I am a huge fan of Dirk Pitt, but with the Isaac Bell series, I have a new favorite Cussler character. The race is set during the early days of flight, when anybody daring enough was free to fly. The description of a cross-country air race during this time gives you a window into how people strove to push the limits of flight.
While the story revolves around the air race, it is a typical Cussler mystery with twists and turns. Isaac Bell is as brave and cunning as Dirk Pitt. If you like the Pitt series, then this is an excellent change. You get the same fantastical events, but instead of ships, subs, and sunken treasure, you get primitive planes, early automobiles, and trains.
Scott Brick is a pro at these books. I always enjoy his work. When I see his name, I know the narration will be top quality.
This is a difficult question to answer because I think it would start with a new plot, a new protagonist, new supporting characters, and then move on from there. The start of the book is fine, but then it descends quickly, has a horrible plot, a couple of the sub-plots are somewhat OK, but they're not enough to save the book. After forcing myself to finish (actually, I had to force myself to start listening again a few times before forcing myself to finish), I found myself completely disappointed with the ending. To answer the question honestly, for me to give it 4 or 5 stars, I would have to listen to "The Firm", "The Client", "A Time to Kill." or one of his many other 4 and 5 star books and review it instead of this book.
Catherine Taber's performance was pretty good, until she tried doing an Appalachian accent. It sounded more like an overblown southern styled accent with a hint of Hollywood's perception of what a hillbilly should sound like.
All of them.
I wouldn't have been bothered with the characters having issues with coal companies, the loss of unions, difficulty with black lung benefits, or any of the other legal issues raised in the book, but instead of it being part of the story, it was like Grisham was trying to preach, teach, and educate those from areas outside the coal fields what it's like (and trying to convince those of us who live in the areas he's describing that our perception is wrong). Living in Appalachia and understanding the coal fields and the legal system, the book was just fictionalized on the basic points of construction. The story is supposed to be fiction, but when he basis the story on a specific location, it should at least somewhat resemble the place it's supposed to be. I have read all of Grisham's novels (excluding his YA stuff), and this was the most disappointing book he's ever written. It took me multiple attempts to get through this book. I kept hoping he would get past the far left-wing liberal preaching and just tell a story. I would have the same problem if it was a far right-wing conservative preaching story. This is fiction, and the lectures by the characters didn't sound like normal fiction, they came across as self-ritious and pious. I surely hope he gets back to story telling in his next book.
I love Carl Hiaasen. His books always have colorful characters that make for a funny adventure. The characters are often simple minded people trying to make the score of their life, but every step of the way they find a way to make the adventure more interesting and funny.
It's like an Elmore Leonard novel set in Florida. The comparison is based on the dialog style of writing.
Asner does a pretty good job. I've listened to other Hiaasen novels that had better narration, but Asner's reading doesn't detract from the storyline.
If you've never experienced Hiaasen, you may want to select an earlier book like Tourist Season, Double Whammy or Lucky Dog.
I don't think this could have been made into a 4 or 5 star book. I couldn't finish it. It was long, tedious, and difficult to continue. The story was very slow in developing.
She should have added some wizards, teenagers, and a boarding school. Trying to move from adolescent fantasy to adult fiction doesn't work for her.
I've read and listened to a lot of Clive Cussler's works. I'm a huge Dirk Pitt fan. With Isaac Bell we get a glimpse of what Drik Pitt might have been if he came of age 100 years ago. The series takes you from coast to coast, but while the books are fast paced and full of twists, Bell has to travel by train for cross-country trips.
The Chase is a good foundation for the Isaac Bell series. I recommend reading them in order because just like Cussler's other books, these build on each other as well.
I loved getting a glimpse into life 100 years ago. So many of the conveniences we take for granted weren't even enjoyed by the most wealthy individuals of the day. As with any Cussler book, he describes the means of transportation in great detail so you get a real of being in the train or early automobile.
Mr. Dawe read in such a monotonous tone that I could not finish listening. I read this book in 1998 when it was first released and it made me an instant fan of Phillip Margolin. I have either read or listened to all of his books as a result of reading this book. I decided to go back and listen to the book since it has been 15 years since I read it. I have listened to over 100 books through Audible and this is the first time I can remember where I stopped listening because of the narrator. I was seriously disappointed.
This is a very entertaining book and well worth the read, but I couldn't listen to it.
Sue Grafton's alphabet mystery series continues to provide good stories. This time Kinsey has to explore a side of her rarely seen in previous novels, but it rounds her out as a person. Judy Kaye is the voice of Kinsey Millhone. If you enjoyed A-T, you'll enjoy U. The down side is that there is only 5 books left in this series.
If you enjoyed the previous Fletch Novel, you’ll probably like this one too. In this prequel, MacDonald showed the origins of Erwin Flecher’s journalism career. His attempts to scoop the story are great, but some of his sarcastic attempts at humor fall flat. I read the Fletch novels several years ago and was disappointed that it took so long for another one to come along.
As I listened to The Appeal, it struck me how different it was from the typical Grisham novel. I was also amazed at how familiar the story sounded. It was not until after the I finished the story that I learned that Grisham used my home state as the foundation for the story. Of course it was loosely based on the 2004 West Virginia Supreme Court election. In that election, a coal executive spent millions of dollars through a group called "And for the Sake of the Kids" in an effort defeat a sitting justice. Of course Grisham added some suspense and evil characters on both sides of the election that hopefully didn’t exist in West Virginia, but I found the ending to be a bit disappointing. I miss Grisham's earlier work.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is quite long, but it covers years. I’m glad I read the book before watching the movie. The movie glossed over the actual struggles in the war, particularly Wilson’s attempts to have a weapon developed that could shoot down the helicopters. The story not only gives a glimpse at the way a third world country could defeat the mighty Soviet Union, it showed the inner workings of Congress and the ability of one man to work the system for a cause in which he truly believed. I found the background story of Wilson’s discussions with
Tip O’Neal involving John Mertha, and O’Neal providing Wilson with the committee assignment that he needed to fund this war, and of course a seat on the Kennedy Center’s Board. A poor bachelor in D.C. needs a place to take dates. I also found the story of Gust Avrakotos to be quite compelling. Without Gust in the right post with the C.I.A. at the right time, Wilson never would have succeeded. I highly recommend this book.
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