Pulse Review

“Looking for a terrific read this weekend? I highly recommend PULSE, by Michael Harvey. It's a story to get lost in.” -Stephen King

Boston, 1976. In a small apartment above Kenmore Square, sixteen-year-old Daniel Fitzsimmons is listening to his landlord describe a seemingly insane theory about invisible pulses of light and energy that can be harnessed by the human mind. He longs to laugh with his brother Harry about it, but Harry doesn't know he's there--he would never approve of Daniel living on his own. None of that matters, though, because the next night Harry, a Harvard football star, is murdered in an alley.

Detectives "Bark" Jones and Tommy Dillon are assigned to the case. The veteran partners thought they'd seen it all, but they are stunned when Daniel wanders into the crime scene. Even stranger, Daniel claims to have known the details of his brother's murder before it ever happened. The subsequent investigation leads the detectives deep into the Fitzsimmons brothers' past. They find heartbreaking loss, sordid characters, and metaphysical conspiracies. Even on the rough streets of 1970s Boston, Jones and Dillon have never had a case like this.

Pulse is a novel laced with real danger and otherworldly twists—a master class by an endlessly gifted writer.

“Harvey’s lethal imagination is cranked to eleven in this one . . . his best yet by far. Superb!”- Lee Child

“Pulse is the rare crime novel that makes you think and feel – deeply so on both counts. Harvey tells a gripping, richly-textured story that’s full of characters who jump off the page and stay with you long after the book is over.”- Lou Berney, Bestselling Author of The Long and Faraway Gone and November Road

"It's all here: murder, corrupt cops, a gritty 70s Boston in turmoil. But then Harvey throws such a huge curveball your head will spin. The interconnectedness of all things is a big theme, and there are some scenes (keep your eye out for the one with Daniel and the dogs--trust me, you'll know it) that will make the little hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Harvey has a firm grip on time and place, and one-dimensional characters just aren't in his toolbox. Harvey is a bona fide noir poet ... The whole book, even the very realistic action sequences, has an otherworldly feel, and as bad as things get, behind everything Daniel does is his intense love for his brother. The last quarter had my jaw on the floor and the last page broke my heart. Stunning." - Kristin Centorcelli, The Criminal Element

"In a vivid narrative, Harvey captures the Boston of the mid-'70s, where racial protests and battles were prevalent as the city struggled to face court-ordered desegregation of its school system through the busing of students between white and black neighborhoods ... [a] supernatural subplot adds an element of fantasy to the novel that makes for an entertaining pairing. Ultimately, though, Pulse is simply a great police procedural ... Pulse is a wonderful crime novel painted on a '70s canvas. As a Chicago guy, I do hope that Michael Harvey returns his stories to my hometown, but my occasional trip to Boston is still quite enjoyable." - Stuart Shiffman, BookReporter

"Set in the '70s, Pulse is partly a whodunnit, partly an historical coming-of-age story, partly gritty noir and partly quantum physics sci-fi. As a film, it might look something like a Good Will Hunting/Boondock Saints/Surrogates farrago--only more tightly wound and carefully constructed ... Like a good crime novel, Pulse is driven by a trail of clues and coincidences that paint a picture of cause and effect." - Bruce Jacobs, Shelf Awareness

"Harvey...gives us a gritty mystery with an element of fantasy that, rather than detracting from the story's realism, actually supports it: we totally believe in Daniel's ability, which means that when Harvey starts layering on the twists and turns, we marvel at, rather than disbelieve, the revelations that follow. Harvey takes some risks here--a serpentine, fantasy-tinged plot is always in danger of running off its tracks--but he never loses control of his narrative, and readers just might find themselves a bit out of breath at the end of the ride. An ambitious, brilliantly successful novel and a textbook example of how to make crime fiction and fantasy work as a team." - David Pitt, Booklist

"Harvey...returns with...a crime thriller with a dash of quantum physics and spirituality ... This well-researched novel set in 1970s Boston is a real page-turner. With twists that sometimes seem to come from another world, it's sure to keep readers interested." -Joni Gheen, Library Journal

Edition Language:English

    Some Testimonial About This Book:

  • Tammy

    Taking place in Boston during 1976, this is an edgy police procedural that feels new. It explores the links between quantum mechanics and consciousness. And no, no one understands what that is least o...

  • Sandy

    This is one of those books that must give publishers the vapours. Police procedural? Sci-fi? Mystery? Grit-lit? Well….yes, it is. All of the above. So instead of trying to label it, I’ll do my bes...

  • megs_bookrack

    If Stephen King is going to take the time to tweet a recommendation of this book, I am going to take the time to read it. Immediately adds to tbr......

  • LadyJBookishNook

    Read this for the Library Journal. A little different book than what I normally read but I enjoyed the change. ...

  • Kathy

    Half in, half out for me. I liked reading something completely out of my zone, but perhaps it was too far out. I think I will call it dark urban fiction.You'll get Boston from Southie perspective; met...

  • Dan Radovich

    I have been a fan of Harvey's skilled writing for years, but this one kind of threw me for a loop. He brings a strong police procedural to vivid life (as always) but with PULSE, he adds some detailed ...

  • Ron S

    A tale more suited to fans of the show "Stranger Things" than readers of Richard Price or The Friends of Eddie Coyle....

  • Suzanne

    I’m not sure how to review this book; my reaction to it is complex. At times I was fully engaged with the characters and plot; other times I thought it lacked cohesion and made little sense. It is a...

  • Bookreporter.com Mystery & Thriller

    As he works to mold and perfect the details of the shooting of a homicide suspect, Boston detective William Barkley “Bark” Jones seeks guidance from the medical examiner. “So I did the right thi...

  • Michael

    This is a somewhat unusual combination of police procedural, the supernatural, and certain elements of physics and time travel, which make for a very interesting and educational story. The book is loo...