Lancaster, PA, United States | Member Since 2010
Maybe I overdosed on James Lee Burke. This is my sixth Dave Roubicheaux novel and the last three I listened to back to back to back. Mark Hammer's tongue is wrapped around bayous, filagreed iron window screens and Spanish moss. He speaks through a veil of humidity and swampy muscle. He somehow makes the rich vocabulary and elegant metaphoric Roubicheaux musings seem plausible from the mind of this hard-scrabble back gator country lawman.
This time it took just a tad too much to do it. Burke is a poet first, a sociologist second, a dramatist third, a gently liberal social commentator, and ... oh yeah... a detective mystery procedural writer. Here it is the last that seems to be stretched a lot too thin. The characters were either too complex for the plot, or too comic-book skinny to hold up its pants.
I'm going to take a break from Dave, Bootsey, Alafair, and Cleetus. If you've not listened to a Roubicheaux novel... start from the beginning. You'll think, feel, and even tear up. But maybe you'd do well after the first five to pause before beginning this one. Just like I'll take a break before downloading the seventh....
Adequate characters, and the writer had craft BUT, this "story" stinks! I have never been so disappointed with the way a writer ended a plot. He betrays the reader with one narrative, then inserts an incongruous, entirely different storyline that assumes the reader is a dolt! Margolin appears to have contempt for his readers, assuming we accept any twaddle that let's him write, "The End" when it's obvious that he's grown tired of the entire thing.
I worried about getting this book after the way Margolin's "Wild Justuce" fell apart at the end, but I enjoyed some of his ensemble enough to try "Ties That Bind". Boy am I sorry. Margolin's needs to become a ghost writer for someone who has plot ideas, his just evaporate in the end.
Don't buy this thing, even with George Guidal, it was - in the end - Un-saveable! Stinko!
Somewhere in the middle of “hunt For Red October it clicked. “Yoa!” I thought, “This is a new something… a genre… if not a new species, well at least a new breed.” So I read the next 16 (or was that 18?) Clancys… Until somewhere in “Shadow Warriors”, or perhaps “Search and Destroy” he lost his power to fly the class he created (and never recovered them in his own attempts at cyber-fiction).
“Trojan Horse” goes “CLICK!” Mark Russinovich has accomplished where Neil Stephenson and the aging Clancy failed. Issac Asimov argued that if science did not drive the plot, it was not "science" fiction, but fiction in drag. Clancy at his best did the same thing with his techno-fiction where a sort of electro/mechanical engineering drove the plot. Russinovich’s transformational technology-driver has done to Clancy’s breed what the internet has done to newspapers… This is a disruptive book.
While “Zero Day”, the first in this Jeff Aiken/Daryl Hagen series, was engrossing –Russnovich was experimenting with his powers. I enjoyed it, and recommend that you read or listen to it before starting this book since it explains the allusions to that story peppered through “Trojan Horse”. But while each of these books are VERY commercial and crammed-full with action (cinematic is the word that comes to mind), Russinovich is sucking on the cyber-pipe full-on here in “Trojan Horse”.
BTW, this is NOT a Jeff Aiken book. While it’s a partnership, Daryl Hagen is now the stronger member of this pair. I hope someone at Audible will fix that in the series description.
Johnny Heller does a fine, if not masterful, job of presenting this work even if his characters are incompletely nuanced. Still, I won’t do anything to pull all five stars away from “Trojan Horse”. It’s as masterful as “DaVinci” code in its story telling clout yet "cyber"-fiction in the Asimov sense.
This is a cross-over novel that every adventure/mystery lover can enjoy and the best adventure book I’ve listened to in years.
Maybe this was a first novel? Nope, this is what Abbott does all the time I guess. Anorexic characterization that's much fatter than the plot. If you believe any of this tale, hey… I've got a pair of bridges that are totally cheap… lemme know, K? It reminded me of the early summer blockbuster movies… Back in the 70s… The ones that were all shoot-em-up car chases. Fine for the times, but un-viewable today. This story wouldn't get green-lighted for cable TV.
