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The Conspiracy Club by Jonathan Kellerman
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The Conspiracy Club (2003)

by Jonathan Kellerman

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English (16)  Dutch (2)  French (1)  All languages (19)
Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
I love Jonathan Kellerman's Alex Delaware character and have read all his books. I guess the problem with becoming use to a certain set of characters is that when they aren't there all of a sudden, it's like part of your family is missing. It's not a Delaware book but was it a good book? Yes. It was a good plot although it did seem that it took a long time to build the personalities of the characters. ( )
  Carol420 | May 31, 2016 |
Jonathan Kellerman takes a break from his usual Alex Delaware novels with this entry. The main protagonist is Jeremy Carrier, a psychologist at a hospital, who is recovering from the brutal murder of his wife. He befriends Dr. Arthur Chess, an older doctor and his group of elderly friends who have a private group that are interested in investigating crime and studying evil. Meanwhile, Jeremy is receiving messages that are clues about his wife’s killer as well as other murders that have plagued the area.

This was not up to par with other Jonathan Kellerman novels that I have read. Plot holes abound in this novel, almost to the point of ridiculousness. The story line was not especially believable, and the characters left much to be desired. I wasn’t remotely impressed with this novel and I would advise skipping it.

Carl Alves – author of Blood Street ( )
  Carl_Alves | Jun 27, 2015 |
85 out of 100 points -- 4 stars

Plot -- 17 out of 20 points
In a killing eerily reminiscent of Jack the Ripper, a young nurse is brutally murdered by someone with specific surgical skills. When Jeremy Carrier, the psychologist hero, becomes a suspect in his girlfriend’s murder, his grief-driven attitude and psychically-numbed responses cloud his judgment, leading him deeper into dangerous territory. A series of mysterious communications arrive in his office, leading him to conclude that the unknown sender has some personal knowledge of the killer. As he is lured into the chase to identify the psychopath, he seems to be feeling his way through a dark, depraved world like a blind man, relying on sensory input in his lonely isolation chamber-like existence. Apparently, Jeremy never forged meaningful friendships and lacks the personal connections most of us rely on in a crisis.

Characters -- 17 out of 20 points
Having the lovely Jocelyn Banks murdered early on tinges the tale with a sadness that doesn’t seem to leave much room for her successor in the bereaved psychologist’s bedroom. There is some rather graphic sex here and there, but Mr. Kellerman uses it to explore Jeremy’s experience with the grief process as he tries to move on and begin a new romance. Several characters seem to be so psychologically damaged they teeter on the edge of reason, in danger of crossing the fine line of sanity. The reader is left to pick out the real killer from an extensive group of “weird” people, who seem to challenge even the hardiest reader’s ability to trust as danger lurks in the shadows. One of Mr. Kellerman’s strengths is his compassion for the patients his fictional psychologist treats; cardiac patient Merilee Saunders and cancer survivor Doug Vilardi seem to bring out the best in the emotionally distant Jeremy as he goes through the motions of being a psychologist. The big drawback of the book for me was that I found the members of the Conspiracy Club hard to relate to as fictional people.

Setting -- 17 points out of 20
Jeremy, whether tucked away in the bowels of the hospital or the dreary apartment of his new girlfriend, is so overwhelmed by his loss that he appears to function on automatic pilot. City Central Hospital seems to have a dark, sinister chilliness that seems to chase away the sun. Even the meeting place for the Conspiracy Club feels unwelcoming and awkward. The too-willing Jeremy follows this storm cloud as it spreads menacing gloom in his path. (I felt like sending him away -- somewhere, anywhere -- for a long weekend, just to expose him to a little natural light and stimulate his senses in a healthier direction. “Psychologist, heal thyself!”)

Pacing -- 18 points out of 20
The story moves along like a powerful river, sweeping the reader into black, treacherous water where hidden dangers lurk. This isn’t a comfortable read -- too many characters grieving real losses and health challenges, while other characters remain stuck in their own earlier tragedies. But the action unfolds with enough chilling discoveries to keep the tale moving forward. The reader does wonder what brought all this tragedy to fruition, even as the dread builds and the finale reveals the answer.

