Cover image for The cabinet of curiosities / Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.
The cabinet of curiosities / Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child.
First oversize mass market edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Grand Central Publishing, 2014.

Physical Description:
684 pages ; 20 cm
Added Author:


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
PRE Paperback Adult Paperback Fiction
PRE Paperback Adult Paperback Fiction
PRE Paperback Adult Paperback Fiction

On Order



In an ancient tunnel underneath New York City a charnel house is discovered.

Inside are thirty-six bodies--all murdered and mutilated more than a century ago.

While FBI agent Pendergast investigates the old crimes, identical killings start to terrorize the city.

The nightmare has begun.


Author Notes

Douglas Jerome Preston was born on May 20, 1956 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He received a B.A. in English literature from Pomona College in 1978. His career began at the American Museum of Natural History, where he worked as an editor and writer from 1978 to 1985. He also was a lecturer in English at Princeton University.

He became a full-time writer of both fiction and nonfiction books in 1986. Many of his fiction works are co-written with Lincoln Child including Relic, Riptide, Thunderhead, The Wheel of Darkness, Cemetery Dance, and Gideon's Corpse. His nonfiction works include Dinosaurs in the Attic; Cities of Gold: A Journey Across the American Southwest in Pursuit of Coronado; Talking to the Ground; and The Royal Road. He has written for numerous magazines including The New Yorker; Natural History; Harper's; Smithsonian; National Geographic; and Travel and Leisure. He became a New York Times Best Selling author with his titles Two Graves and Crimson Shores which he co-wrote with Lincoln Child, and his titles White Fire, The Lost Island Blue Labyrinth and The Lost City of the Monkey God.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In seven bestselling novels (from Relic to The Ice Limit), Preston and Child have delivered a body of science-based thrillers that for high excitement and robust scientific imaginings rival those of Michael Crichton. Their eighth outing is another richly entertaining tale, about the hunt for a seemingly immortal serial killer at work in New York City. Preston and Child revive characters and settings from earlier novels, often a red flag that authorial imagination is tiring; but in this case, all comes together with zing. There's FBI Special Agent Pendergast (from Relic), pale, refined and possessed of a Holmes-like brain; dogged New York Times reporter William Smithback Jr. and his fiery erstwhile girlfriend, Nora Kelly of the New York (read American, where Preston used to work) Museum of Natural History (both characters from Thunderhead with the museum the setting for Relic). The action begins when groundbreaking for an apartment tower in downtown Manhattan reveals a charnel house of murder victims from the late 19th century. Enter Pendergast, who for unexplained reasons taps Kelly to study the remains before the site is stripped by the building's developer, a Donald Trump-type who, with the mayor's backing, will accept no construction delays. As Kelly calls on Smithback for investigative help, the city is struck by killings that duplicate the earlier murders, with the victims' spinal cords ripped away and clues pointing to a 19th-century scientist who sought the secret of immortality. Featuring fabulous locales, colorful characters, pointed riffs on city and museum politics, cool forensic and paleontological speculation and several gripping set pieces including an extended white-knuckle climax, this a great beach novel, at times gruesome, always fun: Preston-Child at the top of their game. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

This absolutely terrific thriller brings together a lot of old friends from previous books: FBI Special Agent Pendergast and New York Times reporter Bill Smithback (Relic and Reliquary), archaeologist Nora Kelly (Thunderhead), and the New York Museum of Natural History (Relic). This time, the historical shenanigans center on a serial killer who operated 130 years ago out of a "Cabinet of Curiosities," a scientific sideshow of sorts that was the 19th-century precursor to natural history museums. With the help of Smithback and Kelly, Agent Pendergast determines that the killer harvested parts from living human beings and distilled them into an elixir that would, in turn, allow him to live forever. It was a gruesome business in 1870, and it is no less terrifying when "copycat" killings start anew in 2002. Could there really be a murderer on the loose for 130 years? This adventure has all the elements of the perfect summer read: the wonderfully spooky atmosphere, the dogged reporter smitten with the lovely scientist, and the mysteriously prescient FBI agent. Authors Preston and Child have been hot since Relic, and here they score another big winner. Highly recommended for all fiction collections. Rebecca House Stankowski, Purdue Univ. Calumet Lib., Hammond, IN (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.