Will Patton reading James Lee Burke is like music to the ears! Absolutely beautiful. I found myself driving the long way home just to get further along in the story... and with gas prices what they are... that's saying something!
I particularly enjoyed Swan Peak because it features the same great New Orleans characters in an absolutely beautiful setting.
For those of you who enjoy James Lee Burke's Dave Robicheaux series, you will not be dissappointed.
If this is the first in the series you're considering, I would go back a few and maybe start with something like Crusader's Cross, then Tin Roof Blowdown, then Swan Peak. With the brilliant character development Burke does, I feel it's important to be introduced to the main characters on their own turf "pre-Katrina" then "post-Katrina"... then enjoy their run-ins with the Montana folk!
James Lee Burke is not for the faint of heart. Expect violence and strong sexual language. If that sort of thing doesn't bother you... you'll be hooked!
This is another outstanding James Lee Burke novel with a value-added feature: an audiobook also provides the talented Will Patton as narrator. In fact, it is difficult to decide what I enjoy the most - Burke's brilliant plots, complex characters and detailed panoramic scenery or Patton's voices.
I was worried when I read that Dave, Molly and Clete had left the enticing confines of Louisiana for Montana. I was wrong. This is vintage James Lee Burke, who I believe is the best mystery novelist in the world.
Avid audible listener for over 10 years.
I have listened to most of this series, and this is easily one you can read out of sequence. While the other novels take place in Louisiana, this is set in Montana. All the characters are the same, but the different setting makes it a novel that can stand by itself. Like most of the books you are sure that Dave and Clete will meet their end, but they manage to escape at the last moment again. The cast of evil characters is good, but other than one slight hint the most evil character almost appears out of nowhere at the end. I could say more that would give away the ending. As usual, the book is extremely violent, with the actions od Clete and Dave being not much better than the criminals. You always have to wonder how they escape being sent to jail themselves.
One of the best aspects of this series is the narration by Will Patton. He switches between voices effortlessly, and the voices are consistent among the books.
Swan Peak was a refreshing twist to this series and I really enjoyed it. Burke's rich descriptions make you feel like you are there, you can hear the Clark Fork Creek as he describes it. I loved this particular cast of characters and I loved the ending. It was fun to have other "good guys" in this story to mix it up with Clete and Dave.
Wow do I love this duo. I don't get excited about too many things but this combo of writer and narrator are the best I have come across. Get this book and tell your friends. I hope they both know how much joy they bring to peoples lives.
James Lee Burke and Will Patton are by far the finest pairing of author and narrator that I have every listened to. Burke's writing gets better with each book. In Swan Peak he continued to keep Dave and Clet their usual "hell raising" selves, while also introducing new and complex characters. This book was just as great as Pegasus Descending and The Tin Roof Blow Down, my favorite JLB works. Patton is so perfectly suited to read the Robicueax novels that it was truly difficult for me to listen to any of the older books in the series because they were performed by a different narrator. I wish that he could start at the beginning and reread every title in the series.
An enjoyable listen. I listen to audiobooks to be entertained and as a distraction from something mundane that I am doing like vacuuming or cleaning. With Burke's novels, I get fully engaged in the plot and is entertained by the fun and engaging characters of Dave and Clete.
Detective Robicheaux, his wife, and his buddy, Clete Purcell are vacationing in Montana at a friend's ranch. Their vacation is disrupted by murder. Yes, the plots of the Robicheaux novels are a bit formulaic but I like the formula. The publisher's summary gives a very good outline of the plot.
In this novel, Burke deviates a little from the usual formula in that in this story the really bad guy is totally unexpected and pretty much appears "out of nowhere" in the last few chapters of the novel. The violence is pretty high... even Dave is heavy handed (unusually violent) in this one. Some of the acts committed by Dave and Clete are not much better than those committed by the criminals. You always have to wonder how they will justify themselves and escape being sent to jail, they always get away with the crimes of voilence they commit. Dave and Clete are flawed to perfection! Suspend disbelief and enjoy!
Will Patton is his usual excellent self... Recommend...
Burke has a way with describing the beauty of Montana, and Will Patton's narration is just right for the characters. In Swan Peak, the plot is engaging, the characters generally well-developed, and the underlying themes of loss, betrayal, and loyalty are woven throughout the primary narrative about events gone very wrong amid the pure mountain landscape. I'd listen to another Burke/Patton combo anytime.
Great plot, kept me very interested. Loved the authors ability to paint a visual picture. The only negative for me was the language. I don't enjoy reading/hearing the "f" word used as much as it was.
May be the best Burke book yet !
It grabs you up front and never let's go. One high tension wave after another. Burkes great vocabulary challenges, stimulates and separates Burke's books from the paper mill detective stories.