**A couple of very mild spoilers below**
I want to say first and foremost that this book was very good. It was very action-packed, interesting and the audio quality was gangbusters. I believe another reviewer compared it to being similar to what you would get if Chuck Palahniuk wrote a book combining the best elements of "House" and "The Sopranos". That reviewer was correct. This is a really interesting take on two old themes: hospital dramas and mob movies. The author, being a med student himself, inserts a lot of medical expertise into the book. The protagonist, much like Dr. House, has an off-beat way of approaching his job. He does his job well, isn't necessarily emotionally entangled in his charges and has somewhat of a laissez-faire all-around 'tude. When his former mob life careens into his current med life, a series of flashes backward and forward take place to give you the sum of his character. It is a very interesting character study and there is surely a ton of action going on for adrenaline junkies.
The narration and audio presentation are top notch. I mostly enjoyed the music and sound effects added throughout but once or twice they took me out of the flow of the story.
Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for an exciting book to read. As a person who loves to re-read books, I probably won't ever re-read this one but I will likely listen to the second part.
This book is part noir, part pulp, and very entertaining! You believe this story from start to finish. No one could make up this stuff, right? Wrong, but enjoy it anyway! It is reminiscent of Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, which is one of my favorite books. It's is raw, hard-boiled, gritty, and really in your face but fun to read!! I would read or listen to anything written by this author!
At the top. Incredibly clever - amazing writing. This will be the first book I listen to more than once.
This book is fresh, truly original.
This is the first. This narrator is excellent and perfect in this book.
Laughed out loud and often. Engaged - listened in one day.
Ex-military high school math teacher.
If you are looking to relax your hold on reality and what is physically possible, then yes this is a good book. Reminds me of the Remo Williams books.
It requires a reader to forget a person's physical limits and know that the goverment WITSEC program is utterly stupid putting a person back in the same city they are from.
I know he wrote one, but for me to read it would, it would have to be on sale, drastically.
To graphic for my tastes but this book was a brilliant surprise, a contender for the best book of the year.
Parts of this book were delightful and interesting, but some sections (the two trips to Coney Island, the fight with the assassin, the deliberation before the final altercation) were maddeningly egregious in the writer's use of excessive detail, exhausting thought processes, and boring tedium. This writer does not belong to the minimalist school of writing. Every movement is described with nothing left out.......slowing the pace to such a degree that I simply left the room to retrieve a cup of coffee, letting the narrative drone on. In addition, I think that many of the sexual references, including one unbelievable scene in the Coney Island "fright scene" are so unreal that the terminology and the actions seem a bit juvenile.....and the sort that would appeal to adolescent males. (I did repeat some of these references to my female friends; none of them were the slightest bit amused.)The earlier flashbacks, the main character's trip to Poland, his earlier life are extremely interesting. In addition, the author's description of many of the medical decisions made by his "doctor" delighted me with the unexpected deductions...and his view of life is undeniably humorous. Some plot devices seemed undeveloped (such as the courtroom scene, the strangely abbreviated love affair, and his stupid, fateful decision to accompany his former friend), but I suspect that this is probably considered to be humor by younger readers.
After the snail's pace of much of the rest of the book, the abrupt ending annoyed me. Also, I didn't understand why the character, who had previously announced that he disliked his profession, now, all of a sudden, seemed anxious to continue. I also was nonplussed that his former mentor, who, earlier was not available for help (for no apparent reason), then offered him tepid advice, all of a sudden showed up at the end to give him some advice (like some things can't be helped) and, bingo! The story is concluded with little plot resolution. (For example, what about his nemesis' gangster father? And what does the character do at the end?) Very Strange.
This is the first performance of Petkoff that I have heard. His voice and timbre is excellent.
I would probably not be interested.
This book was so interesting in some parts and so deadly dull or irritating in others that I can only wish that he'd had a better editor.
Beat the Reaper is vulgar, brutal, abusive, and shot up with more adrenaline than an ER shock cart. A doctor with a bullet-wound sized chip on his shoulder stumbles his way through his hospital ward and back alleys, leaving mostly blood (from both his patients and his enemies) behind. The writing is sharp and witty, and the somewhat non-linear plot is well woven and easy enough to follow. The sound design on this audiobook is particularly noteworthy, with music during intense sequences and the occasional ambient soundtrack when certain locations call for it. The narrator is great, and every line is dripping with the main character's well-earned cynicism. My only complaint is that the overall story is a little ridiculous, especially the climax, and I think I would have preferred if it were a little less pulpy.
Beat the Reaper definitely made it into the top 10. Quite possibly even the top 5.
Beat the Reaper is the first book I have listened to in this genre so I can't really say for sure what I would compare it to. I am listening to the second book in the series, Wild Thing.
Everything! Robert Petkoff really captures the character and brings this story to life. I honestly believe that he fit this role perfectly. Robert Petkoff and anything mafia is pure gold.
I wouldn't say extreme but I did find some parts to be humorous. There were also parts that were quite graphic and as I visualized them I would shudder.
A great listen and perfect narrator.
always hyper, chatting away and eating lol.
Considering that this was my very first audio book listened too, overall this was a great book. Very well narrated. What I enjoyed the most was how well the narrator got into character, he was able to use the proper accents and tone of voice for the characters in the book. I think thats the most important factor of listening to an audiobook. It's how well the narrator, narrates. The storyline however, was a bit confusing for me. I found it difficult to focus at the beginning of the book, seeing how the narrator jumps from present to past often. Midway through the book, i was able to tie the parts that i found found confusing and understand what was going on. The part i enjoyed the most was the ending of the book. It was edge-of-your-seat climax and ending. It's always great to have a thrill especially at the end that has you wipe your forehead clean from relief for the characters sake. I gave the story 4 stars for order of past to present, but maintaining focus, unlike other books that explain a history for about 6 chapters, then the fun begins. This book started off with what was going on then a brief history then back to present, good stuff man.
Aside from comparing the book to all the mafia books in the world (well not all lol) i would honestly compare it to a TV series, where the main character is building up to the climax from show to show and hit you with the strong ending.
His overall performance was great. It's what i gave the only five stars in my rating, because he got so into character its one one of the reasons i kept on reading
towards the beginning of the book like i mentioned before since it was my first audio book i had trouble reading and giving full attention to. but after the middle i definitely did listen to the book in one setting. rather enjoyable.
The book is based off a ex mafia member, who then turns doctor. I can definitely appreciate the narrators witty and sarcastic humor within the book. A little too descriptive with the violence and murder scenes but overall if you enjoy an exciting read this is for you.