Parker seems to challenge himself with uniquely flawed characters that somehow he has to build a compelling story around. He succeeds again here, with a very solid A- effort, not quite his best, but still a very good story that is very well read.
The story and narration are fabulous, engaging and very entertaining. But it just stops about (it seems) three quarters of the way through with about six story lines totally hanging.
No problem, you might think, I'll just buy the next edition that finishes the book. Well, there is none. In all other books (it seems, I only bought the first in the series that should have been the sequel), the character is older, the narrator different, the quirky sexy girlfriend gone, and all story lines dropped.
Was the time spent listening to this book worthwhile? Sure, but if you want a complete story (which I think I deserve for spending the money and time), this isn't it. I also think the approach is lazy and frustrating, at least for me. Authors should finish what they start (and get their readers engaged in) and I shouldn't have to use a full credit on a story that isn' t complete. Just my $0.02.
Victor is one of the least likable characters I've ever met, just zero personality, and the perfect at everything hit man, extra proficient with weapons, martial arts, and an incredible ability to instantly, and without knowing all the facts, make the absolute correct decision during times of extreme uncertainty.
No situation he can't perfectly handle, no mistakes, no faulty logic. Ever. No wisecracks, flirting, or fun and interesting relationships with other characters. Yawn. Maybe people like that exist, but you wouldn't want to hang out with them, or spend 12 hours reading about them.
Probably OK if you're looking for pure escapism, but if you're looking for an interesting read with compelling characters you might ultimately care about, this isn't it.
I liked the first book in the series, but this one felt like cobbled together bits of cliches and platitudes, from the presidential adviser who hates the spooks (who always seem to save the day) to ranchers who all wear Carhartt (enough already) and gladly face armed Muslim fundamentalists to protect their neighbors. Not to mention the soldiers and Seals who gladly and without a hint of fear fly to their deaths to save American lives.
Most of this book takes place in the US, the bulk on a Montana ranch where a handful of ranchers with hunting rifles (all ex-military like their fathers before them) hold off 20 Al Qaeda fighters with AK 47s and other more advanced weapons until the cavalry arrives. The previous book was much more overseas, which felt like the writer's strength, or at least a lot more interesting to me.
I got through this to the end, but it was close. I probably won't buy another book in this series, and don't recommend this one.
In this prequel, we get to meet the young John Rain, and learn how he got his start. In many ways, this is the most likeable Rain, before the physical and mental wear and tear. Eisler's read is nuanced and more enjoyable given that he literally put the words in the character's mouths.
Probably the best Eisler yet, and a great place to get acquainted with him and Rain if you haven't had the pleasure before.
I've been an Audible member for over ten years (607 downloads) and I'm hard pressed to think of a worse read than this one. Every conversation sounded the same, whether deciding what to eat for dinner or staring down an incoming missile. Men, women, Americans, Chinese, all sounded the same. This was particularly frustrating when men and women were talking because you had to listen especially hard to figure out who was who.
I don't know who Rob Patterson is and what he's done before, but it's as if they pulled some random guy off the street and said, "here, read this novel." "Never done it before?" "No problem."
The biggest shame is that the story is actually quite good. Put in the hands of even a competent reader, and it would have been fabulous. As it was, I put this down three or four times and had to push myself to finish it.
The story was the most intricate and involved of all the Coes books, involving a healthy dose of Brits, Chinese and US characters. The narration was very nuanced and full, bringing the characters to life before your ears, with full personalities and excellent differentiation.
The story? Dewey is a compelling hero, but (like all such heroes) you're going to have to suspend disbelief quite a few times. How many times can you be shot at by machine gun toting pros and not get hit? And the mechanism used near the end to get Dewey close to the protagonist strains credibility; one of the least likely strategies ever formulated.
But somehow, it all works.The characters are personable and likeable, the story serviceable and the narration just top notch. You'll enjoy yourself so much that you'll just shrug off any deficits and you'll be sad (like I was) that the story had to end.
If you're unfamiliar with Dewey, where does he fit in in the action hero continuum? Let's assume Jack Reacher is kind of ground zero, super but not superman. Throw Gabriel Allon a bit to his left; even more realistic. At the far right extreme (no political connotation meant) is Mitch Rapp, gone before his time, enjoyable, but not always believable. Scott Harvath is between Reacher and Rapp,
Dewey is probably on the far side of Harvath, but nowhere close to Rapp. He's more human, more likable, has more personality. No criticism meant, they're all enjoyable, and I've read or listened to every book in all the series. But hopefully, this will help folks unfamiliar with Coes/Dewey understand what they're in for.
If you like this general genre, you'll love the book.
I think I've read or listened to almost every book in the series; this is one of the better ones. Interesting plot twists, intriguing new characters, no miraculous escapes that seem random.
I am not a George Guidall (the narrator) fan. I don't like him in the Mitch Rapp series, and the narration here, which requires much more subtlety, is deficient. The British accent is nearly indistinguishable from the French, from the Corsican. Basically, all accents sound the same and all characters sound the same.
For me, Phil Gigante has become Gabriel, and I was looking forward to another elegant read, assuming he was the reader. You know what they say about assuming and the error was mine.
Would I have bought the book if I looked and saw that Guidall was the reader? Probably not, but having listened to it, the story trumped the narration, and I'm glad I did.
So I wrote this as a plea to Silva, or whoever makes these decisions. Your characters and stories are far too subtle for Guidall. Please bring back Gigante, or someone with his breadth and depth. Your stories deserve more.
Woods wrote two or three amazing books before he devolved into the James Patterson-like, formulaic book a year for the money-type author (Stone Barrington-drechhhh). This book is a total classic, great characters, intricate and compelling plot line, awesome story telling and a very satisfying long length. An interesting picture of the old south in a small town in rural Georgia.
I read the book back when it first came out, and bought the audiobook recently on a whim during a down month for new titles with an about to expire credit. I was not disappointed.
This was a cartoon from the clumsy plotline to the ham-handed reader performance. At first I thought it was so bad it was good, but I finally concluded it was just bad. Been with Audible since '01 or so; this was the second book I didn't finish.
A unique and interesting character (the Ghost Man) escorts you into the world of high profile bank robbery. A great match of voice and character personality.
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