Book of the Day
City of Endless Night
Review by Liz Gatterer
City of Endless Night by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child is the 17th in the Agent A.X.L. Pendergast Series-and my new favorite. Preston & Child are master craftsmen and their novels are always a thrill to read.
F.B.I. Agent Pendergast is sort of in trouble… you can read the previous novel, The Obsidian Chamber if you need to learn why, but for now let it suffice that his standing within the department is not what it once was. As punishment for his transgressions, he is sent to investigate the gruesome murder of a young woman-an assignment he feels doesn’t merit his involvement. NYPD Detective Lieutenant Vincent D’Agosta is also working the case, and not happy about either. Had the call come in just 20 minutes later it would have gone to someone else. But the two have teamed up before and work well together which makes the assignment a bit easier to bear. But this is going to be a doozy of a case. The body was found without a head, a massive GSW to the heart, and wearing Louboutin sneakers. This is going to be a feeding frenzy for the press. When a second decapitated murder victim is discovered and then a third, albeit with different MO’s and seemingly unconnected, Pendergast and D’Agosta race to find the killer or killers as the case may be.
Preston & Child have done it again. Their wordsmithing abilities are enviable. It is rare to find such a combination of imaginative storylines and flawless technique that repeatedly produces such wonderful work–I suppose it helps if one of the writers is a world class editor and the other a creative genius… They truly are a marvelous team. I find their details, like for example, the fact that the first victim is wearing Louboutin sneakers or that the second victim owns a 17th century Stradivarius so intriguing. Curiosity often gets the better of me and I find myself having to stop reading to look up what they are talking about (yes, Louboutin actually does make $1500 sneakers) or sometimes it is an unfamiliar word that my pride will not let me continue in ignorance of that turns out to be the perfect word for the situation. I am certainly never bored reading one of their novels and always feel like my time has been well spent when I have finished reading it (usually in one very intense, sleepless night).
For fans of the Pendergast series, City of Endless Night has moments of near heart-stopping fear for the beloved Agent, as well as a few wonderful moments that are very satisfying. The authors have given us a new Pendergast novel, on average, every 12.5 months for the past 15 years – is it too selfish to hope that they can speed that up? I’m not sure I can wait until NEXT January for the next book.