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Wild Thing: A Novel | [Josh Bazell]

Wild Thing: A Novel

It's hard to find work as a doctor when using your real name will get you killed. So hard that when a reclusive billionaire offers Dr. Peter Brown, aka Pietro Brnwa, a job accompanying a sexy but self-destructive paleontologist on the world's worst field assignment, Brown has no real choice but to say yes. Even if it means that an army of murderers, mobsters, and international drug dealers-not to mention the occasional lake monster-are about to have a serious Pietro Brnwa problem.
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Publisher's Summary

It's hard to find work as a doctor when using your real name will get you killed. So hard that when a reclusive billionaire offers Dr. Peter Brown, aka Pietro Brnwa, a job accompanying a sexy but self-destructive paleontologist on the world's worst field assignment, Brown has no real choice but to say yes. Even if it means that an army of murderers, mobsters, and international drug dealers - not to mention the occasional lake monster - are about to have a serious Pietro Brnwa problem.

Facing new and old monsters alike, Dr. Brnwa's story continues in this darkly funny and lightning-paced follow up to Josh Bazell's best-selling debut.

Also listen to the first book, Beat the Reaper.

©2012 Josh Bazell (P)2012 Hachette

What the Critics Say

"[Bazell's books] are hard-boiled thrillers, written in one of the most distinctively entertaining new fictional voices I've run across in years, in any genre. There is a massive density of information in [Wild Thing]...but Bazell wields it with wonderful lightness. Reading him is like being able to monopolize the attention of the most interesting person at a party...It's so rare that you see a really brilliant writer who is committed, 100%, in every sentence, to giving you a good time. Bazell is, and he does." (Lev Grossman, Time)

"Carl Hiaasen fans will relish Bazell's frenetic sequel to 2009's Beat the Reaper...Bazell expertly blends action, farce, and political satire, and his wide-ranging imagination bodes well for the future of the series." (Publishers Weekly, Starred Review)

"The book is composed in Bazell's propulsive, profanity-laden style, peppering startling violence with detailed footnotes that cover subjects like tooth reinsertions and human cryogenics...Props to Bazell for not cranking out an idle retread of Beat the Reaper. A funny, unexpected journey for our hero that sets up the next installment with finesse." (Kirkus)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (278 )
5 star
 (75)
4 star
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Overall
3.3 (247 )
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3 star
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1 star
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Story
4.2 (247 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Edward Vancouver, WA, United States 03-05-12
    Edward Vancouver, WA, United States 03-05-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Disappointing."
    What would have made Wild Thing better?

    Get rid of the Scooby Doo plot and overt political opinions. The violent, morally ambivalent Pietro from Beat the Reaper was way more interesting than the main character (allegedly the same guy) of this book. The rural setting was wrong. Pietro is an urban hero.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Them or Us by David Moody


    Have you listened to any of Robert Petkoff and Stephanie Wolfe ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    The performance was good.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    The banter was occasionally amusing.


    Any additional comments?

    Hopefully just a poor sophomore attempt.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris - Audible Newark, NJ, United States 04-17-12
    Chris - Audible Newark, NJ, United States 04-17-12 Member Since 2011

    I'm an Audible editor, and I think this quote sums it up: "A voice is such a deep, personal reflection of character." - Daniel Day-Lewis

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sophomore slump?"

    That must be it, because we know what Josh Bazell can do. He can write the most kickass thriller ever with the most kickass, anti-hero protagonist ever (See “Beat the Reaper”). This book is not that book. At all. Not even close. (Robert Petkoff, You are not responsible for this. You are a great narrator. You did the best you could with what you had.) There’s a weak lake monster subplot along with a useless love interest, and it’s all wrapped up with the most Scooby-Doo of endings.

    It’s clear throughout that Bazell used this book as a pulpit to forward his views on politics and religion. You can agree or disagree with him, but you’ll have a hard time speaking clearly because he’s been beating you over the head with it. Unnecessary.

    11 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr. Lake Oswego, OR, United States 02-24-12
    Dr. Lake Oswego, OR, United States 02-24-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Lot Like Cotton Candy"

    It is a trite cliche, but comparing Wild Thing to cotton candy is very fitting: it is so tasty, it melts in your mouth, but you know its not good for you and when its gone, it has left you with nothing. I loved "Beat the Reaper" - without doubt, one of the best audio books I have listened to. I couldn't wait for the sequel. Wild Thing has some things in common - the main character, of course, but also the snappy dialog and fast pace that keeps things moving. Even though it is immediately apparent that this is the stupidest plot/story line imaginable, I dove in and thoroughly enjoyed myself - right up to the end. By the end, however, the story is so stupid and implausible, I felt like I had just eaten cotton candy again - knowing all along I would regret it.