I stopped listening three times, but finally,with nothing else on my iPod and a long gym workout to fill… it got finished with an ending that was unexpected as a baby's birth gender after a first trimester ultrasound.
Maybe this is aimed at prepubescent reading-challenged males? Actually I'm thinking that the interminable action scenes may have been assignments to the author in a creative writing class that he sort ran back to back without bothering to imagine a story for glue?
Phil Gigante made a buck here, probably deserved, not so much for his performance which is OK, but for his tenacity in reading "Collision".
Pay for one, get two Harry Bosch novels entwined here in "The Drop" AND…. a bridge to Connelly's next Bosch… "The Black Box"! Plus this is totally great Michael Connelly. Here Harry goes puzzling-out the mysteries of a "Splatter" who's found seven stories below his penthouse terrace while Bosch's also working through the mindset of a pedophile who's got an astonishing alibi as a suspect in a rape/murder.
Of course both cases are cemented together with procedural detail and cop-politics. Connelly's never been better, nor has Michael McConnohie. As usual, I recommend you start Bosch from the beginning of this epic series to capture all the whorls and whims of Connelly's imagination, but hey… If you just want to start your Bosch experience somewhere…
Drop in here…
Every male (I can't use the word "man") in NTFG is built around a spine that's wispier than stuff Victoria's Secret uses to make panties. Think of the word "manly" then think of its most extreme opposite. There, you've described every male character in this book.
Actually the mystery here is interesting, and adequately worked out. But these panty-waist guys are so weak… no "weak" is to these creatures is like using the word "dull" to describe Uncle Dan's family slide show. Barclay's women are shrews, his males pansies and this story what happens when the word man is surgically separated from the word testosterone.
As for Christopher Lane… I guess this was work. We all need to make a buck, and this chore was probably better than digging ditches in winter during a storm.
I really like Amanda Jaffe, Phillip Margolin's star character here in Wild Justice. And yeah, Margolin is like a great carpenter, but in this case, not a designer of fine furniture. There's a difference, right? While he puts the story together with competent precision… Well if this story were a cabinet, it'd sure have a lot of gaps, holes, bulges, clashing colors, and improbable joints.
Still, I listened to the end because Anna Fields is a terrific actress (can't wait to hear her tell me more stories) and Margolin is a master carpenter and its entertaining to watch him saw, bang, paint, and join stuff. I'll get more of his books, but like a quarter mile secret tunnel snaking out beneath a suburban home… This one's too improbable to believe.
If I had it to do over again… Nope, I wouldn't.
This is just plain, old fashioned…. THRILLING!!!! Okay, Paul Hecht doesn't even try to do female voices. FUGEDABOUDIT! This thing is perfectly designed to entertain till almost the last tick of the clock…. LITERALLY! Totally liked it. Recommend it. A blast from beginning to end.
There are times on history's vector when its slope doesn't just get steeper but when the damned thing gets discontinuous… it doesn't slope upward as much as it takes a big step. Here Stephen Greenblatt meticulously reveals one of those leaps… or as he calls it… The Swerve. Don't worry, your eyes won't glaze in spite of that word "meticulous" up there. This is scholarly yet popular history writing wedded. And Edoardo Ballerini leads us through with patience yet with all of the appropriate drama. Nowhere does he make this seem a lecture… rather more like a good thriller. I liked it… And have bought the physical book as presents for a number of friends thanks to this listen.
Spy versus spy. A LeCarre mood of multi-crossing darkness. A tale of momentum as the moral alternative. Pace comes fast, morality a lot slower. Intellectually, that's a good thing in this middle eastern drama. Emotionally though… that's where the questions burble up. Silva is masterful and George Guidal is, as usual… the perfect ensemble creator with a voice that wraps around dialects he thrives in international thrillers… just like this.
Oh so much belief to suspend here. At times the plot has more holes than a lace shawl. BUT it's still a lace braided with precious thread. I'm guessing this is an early Coban. But the ending's plausible if you buy Coban's set up and Coban's strength is in set up.
Frankly, if you/ve not read this author before… don't start with this. If you have read him, don't expect as much. Ed Sala does a journeyman job.
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