Tone -- 16 points out of 20
Picture yourself waking up inside a dark closet. Is the closet locked from the inside or from the outside? Is it a sanctuary from the cruel outside world for you or a tomb? That’s the kind of tone this tale provides. At times, it’s hard to tell whether the growing uncertainty will end in the demise of the bad guy or take everyone else down in the process. While there is great tension, it seemed to get snagged from time to time on the subject of Death itself, as opposed to the loss of individuals. Was that deliberate on the part of the author? ( )
  sarambarton | Oct 16, 2014 |
Dedicated young psychologist Dr. Jeremy Carrier is unschooled in the ways of violent crime and incalculable evil until his life is irreversibly touched by both. When his romance with nurse Jocelyn Banks is cut short by her kidnapping and brutal murder, he is left emotionally devastated and being warily eyed by police seeking a prime suspect in the unsolved killing. To escape the pain, he buries himself in his work. But when more women turn up murdered in the same gruesome fashion as Jocelyn, the suspicion surrounding Jeremy intensifies and the only way for him to prove his innocence is to follow the trail of a cunning psychopath. Spurring on Jeremy's investigation is Dr. Arthur Chess, an enigmatic pathologist who harbors a keen fascination with the darker deeds committed by the living. Arthur draws Jeremy into the confidence of a cryptic society devoted to matters unknown and unspoken. But when Arthur suddenly slips away, Jeremy is left to contend with an onslaught of anonymous clues – and the growing realization that a harrowing game of cat and mouse has been set in motion.
  Hans.Michel | Sep 13, 2013 |
The main character of this book is Dr Carrier whose partner has been murdered and the police suspect him as the culprit. Enter a retired pathologist, Dr Chess, who foists his friendship upon Dr Carrier introduces him to a strange dining club and leads him along a trail to the real killer via a series of obscure and illogical steps.

My biggest issue with this book, is if the dining club knew exactly who murdered Dr Carrier's partner why did they sit back and let several other women be murdered just so they could let Dr Chess travel the world and mail idiotic postcards to Dr Carrier? They were all victims of crime and are so devastated by such that they have apparently dedicated the rest of their lives to fighting such, yet stand idly by and let a serial killer roam free just so they can lead Dr Carrier along a convoluted path of clues.

Really the story is nothing great even once you get over the logic gaps it's still a rather run of the mill murder mystery, unlike most murder mysteries there's also basically no police involvement beyond a detective that pesters Dr Carrier now and again and very little in the way of 'investigation'.

If you have nothing else to read it will fill in time, but if your lawn needs mowing it'll probably be more rewarding to do that. ( )
  HenriMoreaux | Aug 3, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
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Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Humpty-Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty-Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses,
And all the king's men,
Couldn't put Humpty together again.
Dedication
To the memory of my father, David Kellerman. 1918-2003
First words
Raging emotions, dead tissue.
Quotations
I never thought [hypnosis] was something I could do, Doc. Tell the truth, when you first mentioned it I thought it was bogus-pocus.
Intelligence is like fire... You can burn down the house, learn to cook, or forge beautiful works of art in a kiln.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345452585, Mass Market Paperback)

When his passionate romance with nurse Jocelyn Banks is cut short by her kidnapping and brutal murder, young psychologist Jeremy Carrier is left emotionally devastated, haunted by his lover’s grisly demise–and eyed warily by police still seeking a prime suspect in the slaying. To escape the pain, he buries himself in his work at City Central Hospital–only to be drawn deeper into a walking nightmare when more women are murdered in the same gruesome fashion as Jocelyn. As the suspicion surrounding Jeremy intensifies, the only way for him to prove his innocence and put his torment to rest is to follow the deadly trail of a modern-day Jack the Ripper.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:08 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Devastated and suspected by the police after the brutal murder of his girlfriend, psychologist Jeremy Carrier finds himself engaged in a game of cat and mouse when additional murders take place and clues begin appearing in his mail.

» see all 10 descriptions

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