Book Review: The Schwarzschild Radius, a new Crime Thriller by Gustavo Florentin

The Bottom Line: Suspense fans looking for the next Gone Girl have found their new up-all-night page turner in The Schwarzschild Radius.

A rope, an axe, a propane torch, leather masks, and video equipment. What do all those things have in common? You’ll have to read Gustavo Florentin’s brilliant new crime thriller, The Schwarzschild Radius, to find out.
Meet the lovely Rachel Wallen, a Columbia University student searching for her missing sister, Olivia. Her quest leads her to a strip club, the private homes of the rich and powerful, and most importantly, to Transcendence House – a refuge for runaways in downtown Manhattan.

There she meets Father Massey, whom People Magazine dubbed “hippest man of the cloth,” and the Washington Post called “a Roman Catholic priest with a vision.” But is he really so pious behind closed doors? It just so happens that Father Massey worked closely with Olivia in the weeks before her disappearance.

Enter Detective John McKenna, a veteran of 21 years who’s getting close to retirement. But after interviews with the Wallen family, McKenna soon discovers the existence of a third sister, and some very dark family secrets.

As fictional detectives go, Detective McKenna is a breath of fresh air. As in classic noir, he’s a no-frills loner with none of the eccentric superpowers that color a lot of contemporary sleuths. That departure is a good thing, especially considering the fact that his character is surrounded by charismatic figures such as Father Massey.

Florentin’s restraint not only showcases his skill as a writer, but also renders McKenna’s investigation all the more compelling as he’s drawn into a world of unimaginable cruelty and pain.

Addictive from the very first paragraph, The Schwarzschild Radius is a taut crime thriller that never lets up.

Bella Wright

Bella Wright blogs about books, film and media.

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