    This is a fun listen and will keep you engaged - especially if you have already listened to Beat the Reaper. If you have not listened to Beat the Reaper, do not like gratuitous violence, lots of vulgarity, or attacks on Republicans, do not listen to this book. If you still want to try it, be sure you have listened to Beat the Reaper first. Not only is it a far superior story, it will allow you to follow all of the references that pepper this story.

    The narration is very good - hence the performance gets 4 stars.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian Danville, IN, United States 05-28-12
    Brian Danville, IN, United States 05-28-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Such a disappointment"

    Let me start by saying that Josh Bazell's first book, Beat The Reaper, is one of the most enjoyable audio books I have ever listened to. Great story, very well acted, incredible action and surprisingly funny in many spots. Essentially, everything that this second work was not.

    The story is slow and ponderous with only a tiny fraction of the incredible action sequences that made Beat The Reaper such a dynamic listen. In fact, the main character seems to be an entirely different person, more involved with voicing flights of sexual and romantic frustration than driving the plot in any meaningful way. He might not be completely to blame however since 'the plot' consists of little more than a reed-thin stage from which Bazell spouts his political, environmental, and evolutionary beliefs, up to and including some sort of progressive/liberal/enviro-whacko laundry list monologue at the conclusion of the story.

    Overally, a complete and utter let-down. If you're a fan of Bazell, don't waste your time on this one.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 04-12-12
    steve kearny, NJ, United States 04-12-12 Member Since 2009

    Addicted to Audible since 2009

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "So much for the sequel"

    I really enjoyed Beat the Reaper so I gave this a listen but to my dismay, this book wasn't nearly as good as the first part, which was much more clever and thought out. The sequel was definitely missing that creative format, which was so present in Beat the Reaper. With that said, Wild Thing isn't bad, just not as good and I will say this, Josh Bazell is clearly a really smart guy and some of the subjects discussed in the book such as evolution and science and communism are right on the money. TAlso to note: the narrator also does a very good job too.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cristina Somerville, MA, United States 03-26-12
    cristina Somerville, MA, United States 03-26-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a disappointment"

    I really enjoyed "Beat the Reaper." Rushed to download this one...and found it idiotic. Were it not for the reader, who is terrific, I probably would not have finished it. Yes, the first novel was crazy and did not even attempt to be believable -- but it was FUN. This one was not.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jose Marco Island 05-05-12
    Jose Marco Island 05-05-12 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Rotten Thing"

    The previous novel of Bazell although not great was okay. This supposed sequel alternates being flat boring with being exasperatingly ridiculous.
    This is obviously a contract driven book, the author has no story to tell.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jefe de Pugs Los Angeles 03-05-12
    Jefe de Pugs Los Angeles 03-05-12
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    "Disappointing Second Effort"

    I loved Bazell's first novel, Beat the Reaper. It was wry, funny, unpredictable and gritty. Wild Thing is an attempt to continue the series, but not a very good one. It feels like he wrote it for Movie executives. I hope he'll be back with better stuff.

    The production and narration were very good. It was the story that bugged me.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gyoung1951 United States 03-06-12
    gyoung1951 United States 03-06-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    "Looking for Dr Peter Brown"

    If you were wanting more of Beat the Reaper it's not here! For a sequel this totally missed the mark - better luck next time Josh

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara MARIETTA, GA, United States 02-16-12
    Barbara MARIETTA, GA, United States 02-16-12 Member Since 2004

    WildWiseWoman

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Progressive politicos will love it"

    This novels takes some dangerous, impressive twists and turns, winding up with a political diatribe which was fascinating and factual, but oddly placed. It's clear that after the success of his insane wordfest "Beat the Reaper" (my favorite book in the last 5 years), Josh Bazell felt comfortable enough to start forcing political statements into his novel. I personally agree with him 100%, or more, but I can see others being repelled or confused by the insertion.

    The story is extremely strange, not nearly as cohesive as the first book, and I would strongly advise against reading the second without reading the first. Bazell isn't cautious at all about revealing many plot points from BTR, and there are spoilers galore in this second in the series.

    The performances are flawless.I kept waiting for Stephanie Wolfe's voice to jump in, but it isn't until the afterword, which is where the amazing passion and intellect of Josh Bazell comes to a full boil.

    For me, it was a great, fun book with Carl Hiassen-like assaults on the Right, the 1% and their disregard for - well, anybody but themselves. There are a lot of laugh-out-loud and gotta-write-that-down moments, and as with BTR, I also bought the Kindle version and will be listening to this audiobook again.

    8 of 11 people found this review helpful
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