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Critique of Criminal Reason by Michael…
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Critique of Criminal Reason (original 2006; edition 2006)

by Michael Gregorio

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3021337,080 (3.01)1
Member:kittyhorse
Title:Critique of Criminal Reason
Authors:Michael Gregorio
Info:Faber & Faber (2006), Edition: 4th, Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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Critique of Criminal Reason by Michael Gregorio (2006)

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Showing 1-5 of 12 (next | show all)
transferring information from 2006 spreadsheet
  sally906 | Apr 3, 2013 |
Sarebbe stato meglio lasciare Kant alla filosofia. Scomodare nomi altisonanti per un giallo mediocre non è cortese. ( )
  Spell.bound | Apr 3, 2013 |
Hanno Stiffeniis, a man in his early thirties, was serving as a magistrate in a small town in Prussia in 1804 when he receives a summons from King Frederick Wilhelm III ordering him to leave for Konigsberg. There have been a few unsolved murders and the circumstances of the murders have panicked the townspeople.
He hadn’t been in Konigsberg for seven years and had been told to never return there because of an incident between himself and Immanuel Kant, the philosopher and teacher but believes he cannot refuse his King’s command.
Other, more experienced men have been trying to solve the murders but have been unsuccessful. He doesn’t know how he would be able to succeed where they have failed. Soon after he arrives, he does meet with Dr. Kant and what happens next changes everything.
The usual way to solve crimes was through threats and torture. The murder victims are found in a kneeling position. The police reports lack a lot of basic information such as the cause of death and important names of people involved in the investigation. He begins his job by trying to determine a motive and, after finding one and determining the murderer; discovers he was wrong. This happens several other times. Dr. Kant, who is quite old at this point and in poor health, leads Stiffeniis to use logic and evidence in looking for the information he needs. It is the beginning of modern crime technique.
One quote of Kant, “...Reason operates on the surface alone. What happens beneath the surface shapes events,” helps Stiffeniis solve the murders as well as several others which occur after his arrival.
He eventually learns the reason he was recommended for the job as well as resolves some deep personal problems within his own family.
Michael Gregorio’s descriptions of people, places, and just about everything else are very detailed. The reader can picture what Stiffeniis sees. The book goes into very gory detail about the corpses. I eventually skipped over them and don’t think I missed anything important.
There are a lot of criminals who are being shipped to Russia and he sees them at a tavern while waiting for their ship. They are seated in a circle around a fire. “So many people, so close together, yet barely a word was said” made me think of our modern culture where people gather together and, rather than interact with the people around them, are involved with their smart phones. These prisoners didn’t have that option.
The book does a fairly good job weaving logic and philosophy into solving crimes at a level that most readers will be able to understand. ( )
  Judiex | Nov 10, 2012 |
In 1803, Hanno Stiffeniis, a rural procurator, is ordered to the city of Konigsberg, Prussia, to solve a series of mysterious murders. It turns out that his summons has come about at the behest of Stiffeniis' former mentor, Immanuel Kant.

I read enough historical mysteries involving real-life personages to know the formula (introduce the real historical figure with far more fanfare than makes sense in context; give said historical figure a mystery that will inspire all his or her writings / actions / philosophy from that moment forth, as if there would have been no writings but for this; and if there's a young attractive sister-brother pair we're looking at an 80% chance of incest), and this adhered to it. But it also kept me genuinely interested in the solution to the mystery, which many of them don't, and the protagonist was realistically flawed without being unsympathetic. I felt that the ending piffled out, and I'm not interested in reading the sequel, but there was nothing wrong with spending a few days on this.
  atheist_goat | Feb 13, 2012 |
excellent read! ( )
  hcfrealtor | Sep 25, 2010 |
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'Observe, Stiffeniis. It slid in like a hot knife cutting lard.'
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312378033, Paperback)

An International Bestseller and Playboy Best Book of 2006

It has been years since Immanuel Kant’s landmark philosophical work, Critique of Pure Reason, brought him fame throughout Europe and made him Königsberg’s best-known citizen. Now, rumors have begun to surface of a new work by this aging but still acute mind. Yet unlike his earlier work, this book will not examine the mind of the average man, but the mind of the serial killer.

Detective Hanno Stiffeniis has been called to the city to find the culprit in an enigmatic string of murders. Are they part of a plot formed by Napoleon’s spies to undermine the Prussian king, or the work of a solitary killer? The case would seem unsolvable, were it not for the assistance and unmatched intellect of his mentor, Immanuel Kant. Together the young detective and the elderly, eccentric philosopher must track down the killer who has the city by the throat.

Atmospheric, entertaining, and intelligent, this acclaimed novel is sophisticated, page-turning crime at its best.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:58:15 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Arriving in the city of Knigsberg to help solve a series of murders, young detective Hanno Stiffeniis joins forces with his mentor, philosopher Immanuel Kant, to track down a serial killer, in a historical mystery set in early nineteenth-century Prussia.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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