This is one of those non-fiction books that just blows you away. It was a little tough getting into it at first, but once it got into all the stuff about Las Vegas and golf courses, etc. I was hooked. Great narration. You will seriously never look at water the same after listening to this.
This was unavailable in audio for many years. I am happy to see they've finally released it. I've read four Murakami novels and most of the short story collections. I don't think this book is as popular as 'Wind up Bird' and some of the others, but in my own opinion this is his best work. Wind Up Bird and Kafka are paced very slow with chapters and chapters of stuff that is intereting to read, but overall does not contribute to the story. This book is slim, to the point. Wistful romance of the only-child. It is very haunting without trying too hard. I've read the other Murakami novels once, but this book I've read at least five times. I am surprised it is not as popular as his other books. If you already like Murakami, I think you will like this. If you're new to Murakami, I can't think of a better novel to start with.
I loved the first two books of the series. Like many other reviewers have written, I had never heard of this author before "Speaks the Nightbird." Leave it up to audible to ensnare people with their first-of-a-series sales aka 'gateway drug.' I almost went ahead and bought all four available Corbett novels. Glad I didn't. I literally burned through the first two books. The writing, pacing and characterization was top-notch. You felt like you were in the passenger seat and the author was sprawling a great journey before you. This third book, however, is completely the opposite. It is well-written, but lacks heart. It starts off intriguing enough, but then goes into this deal with Mr. Slaughter which is neither thrilling or interesting. Mr. Slaughter reminds me a lot of Heath Ledger in the second batman film, where he tries sooo hard to be soooo crazy and wicked that its just kind of ridiculous. I kept pressing myself to listen to this book, but it shouldn't be that much work. I gave up a few hours shy of the end because, well, I could not force myself to care anymore. I am debating whether or not to even read the fourth book in the series. And the strangest thing off all is that Mr. Corbett has made some decisions in this book that make him really unappealing as a main character as a series. The pacing in this book also suffers, whereas it was almost perfect in the other books. I don't know what threw me off with this one, but it didn't 'feel' like the other books. It bored me.
This is a great conclusion to this 3 book series. I downloaded, called out sick at work, and finished it within 24 hours. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it. Aside from the writing and pace being highly-skilled, the narration is truly what makes this a gem.
I am a layman who understood maybe 1/10 of the technical stuff in this book at best, yet I still enjoyed it. I was overwhelmingly impressed by the mechanics of the story, how each problem the protagonist faced on mars got solved. initially, I thought the frequent curse words detracted from the story, but it fits the character and the situation. If you're writing a journal and you think you're going to die, you're not going to say 'darn.' Aside from the story being quite outstanding, the narration is flawless.
I'm so thrilled that Audible finally has Bukowski. Dreams DO come true. Now, they just need to put about 20 more of his books on here. Where is "Love is a Dog From Hell?"
Anyway... about Women. I think you have to already be a fan of Bukowski to enjoy this. It's typical of his work. Entertaining romps around California with booze and women. This would be a better book if it was half as long. Ironically, the book itself feels like some of the passages where Bukowski is having marathon episodes with some of these women and can't...um finish. I like the book because I already like Bukowski. But if you're breaking into him, start with Hot Water Music or Ham on Rye please.
I don't read a lot of this type of book which could be classified as mystery or thriller. The writing in this genre is usually what disappoints me. This is one of those rare books that stands out due to the authors adeptness at writing and the time and place the story happens. In other words, it fires on all cylinders and isn't just some writer filling in the blanks. I plan to read this whole series. The book enveloped me so much that I started calling people around me poofters and for about a week I felt compelled to drink Guniess, but eventually I went back to Stella. Sorry. We'll see what happens when I read the second book of the series!
I thoroughly enjoyed the first book in this series. The second, as is usually the case, is much better and faster moving than the first since the main character is already constructed. There are three murders, and Mr. Corbett sets off to unravel the villian. That's the core of the story but, as in the first book, a web of deceitful characters and sub-plots surface. I felt that this book did an expert job of setting up the rest of the series which I now obviouslly have to read. Also, I like the fact that Mr. Corbett manages to get himself raped in every book so far. We'll see what women attack him in the third installment!
I don't usually tackle 18+ hour audiobooks except on special occasions. A recommended this book, but told me nothing about it. I downloaded it and started listening without knowing anything that it was about. I felt the writing was very good. I like the characters. The narrator was perfect. You can always tell a good narrator by how they handle the voices of the opposite sex. I don't think I was bored at any part of this book, nor did I mind going the distance with it.
There are millions of books for females telling their woes of family struggle and men mistreating them. This genre does not really exist for men. Then there is Bukowski who does nothing but tell it exactly as it is with women and trying to find a little scrap of humanity in a such an inhumane world. I like these stories because some of them cross the boundaries of the surreal. It is not like the other books that are for the most part autobiographical. I think this book made me laugh out loud much more than the other books by Bukowski. The wild west story, I thought was ridiculous at first. But any man who reads that story will say to himself at the end of it, "That's sure how it goes with women." Thank god this is audio! Make more.
I read this in print probably 15 years ago. Now that the Bukowski books are on audible, I am revisiting all they have to offer. If you are starting off on Bukowski, I'd suggest Ham on Rye or Post office over this. This novel details many years of Bukowski's life, I'd figure after leaving home, in which he worked about a thousand different jobs in a hundred different cities. As per his style, the chapters are short. There's no filler. It's all, "I moved here, I got drunk at this bar, I hooked up with this woman." Factotum is one of his better novels, but not his best. Still, it flows and is an easy listen.
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