Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Finder” as Want to Read:
The Finder
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Finder

3.41  ·  Rating details ·  751 ratings  ·  140 reviews
Now the author of The Havana Room, Afterburn, and Manhattan Nocturne raises the stakes with an electrifying new thriller, The Finder. Harrison spins the story of a young, beautiful, secretive Chinese woman, Jin-Li, who gets involved in a brilliant scheme to steal valuable information from corporations in New York City. When the plan is discovered by powerful New Yorkers wh ...more
Hardcover, 322 pages
Published April 1st 2008 by Sarah Crichton Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Finder, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Finder

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.41  · 
Rating details
 ·  751 ratings  ·  140 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Finder
Dec 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: american
Buildings & Boobs

Below the marble foyers and plush offices of mid-town Manhattan are of course the sewers: Two worlds. One world is visible, impressive, ornamental and confident; but that’s only a façade for what lies beneath. It is the hidden world of the sewers which is essential, not the marble foyers. If the visible weren’t properly maintained, there might be complaints. If the invisible stopped working, life itself becomes impossible.

As it is with buildings, so is it with people. Those abov
Oct 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, crime, fiction
"But in Tom's case most of the conversation involved abstractions that were answered with abstractions. The people on the other end of the conversation were working within an algorithm, too.


This meant that Tom had very few real conversations. He spoke to dozens of people a day but always within his corporate persona and within the appropriate algorithm He was trapped. The man he'd been once was either buried under all of this behavior or even, perhaps, gone. Irrecoverably. We change in only one
May 15, 2008 rated it liked it
Confession: I only got halfway through. Hell, I love me some violence, but after the death-by-drowning-in-a-car-filled-up-with-human-excrement (followed by a lengthy investigation of the human-excrement-filled pipes for clues -- oh look, it's another tampon!), and after the death-by-golf-club-pummelling, and after the hero stole his dying dad's pain medication, and after the rich guy got a prostate exam during his own party...I needed a shower. Colin Harrison is a great writer, but maybe I'm get ...more
Oct 23, 2008 rated it it was ok
If you can suspend disbelief and not ask any questions while reading this, you might like it. I have enjoyed several Colin Harrison books, so I can't figure out whether his writing is going downhill or my reading became more discriminatory. He is still a good story-teller and his books set in NYC give the reader a real familiarity with the city. This story has an interesting premise: a cleaning crew is taking out valuable trash from Manhattan business offices, and while most of it gets shredded, ...more
Feb 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Set in NYC, this is an international corporate spy intregue. The main character is strong, likable and approachable. He is admirable and the "bad guys" are reallllllly bad. Short on the close, but a tight plot with interesting chapter layout. ...more
Apr 25, 2010 rated it liked it
All you have to do to realize how differently each books affects each individual is to read reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. Clearly some books resonate for a whole variety of different reasons. This book is a good example of that.

Ray's relationship to his dying father is done, I think, in a very sensitive and emotional manner that resonated more than a few of my chords as I had gone through similar experiences with my father last fall. I suspect for many people, it would have been just boring.
Apr 09, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Let me start with a brief tangent. I literally happened onto this book by wandering the aisles of my local Barnes & Noble. If bookstores go away because of the internet then I will eventually run out of stuff to read because there will be no aisles to browse. And I always thought it was undiluted bullshit that you can't judge a book by its cover because I was first drawn to this by its cover. Okay. The characters here are very complex and vivid and I always knew who was who unlike other books I' ...more
Flow Chi Minh
Jul 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Blending big business in with shady elements on the page is no new thing, it's merely art imitating life. But Harrison continues to prove he knows his stuff (or at least seems to--what do I know--I work in shipping) on the ledger side of the equation. This adds a sense of realism to his characters throughout his bibliography, a reason I keep coming back to his novels. That said, there is some really over the top stuff on the street side on occasion in The Finder, and these moments all involve po ...more
Jun 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: thrill-seekers
Recommended to Tiffany by: Entertainment Weekly
Shelves: ew-picks
So far, very fast-paced and exciting. Brilliant descriptive imagery; I feel like I'm in New York City and I've never been. Hate to have to put it down...
Whew!! What a great thriller; truly one of the best I have ever read. This author gets every detail exactly right and unlike most thrillers, I wasn't dissatisfied by how things wrapped up. Recommended for anyone who wants their heart to beat fast...
Feb 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, crime, thriller
A really smart clever thriller. A compelling account of corporate espionage gone wrong, with slightly smarter and more nuanced characters then one usually finds in such thrillers. The real star of the book for me was the way the author brings the sinister side of New York lurking under it all to life.
May 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
After the last few books I read I began to lose faith in the New York Times book list, but they went and totally redeemed themselves with the Finder. A pure action book which I read super fast and loved. Great, gritty read.
Nov 10, 2014 rated it it was ok
I read this book because of a good/interesting review in the L.A. Times - not sure why I finished it. Interesting telling of manipulations of the stock market by international players, including China. However, way too much gratuitous description of abhorrent cruelty and violence.
Azita Rassi
Apr 22, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is very well researched and quite well written, albeit more or less formulaic, but it isn’t the sort of crime fiction I enjoy. Give me Poirot-like mind puzzles or psychological thrillers any day of the week, and I’ll be a happy camper.
Apr 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
If you love suspense I highly recommend this book. The author does not waste any space or use words carelessly.
Dec 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Really great. Some people think it gives the Chinese a bad name but actually it seemed to be torn from the headlines.
Was pleasantly surprised with this thrill ride..this was one I had on my to-read list as highly recommended by an Amazon reader and that push, an intense need to knock some books of this impossible list of things to read in my lifetime LOL and the encouraging author blurbs on the back flap had this one highly anticipated and rightly so, it hooks you, compels you to read and savor needing to know what will happen next.. it was riveting. This story veered in so many directions and introduced so ma ...more
Nancy (Hrdcovers)
Apr 11, 2009 rated it really liked it

