This book has made me a die-hard fan of Nelson Demille. Paul Brenner (the main character) is so much like so many people I know that I immediately found him to be real - he's sarcastic, impatient and a bit of a jerk and I enjoyed his every move. I found myself laughing out loud in many parts and feeling sad in others, emotional responses that make a book worthwhile for me. On top of that, the educational aspect of the story had me mesmerized.
I have listened twice to this novel, thoroughly enjoyed both listens, and was sorry both times when it came to an end. Most books of this length tend to drag too much - this one was the exception.
My measure of a good book is one that brings out strong emotional responses to characters and events in that book. Water for Elephants does that in spades. I laughed out loud, cried in places and felt genuine joy for some of the characters. This book is very well written, narrated flawlessly and is a captivating listen from the very first word. Do yourself a favor - buy it, get comfortable and be prepared to listen for hours on end.
I'm a huge fan of Stuart Kaminsky and his Lew Fonesca character, as well as being a member of the crowd of listeners who buy virtually everything Scott Brick reads. This book won't disappoint you, though at times I was a little irritated with the overuse of "he said". However, with Scott Brick reading it, I had no problem getting by that and enjoying a very well written mystery. I found myself pulling for Lew Fonesca's baby steps back into the real world and look forward to many more similar novels. My true rating would have been 4.5 had I been given that option.
I enjoyed this book thoroughly, as I did "The Company". Littell has the consistent ability to make his characters come alive and includes some interesting development of a few of the characters found in "The Company". I particularly enjoyed the very last line of this book - it made me laugh out loud. The narration by Scott Brick was, as usual, exceptional.
I have read all the books I could find with this particular central character. I have always really enjoyed the hard edge to Mallory and the many facets to her character. I was disappointed in this book mainly because the Mallory I got to know didn't have the depth I'm used to seeing. Contrary to other reviews, I still found the book enjoyable, but I missed "that Mallory".
Nelson DeMille became my favorite author once I had read his first book. Again, he has met, and even surpassed my expectations. I was literally unable to stop listening until I had finished the title, and my enjoyment of it was greatly enhanced by the first-class skills of Scott Brick. A must listen.
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