Lancaster, PA, United States | Member Since 2010
To build tension and distress, Brian Freeman asks us to believe that his cops are sort of dim bulb-ish. Well okay, most of us are and it’s charming to have detectives that are like you and me. Problem is, they wind up solving a multi dimensional criminal plot here that’s buried in a half century of Vegas bloody cover-up. Well, okay… it’s an intriguing puzzle and sort of ingenious. It's the kind of plotting that many of us read these things to enjoy. Yet it’s hard to suspend disbelief when these people who are perilous serial blunderers flash the penetrating deductive insight of Goren and Eames from Law and Order’s Criminal Intent.
But… but… the real talent of Brian Freeman is his dissection of human commitment, promise, loyalty, gender, freedom, lust, and love. Freeman doesn’t judge, he shows. That theme is what will make me download the continuing growth of Detective Jonathan Stride. I want to know what happens next in this guy’s struggles to bring meaning to his life and the ensemble cast he moves among.
I’m glad I started with the first in this series, “Immoral”, and almost demand that you do to. This isn’t a novel; it’s an installment in an epic tale of this guy’s life. Oh yeah, Joe Barrett is exactly the actor to bring this all together. Uh-huh, you might complain about his female voices, but whuddahell… get over it. Barrett sings the music of Stride’s life.
Haven't read one of these stories since Sunday school. OK, this is a fictional saint, but then again, most hagiographs are probably as fictional as this one. So Gruber's made one up that's as fit into our modern moment as the writers of the early Christian era fit their stories into their moments. How'd he do that? Well that's what makes this an unusual book. Any more description will kill this complex story's mystery.
And like every hagiograph... There have to be miracles, and blood, and martyrs, and bad... bad... satanically baaaad villains. They're all here. Oh, and there's a murder along with detectives and sex.
And had I known this was going to be a hagiography, I'd not have bought it. But, it was weirdly interesting particularly since Gruber's a terrific writer and Forbes and Davis are pros. And of course it all comes together in the end because, well... God works in mysterious ways :-)
Jake Fisher, is the dumbest man in mysteries. Odd, since we're to believe he's a tenured (?) PhD professor in a New England College that's at least as prestigious as Williams. Oh, and he's surrounded by equally idiotic decision makers.
Have you seen the TV ad where kids escaping a horror villain hide behind the power saws? Yeah? Well their decision making is light years ahead of those which Jake Fisher keeps repeating throughout this perplexing plot. Was this early Coben? The authorusually stops short of asking readers to accept that a guy with all of these "smart-credentials" can be dumber than a drunk monkey.
You know the way a magician tries to distract with his left hand so you won't notice what his right's up to? Well maybe the frazzle headed oafishness of Jake Fisher was meant to distract me into ignoring the torrent of coincidences Coben demanded I accept to make the plot sensible. No way that could happen.
Scott Brick gives a less-than-over-the-top reading this time which makes it one of his best that I've heard.
Can't recommend Six Years, hope it hasn't turned me off on Coben.
Mark Bertrand teases. He reveals Roland March slowly, using foreshadowing much like a potter might use his fingers. For a time I thought I'd missed an earlier book in this series since the plot seemed to feed upon facts not in evidence. And yet, much like a morning mist dissolves, things clarified and somewhere deep inside I muttered, "Of course".
"Back On Murder's" worth the time and I'll buy more of Roland March's adventures. Look forward to them. Oh, Mel Foster's OK, but he faced a particular challenge with the book.
There are too many characters with useful speaking parts in this story. I wish Bertrand had cut away at the supporting ensemble. Unlike a print version, it's hard to go back and recall who each character might be, hence the reader/actor has to create a uniquely differentiated ensemble. Foster does it OK, but perhaps it's not his fault that I can't say, "He done it reeeeely good." Y'know?
Four hours of heavy tedium have caused any interest I've got in listening to this... this... thing reveal what it's about to dissipate like a parking lot puddle in searing heat. Nope, bad metaphor. This book and the word "heat" should never appear in the same sentence. It is cold and not even interesting enough to be called boring.
Perhaps this is a "literary" author's attempt to become more commercial by having his book marketed as a "mystery" or a "thriller"? The mystery here is what went through the publishers' minds when they green lighted this thing. Maybe they acted on a pitch instead of actually reviewing a manuscript and once granting an advance found themselves stuck?
Dunno. But I do know that Benjamin Black is on my, er, blacklist. I'll return this book, but no way that Audio can give me back four hours of my life. Pity.
Oh, and Timothy Dalton? His read was as uninspiring as the text. They made a good match.
GUSH! Uh-huh, I'm in the mood to gush over the fun that Edoardo Ballerina and Jay Snyder create in this series. Patterson's brand has had a steroid rush from the invention of NYPD RED.