My introduction to Colin Harrison began with Manhattan Nocturne followed by The Havana Room and then one of his earlier books, Break and Enter (which most of his readers didn't love yet I enjoyed immensely). So I'm definitely a fan and look forward to reading anything by him. I think I would put this one on par with The Havana Room.

I read this on a recent trip to Vegas on a flight that should have taken four hours and ended up taking seven with all of the runway delays. Consequent
Brett T
May 07, 2015 rated it did not like it
Colin Harrison seems to really, really want to be Tom Wolfe. His suspense novel The Finder is filled with the kind of reporting that Wolfe uses to such good effect (and which itself is modeled on Melville's Moby Dick or Hugo's Les Miserables). Wolfe skillfully inserts his reportage into the story in such a way that the reader simply follows it along in the narrative.

Finder isn't nearly as interesting or skillful. The fact that Harrison's setting a crime thriller in the middle of some high-financ
Jan 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Ray Grant is “the finder”, a brave, caring, haunted man looking for Jin Li, a beautiful woman who mysteriously broke up with him and who’s now in deep trouble. Finding her involves untangling a complicated knot of people and problems extending from China to Manhattan. It also means understanding and avoiding the horrible, bizarre deaths befalling other players in the story. This well-crafted mystery will keep readers up all night; at the same time, it offers a fascinating look at human foibles a ...more
Jul 17, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Karen P4 (unless she recommended it to me? can't remember!)
I really loved this modern New York gangland thriller in the beginning--dynamite characters from all over the place: Chinese immigrants, ex-911 firefighters, old-school Long Island gangsters, big-business assholes, plastic surgery wives, and dying detectives. Really interesting intrigue, gross-out murders, detailed info about microcosms of society (how to make a stock rise and fall, how the sewage industry works, what information will people pay big bucks for). However, it sort of lost cohesion ...more
Oct 27, 2009 rated it liked it
Okay, surprisingly I liked this book. I borrowed it from my mother and I read it in 2 days. It was interesting to me because of all the ins and outs of big business in NYC intrigue me. It kept me in suspense -I could never guess what was going to happen next. The author outsmarted me and I liked it...I just don't like to predict what is going to happen next...and I certainly was unable to do that with this book.

