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.
Retired to mountains of California. Sell on eBay as Prsilla. No TV. Volunteer in wildlife rehab. Knit, sew or embroider while listening.
I should have written my review as soon as I finished the book. In retrospect, I believe this is the least violent and most cerebral book of the four. I enjoyed hearing about Matthew's life in New York, and I loved the description of the beautiful old woman in the upscale mental hospital, surrounded by her familiar things, waiting for news from the King! Matthew eventually discovers this woman's story and manages to help her and her family. I would welcome more books of this type with people helping one another to work out their lives instead of enjoying trashing one another and enjoying taking lives. Well written, well narrated, unique in literature. I hope this gifted author will produce more stories like this one.
This is a very complicated review. The start was grueling. The story picked up. the characters were good. The good and interesting characters should have been developed more. There were some great characters to develop. The summation was so quick and unsatisfying. There was so much potential!!!! I love period pieces! could have been phenomenal with some input from a third party or fourth, editor! A non infested person.
He was good, not as good as others, but his performance did not deter.
Yes and no. I finished it but there were times I just did not want to finish it. The summation should have been a surprise but strings should have eluded. I felt like the whole motive was to guide you to the next book.
I have never had such mixed feelings.
Just finished Queen of Bedlam, the second Matthew Corbett book, and I loved it. We begin with Matthew, 3 years after the events in Speaks the Nightbird, working as a legal clerk in New York. Soon though, a murder, then another...both with similar markings cut into their faces. A serial killer in the days before there was a word to describe them. And that's just one of the mysteries Matthew is drawn into. But what is no mystery, is why I like these books. Robert McCammon has a writing style I've been a fan of for more than 20 years. That, along with the historical setting of New York in 1702, the believable characters you meet along the way and their relationships with one another, and just the true mystery of it all. I love a good mystery, and Matthew Corbett is as enjoyable a "Detective", as any I've ever read. I'm a big fan of BBC dramas and Masterpiece Mystery, and I could see these books on the small screen in that regard. Good stuff. I plan to start the next one soon!
The turn of words, old-fashioned ideas and ways of speech combined with the observations and deductive thinking of Mathew to solve mysteries makes for a very interesting story and good read.
This was difficult for me to get through. The first part is horribly boring and I get that it's exposition, but really unentertaining. The book then drones on and on and on. Seemingly unrelated things all end up relating, even though they are a huge stretch. There are too many characters to keep track of unless you keep a chart or binge listen. I did neither, so by the end, I had no idea who half the characters were.
With all the words, by the time you get to the final 5 chapters, details are skipped over while other events never seem to end.
The foreshadowing of times to come (fingerprints in the eighteenth century?) is too smug and happens a number of times. A rape of a drugged male by a female is given almost no attention and the character basically carried on like it was nothing but a bad dream.
Great bedtime listening for me since I couldn't seem to listen for more than 20 minutes.
I cruised through all four books in the Matthew Corbett series in record time and enjoyed every one. I did read them in order so it was easier to follow references to past episodes of Matthew Corbett's career. That said, each can stand on its own individually and be completely entertaining without having read any previous novel.
Mr Ballerini does an outstanding job reading and brings all the characters to life. Each character is uniquely voiced so that you instantly know who is speaking. (Very helpful in keeping the characters strait in your head.) I particularly like his ability to make young people sound young and those with more maturity, voiced in keeping with their age.
It was this series which prompted me to change to two credits a month. It's easy to spend them when one has such entertaining characters and exciting, hair raising adventures to look forward to. I definitely recommend all the books in this series.
Matthew's character grows and new players are added. They make him a better man. Add to that the great island of Manhattan and some new puzzles to solve. I enjoyed the many layers McCammon added with this book.
I listened to this right after 'Speaks the Nightbird", which was an excellent book. 'Queen" is the continuation of the Hero from the first book. This story falls short, though. It starts out with possibilities of being a good story, but then slows down in the middle of the book. I didn't like the characters telling us how everything ties together. I wanted our hero to figure it out with his cunning, or to have the action uncover the plot. It is fine to listen to, but I would listen to some books in between the two. The performance is excellent. I would listen to it for that, but be prepared for lots of little plots varying from the main one.
I enjoyed this book on tape. The story is interesting, the characters are entertaining, and the plot is engrossing. The narration is also excellent.
Say something about yourself!
Yes! I have never been a fan of mysteries and I'm still not except when it comes to this series! Honestly, I'm beginning to think that I'd read anything by Robert McCammon . . . I started with "Swan Song" and enjoyed the writing so much I thought I'd give "Speaks the Nightbird" a shot and I'm glad I did, now I'm hooked on the series!
I love them all, but Matthew is wonderful because he's so meticulous about everything. I especially enjoyed the line in the book when his companion bursts out in frustration at him stating how he:
... HATES the way Matthew looks unconcerned and as though he's thinking of all manner of other things while HE, his friend, is very upset and explaining something very important only to finish explaining and find that Matthew has picked up every word and subtlety completely!.....
(please excuse my grossly inaccurate paraphrasing based purely on memory of my one time listening of the book) - The way Mr McCammon actually casts the dialog is a beautiful example of the authors craft for providing descriptive character detail without shoving it in your face. There are many ways to describe things and Mr Mc Cammon uses them all. :-)
All the characters are well sketched out and developed for the reader, most are left with enough room (visually) for imagination to fill in the rest with the exception of owner/writer of the "Earwig", initially called the Lady Bug". Robert McCammon depicted this character so well he nearly jumped out of my IPOD and stood in front of me! At any rate, every time this particular character spoke in the book his image was stored so strongly in my mind I had to hold back a giggle so people wouldn't stare at me like I was crazy! A truly entertaining character that I look forward to reading more of!!!
Only one, the book previous to this in the series - "Speaks the Nightbird". As with every book, new Characters require new voices and since this book takes place in a completely different location with Matthew being the only continuing character, I'd say that Edoardo Ballerini did an outstanding job! I found it easy to determine who was speaking by the unique style developed for each voice
The book was difficult to get sucked into at the beginning and that's the reason I gave it 4 stars . . . I wish I could give it 4.5 stars. I don't remember what the key event was that finally pulled me in or how far into the book I was, but once that happened, yes, I wanted to listen to the remainder all in one sitting, but due to the length, I found it impossible. Still, at the beginning there were quite a few stops and I found myself looking at other material. My suggestion is to plug on and remember my confession at the beginning of this review, I am NOT a mystery fan . . . this series is the ONLY one I'm following. I don't think the lag lasted beyond two hours . . .
These are well crafted stores written by a talented writer! I haven't written many reviews but I felt obligated to do so in this case . . . the only reason I got on line was to purchase book three in the series! :-)
I know he's got some other books out there, what is the chance that Audible or a subsidiary will convert some of Mr. Mc Cammon's older books? He appears to have a following here on Audible . . . ???
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