The Inquisitor

The Inquisitor

by Mark Allen Smith
4.2 18

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Overview

The Inquisitor by Mark Allen Smith

A spectacularly original thriller about a professional torturer who has a strict code, a mysterious past, and a dangerous conviction that he can save the life of an innocent child

Geiger has a gift: he knows a lie the instant he hears it. And in his business—called "information retrieval" by its practitioners—that gift is invaluable, because truth is the hottest thing on the market.

Geiger's clients count on him to extract the truth from even the most reluctant subjects. Unlike most of his competitors, Geiger rarely sheds blood, but he does use a variety of techniques—some physical, many psychological—to push his subjects to a point where pain takes a backseat to fear. Because only then will they finally stop lying.

One of Geiger's rules is that he never works with children. So when his partner, former journalist Harry Boddicker, unwittingly brings in a client who demands that Geiger interrogate a twelve-year-old boy, Geiger responds instinctively. He rescues the boy from his captor, removes him to the safety of his New York City loft, and promises to protect him from further harm. But if Geiger and Harry cannot quickly discover why the client is so desperate to learn the boy's secret, they themselves will become the victims of an utterly ruthless adversary.

Mesmerizing and heart-in-your-throat compelling, The Inquisitor is a completely unique thriller that introduces both an unforgettable protagonist and a major new talent in Mark Allen Smith.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781429949941
Publisher: Holt, Henry & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 04/10/2012
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 605,957
File size: 324 KB

About the Author

Mark Allen Smith is a successful television and documentary film producer and screenwriter. The Inquisitor, featuring the controversial hero known only as Geiger, is his first novel. Mark's experience investigating features for the acclaimed ABC-TV news magazine program, "20/20," planted the seed for his debut thriller when he was involved with a story dating from the 1970s about the remarkably brutal torture and murder of a 17-year-old in Paraguay, the last true dictatorship in the Western Hemisphere. He was further inspired to action by the shocking death of Lisa Steinberg at the abusive hands of her adoptive father; this event uncorked ongoing interest in the corrosive effect of physical and psychological pressure on children and other innocents. His journey of research convinced him that the novel was his best way to bring his story to the largest possible audience.

A long-time resident of Westchester County, Mark Allen Smith now lives in New York City's Harlem with his wife, Cathy, and a blended family of six children. He is presently working on the sequel to The Inquisitor, also featuring Geiger.


Mark Allen Smith is a successful television and documentary film producer and screenwriter. The Inquisitor, featuring the controversial hero known only as Geiger, is his first novel. Mark's experience investigating features for the acclaimed ABC-TV news magazine program, "20/20," planted the seed for his debut thriller when he was involved with a story dating from the 1970s about the remarkably brutal torture and murder of a 17-year-old in Paraguay, the last true dictatorship in the Western Hemisphere.  He was further inspired to action by the shocking death of Lisa Steinberg at the abusive hands of her adoptive father; this event uncorked ongoing interest in the corrosive effect of physical and psychological pressure on children and other innocents.  His journey of research convinced him that the novel was his best way to bring his story to the largest possible audience.

A long-time resident of Westchester County, Mark Allen Smith now lives in New York City’s Harlem with his wife, Cathy, and a blended family of six children. He is presently working on the sequel to The Inquisitor, also featuring Geiger.

