I enjoyed this book right up to the point that the main character started acting irredeemably stupidly and obnoxiously. Unfortunately, I wasn't nearly as fooled or shocked at the big reveal as the main character and that really brought the book to an unsatisfactory conclusion for me. That said, I very much enjoyed the trip almost all the way to the end and if not for the feeling of frustration at not being able to follow the main character all the way through, I would have given this book 4 stars or more.
Moved to Tyler, Tx
If there had been closure about the disappearance of the main characters two friends. I started this book with anticipation of discovering the truth behind his amnesia and his friends disappearance and neither one was answered, soooo disappointing !
Probably not I was very disappointed. I don't like to be left hanging at the end.
No but I thought he was very good and would definitely listen to him again.
I just felt like the whole thing was a waste of my time.
I feel compelled to write a review, despite the fact that the novel is several years old. I really want more people to experience this author, so here we go!
I won't give a plot synopsis since many other reviewers have. Instead, I'll focus on why I enjoyed this book. One caveat: I have only recently become an avid suspense/thriller/mystery reader. I'm relatively new to the genre, and so far I have yet to find another author in this genre that keeps me hooked past the first few books. So, maybe this is a major reason why the whole "lack of formula following" or "deviating from traditional formats" did not phase me at all. In fact, it was a welcome change.
It's true what they've been saying. The plot is most certainly secondary to character development, setting the scene, and adhering to a realistic story. I swear, I honestly believed this story could have happened. Unlike other books in the genre that end spectacularly well for the protagonist and bring the antagonist to full justice in a blazing final moment of intense action, this book simply ended with an almost anticlimactic finale. Some characters had to pay for their actions, and good did not necessarily triumph over evil. An important issue is left unresolved, which probably should have gotten me all worked up, but surprisingly it did not. I loved the way it wrapped up. I found it satisfying. I was so invested in the characters and the Dublin Murder Squad, which were the true focus of the novel.
Tana French is a master at her craft. She is my favorite author. That feels bizarre to write, since I am a voracious reader and have never been able to say with certainty that any one author is my favorite (I'm much more of the list of favorites by genre types). Her writing is extraordinary. It is vidid, thorough, descriptive, and slow-paced. I mean that in a positive way. I never felt she was hurrying through anything in order to get to something more important. Every sentence was clearly very important to her. Her dialogue was the most authentic I've ever encountered in any book. Yes, there is language and sexual references and all that. However, it did not seem sensationalized to me, or worse, inserted for no good reason other than to make a character seem more hard-core. One especially suspenseful tool she uses is to write as if Rob were telling you the story after the fact. There is a lot of foreboding resulting from Rob peppering his narration with hints along the lines of "She was trying to tell me something important," and "I should have known..." and "This was an important..." And, as the listener, I could not figure out why a seemingly innocuous moment was so vital until the conclusion.
Steven Crossley was a perfect choice as the narrator. I thought he nailed the persona of Rob Ryan. He has a lovely, rich, expressive voice. It did take me a few moments to get used to the cadence of his voice, especially when reading female characters. That is in no way a criticism, however, just an observation. Sometimes a narrator grabs me right away and I fall right into the book. Sometimes, it takes me a little longer. He's in the latter category.His narration, though, is definitely a success in my opinion.
If you have passed over the book in the past, or are on the fence about it, and it's in your typical genre choice, I recommend downloading this book right now.
This author is so talented- if you love a realistic story with human characters and a truly interesting setting, you will love all of her novels. Don't miss them all.
I really liked how the book started out, the two mysteries (one in the past, one in the present) and particularly how the characters of the two detectives and their relationship to each other was developed. However, towards the middle of the book, the story just turns depressing. Not thrilling or scary, but depressing and that is not the kind of thing I'm looking for in this kind of book. In addition there are some lose ends which are never picked up so that you are left wondering: "What was the point of that whole strand?"
Linda in Omaha
There were hours of this book when I actually felt angry that I was wasting my time listening to it. Fast-forwarded through much of it in the middle. In the end, I didn't have any feeling of satisfaction in the story, the ending, or the narrator. Narrator didn't keep the voices the same, and it was hard to keep track of which character I was listening to.
I will remember not to ever purchase another book in any form written by Ms. French.
I have given the narrator, Steven Crossley, only 1 star for his performance, but considering the material he had to work with, maybe he wasn't really so terrible afterall.
I read equal parts NF + F: (Follet + Tolstoy + Hillenbrand + Monk Kidd + Preston+Child), practical, hands on guides, + KidLit.
I am of the mind that there is an unspoken contract between a writer and a reader that the first chapter sets up. I expect the first chapter to set the tone, conflict, and motivation for the hero. In this novel the hero does NOT achieve a single goal set out for him by choice. He's a failure who falls flat on his face and even though the introductory chapters had me hooked, not only does the story not deliver what is promised, but by the end of the book I despised the main character for his weakness and inability to change.
The author never offers explanation for the very reason why I read this book in the first place - to find out what happened to the MC and his two friends who disappeared one summer night in the woods when they were twelve. As if these were not disappointing enough (having an MC who does not change after more than 20 hours of reading and never discovering the truth about one of the central mysteries of the novel), the central murder mystery of the novel is also a disappointment! The murder case drags on and on in seemingly real time, not fast-paced murder mystery novel time, and lacks a single interesting or unseen twist or turn in the plot. I wanted to like this book, but the bottom line is that the author does not deliver. Where are the red herrings? Why have pages and pages of description that never pan out to hold significance? Why set us up to like the MC only to make him out to be the most bland and cowardly character in the book? Why have an MC who does nothing to change his situation? SPOILER ALERT: The hero of this book does not get the girl, does not solve the mystery of his childhood, does not unlock his repressed childhood memories, does not get the promotion, and does not change his life for the better. Spare yourself the disappointment.
The narrator for this book, Steven Crossley, was fine and did a great job. I would certainly consider other books narrated by him.
I drive a truck so I listen to a lot of books.
Steven Crossley was the only highlight of this audible book.
Not a chance, the summary was misleading, the main character was about as exciting as oatmeal
Mark, at least he cursed with some sort of conviction. O' Kelly was not that bad, and I could always tell when a woman was speaking. The performance was the best part.
The narrator was excellent. I will look for more Steven Crossley readings
The summary of this book is misleading, be ready for a truly boring detective story, at 3 different times I actually stopped listening and purchased other Audible tittles. I expected so much more from the summary.
Most books are predictable but this one was not. Great ending
Yes he does. He does this by leading you on but not quite giving you all the answers until the end
It keeps the listener interested but later, the main character frustrates you! I am impatient about stupidity. It was necessary for the story but frustrates just the same.
The actual country side of a country I have never visited.
No. You need breaks.