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Charles Atkinson

I am a blessed man!

Greensboro, NC, United States | Member Since 2005

968
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 270 reviews
  • 546 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 95 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
8
FOLLOWERS
352

  • Suspect

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Robert Crais
    • Narrated By MacLeod Andrews
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (4003)
    Performance
    (3576)
    Story
    (3572)

    LAPD cop Scott James is not doing so well, not since a shocking nighttime assault by unidentified men killed his partner, Stephanie, nearly killed him, and left him enraged, ashamed, and ready to explode. He is unfit for duty - until he meets his new partner. Maggie is not doing so well, either. The German shepherd survived three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan sniffing explosives before she lost her handler to an IED and sniper attack, and her PTSD is as bad as Scott’s. They are each other’s last chance.

    Jacqueline says: "Gripping Page Turner!!"
    "This is a must read, groundbreaking, remarkable!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up Suspect in three words, what would they be?

    Suspense, passion, healing. Crais puts us in the mind of a remarkable K-9 dog with realism and passion. He makes the training, care and relationship of the man and dog so interesting I could not stop listening. And he introduces us to a faction of police work and warfare we've never experienced before in this genre.

    In most police novels the hero never suffers from post traumatic stress disorder after being shot and/or seeing his partner shot or killed. In fact, I can't remember having ever read of this in fiction. In real life it happens to most officers involved in violence that results in tragedy. Crais masterfully takes us through the process of suffering and healing in an entertaining manner.

    He also gives us a heck of a good mystery.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Suspect?

    The opening two chapters set the stage for the whole book.


    What does MacLeod Andrews bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He did a great job on this one. For example, a k9 officer must use a commanding, alpha voice when giving orders to the animal. But he also has to baby talk his dog to build trust and relationship. Andrews was great in a difficult contrast...


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I listened to this book in one day!


    41 of 43 people found this review helpful
  • Tell No Lies

    • UNABRIDGED (12 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Gregg Hurwitz
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (347)
    Performance
    (316)
    Story
    (315)

    The scion of an old-money San Francisco family, Daniel Brasher left his well-paying, respectable money-manager position to marry his community organizer wife and work at a job he loves, leading group counseling sessions with recently paroled violent offenders. One night he finds an envelope - one intended for someone else that was placed in his office mailbox by accident. Inside is an unsigned piece of paper, a handwritten note that says, "Admit what you've done or you will bleed for it."

    karen says: "The purgatory of group therapy"
    "Great Entertainment Makes This Worth Your Time"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    When it comes to rating books I like I am fairly liberal with the stars. There were some flaws in this mystery, but what makes this such great entertainment for me is the group therapy sessions with felons and the depth of character unravelled in key players.

    Daniel Brasher is the only heir to one San Francisco's wealthiest fortunes. Much to the chagrin of his mother, he shunned managing the family fortune to become a counselor. As if that wasn't enough, he married a divorced Hispanic community organizer with heart cancer. But this is all background.

    Much of the book involves intricate, revealing and realistic group therapy scenes with hard core felons. Here is where Daniel's true genius is revealed. He is masterful as a therapist, leading his patients to heal themselves. The relationships here are complex and mysterious, because one of them just may be an active serial killer.

    The contrast of his mother's snobbery and his wife's work is constant source of humor and quite a bit more.

    There's great detective work involved and a great deal of suspense.

    Scott Brick can come off heavy handed at times, but not with this performance. He is great.

    Im giving this 5 stars because it truly is great entertainment.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Murder Bag

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Tony Parsons
    • Narrated By Colin Mace
    Overall
    (25)
    Performance
    (24)
    Story
    (24)

    Twenty years ago seven students became friends at their exclusive private school, Potter's Field. Now they have started dying in the most violent way imaginable. Detective Max Wolfe follows the bloody trail from the backstreets and bright lights of the city, to the darkest corners of the corridors of power. As the bodies pile up, Max finds he is fighting not only for justice, but for his own life....

    Amazon Customer says: "refreshing"
    "Can a narrator make a good book great?"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Colin Mace delivers a performance that puts him in a class with Ray Porter, Frank Mueller, Will Patton and Eduardo Ballerini. He hasn't read a lot on audible, but surely this is a breakout performance.

    In the first chapter we are witness to a brutal rape and murder that occurred some 20 years ago. In present day, suddenly men responsible for the crime begin to be murdered one by one. Obviously revenge is the motive, but what makes this novel so easy to enjoy is how the detectives unravel the mystery.

    The characters are well developed and thanks to Colin Mace, we are emotionally drawn into the life of a truly gifted detective.

