Under the Radar; ‘The Black Tower’

In his review of Louis Bayard’s The Black Tower in today’s Wall Street Journal, Robert Hughes says the author “has emerged as a writer of historical thrillers in the vein of Caleb Carr.”

The current Entertainment Weekly calls it “delicious.” Set in Paris in 1818, the book concerns a “sad-sack hero” whose life is changed by a flamboyant figure,  based on the legendary French detective Eugène François Vidocq. Marilyn Stasio, in her 8/22 NYT review says,

The real-life Vidocq was unmatched as a figure of romantic legend. On the run as a thief, he offered his services to the law, becoming so adept at catching criminals that in 1811 he was named the first chief of the Sûreté, whose detective ranks he filled with former miscreants like himself.

Vidocq is determined to figure out if Marie Antoinette’s son really died in prison, or if he can still find him alive.

There are few holds showing in libraries I checked, so readers advisory librarians may actually have an opportunity to put the book into customer’s hands.


  • Hardcover: $24.95
  • Publisher: William Morrow (August 26, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 0061173509
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061173509
  • Audio CD: Unabridged, 8CD, Library Edition, $90
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks, (September 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433246586
  • Audio Cassette: Unabridged, 7 tapes, Library Edition, $72.95
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks, (September 1, 2008)
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433246579
  • Large Print, Paperback: $24.95, 512 pages
  • Publisher: HarperLuxe (September 16, 2008)
  • ISBN-10: 006166832X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061668326

One Response to “Under the Radar; ‘The Black Tower’”

  1. marie Says:

    I can’t wait to read this one! I’m taking my galley with me on a weekend getaway today and can’t wait to settle into a comfy chair and get started.