I generally like stories like this but as I was slogging through this (and kept finding myself switching to another book -- In The Plex, actually) I kept trying to figure out why I wasn't liking the book. It certainly has an imaginative plot and some suspense ... but here's the thing: none of the characters matter to me. They don't feel real and they aren't likable, even the heroine of the story.
Also, Kate Mulgrew, who has a pleasing speaking voice, has for some reason chosen to read all but the expositive narration, in a really nasty, abrasive voice. So, even an eight year old girl sounds grating and just, well, annoying
The story-line of this book is plenty creepy and Stephen Kingesque, so if you are a fan of that kind of story (and I am), you'll think you want to read this, but if you are a King fan, besides his great storytelling, one of the reasons you probably like him (perhaps without even consciously thinking about it), is his characters. They are believable and likable, especially his kids -- he has a real appreciation for being a kid. The difference, for me, in reading this vs a King book is that in the case of NOS4A2, I'm wishing all along that I could just get the story, find out what happens, and be done with it without having to deal with the characters. With King's books, I find myself liking the characters and missing them when the book is finished.
I've always enjoyed Crais' books, his Elvis Cole and Joe Pike novels are just fun and entertaining. This book is a stand alone (although how many bets he brings back this character?). What's so fun about this book is Maggie, the dog, and how very attached you become to her and all the new respect you have for your own dog. My dog got lots of extra attention (as if she is every neglected!) while I was reading this. It's just thoroughly entertaining and interesting.
I've enjoyed all the books in the John Corey series, and as I'm sure I've said before, Scott Brick is absolutely pitch perfect for these books. The premise of the book is super intriguing and so I was hooked and looking forward to a great read from the early chapters. I have to say, it's a bit disappointing after that. For one, the great premise kind of falls by the wayside and instead it's a lot of unnecessary and tedious detail about Corey doing his macho man thing, and, you know, it's really all about Corey. And, alas, whereas in previous books I've enjoyed Corey's sarcastic wit, by this book I just got plain tired of his attitude and sometimes downright juvenile behavior.
I'll return to the series though, I'm sure.
This second book in this series was even better than the first ... the premise is very interesting (won't spoil it), if you read the first one (In the Woods) you'll recognize a common theme (and especially if you read the next two -- which you'll want to) with respect to the narrator of each book and this book, like the first, is rich in character and place. This particular story will make you think a lot about friendship, home, family ... and it's still a murder mystery :-)
Outstanding writer. The prologue to this book is worth the price of the entire book. It's so well written, so keenly insightful, that I've made several of my friends (many of them writers) sit and listen to it. They all agreed! And then there's the rest of the book: beautifully written, complex and interesting characters and a very rich portrayal of place. Really, this first in the Dublin Murder Squad and the next three (The Likeness, Faithful Place & Broken Harbor) are all good, all completely different from each other, and all wonderfully written. The mystery/ murder itself, in each case is secondary to the story of each book's featured main character. You will miss them when you are finished listening, and the place will stay with you. Here's another plus: you don't need to read them in order ... although you really should since there is a tiny bit of carry over from one book to the next. Really, really great reads. I'll be checking in often to see when French has a new book out.
This is a book that will grab you from the first few pages and hold your interest to the end. It's well written, well narrated and the kind of book you wish three of your friends were reading at the same time so you could talk with them about it, which is why I think it would be an excellent choice as a book club pick. The likely discussion about the book would be lively and interesting and sure to go off in many directions.
And not all that well read considering what a huge fan of Scott Brick's readings I usually am. Maybe it's the writing ... I suppose you can only do so much. It's a weak story, not particularly suspenseful or interesting. Don't bother.
I have to say this every time: Scott Brick is perfect as John Corey. That said, another page turner from DeMille with a very clever plot. You won't be disappointed at all. Looking forward to the next in the series ... I am hooked.
Again, Scott Brick is perfect for these books. This, the second in the John Corey series is interestingly told (from Corey's point of view and from that of the bad guy, "The Lion,"), it's suspenseful, has plenty of DeMille's usual humor, excellent characters -- overall a page turner (so to speak ... there should be an equivalent word for an audio book). Really good. Couldn't put it down (turn it off).
It's the character, John Corey, and the excellent reading by Scott Brick that make this book good -- the story bogs down a bit with some silly action, but mostly it's a great introduction into the series and good enough to make you want to go forward with the rest (which I have done), and which are all better than this particular one. This establishes Corey and some other characters and does a good job of it ... but the next two are really compelling :-)
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