Warning... warning... warning... There is a "2" in this title. You must read NYPD RED 1 first. Or else this book is one long spoiler alert that will asphyxiate your satisfaction in listening to the first in this series. I gushed over that book... So let me write that this is in every way as good. Better? Hmmmm....
Wuddaya want from a police procedural set in Metropolis? It is all here paced by Patterson and Karp to keep you in the driveway listening after a long commute. It's designed to make you earbud-anti-social for hours so that you can let the story anesthetize away life's tensions.
This is snarky entertainment... Start with NYPD RED 1, read this then, like me... go onto the waiting list for the next Zack Jordan, Kylie MacDonald adventure...
The only mystery now is whether Patterson and Karp can keep popping fifteen stars out of me with each new NYPD RED. Can't wait to find out.
Too often big-foot writers outsource something to smaller-shoe collaborators and the results read like a camel instead of a horse. Not here. I don't know how much of this is Marshall Karp's doing but the mix WORKS!
Zack Jordan and Kylie MacDonald are tugged and fit together like Jennifer Lopez's red-carpet outfits. The plot in NYPD Red's like a NASCAR engine… purring at warp speed yet quietly and confidently. This will be a new series, right? Got to be.
BTW, don't know the story about the two readers or which is which but it seemed that a substitution was made about 80% of the way in. The replacement carried the ball to score.
Here's what I want in an Audible mystery/thriller…characters, plot-driven AND driving action, and a puzzle that's intelligently solved at the end. Oh, and a buzz of sexual tension's a useful blob of epoxy to hold my attention. NYPD Red's got it all.
"I've gotta'n idea, we write this book through the eyes of the dog and ba-zing-ga!"
"Duuuude!? That's not an idea, that's whacked."
"No.... no... There are readers who'll love it. How many dog owners are there?"
"You want to write a whole book though the brain of a dog? A DOG!"
"Yeah, cool huh? We'll make a series out of it."
"Cool? No, weird. Who'd publish something like that?"
The answer is Aria brooks, and they've stretched a writing class trick into a seven book series. Which means I will not read 7 3/4 of them since I stopped when it went WAY OVER THE SHARK for me about a quarter of the way in.
"Hey, I gotta'n idea, let's write a book through the eyes of a shark that writers leap and ba-zing-ga!"
"Duuuude!? That's not an idea, that's whacked."
"No.... no... look how many people liked that dog thing. How many sharks are there in publishing?"
If you get off on this stunt, I'm thinkin' you could reeeeeeely like the Chet and Bernie series. I didn't so it's Dog-Gone... y'know?
You might not believe it but scores of folks in Savannah ire maniacal IRA killers. I know it's Savahanna because Chuck Barrett's read a tourist map of the place... One of those that lists a couple of sentences about every... And I mean EVERY... Historical marker within three blocks of River Street. And for no reason at all, insists upon reading them back at us during pointless chases.
Both he a nd Scott Brick have the magical ability to turn this explosively baaaaad eleven hour plot into a seemingly sixty hour experience even when you crank up your iPod to 2X. Oh, and just when it should end, Barrett sends his rag-tag cast off to Ireland. That's when I left to return this mess to Audible.
Savannah should sue.
This is a farce. Nope, not an indictment, a definition. Whoever wrote this book, and there's a bunch of controversy over that (Was it someone named Tanenbaum? Does anyone named Tanenbaum exist? Was it some guy named Michael Gruber? Does he exist? My head's going to explode... Go Google 'em and you decide.) But I digress...
Listen to "Depraved Indifference" as a slow-starting, over the top, jump the shark, broad and blue-humored FARCE! Do that and this book's fun. Oh, it's dirty as a 1970s Red Foxx at work in a smokey grownups' supper club... Adult stuff. And if you watch life through a PC filter... Don't... I'm warning ya'.... DO NOT LISTEN TO THIS BOOK! You will be sooooooo offended that you will become incontinent for weeks.
Me? I'll probably get the next book in this series :-}
Robert Dugoni's a powerful writer. But like Phillip Margolin, he cannot end a story with much less than contempt for his readers. I've written before about the cheap trick of the ancient Greeks called Deus Ex Machina. Where a playwrite'd work himself in to an impossible situation only to have a god appear in a chariot, and abruptly solve all the mystery. Well that is exactly what Dugoni does here, entirely cheating his readers. Nope, you didn't see that coming, because it wasn't! Once upon a time, I'd put this down to an early novel and try the author's next attempt in hopes that he'd really have a plot the next time.
Unfortunately I did that with Margolin and got burned with his awful "Ties That Bind". It taught me a lesson about wasting time and treasure in hopes that a bad author but a good writer might discover his craft on my dime.
You want spiritual improbability? Join up with Scientology, or maybe some cult political movement. Don't spend money on "Jury Master."
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