    This was a great experience.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Becoming Quinn: Jonathan Quinn Series Prequel

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Brett Battles
    • Narrated By Scott Brick
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (212)
    Performance
    (188)
    Story
    (183)

    Meet Jake Oliver. The day will come when he's one of the best cleaners in the business, a man skilled at making bodies disappear. At the moment, however, he's a 22 year old rookie cop, unaware his life is about to change. In a burning barn a body is found--and the fire isn't the cause of death. The detectives working the case have a pretty good idea about what went down. But Officer Oliver thinks it's something else entirely, and pursues a truth others would prefer remain hidden - others who will go to extreme lengths to keep him quiet.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Excellent Story of How A Great Hero is Made"
    "Excellent Story of How A Great Hero is Made"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I purchased this 9 months ago and tried to listen to it. But I am impulsive and compulsive and did not give it proper attention. I know this because this time I started it from the beginning and was riveted for the next 8 hours of listening.

    It begins with a covert hit of some kind by highly trained professionals. The man in charge of cover up, called a cleaner, notes a few mistakes made during the operation, but is confident all loose ends are covered. But when a 22 year old rookie police officer begins noticing very obscure clues, the cleaner's job becomes infinitely more complicated.

    Fortunately for the cleaner, the rookie's inexperience and lack of authority renders his investigation useless by authorities. But the cleaner watches in amazement at the young cop's eye for detail and logic uncovers the truth of what really went down. But now another problem has reared its head. A key member of the hit squad wants the rookie dead.

    Thus begins the end of a talented police officer's career before it really began, and the recruitment and training of a professional cleaner in the covert world of espionage.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Concrete Blonde: Harry Bosch Series, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2832)
    Performance
    (1542)
    Story
    (1549)

    The Dollmaker was the name of the serial killer who had stalked Los Angeles ruthlessly, leaving grisly calling cards on the faces of his victims. Now, with a single faultless shot, Harry Bosch thinks he has ended the city's nightmare.

    Barry says: "Wow! Excellent Bosch thriller!"
    "Quintessential American Police Procedural"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is one of the first Bosch novels and one I'd read many years ago. Fortunately the only things I tend to remember are interdepartmental and personal relationships about Bosch so the mystery was new to me. It's a great one.

    If this was a new release I'd give the review more time. One key aspect is the excellent performance of Dick Hill. More than one of the narrators of this series read like its a documentary. Hill brings the best out in Bosch!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Black Ice: Harry Bosch Series, Book 2: Harry Bosch, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Michael Connelly
    • Narrated By Dick Hill
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2658)
    Performance
    (1559)
    Story
    (1570)

    Narcotics officer Cal Moore's orders were to look into the city's latest drug killing. Instead, he ends up in a motel room with his head in several pieces and a suicide note stuffed in his back pocket.

    Daniel Mcafee says: "Good Listen"
    "This Is What Hooks You On Harry Bosch and Connelly"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've read and/or listened to all of Connely's work. Until the recent influx of Northern European authors, he was easily my favorite novelist. It dawned on me that I could not remember all of the earlier Bosch novels so I picked up Black Ice through the Whisper Sync phenomenon that allows you to purchase the audible version so cheaply.

    Black Ice is essential to the Bosch series because it is truly a great procedural on its on. In the first chapter Connelly introduces his hero as the hard nosed outsider on the detective squad who never lets politics or personal gain interfere with his work.

    When the author came to Greensboro to promote The Overlook, (that mystery begins in Greensboro), he was asked about Harry's love for jazz. Connelly explained that when writing, jazz instrumentals are not the distraction that blues and rock, his first loves, are. In Black Ice we are introduced to Harry's love for the saxophone in particular. So I found the Coleman Hawkins & Ben Webster channel on Pandora. It's been remarkable background music while listening and working!

    Dick Hill is a huge improvement over Len Cariou, who is the narrator in some of the later books.

    As for the story itself, it's a great mystery with a great twist I never saw coming.
    Highly recommended!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Wayfaring Stranger

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 10 mins)
    • By James Lee Burke
    • Narrated By Will Patton
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (80)
    Performance
    (73)
    Story
    (73)

    It is 1934 and the Depression is bearing down when 16-year-old Weldon Avery Holland happens upon infamous criminals Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow after one of their notorious armed robberies. A confrontation with the outlaws ends as Weldon puts a bullet through the rear window of Clyde’s stolen automobile. Ten years later, Second Lieutenant Weldon Holland and his sergeant, Hershel Pine, escape certain death in the Battle of the Bulge and encounter a beautiful young woman named Rosita Lowenstein hiding in a deserted extermination camp.

    Marci says: "Near perfect. One of Burke's Best."
    "Outstanding Addition to the Holland/Texas Saga"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The combination of Burke and Patton is without peer. Personally I favor his Hackberry Holland series. This tale involves a cousin of the infamous sherif of Rain Gods.

