Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Death Instinct by Jed Rubenfeld


Synopsis From Back Cover:

The bomb that devastated Wall Street in 1920 explodes in the opening pages of The Death Instinct, Jed Rubenfeld’s provocative and mesmerizing new novel. War veteran Dr. Stratham Younger and his friend Captain James Littlemore of the New York Police Department are caught on Wall Street on the fateful day of the blast. With them is the beautiful Colette Rousseau, a French radiochemist whom Younger meets while fighting in the world war. A series of inexplicable attacks on Rousseau, a secret buried in her past, and a mysterious trail of evidence lead Young, Littlemore, and Rousseau on a thrilling international and psychological journey-from Paris to Prague, from the Vienna home of Dr. Sigmund Freud to the corridors of power in Washington, D.C., and ultimately to the hidden depths of our most savage instincts. As the seemingly disjointed pieces of what Younger and Littlemore learn come together, the two uncover the shocking truth behind the bombing.

I went into this book knowing very little about the events that kicked the action off.  I vaguely remember learning about the bombing of Wall Street in an American History class in college, but I couldn't tell you any of the details.  All I knew then was that it had never been solved and that's all I know about it now after reading this book. 

This book is the product of the ingenious imagination of the author (I will now have to read his other book) as he comes up with his own unique solution to that horrific event.  The bombing opens the book but the characters are what drives this story through the entire series of events that takes the characters from New York to Vienna and back.  From start to end this was a whirlwind of action: kidnappings, car chases, Nazi encounters, and glow in the dark women.  I promise it's not as cheesy as it sounds, it all makes sense in the story.

I'm pretty sure I can't tell you anything about this book without spoiling too much of the plot but I do want to mention that the author does a a pretty seamless job of mixing the historical and the fiction.  The book takes real figures and events from history and blends them into a thrilling mixture of mystery and romance.

I would like to thank Trish of TLC Book Tours for the opportunity to read and review this book.  To read other opinions of this one please visit the tour page.

Challenges: M&S, A-Z,

10 comments:

bermudaonion said...

This sounds like a real page turner!

carolsnotebook said...

I have this one on my shelf. I'm glad to see you enjoyed it without knowing much of the actual history, since I know absolutely nothing about the bombing.

Kathleen said...

Great review! I'll be reviewing this one next week for the tour and just started reading it last night at my son's basketball game. I'm on page 107 and am loving it!

nomadreader (Carrie) said...

Thanks for not including any details. This one sounds fantastic, and it's the first I've heard of it, so I'm glad to go in knowing very little!

Staci said...

I'm glad that you liked this one!! I wasn't sure if it was for me or not, but after reading your review I think I would like it!

heathertlc said...

I don't think I ever learned about this in school but it sounds utterly fascinating (in a horrific way of course). This will definitely go on my TBR list - I can't wait to learn more about this time period.

Thanks for being on the tour Ryan!

bookmagic said...

This sounds like a great read. Adding to list- thanks for the review!

Sheila (Bookjourney) said...

Fantastic review!

Yvette said...

Oooooh, this sounds good! Thanks for a wonderful review.

Julie @ Knitting and Sundries said...

This sounds like a fascinating read. Like you, I only have a vague knowledge of the bombing, but reading books like this always tends to add to the knowledge and make me look up more info, which is why I like them. Thanks for the review!