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The Inquisitor: A Novel 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 18 reviews.
Jodi_Ann_Hanson More than 1 year ago
This book is a smack between the eyes. It grabs you and drags you on a wave of action until the thrilling conclusion. Mark Allen Smith marks his place in the thriller genre with ease. Close up on the protagonist Geiger, a man with a talent for getting answers and knowing if he is given a lie or the truth. Geiger is at the top of his game as an “information retrieval” specialist. He is sought out by the most powerful people to extract confessions and secrets. Those around him including his business partner Harry Boddicker constantly try to figure Geiger out. A quiet man with a guarded manner who speaks with a voice that is silken and without inflection, he rarely blinks and walks with just a little lean. Geiger works within a “code of ethics” in which he extracts information in any way he can avoiding the drawing of blood and the number one rule is he never works with children, ever. Boddicker brings a “rush job” to Geiger. The client has a small window of time to find out where a valuable stolen item is located. Against his better judgement Geiger accepts, he normally requires diligent investigation into a job before agreeing to take it on. When the client arrives Geiger finds him demanding the interrogation of a twelve-year-old boy. Going into protection mode Geiger takes the boy and whisks him off to the safety of his loft apartment until he can figure out what to do. The inquisitor now finds himself on the other end of the retrieval business. He has to find the reason the client needs the information from the boy before he, the boy, and his partner become victims of Geiger’s brutal opponent. Mark Allen Smith has crafted a debut novel that puts him in the big leagues. He has brought an unexpected spin on the thriller that makes this a must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
SuseNJ More than 1 year ago
Outstanding action/character thriller! Superb, engrossing, totally original, unexpected all the way through. I am SO glad that Smith is working on a sequel! Never a dull moment. Many themes that could be developed even more.
JonnMnz More than 1 year ago
Excellent book! I didn't think that it was possible to make a professional torturer a sympathetic character, but Mark Allen Smith did it wonderfully. This book is part action, psychological thriller, and redemptive. Geiger's back story isn't completely revealed, but we're shown enough to answer some questions about him. The author left room for a sequel to explore more of Geiger and his healing psyche, so I hope a next book is soon to come. It is a bit graphic, but not a a bloody/gore sense. Don't confuse this book with a gore /killer book, it is so much more!
ChrisNE More than 1 year ago
The character development in this novel is fascinating. Although some of the action is a bit graphic for my taste, it does add further to the development of the main character. Everything comes together in the end, which is the best part of the book. It is perfectly set up for a sequel, and I am hoping that Smith writes one in the near future.
KenCady More than 1 year ago
Since much of this novel happens on the 4th of July, when Americans are at the beach, that may be the best time to read it. You can leisurely wonder just how far our government is willing to go in torturing those suspected of being unfriendly to US interests. Each blast of colorful fireworks could be just another enemy combatant. Geieger, the Inquisitor does that job for us now, among other things, and none of us would likely want to meet him. He even disturbs his psychiatrist. But, the author allows to see just enough to find a human element in Geiger that we can move hopefully from page to page. I liked the story while I didn't like the torture, but if we choose to ignore it as a fact of today's life, we might as well read Dick and Jane novels. Or watch fireworks. Room is left for a sequel, so set your counter for the return of Geiger. One thing he could not do that the author was able to accomplish is get garbage service in Manhattan on Independence Day. Powerful!
Kataman1 More than 1 year ago
Gieger is great at what he does. He is an expert at "information retrieval," meaning he uses a combination of physical and mental means to garner secrets from people. He has set up a business with his partner Harry who is good with computers. The two agree to take on a job to find out what an art dealer has done with a stolen painting. At the last minute the client substitutes the dealer's 12 year old son as the one to work on. Geiger decides this is too much and attacks the client and takes the boy away to someplace safe. This sets off a chain of events and Geiger and Harry find out that the people wanting the boy interrogated are very dangerous. The book is a study into the mind set of Geiger and what made him into the "cold fish" he is. It is intriguing to know what happened and though the author provides some clues, we do not know all. Also, Harry has a sister who is now mentally incapacitated and we would like to know a lot more as to what happened to her and how it influenced Harry. The author sets up a great tale with tension that builds to the end and it is the fact that I wanted to know more about the main characters that stopped me from giving it a full five stars.
TWTaz More than 1 year ago
Thought this was a fast-paced thriller. You'd think -- given his line of work -- it would be hard to take a liking to a character like Geiger. But I found myself drawn into his world and rooting for him throughout the book. I'm not at all squeamish, so some of the more visceral scenes didn't bother me at all, but a few parts may be a little hard for someone else who doesn't like a litte violence in their fiction. I have no problem recommending this book to anyone looking for an intense but quick read. I think I put this book down twice while reading it so I finished it in one day, I was that drawn into Geiger's world and finding out things would play out for everyone involved. I'm hoping this author gives us more of the life of Geiger in future books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
cy-12_34 More than 1 year ago
An excellent book, well written and suspenseful. The main character is very quirky, but you warm to him immediately. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and, if you like a very engaging and exciting book, I think you will enjoy it tremendously.
tony21CH More than 1 year ago
EXCELLENT!!!
Jules3 More than 1 year ago
You will get nothing else done while reading this book!! Loved all of the characters. One of the best debut novels I have ever read!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love books about the bad guys with a soft side - the likeable hit man or the ckeaner. However, I have been disappointed more often than not. But not with this book. My only disappointment came from not finding more books with the same character, like with the Lawrence Block or Barry Eisler hit men series'. I was totally engrossed in this story and could visualize every scene; however it wasnt due to endless descriptions (like Stephen King). I found it well written and totally fascinating.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Impossible to put down. Beautifully crafted characters. Can't wait for the next installment, Mr. Smith!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago