Monday, December 28, 2009

The Conspiracy Club

The Conspiracy Club by Jonathan Kellerman
Mass Market Paperback, 405 pages
Ballantine, 2003
ISBN-13: 9780345452580
highly recommended

When his brief, passionate romance with nurse Jocelyn Banks is cut short by her kidnapping and brutal murder, Dr. Jeremy Carrier is left emotionally devastated, haunted by his lover’s grisly demise and warily eyed by police still seeking a prime suspect in the unsolved slaying. To escape the pain, he buries himself in his work as staff psychologist at City Central Hospital–only to be drawn deeper into a waking nightmare when more women turn up murdered in the same gruesome fashion as Jocelyn Banks... and the suspicion surrounding Jeremy intensifies. Now, the only way to prove his innocence and put his torment to rest is to follow the trail of a cunning psychopath.
My Thoughts:

Interesting... The Conspiracy Club received lower Amazon ratings than the last 5 of Kellerman's Alex Delaware novels I've read and yet it held my attention much more completely. Most of the complaints seemed to be from fans of the Delaware novels. I'm here to say that this was a very good mystery and I think it was better than the last several Kellerman novels I've just read. In The Conspiracy Club Kellerman's innate ability is really highlighted. He had great character development. He was still able to psychologically analyze the situation with his new character, Jeremy Carrier. Since Carrier did not have a "in" with the police department, he had to use his own skills and abilities to figure out the clues being presented to him - while actually holding a job at the same time. Plus, as a character, I found Jeremy Carrier a truly refreshing change of pace compared from Alex Delaware and Milo Sturgis. Highly Recommended


Raging emotions, dead tissue.
Polar opposites was the way Jeremy Carrier had always seen it.
In a hospital setting, no two disciplines were less connected than psychology and pathology. As a practitioner of the former, Jeremy prided himself on an open mind; a good psychotherapist worked hard at avoiding stereotypes. opening

Not caring much if she responded, or not. It had been that way since Jocelyn. He didn’t even try anymore.
And the funny thing was, patients reacted to his apathy by opening up more quickly.
Grief had made him a more effective therapist.
Jeremy, flabbergasted, gave the matter some thought and decided patients probably perceived his blank face and statue posture as some sort of immutable, Zen-like calm.
If only they knew . . . pg. 7

Drop your interest in patients and patients talk to you more readily.
Mouth off at the honchos and gain collegial esteem.
Irony stank. From that point on, Jeremy found excuses for missing the meeting. pg. 9

The way Jocelyn had died - the image of her suffering - was plaque on Jeremy's brain.
He was never allowed to read the police report. But he'd seen the look in the detectives' eyes, overheard their hallway conferences.
Sexual psychopath. Sadistic. One for the record book, Bob.
Their eyes. To do that to a detective's eyes... pg. 11

"Fine. So let's cut to the chase. You're here because something happened. Something similar enough to Jocelyn to want to take another look at me." pg. 47

"...It's the combination of recklessness and cruelty that leads to your very, very bad behavior. And that's where environment comes in: take a child with the biological markers, expose him to abuse and neglect, and you're likely to create a ... problem" pg. 53

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