Indiana, USA | Member Since 2012
Every new chapter was more engrossing than the last, and what a ride! Once I began reading, it was nearly impossible to put down. This is a clever, brilliantly-crafted thriller with great characters and more than a few twists. Two enthusiastic thumbs-up!
Coming off a high after reading The Millionaires by Brad Meltzer, I had great expectations for "Dead Even". Alas, it was a big disappointment. New ADA Sara Tate, her job in peril from announced budget cuts, steals a case earmarked for a senior, highly-respected ADA in hopes of gaining attention and job security. Her husband, a defense attorney, winds up on the opposite side of the case when he is forced to represent the defendant and ordered to win the case by nefarious principals who threaten to kill his wife if he loses. Sara, in turn, is approached by her own thug, a "sunken-cheeked" man, who issues a similar threat, proposing to kill her husband if SHE loses the case. Uh-huh. And, of course, in order to protect the other, neither spouse reveals their respective threats to each other, setting up one debacle after another.
There are a number of things wrong with this book, starting with the fact that neither one of the protagonists are especially sympathetic or likable characters. They never felt "real" to me, they made incredibly dumb decisions for highly-educated people, and in the end, I wasn't invested in whether they triumphed or not. That's a huge problem to overcome. And the end of the story unraveled rather than unfolded. Everyone - protagonists and antagonists alike - started making ridiculous speeches and bone-headed moves (reminded me of the line of some movie: "If you're gonna talk, talk; if you're gonna shoot, shoot!"), and I didn't buy a second of it. The last hour was fairly excruciating but somehow, I slogged through it.
This book will undoubtedly appeal to some, and to you, I say I'm happy for you. But it didn't work at all for me. Especially from such a talented author as Brad Meltzer. Scott Brick does his best, as always, with the performance. I just wonder if he was as bored during the reading of it as I was with the listening.
I just loved this book, period, and Scott Brick's performance was, as always, perfection. The storyline, with two brothers as the protagonists, a cast of questionable characters whose motives you're never entirely sure of until the end, and some goosebump-inducing villains who relentlessly chase our heroes, The Millionaires is pure edge-of-your-seat fun! This novel has it all...excellent character development, unique plot with the requisite twists-and-turns you'd expect from a great thriller, and wonderfully smart and witty dialogue.
I loved the relationship between the brothers, and Meltzer does an excellent job of making their relationship seem authentic and engaging. They aren't really the kind of guys you'd expect to conspire to stealing $3 million dollars but given the unique circumstances behind the money, it hardly even seems like a "crime" in this case. In fact, as one of the peripheral characters points out, there's only two kinds of "perfect" crimes: 1. One in which the criminal dies; or 2. One in which no one even knows a crime has been committed. The brothers are banking on the latter. But, of course, as these things have a way of doing, it goes awry right out of the gate. The action is fast-paced, relentless, and you won't want to put it down.
As far as the performance, Scott Brick is one of my most favorite narrators, and he was the perfect choice for this smart, sexy novel. He's got fantastic material to work with here, and doesn't disappoint.
If you waste a credit on "Tell Me You're Sorry", you'll be sorry alright. I plodded through 3 hrs of this turkey, hating nearly every minute of it, before I finally pulled the plug. This hot mess will have you saying, "God, this is awwwful!" every 5 mins. or so. The story, the performance, the everything about this, is boredom personified.
I wish I could find a silver lining, something positive to say, but honestly, I couldn't possibly care less who killed whom, let alone the why of it. And the narration...gah! It was like adding insult to injury. This guy can't do character voices, period. Everyone ends up sounding snobbish with only slight variations, even when they're supposed to be sympathetic. His performance was as ghastly as the author's work so, I suppose, in a horrible twist of fate, they were perfect for each other.
There are too many great novels out there to waste your time or money on this tripe. I don't know if this author has other works to his credit or not, as you couldn't pay me to try another one of his creations, but this one is simply awful.
I really enjoy Gillian Flynn's writing, and this is no exception. She creates characters who are deeply flawed and relatable, and her storylines are riveting and unique. This is a whodunit, and while the action isn't fast-paced, she does a great job of moving the plot so that it captures and retains your attention. The narrator gives a superb performance, creating distinct voices for each character that makes them easily recognizable.
