Ever feel like flinging a book across the room? I had that sensation a few times while reading Caleb Carr’s new novel, Surrender, New York. A couple of State University of New York (SUNY) professors (like me) investigate a series of deaths of “throwaway” children. A “throwaway” child is a child whose parents have moved away and abandoned them. Carr’s narrator, criminal psychologist Trajan Jones, formerly of the New York City Police Department, now lives in a upstate town. Dr. Jones has a sidekick named Mike Li. Together, they teach online courses for SUNY and help the local police when they’re stumped.
Carr loves excess in Surrender, New York. Dr. Jones has a pet. No, not a dog or cat or fish. It’s a cheetah! Dr. Jones has an office. No, it does not look like a Dilbert cubical, it’s a World War II German airplane! The plot is compelling, but the over-the-top aspects of this book really mount up over its 600+ pages! If your tolerance level for annoying excesses is high, then I’d recommend Surrender, New York. If not, skip it. GRADE: C+