Title: The Hypnotist
Author: M.J. Rose
Release Date: May 1, 2010
Genre: Historical Thriller
Rating: 4 out of 5
Lucian Glass, an agent with FBI’s art crimes division, has been haunted by the past for a long time. Twenty years ago, he was late meeting his girlfriend at an art gallery, and as a result she was present when someone came to rob the place. She was killed and Lucian has blamed himself ever since. Now, one of the missing paintings has resurfaced, and Lucian sees the chance to solve the mystery that’s been unsolved for so long.
I was a fan of the first two books in M.J. Rose’s Reincarnationist series (The Reincarnationist and The Memorist), so I didn’t really think about picking up The Hypnotist - it was a no-brainer for me. The Hypnotist was another gripping historical thriller that had my attention from beginning to end.
Lucian is a well-written and engaging main character. He wears his grief on his sleeve, even after twenty years. When it looks like he might have the chance to solve the mystery and bring the case some closure, he throws himself into his work. The depth of feeling he still has about his former girlfriend, Solange, is surprising, but it makes it easy to see why he is so passionate about his work. When he starts to experience past life memories, it’s gratifying to see him try to embrace the process, despite his distrust of Malachai Samuels.
The discussion of art in The Hypnotist was really interesting. From art theft to art history, it is filled with little attention-grabbing little tidbits. The addition of reincarnation gave the book a unique premise, setting it apart from the other art theft thrillers out there.
The Hypnotist isn’t perfect; it is slow to get going. Additionally, it should be read as part of the series, rather than a standalone. I’ve read some reviews of people jumping into the series, but I would have been completely lost if I had done that. Overall, I have really enjoyed this series and I hope this isn’t the last of the books. It’s a fun, engaging read that actually will leave you something to think about.