I loved The Shining and couldn't imagine how Stephen King could come up with an equally awesome sequel, but awesome it is! This novel is full of fun surprises and S-curves, and I had a blast from start to finish. Will Patton does a terrific job, in my opinion, performing all of the various characters and conveying the appropriate mood for each scene.
If you like suspense - and even if you've never read The Shining - I highly recommend Doctor Sleep.
In short, this book didn't work for me on a number of fronts. It began with promise but went to hell about one-quarter of the way through, until I lost interest entirely. It didn't scare me, although that would have been nice. On the contrary, it bored me. I couldn't become invested in any of the main characters, the storyline belched and finally stalled-out, and the techno-noise inserted randomly in places invariably startled and annoyed me every time.
It's apparent to me that the author has the talent to construct a good novel....but this isn't it.
I'm definitely going to be demanding my credit back for this mind-numbing turkey. I'll keep this brief. The storyline started on a high note but took a nosedive and kept tumbling. The narrator had little to work with, that's true, but was still horrible. Stephen King's books are among some of my favorites, but NOT this one! That he's responsible for this monstrosity is unbelievable. And finally, if I ever again hear the phrase, "Only this and nothing more", I'll probably lose my s*@t!
This is Book 4 in the Dublin Murder Squad series, and in my opinion, the absolute best of the lot. But if you've not read books 1-3 (and you really should just because they're so wonderful), no worries. As it's not a continuing saga in the traditional sense, you won't be at all lost or confused not having read any that came before. In fact, you could start with Book 4, then read Book 2 or 1 or 3, in no particular order, each being an entirely separate and unique storyline independent of each other.
While as I said, the others were wonderful, Broken Harbor is truly something special. It starts out strong, then continues to build all the way through, never faltering, never slowing. The storyline is unique and inspired. It was maddening to have to put it down for awhile when real life intruded! The writing is masterful, and the scenes are heartbreakingly vivid and tender. The characters are superbly developed and given flesh, each with their own talents and frailties, secrets and aspirations.
If you've never had the pleasure of reading Tana French before, you're in for quite a treat. And if I were you, I'd start with Broken Harbor. But then again, I always start every meal with dessert!
I'd heard nothing about this book or the author prior to investing a credit, but the title and synopsis sounded intriguing. Now having wasted 4+ hrs. listening to it, I can report without hesitation that there is nothing worthy of intrigue here. The writing is bizarre, particularly the initial chapters, consisting of nonsensical metaphors, mixed metaphors, and similes, as if the "assignment" was to construct a work of fiction with "X" number of literary devices contained within, regardless of the appropriateness of said devices. Then add to this confusing word salad the cadence, which is strangely poetical in nature, rather than literary. Two- and three-word sentences abound, and the choppiness is both distracting and obnoxious.
Regarding the plot, who cares? The main character, a teenaged girl, is never fully developed and to wit, I was never able to truly empathize with her. Her friends, especially "Buddy"/"Adam", are more caricatures of humans rather than fully human, as are her parents, siblings and everyone else in the cast. My basic rule of thumb is, if I don't "buy" the characters, I'm certainly not going to buy anything that happens to them. And I didn't.
I actually made it all the way to the end, but only because it's approx. 4 hrs. in length. If it had lasted any longer, I'd have shelved it permanently following the concluding sentence of Chap. 1. I hoped, of course, that it would get better. It doesn't. If you're in the market for a novel that depicts teenaged experimentation with street drugs that grabs your attention, this is not that book. This is, unfortunately, amateurish shlock that will only succeed in boring you to tears and wasting your credit.
I had low expectations for this book. In fact, I let it reside on my MP3 player for quite some time, leaving it for the last. Boy, was I ever wrong! Once I grudgingly started it, I couldn't put it down. Everything about this novel is top-notch, from the story to the narration. It tells the story of what it's like to be the only child of hoarders, from childhood to adulthood, and how it changes who you are. There are struggles and anger, but there is also undying love and guarded hopefulness. I cried more than a few times throughout this superb novel, but there were laughs too.
This novel will stay with me for a long time and eventually, I'll re-read it. It was that good.
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