An autobiography that leaves you liking the guy less than when you started! An ego so outsized that it is laughable. Lets see--he invented the everything bagel and then every new format of Italian dining in NYC for the last 20 years. And, it appears he did it all himself. Sure there were others involved but gives them minor credit. Even his mother. She helped him most by "stepping back". The proof of this inflated ego trip is that he decided he was the best narrator for the material. Except, he can't read his own words. Halting and slow delivery--kind of like handing a book to a middle schooler and pressing record. And he likes to curse to make a point, any point.
The positives? Well, if you are planning on opening a restaurant in NYC there are prob a few useful tips.
If you think you might like him from Master Chef this book will prove you wrong.
I so wanted to like this book. Well developed characters, strong narration, seductive writing style. The best of this builds interest for the first third of the book. But just as you get hooked in slows and feels stuck in the mud. Plot gets weak and themes become predictable. Then, for me, the narrative comes apart. Almost like the author had a bunch ways to finish but couldn't decide so someone else grabbed a thread and ran it out to a conclusion. Tried to patch with a closing coda but it didn't really connect to what got us there. It has all the classic elements of grand sweeping historical fiction--just not the substance to back it up.
A random collection of disjointed plot lines. Kind of a shotgun story line with each eventually coming to an unsatisfying climax. Each subplot has an abrupt conclusion and then quickly forgotten. But it is the narration that makes this a below average listen. Feels like the narrator saw the material for the first time in the recording studio. It is read to us in a slow, deliberate manner as if we couldn't keep up if he goes any faster. I tried to listen on 1.25 speed but highlights the monotone read. I thought this character series had potential but Burn suggests that I was incorrect.
Their first book gave new info and insight on the campaign and presented it as a compelling read. This one feels like warmed over old news and is written that way. Keep looking something to keep me interested. Sorry to say I drifted away and learned nothing.
I have listened to other books in the "Private" series. They still seem in search of a core theme. The main character is mushy in terms of personality and motivation and that changes from book to book. The plot is mildly interesting. Honestly, I finished this book two days ago and--like cotton candy--it's gone. Seems like the Patterson "brand" has become publishing fast food.
Not sure if Patterson dislikes his readers or just thinks we are chumps. This book suggests chumps. If he didn't have time to finish this book he should have delayed its release. But there must of been pressure inside the Patterson writing factory to hit send to the publisher. Why go to the trouble of finishing it if people like me will buy it anyway.Fool me once... This is my last contribution to Patterson Inc for the once interesting Cross series. Hey, shouldn't truth in packaging require him to at least call this Cross My Heart - Part One? Waste of time. Move on. But thanks for the author's note at the end of a book. Was this an honest to goodness apology letter to keeping people to return their books to stores before he hit best seller status.
Slow to get started. Pace and promise of an important book as it progresses. Then the narrative and storyline blows apart as the author feels around in the dark for a conclusion. Harsh? Maybe, but I was left so disappointed that it failed to make something out of some great raw material. The eventual weaving of the three story lines into "the son" is a heavy handed morality lesson. Jarring and inauthentic based on the profiles of the personalities that proceed it. The best part of the book is the performance of the various narrators. All of whom exceed the material.
Kind of like taking History of Venice 301 from a egotist prof who thinks everything he has to say is interest and important. Fact is, a good bit is worthy of the time it takes to get though the heavy lifting of rest of the text.
Listened in advance of a trip to Venice. Gave me some new perspectives on a place that I love. But after the first few chapters I had to edit to keep myself interested.
The reader sounds like a professor speaking slowly so the class can keep up and take notes. Happily you can speed him up to keep things moving.
Bottom line. A special interest listen but worth the time if you want to find out the history behind the masks.
Nice story. Plot moves quite slowly. Slightly above average detective story. What is all the fuss about? Great marketing gimmick to launch with pseudo-name. But taken on its own there is nothing really special here. A nice short story padded into a novel. At least it is well performed and carries you over the dull patches.
Nathan McBride is a good, solid character. Story holds close to Jack Reacher novel. A series also read by Dick Hill. Mr. Hill makes the material better. Like a great actor he can make a good story great. No wonder he has won so many audible awards. If there is a better reader--I have not heard them yet. Very entertaining and now I want to hear the other two books in this series.
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