One of my favorite books this year. Booth develops this character slowly, like a good friendship should be developed. From the beginning we meet a lonely man, matter of fact, and circumspect about the details of his life.
First person narratives are my favorites, and this is one of those. Our mystery "American," reveals himself in small slices, just as one might choose to invite someone into one's own life. He's deeply immersed in his secretive craft, and under a watchful eye, his descriptions of his surroundings come alive in the mind of the reader.
He is a man of secrets, a certain fatalism, limited emotional intimacies, and rather than being amoral about his profession (manufacture of assassin's arms), he articulates a code of ethics above his surroundings. He stands outside the world of normalcy, and describes a consistent world view by which he lives. It's lonely, but has it's own serenity, and above all he is safe from all the things, and people who hurt us in so many ways.
We meet his customers, and through his eyes we even respect the idealism of their craft. But this solitary man is not without his enemies, and when at last he is run to ground by one of them.... well you'll just have to read the story to see how it ends.
I have enjoyed the stories about the Israeli assassin and his art restoration avocation. I like the characters and places described. Just enough action to wet my appetite for an adventure story but sufficiently thoughtful, and introspective characters . These are not deep novels they don't provide enormous background of the locations, or characters, but they're nice comfortable easy reads. My favorite thus far.
a top ten for sure. This is my 3rd Dept Q books. Love the characters, love the dialogue, and enjoy the plots as well
It's not an edge of the seat book. This is one that is to move along through characters, and events to a logical conclusions. Yes, some doubts, some tension, but great story, and I enjoy the journey.
Enjoy Marco sitting in the safe hiding from Zola's thieves were looking through the house for him
Happy when the paralyzed detective was able to move, and felt bad when the main character's girlfriend dumped him.
These are the kind of character driven plots, ( like Len Deighton books) that are plausible, and travel at an enjoyable pace. Good stuff!!
Like always, Grisham includes a lot of dialogue, a lot of character introspection. His stories are character driven, rather than "action" driven. That's the "stuff" that makes me buy his books. The moral dilemna's and the complexity of life, make his stories read more like first-person narrative documentary, than legal fiction.
This isn't an "edge-of-your-seat" story, as much as it moves along at a very human pace. I like it. Things happen, life happens, bad things even, but like all of Grisham's stories, they come at a pace that makes them mostly believable (if somewhat hyperbolized), fiction or not. Rather than the roller coaster action ride of a Vince Flynn, Grisham follows closer to Deighton's stream of consciousness, 9 volume Bernard (and Fiona) Sampson stories. This is good stuff, and takes us into the Appalachian hills, and coal mining.
I liked Catherine Taber. I don't expect the narrator to try to "imitate" all the voices of all the characters, contrary to one reviewer's comments. Catherine was easy to listen to, and she captured the main character, principal protagonist's personality, well. It was a good choice. I'd listen to her again, and in fact may buy one of the other books she's narrated, based on the strength of this performance. I suspect that her forte' is narrating from the Romance genre, which is not my preferred reading, but she may tempt me to cross-over, at least for something like Gray Mountain.
A movie tag line would have to capture our protagonist's character... Perhaps I'd call it, "finding her soul, a lawyer's journey."
John's "well of creativity" has not dried up. He continues to experiment with characters and stories that lend themselves to his character driven stories. I have a very large library at Audible.com, (including most of Grisham's), and when I venture into fiction I'm often looking for something to "carry me through to the next John Grisham release." Most often I'm disappointed. This book was a trip back into my comfort zone. Thanks John, Keep em coming!
yes, assuredly yes
Discovery of the brother, discovery of the the maid's family connection
I like Michael Beck's readings of Grisham. The two are inseparable. I liked him in every book I've heard. I have about a dozen Grisham audiobooks
No, too long... but it's good enough to tempt you to try.
Keep them coming John, and I'll keep listening. I have several Grisham books, that are staple listening when I travel. I know the plot twists, and I still listen to them over and over. I won't tell you which ones. You' have to find your own.
whew.. It just was so boring, that I couldn't get into the plot at all
no preference. Maybe George Guidall could have gotten me to listen to the whole thing
... just blah
Probably won't read this author again. but I'm sure he will have fans... Couldn't finish book, have tried several times.. Going to return it.
Use a different narrator. That would have freshened it up. Scott Brick is fine, but he always sounds a bit sardonic, in his affect. He's a good performer, I just like a break from his particular affect.
Less likely after reading this book. There's just not enough "fiber" in the plot to chew on. I've got two books by Cussler right now besides this
Scott Brick and George Guidall, suffer from over-exposure at this point. Both good performers, but they don't surprise me any more. They respond predictably in all plot parts. That's not a bad thing, they're just over-used at this point.
dissapointment. Plot was too shallow, too simplistic, too predictable.
Thank goodness Audible allows returns... This one isn't worth the time to listen to it.
I'm really enjoying part 1. The writer is so unassuming, so down to earth. You'd think he was part of the "slacker" generation who just "happened into success." The reality is that Grant was least likely to succeed. His stories about the Mexican war, and the politics behind it give a better 1st person narrative of the times than current history books on the same period. I really liked the guy as I listen, and the narrator is pretty easy to listen to also. Proved the old adage that providence plays a part in the affairs of life.
I've got the full 5 book set, and I don't mind the narrator, or even his occasional mispronunciations. The content is good, and provides a humanizing commentary to the stories we only normally read in King James English in the Bible.
What I don't like is the chapter split and numbering. It's broken into sections that don't match chapters. If you loose your place, fall asleep listening to the reading and try to find the last place you listened, you're likely to be very frustrated. That's a major defect for me. I like the books, but will look for other providers. I've found other readers, that are worse, with better chapter breaks. Still looking for the right combo.
From the beginning of the story through to the end, John leaves you looking for the next exciting step. Told in first person narrative, the story takes you inside the head of a man who's made a transformation from who he was to a very different man. He's a lonely man, and he fills his mind, and time with the details of his surroundings designed to help him survive. As others have suggested, this becomes a great travelogue. And for me that's a huge plus. I enjoyed italy through Backman's eyes. The Broker is not a super-sleuth, and that makes him more human, more approachable than say, a Ludlum or Follett character. We expect (hope) for him to survive, but knowing Grisham plots like "The Summons," and "The Partner," we know that John can provide bitter endings that disappoint our hopes. This one does not. I liked Joel Backman and wanted him to survive. This is one of John's top four or five books in my estimation, and I've read (or heard) nearly every one he's written. I'd like to see this one made into a movie.
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