Told from the viewpoint of an impressionable young entrepreneur named Jay Carter Brown, this memoir quickly dives into the gritty underbelly of the international drug trade. The story begins with minor-league smuggling scams between Canada and the Caribbean that soon escalate to multi-ton shipments of grass and hash from the Caribbean and the Middle East. All goes well for a time, but as the stakes grow higher, inevitable setbacks occur. Drug-runners, police, jealous friends, and rival gangs all contribute to this extraordinary story of a young man who became involved at the highest levels of the drug trade and lived to tell about it.
©2007 Jay Carter Brown (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
I often look past bad pronunciation in audio books because typically it doesn't bother me - but perhaps that's because I'm Canadian, and when they apply to the US - particularly some US figures - I'm not as familiar with them and I can let them fly; but in this case I couldn't. While the narrator was acceptable in his story-telling, his pronunciation of Canadian names - particularly those around Quebec ( a hard "a" in autostade, or worse, a hard T in Laurentians, were just two examples) - was so appalling that it was a distraction - exacerbated because place names were so central in the opening parts of the book. After 45 minutes I had to stop as he bastardized every place name he mentioned. This is unfortunate because it seemed like a good story - and it's unfortunate that this doesn't come out in the audio preview. In this case, poor pronunciation was a practice that I couldn't put up with for very long; but, like me with other audio books, perhaps others who are less familiar with the names won't be as affected by the narration, and can listen to what is likely a decent yarn.
I'm not sure what benchmarks Audible uses in selecting narrators, but given that the narration of a book is so central to the enjoyment one derives, and the frequency with which one ends an audiobook prematurely due to bad narration, I really think this is something Amazon/Audible need to invest more time in reviewing before selecting a narrator - because surely their standards on narration cannot be that far off the average listener on Audible. . . yet from the number of reviews that reference "poor narration", it would seem that they set the bar pretty.
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