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The Alienist

Narrated by: Edward Herrmann
Length: 4 hrs and 3 mins
4 out of 5 stars (324 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

New York, 1896: Reporter John Moore is summoned to the East River by his friend, psychiatrist Laszlo Kreizler, a brilliant pioneer in the new and much-maligned study of society's "alienated" mentally ill. At the river, Moore and Kreizler view the horribly mutilated body of a young male prostitute from one of Manhattan's infamous brothels. Supervised by the police commissioner, the newsman and his "alienist" mentor embark on a revolutionary attempt to identify the killer by assembling his psychological profile. Their dangerous quest takes them into the tortured past and twisted mind of a murderer who has killed before...and will kill again.

©1994 Caleb Carr, All Rights Reserved (P)1994 Simon & Schuster Inc., All Rights Reserved

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael
  • Santa Rosa, CA, United States
  • 08-31-12

Great listen. Unfortunately it is abridged.

I really enjoyed the book. I really wish that it was not abridged. The story was too condensed for me. I wanted to luxuriate in the prose.

30 of 30 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Abridged versions of novels are horrible!

The reader is fine but this abridged vesrsion is no good, plese put up a full version!

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Harvey
  • WASHINGTON, DC, United States
  • 12-05-12

Good as far as it went

Would you listen to The Alienist again? Why?

No. A good enough story, but not sufficient for a second listen.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Obviously the heroine.

What about Edward Herrmann’s performance did you like?

Yes, well done

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

no

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Scary....

Fairly raw murder descriptions, but accurate historical detail, thanks to Mr. Carr's historical background. Plot gets you engaged, and you like the main character despite his faults. Good mystery!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

The TV Series was better

The first time where the TV series is better written than the book, abominable adaptation, never again will I purchase an abridge book...

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

The Alienist by Caleb Carr

The Alienist by Caleb Carr revolves around a wealthy crime reporter for the New York Times in 1899 and his search for a savage murderer. Teamed with a renowned psychiatrist (in those days called an "alienist"), the pair uses psychological theory with deductive reasoning to tract the serial killer who preys on poverty-stricken young boys, victimized by powerful forces--club and hotel owners who control the city's dark world of prostitution.

Although not one of my favorite crime reads, the novel does give a sense of New York during the Victorian era with its presence of governmental corruption. It also highlights the gradual acceptance of criminal profiling as a vital police tool.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Rick
  • Urcuqui, Ecuador
  • 01-31-18

Malevolent Mystery

In the sordid underworld of child prostitution in late 19th-century New York, a psychotic killer is hunting and killing on the rooftops of the city, and his victims are immigrant children. This seamless abridgment makes for a fast-paced mystery populated by period characters, including the real Theodore Roosevelt as police commissioner, and read by the incomparable Edward Herrmann.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

One of the best period suspense/detective stories.

What made the experience of listening to The Alienist the most enjoyable?

Great period descriptions and characters.

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

Its a long story that builds but characters keep the story going.

What does Edward Herrmann bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Since he's been in many period movies his narration fits easily.

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

Great Cast of detectives drive a period horror and suspense story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • ML
  • Queensland Australia
  • 07-09-19

Very abridged- so much of the story is lost

This version is considerably shorter than the complete book and that is unfortunate. Quick to listen to and well performed but definitely not recommended.

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Excellent

The story line is good, but the prose and performance are even better. I am rarely impressed with a modern authors skill with language. I will definitely be trying more books written by Caleb Carr and books narrated by Edward Herrmann!

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  • Tania111
  • 02-16-18

Brilliantly done!

An old fashioned detective mystery that is well written and engrossing. The story transports you straight back in time, giving a truly atmospheric feeling. I loved the characters who are well rounded. Can't wait to read the next one.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • vicky ross
  • 01-24-18

interesting read

excellent narration good book overall can't wait to watch the tv adaptation of story interesting characters and storyline

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lizzy
  • 02-26-19

Awesome

This was an amazing story! Caleb Carr wrote a great story and the much missed Edward Herrmann was the best possible narrator.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-12-19

Gripping novel

Held my attention from start to finish. Fabulous read, amazing imaginative story. Much sympathy for characters.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mikey160566
  • 11-06-18

Awesome!!!

Detailed and dark
Having watched the series this gave a less personal feel than on TV, more focused on the more than the individuals.
Highly recommend

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  • Matt Bryant
  • 06-17-18

Enjoyed the TV adaptation and loved the book

I really enjoyed the TV adaptation so I thought I'd give the book a go and wasn't disappointed. The book is different enough to the series to be interesting whilst giving a different take on some of the characters. The narrator did a good job of giving different characters voices and accents.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Aileen
  • 04-11-15

Abridged?!? Dammit!

Why oh why didn't i see this was abridged? I HATE abridged books. They are so cobbled together and hopelessly unsatisfying. So annoyed with myself. Who on earth actually prefers an abridged book to a real book, anyway???

6 of 7 people found this review helpful