The beauty of this series is AXP's interest in and contribution to the story; in this one he opened and he closed the story, but the plot was so fragmented that it was hard to decide if this book was about Constance or Pendergast. At the end, even though Constance's role is revealed as being as key, I found this episode weak and not believable.
But the story itself is what lacks the ability to hold interest. There is a monastery, there are monks. There are trusts made and broken. AXP takes off and leaves Constance at the monastery to question the most secluded monk... too easy, really. An important and dangerous artifact is stolen from the monastery and the monks ask Pendergast to retrieve it.
Then there is an ocean voyage and many red herring bad characters. There is an apparently prime story line about the ship's captains, but those also relate to the found/missing artifact. There are ghostly characters, cliched sea characters, a luxury liner about to go Titanic and a half dozen or so odd deaths -- all in service to the missing artifact.
So, the crime is solved, but not before AXP falls under its spell and "disappears" -- by becoming bad AXP ---- for way too long. Constance tries to guide him back to his good self and ultimately AXP's strong thoughts of home and a visit from his dead(?) brother bring him back around to sanity. The ship is not lost and the bedeviled characters regain their sea legs. There is a reappearance of a former nemesis, and the book closes with suggestion of greater devastation to come. Lots of people die.
It is disappointing on many levels. I think that when AXP disappears early on from his own book, you can expect it to be a poorer cousin of the better books. It's as if the star of a series dies mid-season and they have to absent him and make an explanation -- like it was all a dream or some such thing. Except for a rather enjoyable chapter where AXP plays blackjack to foil the card counters on board, it was mostly without Pendergast's usual charm.
I feel I wasted my credit. I would rather have paid $5-6 for this and saved a credit. It was not a "good purchase."
STill, if you follow the series, the story does offer information necessary to go forward to the next, hopefully realistic and harrowing adventure.
This is the 8th book in the Pendergast series.I am only in the third chapter and so far, the storyline seems fine.
Very much. Had I not listened to the previous, much superior narrations of Pendergast books, I would create a completely different image of Pendergast and the other characters. Rene Auberjonois seems to ignore the fact that Pendergast is from New Orleans. He only starts to make a feeble attempt at a Southern/NO accent several hours into the story, after a conversation reveals that Pendergast is from New Orleans. The fact that P is from NO is major aspect of the persona and has been a much appreciated feature of previous narrations. Rene A's effort is a horribly botched one, I am sorry to say.
Similarly unfortunate is how he adopts an annoyingly high-pitched, affected voice when talking on behalf of Constance. Good grief. I am listening as I type and just heard the "Eastern European accent". It sounded like no Eastern European I have ever known.
Unfortunately, we are stuck with this narrator for the remainder of the books. I can only hope that his performance improves based on feedback or if he actually realizes what this character is all about. I wish I knew what went into the decision to hire this new narrator and give him a multi-book contract, especially when perfectly good and talented narrators have done a superb job on earlier projects.
Just in case Audible can put pressure on the publishers of audiobooks, here's a thought. I would recommend sticking with the "Don't change it if it ain't broke" adage. Previous narrators in this series were fine, and there was no need whatsoever to change to an inferior voice actor and give him a contract for all the books.
I am someone who enjoys audible books very much now that they exist. As a young student (real young) I can remember a teacher telling me how books can transport people to different places & open up a whole new world. This is how listening to audible books make me feel. Now if I can just stop falling asleep while listening to them at night I would be fine. Ha ha
Yes I like the way the authors come up with such good story plots. They never sieze to surprise me.
Any of the Pendergast books
Thye were great & so was this one
sure, but can't stay awake that long
yes, it will keep you on the edge of your seet
seems so real
yes, its one you can't put down to the end
all of the books from Preston are great and exciting, keep writing
An avid reader, demanding of the story, characters and narrator. Mysteries and historical fiction are my favorites.
Preston & Child have done it again. I was dubious that a story taking place on a luxurious ocean liner could offer the tension and suspense that was evident in the subway murders. No reptilian creature, no crazy overgrown infant, but still scary and satisfying.
Rene Auberjonois's narration was superb.
The latest installment in the Agent Pendergast series largely takes place on the maiden voyage of the Britannia – North Star’s newest and most luxurious ocean liner. Not quite sure why the synopsis says the Queen Victoria!
Although it gets off to a slow start, the book quickly picks up the pace as soon as Pendergast and Constance get to London. Although our two heroes are the only familiar faces from the Pendergast series, Lincoln and Child do not disappoint by introducing a new slew of characters aboard ship who spring to life and quickly envelop the reader into their struggles.
I really enjoyed this book. It was a change of pace from the New York City setting most of the novels center around. That said, I am looking forward to “Revenant” and seeing Nora and Bill again.
Yarn Yearner, Story Seeker, Legend Lover, Fable Fanatic and Tale Teller
I rarely listen to books more thanonce. I'll revisit this question in a few years
Constance Greene is an interesting little mystery
He sounds like I've always imagined Pendergast would.
Take Tibet to the love boat and douse in the unfathomable
Probably, in a few years. It has all the cool factiods and personality details to make for a really fun read.
It's part of a series, and should be read that way.
Super Irish and English accents!
I laughed a few times.
This is not my favorite Pendergast novel. If it had been my first Pendergast experience, I wouldn't have cared at all about the characters and probably wouldn't have read the other books. There was not enough character development. And compared to Scott Brick, Rene Auberjonois's performance doesn't hold up, especially when it comes to Pendergast's voice.
Rene Auberjonois is a wonderful actor and narrator, just not for Pendergast. So...yes.
I have purchased all of the books before this and listened to the "trilogy" Brimstone, Dance of Death and The Book of the Dead. Scott Brick gave a FABULOUS performance, as usual, bringing all of the characters to life giving each their own "voice" and personality.
Conversely Rene Auberjonois does Pendergast a terrible disservice and if it were not for my readings of prior books and Scott Brick I would never been aware of the refinement, bearing and personality of Aloysius.
I will miss this series but will NOT be purchasing the current balance of the series performed by Rene.