larger-than-life characters. The Alienist takes a bit too much too much time to get where it's going.That said, the historical setting is interesting and Carr practically makes turn-of-the-century New York into an additional character.

    George Guidall's reading is superb, one of the best I've ever heard for an audiobook. He brings the characters to life, raises the tension in scenes where it's appropriate and overall, just does a fantastic job.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B.J. Minneapolis, MN, United States 10-31-13
    B.J. Minneapolis, MN, United States 10-31-13 Member Since 2010

    I hear voices. But maybe that's because there's always an Audible book in my ear.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2942
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    440
    185
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    992
    16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Historical fiction at its finest"

    I read this book years ago when it first came out and loved it. When I saw it was available on Audible with George Guidall narrating, I was thrilled. Two of my favorites at one time. How great is that?

    First off, let's talk about George. I adore him. He is not just 'the voice' of Walt Longmire in Craig Johnson's series, he IS Walt. So much so, that when I began listening to "The Alienist" I had to keep reminding myself that Walt was not in this book. It took me at least 4 hours of listening before I could get that out of my head. (Victoria Moretti appears, too.)

    Now to the book itself... There's no need to rehash the plot - you'll find that everywhere you look. What I find remarkable is how much of New York City in the 1890s comes through in the descriptions. You can feel it, smell it, hear it. You know what it was like to dine at Delmonico's late at night and to walk down dark streets. You get to know the hoodlums and rapscallions. You can feel what it's like to be at the Met. It is totally absorbing. It's true when you read it, but even more obvious when you listen.

    This is a splendid book - though dark and gruesome in places - and definitely credit-worthy if you like historical fiction or mysteries.

    14 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dianna 08-26-15
    Dianna 08-26-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Slow start but worth the wait!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Alienist the most enjoyable?

    The plot was unique. The narrator did a fabulous job verbally distinguishing between characters. This story line was complex and well thought out. Great read/ listen!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ben Atlanta, GA, United States 07-13-15
    Ben Atlanta, GA, United States 07-13-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    33
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    9
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great listen"

    I almost didn't purchase this title because the sample didn't inspire any great enthusiasm but I'm glad I did. While I wouldn't call this a thriller, it's much too methodical for that, it's a very good procedural mystery set in a time when procedure was anything but standard. Overall, thoroughly enjoyable. 4.5 stars

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marilyn 05-26-15
    Marilyn 05-26-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    20
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    52
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great writing. However, my mind wandered."

    Immaculate writing, but extraneous details could have been eliminated to tighten up the story line.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clinton Birmingham, AL, United States 03-04-15
    Clinton Birmingham, AL, United States 03-04-15 Member Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    213
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Interesting period piece"

    Taking place at the same time as Sherlock Holmes, though written 100 years later, the book sets up a Holmes-and-Watson relationship between a psychiatrist ("alienist") and a reporter, the story's narrator in true Watson fashion. The story is fairly good, though not as clever as the Holmes stories. What weakens the book is the author's harangue that evil is brought about solely by poor nurturing (bad parenting) and does not exist by nature. But I suppose if we take the book as a 19th century story, it would be 50 years before DNA would be discovered. Medicine still is so amazingly unscientific sometimes.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    julie 02-03-13
    julie 02-03-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Exciting!"
    Where does The Alienist rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The best one yet.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Yes! I couldn't wait to hear what would happen next.


    Have you listened to any of George Guidall’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    A dramatic story of crime history.


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.