Interesting characters, plot moved along with secrets revealed at a rapid clip. Interesting subtext about racial, gender stereotypes. Everything came together nicely at the end.
Barely noticed his performance- all the accents were very realistic!
Light entertainment, but exceptionally well done. Fans of CSI-style forensic police procedurals may be disappointed- this is more of an Agatha Christie style pursuit of psychological deficiencies and motives for murder!
WWII told lightly
Narration was very good; however, I found that I missed a lot with the audible version, so I bought the e-version so I could linger over the prose. The time-shifting became difficult to follow when listening in smaller portions. Also, the chapter #s were different in the Audible version, which made it confusing to FF or rewind.
I was a little confused by the ending, even after multiple readings.
Jill Leovy is a respected journalist and her many interviews on radio were intelligent and interesting; however, this book really dragged for me. She spent several chapters glorifying the 2 white investigators who sound truly remarkable but don't really advance our understanding of the larger problem. The author expects us to be surprised that the many black men killed by police and each other have families that grieve for them years after their deaths- that's a given. It's important knowledge, but I don't want to read a book about grieving parents. Listening over several sessions, I became confused about the structure of the book- the central core was stretched way too thin, tidbits of facts were scattered throughout.
Couldn't finish it.
No. I found the narrator to be too laconic for what given the topic should have had a harder edge. She sounded more like a tender-hearted social worker than a hard-nosed investigator. This book may have been better in hard print because you could skim read and possibly get a lot more out of it.
Couldn't finish it- got bored and wasn't learning anything new.
Surprised by the great ratings- did these people just like the concept or did they actually listen to the whole thing? I'm usually in sync with the majority.
Just didn't seem realistic. Characters were too thinly sketched and not likeable. The plot had too many holes .
I liked his baritone voice and crisp elocution, but he was not right for the main character (too old, too strong) and the women seemed like airheads (this is tough for all the male narrators).
Disappointment- kept hope it would pick up.
I was a huge Dick Francis fan, but stopped reading his later works when the quality fell off. I knew his writing was a family affair, so when I saw Felix got 4 stars for Bloodline, I decided to give him a try. I'm sorry to say he doesn't have his father's touch. His "hero" began the book with a huge ethical lapse, and did not have the expected reaction to his sister's death, making him very unsympathetic He didn't ask the logical questions one would have after a sibling's presumed suicide, and it was frustrating that he seemed to miss obvious clues. The supporting characters behaved in arbitrary ways. His love interests (both of them) acted so suspiciously that I assumed they were being set up as conspirators or victims. Unlike Dick Francis, who would introduce new villains as the thriller progressed, Felix followed the "Law of Economy of Characters" so that the killer had to be one of the characters previously introduced. Once our hero identified the killer by sight, he was described only as "the man", which was really frustrating because it could have been 2 or 3 minor characters (either of them would have satisfied the plot). The setting of the race course broadcast booth was interesting, but most of the dialogue was really flat.
Learning about the "art" of art forgery and the commercial side of the art world was interesting, but the story was based on an "idiot plot" : no reasonable thinking person would have gotten him/herself in such a situation! I know that art forgers do exist and have their reasons, but I do not find them to be sympathetic. I continued listening to learn how the author would tie up the loose ends and vindicate her protagonist, which I knew she would do. The main character seemed likeable, but for a supposedly smart and strong-willed woman, was easily manipulated by men and lied too easily for her own good. By the end of the novel, I didn't understand how she had any friends or supporters. The story was so implausible, I ended up feeling cheated of my 10 hours.
Learning about art forgery, and the mystery of the fake Degas.
Men were irritating. She did well with the main (female) character's voice, but the men all were depicted in a deep-throated husky voice.
Yes and no. I could have spent more time in the world of the art world, less in the head of the main character, who was meant to be a heroine, but was really an unsympathetic character to anyone who cares about art and authenticity.
Dialogue was thin. Supposedly smart creative people should be much wittier.
