Sandra Brown specializes in the wronged, seemingly villainous hero who strikes fear and loathing in the hearts of everyone but that one special woman, and she sure has a knack for torturously testing his heroism until justice prevails. In Lethal, deep undercover FBI agent (c’mon, you didn’t really believe he was a mass murderer) Lee Coburn is about to discover the identity of a particularly nasty criminal mastermind known as The Bookkeeper when all hell breaks loose. Coburn is set up as the shooter when seven people are executed by the Bookkeepers’ minions. He flees straight into a Louisiana swamp, to be found lying muddy and blood-smeared in the yard of widow Honor Gillette by her four-year old daughter Emily.
Coburn strong-arms Honor inside at gun point and demands to search her house. At first Honor fears the worst; that she and Emily will be victimized by a brutal stranger. Grudgingly, Coburn promises Honor that he won’t harm her or her daughter if she’ll help him find evidence against the Bookkeeper, evidence that he believes Honor’s late police officer husband had collected and hidden. Honor is torn when Coburn alleges that the local police are dirty, enmeshed in collusion and cover-up. Coburn convinces Honor that going underground with him is her only chance to survive and to prove her late husband’s innocence. And thus begins the thriller part of this most excellent thriller.
Brown weaves a complex mystery with a large cast of characters, villains, and possible villains thick on the ground. I wasn’t sure who was good or a player in the conspiracy for most of the book and, dang, she got me again with a diabolical twist that I did not see coming. I confess that I didn’t correctly guess the Bookkeeper’s identity, although on a second listen I realized that the clues were there.
Victor Slezak reading Sandra Brown epitomizes my idea of a perfect audiobook. He gets the cranky, I-don’t-need-no-love outlier with a secret, mushy center exactly right. Thank you, Victor, for simply reading women’s dialogue, never doing that falsetto, breathy thing that so many male narrators are guilty of. An absolutely delightful bonus is Slezak’s voicing of chatty, precocious four-year old Emily, who shamelessly flirts with our perplexed hero. Yes! He pulled it off! 100 bonus points for that alone.
Oh, and the epilogue? It's perfect. Just perfect.
Nothing new. I listened for a couple of hours as bits and pieces from other paranormal romance and urban fantasy series were blended in.
Whispersync price tempted me to try a narrator I'd never heard. Wish I hadn't.
I enjoyed reading the book even though hot cop hero Derek may be a bit too much the caveman in his romancing technique. The author writes excellent banter and there were more than a few laugh-out-loud moments in the verbal battles between Ginger and Derek. Pretty good romantic suspense from a new (newish?) author I'll definitely read again.
I rated the performance one star. The narrator sounds muddy, mushy-mouthed, unprepared, and inexperienced. I suppose it's possible that this is another narrator using an alias for the naughty stuff, but she sounds very amateurish to my ear. Ginger and her sister Willa have just arrived in Chicago from Nashville. They should have an accent. And they do in a few passages, but mostly not. Actually all characters sound exactly the same regardless of gender, age, agency, or disappearing accent/no accent. Derek in the book is desirable, hot and dominant. Derek in the audio is a cypher. Overall, a disservice to a book I enjoyed.
Sandra Brown has pioneered her own unique niche since throwing off the constrainting rules of writing genre fiction with the publication of Envy in 2001. I have mad love for just about every word she's written since then and Deadline is no exception. Setting a meticulously crafted mystery/thriller at the heart of a love story, Brown honors her romance writing roots as well as her romance reader fans. Or is it the other way around--romance at the heart of a mystery? Either way you choose to look at it, one needs the other and it's a happy confluence that pleases me in all the best ways.
I've struggled with false starts and wholesale deletes in writing a review for fear of spoilers. I'm a spoiler hater and I'm glad that I experienced Deadline knowing only what is revealed in the blurb and I urge you to do the same. I reveled in Brown's trademark diabolical plot twists without having a clue as to where she was going with it. Unspoiled is the only way to go with Sandra Brown.
In addition to main protagonists Dawson and Ameilia, there are numerous characters important to the storyline, each requiring a unique voice. Stephan Lang aces it in that respect, seamlessly delivering dialogue between/among the entire cast while consistently staying in character. I especially loved his voicing of a certain villain An unexpected choice and so devious and insightful. Extra kudos to Lang for his heartbreaking reading of Flora's journal.
I didn't love Lang's Ameilia voice, not that the timbre is a problem, but a bit of a miss on her characterization. She sounds too soft and hesitant, almost apologetic, for an accomplished professional woman with an aristocratic upbringing. Hero Dawson Scott's voice is exactly right to my ear. Dawson is decidedly different sort of Sandra Brown hero and that's all I'm going to say. Lang clearly gets Dawson and I love him for that.
