Speaker, Coach, Author - in Reno, NV (A GREAT place!) I've been an avid Audible fan for several years. Listen on my iPhone many hours each week.
I am a HUGE fan of Preston & Child and their Pendergast series. I finished this one only because I am such a big fan and Rene Auberjonois is such a master narrator. I will certainly buy the next book in the series - but if it is as far off the mark as this one is, it will be my last. The reviews on this book, which I read the other day, long after I'd purchased mine since I had it on auto-purchase, were clearly wildly mixed. Some love it and others are feeling like I do - pretty disappointed. I won't go into all the craziness that was in this book, but suffice it to say that it didn't live up to everyone's expectations for what we want from our favorite FBI agent (and those who write about him).
Preston and Child must have known this series was running thin. Aside from an interesting plot line in Brazil, the other pieces seem to wrap up too cleanly and quickly. For the first time, I was able to figure out the last four hours before I heard them.
If you've listened to the entire series, this audio book won't have you wishing for another. Even the authors sound like they've had enough. As usual, narration was excellent.
The truth of the matter is that, if you are a fan of the series, you will listen to this book regardless...but it's definitely not up to the level of the first few (It IS better than Cold Vengeance, which wasn't even a full story). If you expect early Pendergast, you will be disappointed by the unrelated story lines that seem to be included in the book "just because," by the series of new characters that appear and are disposed off for no good reason, and by some of the ridiculous coincidences (i.e. a volcano that's about to erupt at precisely the right moment).
That said, if you download it like you would download the season finale of a TV series, you won't be disappointed. It is entertaining -- but definitely not great.
Getting kind of tired of these characters although Pendergast is more lively and interesting than in some of the previous stories. Still, there doesn't seem to be a real point to this series anymore. Maybe it's time for the authors to start something new.
I was extremely disappointed with the quality of the plot in this book. These authors are far better than this. There is a hodge podge of all the characters in the series and you are bounced from one feeble story to another without them meaning anything to the other. Pendergrast is not the strong character that we've grown to know and enjoy - he's turned into a miserable weakling that we are supposed to believe is driven to the brink of suicide by the death of someone that he's not even sure if he loves anymore?? The inclusion of all the characters made me feel like I was watching a ping pong match and wondering if there was ever going to be a tie-in or just a book of 4 or 5 stories taking place. From the very beginning of the book, I was thinking that I'd missed a chapter somewhere that would somehow make it all make more sense. I felt like I just had 5 different books open -- read a chapter in one, pick up another and read a chapter in that and so on - then start over.Best thing in this book was Rene Auberjonois.
I have read/listened to all the Pendergast stories, and enjoyed them all. This was by far my least favorite.
Think He did a fine job
I would not ask a friend to waste their time on this. It is a mish mash of different stories that seemingly do not have much in common. I expect Pendergast to be more organized, poised and much less emotional from all of his previous history.
They could have made the central character more like the Pendergast that we've come to know and love. Yes, some of the previous story lines have been huge and almost unbelievable, but this is like SuperPendergast who is out to save the world without a believable pretense. It is hard to write an accurate review without ruining the story for others who've not experienced the unreasonable and unbelievable occurrences that make this much less than it should have become.
As always, Mr. Auberjonois gives a fantastic performance. He is a joy to listen to and gives the book the most normal part of Pendergast that we have come to expect.
Yes, but it would be more of a supernatural movie than the thriller that the previous bbooks have given us.
Having read or listened to all of the Pendergast books I was finally completely disappointed in their newest offering, Two Graves. I have been concerned about the direction of the books for a while. I was troubled by the Diogenes story line and his interaction with Constance, largely because these characters were less than essential to the Pendergast theme. They were peripheral characters in different storylines that were afforded more than a useful share of the books.
I was troubled by the Stradivari storyline because it seemed an interminable load of back story serving no useful purpose again. I feel the authors have a need to demonstrate that they are worldly travelers deeply knowledgeable about the slightest nuance in broad swaths of lore. It sometimes becomes a bit of self-aggrandizement at the expense of the story.
I was concerned at the lack of real content in Cold Vengeance. The back and forth with Esterhazy was tedious and reminiscent of Keystone Kops. Important plot revelations equaled about a chapter only.
Which brings us to Two Graves. I was already troubled at the notion of the Nazis. Why reboot this tired tired canard. Never mind the nod to Captain America in the opening…as Pendergast goes super hero. The deductive reasoning that leads to impossible clues reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes. The shocking mass killer reminiscent of Jack the ripper who we are to believe is the long lost progeny of a central character. And last but not least is the truly monumentally pointless exploration of the Constance story.
It seems the authors are truly finally lost or bereft of ideas and are throwing characters at the proverbial mud wall in hope of some success. I suggest a return to what made Pendergast compelling and different. Not a lot of heavy muddy pointless personal baggage. Rather a Kolchak-like penchant for uncovering strange occult appearing occurrences that are inevitably proven to be, not the work of ghosts and demons, but the work of bad people. He does not need a consistent buddy. D’agosta would be ok but the Laura Hayward character is not really useful. Also not useful is the whole girl from Kansas storyline. C’mon guys…come up with some new ideas or end the series honorably.
I won’t be buying another Pendergast book unless there is a change for the better. I stopped reading Two Graves halfway through. I may finish the book at some point but I needed to look away from this unfortunate disappointment.
It was great to have all the Child/Preston characters back! Narration is excellent. Knowing the previous books in the series gives this listen more depth, it is not the place to start the series but as on going it is wonderful!
I love all the Pendergast series. That said, this was as if the authors dropped pages of characters all over the floor and swept them up together in a haphazard fashion. This was the last of the "Helen" series, which played out like a soap opera with evil twins and not really dead characters, unknown children appearing and disappearing, and characters from other novels seemed to just drop in for a cameo. A seriously overly dramatic Pendergast went against his own character here, as well, which isn't logical. In these novels we are always asked to suspend our sense of reality a bit, but we usually do it willingly. This was unwilling. And all the answers to all the characters' life questions were unceremoniously answered as though it were a rush to the grand finale of the series. I had figured it was just that until the very ending, which seemed to leave one tiny window cracked open for a sequel in this continuing series, which has continued true to form so far. It was almost a parody; but not quite. As it was these authors and Pendergast, it was worthwhile--just not their best by far.