The Barnes & Noble Review
For sex crimes prosecutor Alexandra Cooper, even a night out can be murder. Already troubled by the return of the Silk Stocking Rapist (back in business after a four-year break), Alex is further burdened when the seminar she's attending at NYU Law School is interrupted by the discovery of a skeleton bricked up behind the wall in the basement of a Manhattan brownstone that was once the residence of Edgar Allan Poe! Although the tabloids have a field day with the Poe connection, this corpse is no relic from the poet's era. Forensics estimates that the body was entombed sometime after 1979 -- ancient history only from the perspective of leads gone cold.
Meanwhile, someone is mimicking the M.O. of the Silk Stocking Rapist -- with one notable distinction: He leaves his victim dead. As that investigation unfolds, Alex wonders if the copycat's victim might have had information about the body in the basement…. Suddenly the cold case turns red-hot, and it's up to Alex to ensure that no one else gets burned.
Linda Fairstein's inside knowledge of police procedure and legal work (she spent 25 years in the Sex Crimes Prosecution Unit of the Manhattan D.A.'s Office) provides Entombed with intriguing realistic touches; her craft as a writer turns it into an atmospheric, fast-paced tale that rivals Poe. Sue Stone
The specter of Edgar Allan Poe hovers, chillingly, over bestseller Fairstein's seventh thriller featuring Manhattan sex crimes prosecutor Alexandra Cooper. Alex's labyrinthine path to a serial killer travels through a lot of forensic evidence and two initially unconnected cases: the Silk Stocking rapist is terrorizing women after a few years' respite and a woman's skeleton is discovered in the wall of an East Village building. Said discovery takes on additional dimension when it's learned that the victim was walled up alive and that the house was once inhabited by Poe. Freelance writer Emily Upshaw appears, at first glance, to be the Silk Stocking rapist's latest victim, but several details feel off to Alex and NYPD detective sidekicks Mike Chapman and Mercer Wallace. Emily, it's determined, is the victim of a copycat, but she does have a tenuous link to Poe and to a secret organization called the Raven Society. These are the puzzle pieces that Alex and company work with, in a tale that develops like the proverbial peeled onion, a layer at a time. Alex, fresh from a breakup, also continues her unconsummated flirtation with Mike. It's a tribute to Fairstein's integrity and her clear, measured prose that the novel never tips into prurience. Her methodical presentation of authentic detail engages reader interest more than narrative flourish or cheap thrills. She's the real deal. Agent, Esther Newberg. (Jan.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
With a rapist wandering about and the skeleton of a recently dispatched young woman found upright behind the wall of the brownstone where Edgar Allan Poe once lived, sex crimes prosecutor Alexandra Cooper must seek help from the Raven Society (Poe fanatics, of course). With a 12-city author tour. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
A pair of hot cases carry Alexandra Cooper from her bailiwick as head of Manhattan's Sex Crimes Prosecution unit back to a past series of crimes-and the distant past of an American literary giant. According to DNA samples recovered from the scene of a brand-new assault on a Swedish student, the Silk Stocking Rapist, who's been quiet for five years, is at it again. But the strangling of freelance writer Emily Upshaw with an actual silk stocking, decides Alex, must be the work of a copycat. Even before she's begun the fight to persuade her boss to file an indictment of John Doe as the Silk Stocking Rapist lest the statute of limitations wipe his slate clean, Alex is faced with a Jane Doe: a skeletal corpse immured alive in a downtown tenement that NYU is bulldozing. The victim was evidently walled up alive in the Poe House some 25 years ago, in a manner strongly reminiscent of its one-time tenant's horror classic "The Cask of Amontillado." Readers asking what John and Jane Doe have to do with each other haven't been paying attention to Alex's six earlier adventures (The Kills, 2004, etc.). Instead of stooping to the easy task of picking holes in the logic or plausibility of a pair of boldly plotted investigations that entangle Poe's memory and methods in unnerving new chapters of violence, they're advised to sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the torrent of crime scene detail, Poe allusions large and small, and anecdotes about sundry lesser crimes before the two headline cases go their separate ways. Avoiding both the surfeit of personal chitchat and the whispers of international intrigue that have marred several of Alex's earlier cases, Fairstein delivers half a great suspense novel and anhonorable attempt at a second half for her best outing since Alex's strong debut in Final Jeopardy (1996). Agent: Esther Newberg/ICM
"Entombed [Will] make your heart get caught in your throat.... Don't miss this one."
Newsday (New York)
"A champion teller of detective tales."
"Original, chilling, and brilliant."