Warning - a few of the scenes were vulgar or the point where I was emba
Jan 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime
Well written, great story line and one hell of a way to begin this saga! Two young women killed in one of the worst ways to die in recent memory. What a shitty way to go! You know urine NYC when you get snuffed by excrement, it must be those devious, bohemian, artsy-craftsy type characters, or is it? I was hoping the rest of the plot wasn't going to be as distasteful but it concluded in just the opposite; an effective, engaging thriller. Mr. Harrison tended to dwell upon the history of nearly ev ...more
Apr 05, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommended to Corny by: NY Times Book Review
Shelves: thrillers
This thriller is worth reading for the interesting characters that pop up along the way like Ears Moleson, a minor player whose name and eventual demise is just one of the fun surprises in the book. The description of the sewage business is another odd but interesting sidelight. The last third of the book is somewhat absurd as thrillers tend to get but the action is fast and furious and holds the reader's interest. The overly detailed but not very understandable description of the financial mane ...more
Beverly Lawrence
Feb 19, 2011 rated it did not like it
It seemed the author was trying to find the most awful ways to die possible, for the involved characters. There really was no 'mystery' involved, as the means, motive and opportunity were quickly revealed. As for 'suspense', rather than 'mystery' - well, I suppose one might read on, just to see whether the 'hero' and his intended will survive their own stupidity. This book has the added 'bonus' of making the reader thoroughly disheartened, when considering the likelihood of thorough corruption i ...more
Henk Roi
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was ok
Enjoyable enough if you want some light reading and can stand the gratuitous violence and gruesome filth. The book paints a believable enough picture (alas) of corporate New York but goes too much into technical detail to my taste. The scenes between Ray Sr and Jr are some of the strongest in the book. The relationship between the son and his dying father is described in terms of practical filial care and paternal final making up the reckoning kind of help that try to make light of the implicit ...more
May 30, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
The cast of The Finder sets up like a bad joke: enter a Chinese woman, a pharma rep, a billionaire tycoon, a sewage specialist, a Chinese entrepreneur, a Mexican mafia boss, and former CIA agents. Surprisingly, at least to me, Harrison manages to concoct a story connecting each of these outlandish characters, fittingly embedded in New York's diverse social-fabric, in a fun, spirited thriller.

An easy summer read done best with sand at your feet and cold lemonade (full of Grey Goose) in your free
Aug 25, 2008 rated it it was ok
Listened to this on audiobook - was annoyed with the reader's fake-Asian accents for the Chinese characters and his digressions into random minutiae like the warning label on a drug bottle and how to lift a stock's price. Some scenes, like a series of cell phone calls near the end of the book, were hilarious and tension-filled at the same time and broke through the muck. It was gripping in the beginning and gory throughout, but by the last half of the book I just wanted to finish it bacause I wa ...more
Bookmarks Magazine

Reminiscent of Tom Wolfe's and Raymond Chandler's novels, The Finder received mostly rave reviews. Although somewhat of a basic thriller, it contains excellent portraits of greedy, corrupt men and women and of a New York rotten to the core. "In [Harrison's:] New York," notes the Washington Post, "the evil that men do is indivisible." Critics praised Harrison's sharp eye for nuance

Feb 09, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: modern-lit
It took me two months to finish this book mainly because it just couldn't hold my interest. The story was fast-paced, but I didn't connect with the characters. He would flit from present tense to past tense in the same paragraph at times causing confusion. I also thought the dialog was sometimes clumsy, especially when he was trying to do foreign accents. Violence was way more graphic than it needed to be. The story was creative and well developed enough that I wanted to finish itm but I really ...more
Sam Reaves
Aug 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
From one of my new favorite writers. Nobody's writing better literary thrillers than Colin Harrison, and there aren't too many people writing better anything. This one takes a look at information, the kind of valuable information that companies are careful to conceal-- except when they're careless with their paper waste. What if a smart criminal entrepreneur founded an office cleaning company just to get access to the things companies want shredded? Harrison's books always show you something uns ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Dead Irish (Dismas Hardy, #1)
  • Fair Warning (Jack McEvoy, #3)
  • The Eighth Detective
  • The Black Angel (Charlie Parker, #5)
  • Broken
  • A Murder on the Appian Way (Roma Sub Rosa, #5)
  • The Professionals (Stevens & Windermere, #1)
  • The First Horseman
  • At All Costs
  • Neanderthal
  • Heat
  • The Quiller Memorandum
  • Star of the Sea
  • Green River Rising
  • Atlantis
  • In the Moon of Red Ponies (Billy Bob Holland, #4)
  • Watch on the Rhine (Posleen War: Sidestories, #1)
  • Dvärgen/Barabbas
See similar books…
Colin Harrison is a crime novelist. He is a vice president and senior editor at Scribner.
He lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn, with his wife, the writer Kathryn Harrison, and their three children (Sarah, Walker and Julia).

He attended: Haverford College, BA 1982; University of Iowa Writers' Workshop. MFA 1986

His short nonfiction has appeared in The New York Times, New York Magazine, The Washington Po

Related Articles

If you ask us, it's always the perfect time to lose yourself in a page-turning mystery. To help you sleuth out a new read, we asked the...
87 likes · 79 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »