Yes - JLB always stands up to multiple readings. The plot, characters, narrative voice, humour, and depth of emotion in this story make it a very rewarding experience
Anytime Hugh is knocking around. Or Deaf. Will Patton's delivery is brilliant, particularly for these two characters.
Hugh or Deaf!
Nobody should ever be permitted to read James Lee Burke other than Will Patton. I'm addicted.
The story starts with life in a prison camp. It’s cruel and bad and depressing. Then the two guys escape, and they’re on the run. It’s hard. This is not a fun read. But it was a good story. It turns into some historical fiction with Sam Houston leading the Texans against the Mexicans. The Alamo and the battle at San Jacinto are included.
I really enjoyed the character Hugh. He was nasty. I wouldn’t want to be him or do what he does, but he makes being an older guy “cool.” I don’t mind being older if I can be like him. (Don’t get me wrong, I hope I am never like him, but ...) His survival instincts were amazing. He was crafty, competent, impressive, cantankerous, ornery, and a good decision maker in desperate circumstances. He was always getting into trouble, couldn’t keep his mouth shut, insulted the wrong people, and not good at keeping a job. I liked Hugh even though I shouldn’t.
The other main character was Son. What an honorable guy, his honesty kept coming out.
I loved the narrator Will Patton. He is now one of my favorite narrators.
Genre: historical fiction, prison fiction
As usual, Will Patton's delivery was perfect and was probably all that kept me listening to this story. Unlike most books I listen to....and I've listened to most of James Lee Burke's....I just couldn't keep my focus on this one. The story just didn't seem to go anywhere or have a point that I could identify with. Maybe I was just in the wrong mood for it but generally, when listening to a really good story, I do not want to stop to do anything else. This time, I was hoping for something to interrupt me so I'd have something more interesting to do. Just not my cup of tea, I guess.
... And Will Patton should play Sun Holland.
Not to sound like a member of the heard, but this story is Amazing ;)
There is certainly a recognition of characters from prior series, but I think that is part of the magic. The flow of the story blends perfectly with the writers in-depth description of this flawless and surprising tale from the past. Though it is fiction, I found myself googling the main characters to try and see where their story ends.
To anybody ready to pass on this novel because of its short length, Don't you dare! This is a must hear. A captivating, one- sitting, listen with a satisfying finish.
Thank you JLB.
This is only my second audio book, and it doesn't compare to the first book with regard to genre and depth.
It was enjoyable, but I wouldn't go so far as to say it kept me on the edge of my seat.
It meant everything, since there were so many different characters.
We did, in fact, listen to it in one sitting while travelling.
James Lee Burke is such a skilled writer. His descriptive phrases bring sharp images to the imagination. This is a small book, but the story did not seem small. It moved along briskly. The characters that he created seemed so real, one would almost think he actually knew them and shared firsthand in their real life adventures. The narrator was nothing short of fabulous. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a terrific story and great characters, regardless of how one feels about western genre books. This one is special.
I did not realize that this book was about thirty years old until I started listening.
Performance was not the issue.
I did not listen past the first few chapters.
Please read reviews and research the book if you are looking for current updated stories
My overwhelming sense with this book was that it was another Dave Robecheu novel transported back in time. First, I should say that I listened to any book I can find that Will Patton reads. I particularly like the Dave Robecheu novels. Second, I like the 'gum-shoe' cop books that Burke writes. But, Third, this one was simply and only the same two characters of Cleat or Pete and Dave. Unfortunately, I think Will Patton got caught up in the familiarity of the 'voice' of the book and by a quarter the way in he was using the same exact voice of Dave & Cleat.
In the end, the same voice, the same style, the same characters and just moving it to the Texas independence fight - it just didn't cut it for me. Basically, this book blew chunks.
Either Burke needs to take a vacation or he needs to try a little harder and create some new characters or . . . he could just write Dave Robecheu novels.