His epic masterwork Speaks the Nightbird, a tour de force of witch hunt terror in a colonial town, was hailed by Sandra Brown as "deeply satisfying...told with matchless insight into the human soul."
Now, Robert McCammon brings the hero of that spellbinding novel, Matthew Corbett, to 18th-century New York, where a killer wields a bloody and terrifying power over a bustling city carving out its identity - and over Matthew's own uncertain destiny.
The unsolved murder of a respected doctor has sent ripples of fear throughout a city teeming with life and noise and commerce. Who snuffed out the good man's life with the slash of a blade on a midnight street? The local printmaster has labeled the fiend "the Masker," adding fuel to a volatile mystery...and when the Masker claims a new victim, hardworking young law clerk Matthew Corbett is lured into a maze of forensic clues and heart-pounding investigation that will both test his natural penchant for detection and inflame his hunger for justice.
In the strangest twist of all, the key to unmasking the Masker may await in an asylum where the Queen of Bedlam reigns - and only a man of Matthew's reason and empathy can unlock her secrets. From the seaport to Wall Street, from society mansions to gutters glimmering with blood spilled by a deviant, Matthew's quest will tauntingly reveal the answers he seeks - and the chilling truths he cannot escape.
©2007 Robert McCammon (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
Mr. McCammon has the uncanny ability to make unbelievable situations, plausible - and enthralling! Again, I couldn't put this down! The narration was great, and tale was gripping. He introduces the master criminal, and another unattainable love interest. I can't wait to listen to the next installment!
having read the speaks the nightbird i was looking forword to this book ahd I wasnt disappointed .Would recommend as a brollant tale
Finding who the queen of bedlem was
Let's face it, these authors aren't paying me, so there's no need to lie!!
The best way I can think of to describe these "Matthew Corbett" books is: "Harry Potter for adults, minus the magic,with sprinkles of intense darkness". At times you'll get caught up thinking that you're reading a young adult book, and then McCammon will throw in something like a guy that has sex with animals, just to liven things up a bit. I was torn when reading this because part of me can't stand how "young adult" much of the book is, but the other part of me understands that with the ages of most of the characters (including Corbett), it's necessary to have a bit of childishness included in the story. To McCammon's credit, I don't know of another author that can so expertly balance "young adult" subject matter with "dark S&M" so well.
The story takes place in the early 1700's of New York City. Just as a period piece alone, the book succeeds in spades. The story itself does drag at times, but Corbett's lines are witty enough to keep you listening. Ideally, I'd rather see more action, but McCammon's real gift is being able to get inside these characters' heads, and mill about for a while, and that's exactly what he does.
It's not necessary to read the first book, in order to enjoy this one. However, as far as story and action goes, the first book has a slight edge over this one, so you might as well read them in order.
Narrator is great.
I am a 65-year-old psychologist, married for 25 years, with two sons who are 25 and 22. I love reviewing the books and the feedback I get.
So, how do you feel about twenty-three hour, four-hundred year old colonial costume dramas? This is exactly the sort of thing for people who like this sort of thing. Me, I like Edoardo Ballerini. He is virtually the only narrator whom I will listen to and thoroughly enjoy for such a lengthy book. With the exception of Shantaram, I just find these epics way overblown in every way. Now, you may say that I knew what I was getting when I bought it, but I will say back to you that my admiration for Mr. Ballerini and his skills is so great that I can sometimes ignore the overdone work he is narrating. I also have to admit to you that I am going to listen to Sings the Nightbird, which is not twenty-three but THIRTY hours long, and I will do it for the same reason, that being Mr. Ballerini's astonishing skills.
To attempt to sum up the plot of a work this large is foolhardy. Moby Dick is about a whale, and Crime and Punishment is about Russia (both of those gags are Woody Allen's; the results of taking an Evelyn Wood speed-reading course). Just as a taste, I will say that the book is situated in the late 1600's, when New York was just beginning to become a shadow of what it now is. Our hero is Matthew Corbett, who the author claims invented the word "detective." Who are we to argue? There is a cast of thousands, almost literally. There is drama and tragedy, and, regrettably, not much comedy at all. I could have used some. Believe it or not, in an epic this size, there are actually a few characters who are under-drawn, and whom we would like to have heard more about. The women tend not to be drawn all that well, which is common in male-written epic dramas. Many of the period details are interesting. Much of the gore may be essential to the work, but I still could have lived without a lot of it, which I will kindly spare you. You can learn quite a bit of history from this thing, although the historical point of view here is idiosyncratic at best. I'm sure it took billions of hours to research these books, and the results are everywhere, particularly in tiny details.
So, can I recommend this book to you? I am deeply ambivalent. If you love and admire Mr. Ballerini's skills as much as I do, maybe you will be able to get through the thing. If you are a true history freak, that might do as well. Otherwise, you might use these twenty-three hours doing something completely different. Like taking an extremely long baaath.
Book 1 Speaks the NightBird was so amazing and fully engaging, my expectations were the same for Queen of Bedlam. I was disappointed, it's half way through until you are introduced to the Queen of Bedlam, I never had a feel to where the story was going until half way through. I thought many times to put in to rest. however the narrator, simply sucks you into the period and makes up for what story didnt deliver. In the end I was pleased, but not to the extent of Nightbird.
Ranks quite high. Excellent story with lots of depth and character and location development. Gives a good verbal picture of the time and place and has links to past (and future) stories.
Matthew - well developed character with a predictable reaction to all that happens. The character transcends each story which makes listening comfortable.
The nymphomaniacal young lady, name escapes me at moment, with whom Matthew spent an exhausting evening!
Love to see more of these stories, they are quite unique
Murder/mystery/suspense is not my favorite genre. However, when McCammon pairs it with historical fiction and superb character development, I find I love it. Murder/mystery/suspense set in 1703 in the growing town of New York with vivid details and excellent dialogue. The Matthew Corbett series is growing on me. Edoardo Bellerini gives voice to the story beautifully.
This is the second book in the Matthew Corbett series and it was perhaps not quite as powerful as the first, but in no way a let down. I haven't been so impressed with an author in a very long time and now I'm equally impressed with Mr Ballerini for bringing Matthew and all the characters in the series to such bold and colorful life. I look forward to the next books as well.
Yes, the story is entertaining, the audio is well done and the information regarding the time setting is educational.
The unfolding of the story and characters. The "hero" is a regular guy would uses logic and information to advance the story.
When the drunken lawyer tells his tale of woe and revenge.
A case of revenge and a woman in hiding.
I hear voices. But maybe that's because there's always an Audible book in my ear.
The second book of the series isn't quite what the first one was, but this is certainly worth a listen. If nothing else, Edoardo Ballerini's narration makes it all worthwhile.
The storyline in this book, as with "Speaks the Nightbird," has some dark and grisly details. (No more than "Devil in the White City," but gruesome nonetheless.) I try to ignore it just so I can spend some time in NYC in the early 18th century.
McCammon throws things in every now and again to make you chuckle. This isn't flawless historical fiction and he lets you know he's in on the joke. One thing I do appreciate about McCammon's writing is that he always ties up the ending and takes time doing it. This book, like the first, feels complete and unhurried.
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