    When I listen to Burke, his attention to landscape and remarkably eloquent descriptions of people, time and space, I find myself wondering if I am taking the natural beauty of my own surroundings for granted. I live in a beautiful city and state, but when I try to describe it, I find myself at a loss for words. Burke's words bring out the beauty and grace of places, and then delivers the impact from their desecration by industry.

    I read where a single, significant event in her childhood helped Flannery OConnor develop her genius in writing. Burke uses such an event in the life of his hero, Weldon Holland at age 16 to help define his character with his run in with Bonnie and Clyde. It's brilliant.

    This is great tale worth our time. Do not pass this one up.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Cop Town: A Novel

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Karin Slaughter
    • Narrated By Kathleen Early
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (215)
    Performance
    (188)
    Story
    (193)

    Atlanta, 1974: It's Kate Murphy's first day on the job, and the Atlanta Police Department is seething after the murder of an officer. Before the day has barely begun, she already suspects she's not cut out to be a cop. Her male uniform is too big, she can't handle a gun, and she's rapidly learning that the APD is hardly a place that welcomes women. Worse still, in the ensuing manhunt, she'll be partnered with Maggie Lawson, a cop with her own ax to grind (and a brother and uncle already on the force) - a strategy meant to isolate Kate and Maggie from the action.

    Charles Atkinson says: "Outstanding, Gutsy Crime Novel Read by a Master"
    "Outstanding, Gutsy Crime Novel Read by a Master"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Having just finished three of the best crime novels I've ever read, I never expected Cop Town to be as good, if not better than Mr Mercedes, Nesbo's The Son, and Bombproof.

    Cop Town is a gritty story of the first police women to infiltrate the Atlanta PD in the early 70's. Someone called "the shooter" is killing cops at point blank range. The Atlanta PD of the 1970's was a force in turmoil with the integration of blacks and women into its ranks. No rock of bigotry is left unturned as the two main characters must dance around a smothering culture of racism, misogyny, homophobia to find the killer.

    There are sophisticated and powerful family systems in place that greatly influence the police work of the two main characters. Karin Slaughter masterfully weaves them into the tale with a depth of emotion I've rarely found in any crime novel.

    The reader, Kathleen Early is masterful, bringing every character to life and delivering the perfect pitch to every scene. This performance equals any effort of Ray Porter, Eduardo Ballerini and Will Patton.

    Please read Cop Town. It is Slaughter's best work and puts her in rare company.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • The Cobweb

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson, J. Frederick George
    • Narrated By Marc Vietor
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (224)
    Performance
    (108)
    Story
    (114)

    When a foreign exchange student is found murdered at an Iowa University, Deputy Sheriff Clyde Banks finds that his investigation extends far beyond the small college townall the way to the Middle East. Shady events at the school reveal that a powerful department is using federal grant money for highly dubious research. And what its producing is a very nasty bug.

    Linda says: "loved it"
    "Great Storytelling With Great Suspense"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. It has great characters and a gripping narrative. I have to say the narration was 5 star when in character, but lacking otherwise.

    The setting is both a small Iowa college town and Washington DC at the beginning of Iraq war in 1990. Cobweb loosely refers to government bureaucracy interfering with and redistributing good intelligence work in order to fit existing policy.

    There's unforgettable characters in constant conflict with each other and everyone is "cobwebbed." I really did not want this book to end.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Joyland

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Stephen King
    • Narrated By Michael Kelly
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2924)
    Performance
    (2706)
    Story
    (2707)

    Set in a small-town North Carolina amusement park in 1973, Joyland tells the story of the summer in which college student Devin Jones comes to work as a carny and confronts the legacy of a vicious murder, the fate of a dying child, and the ways both will change his life forever. Joyland is a brand-new novel and has never previously been published.

    Bella McGuire says: "The sweest and creepiest coming of age story!"
    "Really Good Tale"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I think it's fair to say this is a quickie by King standards. It's a very good one. Like most all of his work the characters seem more like old friends, people you know and like and hope the best for.

    It's a murder mystery set in an aging carnival type theme park in 1973 North Carolina. There actually is one here called South of the Border. Google it for a laugh. There's a very small supernatural element which has little to do with the story or it's outcome. In truth it would be a great thriller without any supernatural occurrences.

    Just sit back and let reader Michael Kelly take you back to 1973. You won't regret it for a moment.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Silkworm

    • UNABRIDGED (17 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Robert Galbraith
    • Narrated By Robert Glenister
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1331)
    Performance
    (1240)
    Story
    (1235)

    When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband has gone off by himself for a few days - as he has done before - and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home. But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine's disappearance than his wife realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows.

    Crystal says: "A Yawner"
    "Well Written, Well Read Page Turner!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Like it's predecessor, The Silkworm features a remarkable synergy between ts two main characters. It's a romp through the London literary world, and if Gailbreth is at all accurate, Hollywood has nothing on this group of talented misfits.

    Like others, I flew through this one. You can't go wrong with Silkroom.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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