Yes- narration enriched the story-telling and brought the characters to life more than reading from the printed page could invoke. Pacing and pitch were perfect.
Many, many- was brought to tears several times. Although the story is well known, the author introduced many different layers of contemplation.
No, but I will definitely look for them.
Yes- listened in every spare moment. May listen again.
For those who liked "Unbroken", this is much, much better. The story is incredibly rich, on many levels. Author does a miraculous job of interweaving personal stories of 33 miners, their families, and the rescuers. Insightful and profound without straying from the real events and statements of the participants. One of the best "literary non-fiction" books I have ever read- on par with John Krakauer's "Into Thin Air".
There is no one else like Dick Francis. I continued to listen for 9 straight hours without losing interest once. I love how he introduces a new setting for every mystery- this time it was the production of a film about horseracing. I appreciate his straighforward prose which propels the story forward and introduces interesting characters without expounding unnecessarily on background. Dick Francis' stories always have the right amount of tension and violence without gratuitous blood-letting. His hero is always smart, strong, and courageous while still seeming vulnerable and sympathetic. There are no loose ends in a Dick Francis mystery- the riddle introduced in the first page is answered by the final page, and many more besides.
Chasing the knife-wielding assailant in a jeep.
The scene with the wild horses on the beach pulled it all together for me. Before that, the title was a clever pun.
No, but very entertaining escapism!
My only complaint would be about the female characters- while written to be strong and independent, their behavior does not exemplify those traits. Also, I don't believe the female victim would have acted in the way that the mystery revealed (can't say more than that without spoiling the ending).I don't understand the comments about the narrator for the first 3 chapters. The narrator was excellent throughout.
Tana French is certainly a good writer and a critics darling and I liked the social context of the novel, but the male characters were all mercurial and unlikeable and the female characters all fairly flat. I did not want to spend 15 hours with this family! Much of the dialogue was pure sarcasm, got old fast. Many of the plot developments seemed totally implausible, it was hard to stay engaged. I've read 2 of her other novels, so I know not to expect a tidy procedural with all the mysteries tied up in the end, but this one left one murder still unsolved.
Main character could have been more witty and charming to balance out the anger and rage.
No. Loved his soft Irish brogue and lovely singing voice. 2 of the male characters sounded a little like John Wayne- I didn't understand his accent there. Women were pretty unrealistic.
Anger at the ridiculousness of the characters.
Probably won't read any more Tana French. This one was a slog.
While the mystery kept me interested, some of the interview scenes were very tedious (ex/ "Why did you do that?" "Do what?" "That." "This?" "No, that.") The family scenes seemed like unnecessary filler.
Realism is important, but the lack of justice in a murder mystery breaks an implicit agreement with the reader that the killer will be caught and crime and corruption will be overcome, if just for one fictional case. In this case, the true criminals were not brought to justice. One of the reasons I don't care for many of the male mystery writers (especially the Scandinavian authors) is the tendency toward sexual violence which propels the hunt for justice. The last 2 Donna Leon mysteries I have read have also fallen into this category. I do not want to read about rape and torture in an escapist novel.
Does not do so well with the 14 year old daughter, and Guido sounded much older than the character in the novel.
Didn't want to listen to a child's voice
no no no no no no no no
There may not be a better mystery writer publishing today. Mystery is well plotted without resorting to generic formulae. Characters, setting, and context are brought to life in literate prose. Rural Northeast Pennsylvania, with its methamphetamine labs and hydrofracking wells and contrast of newly rich landowners and down-and-out renters was richly described.
Winter Bones, which brought the backwoods of Mississippi onto the big screen in a frighteningly realistic way. This book would make a great TV miniseries, like True Detective.
Henry Farrell was the everyman- impossible not to relate to him.
Total immersion. Love a book that takes me to a new place and introduces me to characters I feel I already know.
I understand this is a debut novel- I can see the seeds have been planted for sequels, and I am looking forward to them!
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