Incendiary by Michael Cannell
The Psychiatrist, the Mad Bomber, and the Invention of Criminal Profiling

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...from beat cops to techies, and the story holds its tension from start to finish through all those twists and turns. A fascinating study not just of a historical crime and its consequences, but also its unintended effects.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Long before the specter of terrorism haunted the public imagination, a serial bomber stalked the streets of 1950s New York. The race to catch him would give birth to a new science called criminal profiling.

Grand Central, Penn Station, Radio City Music Hall—for almost two decades, no place was safe from the man who signed his anonymous letters “FP” and left his lethal devices in phone booths, storage lockers, even tucked into the plush seats of movie theaters. His victims were left cruelly maimed. Tabloids called him “the greatest individual menace New York City ever faced.”

In desperation, Police Captain Howard Finney sought the help of a little known psychiatrist, Dr. James Brussel, whose expertise was the criminal mind. Examining crime scene evidence and the strange wording in the bomber’s letters, he compiled a portrait of the suspect down to the cut of his jacket. But how to put a name to the description? Seymour Berkson—a handsome New York socialite, protégé of William Randolph Hearst, and publisher of the tabloid The Journal-American—joined in pursuit of the Mad Bomber. The three men hatched a brilliant scheme to catch him at his own game. Together, they would capture a monster and change the face of American law enforcement.

 

About Michael Cannell

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Michael Cannell has written about sports for the New Yorker, the New York Times Magazine, Sports Illustrated and Outside, and was editor of the New York Times House & Home section for seven years. His previous book, the critically acclaimed I.M. Pei: Mandarin of Modernism, was published in 1995 by Crown.
 
Published April 25, 2017 by Minotaur Books. 302 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Crime, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction
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Kirkus

Excellent
on Feb 07 2017

...from beat cops to techies, and the story holds its tension from start to finish through all those twists and turns. A fascinating study not just of a historical crime and its consequences, but also its unintended effects.

Read Full Review of Incendiary: The Psychiatrist,... | See more reviews from Kirkus

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