Sandra Brown delivers another excellent romantic thriller and Stephan Lang pretty much nails it.
I've been a regular reader of Anne Frasier's thrillers for as long as she's been writing them. What a happy surprise to see that Hush has made its way to audio!
Narrator Emily Beresford convincingly brings Frasier's characters to life with distinct voices for all. It's a tautly written serial killer police procedural, an intelligent and meaty story. Frasier's hero and heroine are refreshingly human; a welcome change from the stick figure kickass heroine and waxed-torso-of-steel hero so prevalent in recent romantic suspense.
I'd love to see more of Frasier's suspense brought to audio. Ditto her romances written as Theresa Weir.
Review copy provided by the author.
I'm so bummed. Be My Baby is an old favorite and I was so looking forward to the audiobook. Annie Green's reading fails the material. Let me count the ways.
* Misplaced awkward starts and stops. (Oh? There are more words in the sentence?) This sounds like a cold, unrehearsed reading.
* Female characters are pitched low. Male characters sound like cartoon ducks on helium.
* Her mispronunciation of every freakin' common contraction in the text (and there are a lot of them) is indescribably irritating. DIT-tint. COULD-tint. HAT-tint. Is this an affectation?
* She mispronounces common words willy-nilly. I tried keeping a list but it became an overwhelming task. Not acceptable from a professional voice actor.
Susan Andersen's excellent book and its fans should have been treated much better than this. There should be a do-over.
I'm so glad this series has come to audio. The books need a female narrator since the books are written from the heroine's POV. Yay for Kate Russell! She nailed Gwen's personality - most importantly her playful sense of humor. Her reading of Hawk was dead on as well. Totally enjoyed it!
I was very unhappy with the narrator cast for Own the Wind so I'm relieved to see a change for the better. Ideally, this series would have a male and female narrator team. It would be great to hear these bad boys read in a deep rumbly voice. Otherwise, I hope Kate Russell reads the rest of the series.
I'm in the middle on this one. I didn't like it as much as I'd expected to. Decent romance, decent suspense but it didn't light my fire.
Kate Rudd's tone for Maggie was too perky and cute for a heroine who's been kidnapped by a convicted felon. That was jarring and all kinds of wrong.
I listened to this audiobook while working on a project and it went on and on and on...
Seriously, the makings of a good mystery were here but I cannot believe an editor ever got near it. Naval gazing, repetition, superfluous POVs from secondary characters, long detailed landscape descriptions, more repetition, more landscapes, more naval gazing. It was mind numbing! There were some serious plot problems as well -- the dumbest, most incompetent police detectives EVER chief among them. The copyright date 2012 on the Audible site is misleading as hell.. I couldn't figure out why no one used a cell phone when their circumstances became dire. Further investigation reveals an original copyright date of 1992. No wonder police procedures and technology come across as outdated.
I liked the hero and heroine and I totally enjoyed the monstrous, extra scary villain.
Narrator Jennette Selig did a good job -- a yeoman job. Her style is dry and no nonsense and it works well for suspense. I am experimenting with Audible's whispersync price cuts. I got the ebook and the audiobook for about $3.
Cameron Moore and Skylar Slavin are adult children — survivors, really — of hardcore black ops agents. I found this premise a fascinating one and Tyler fulfilled its promise, exploring a little known lifestyle with compelling results. Both Cam and Sky had horrific childhoods as a direct result of their parents’ secretive undercover work.
Johanna Parker’s narration is exactly right. I heard (and liked a lot, thank you very much) Cam’s lusty, sexually adventurous nature that makes him a caring and generous lover. Parker doesn’t significantly differ Cam’s voice from all those other guys with “Future Hero” stamped on their foreheads, but that would have been a big challenge indeed, and not truly necessary. Happily, there’s no doubt that Cam is the Alpha of his own book. Parker’s female characterizations have more variety and Skylar sounds just as she should. I’ve been enjoying Parker’s narration throughout the Shadow Force series. She gets the grittiness as well as the tenderness and I think she’s an ideal narrator in the romantic suspense.
I've eaten up quite a few books by Kristen Ashley (including this one) so I knew what to expect -- over the top biker dudes and their old ladies, the DRAMA, the language, the crazy, the sex. Ashley is an enormously popular author for good reason. She knows how to deliver the whole package.
So I'm wondering why this plum package was entrusted to a newbie narrator. Sigh. Angela Starling is no better than adequate. Specifically, she doesn't differentiate at all between characters; all her men sound just alike as do all her women. No. No. No. Her male voices are not masculine. Smooth-talking hero Shy is read in a staccato monotone. No. No. no. Ashley's books are decidedly hero-centric and a narrator who fails to get that is not up to the challenge. Sad for the wasted opportunity.
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