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Beat the Reaper Audiobook

Beat the Reaper: A Novel

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Publisher's Summary

Meet Peter Brown, a young Manhattan emergency room doctor with an unusual past that is just about to catch up with him. His morning begins with the quick disarming of a would-be mugger, followed by a steamy elevator encounter with a sexy young pharmaceutical rep, topped off by a visit with a new patient - and from there Peter's day is going to get a whole lot worse and a whole lot weirder.

Because that patient knows Peter from his other life, when he had a different name and a very different job. The only reason he's a doctor now is thanks to the Witness Protection Program-and even they can't protect him from the long reach of the New Jersey mob. Now he's got to do whatever it takes to keep his patient alive so he can buy some time...and beat the reaper.

Beat the Reaper is not just the only work that will be compared to Quentin Tarantino's films, Grey's Anatomy, and Chuck Palahniuk - it's also the most original and entertaining debut thriller you'll listen to this year.

©2009 Josh Bazell; (P)2009 Josh Bazell

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1806 )
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4.3 (1050 )
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Performance
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  •  
    T. Applen 02-11-13
    T. Applen 02-11-13 Member Since 2016

    Tudor

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent"
    What made the experience of listening to Beat the Reaper the most enjoyable?

    It's edgy. Violent, gripping. Even my wife didn't want to turn it off, and she hates violence. It has a lot going for it beyond the visceral. It feeds the mind some tidbits here and there as well. A guilty pleasure with some nutrients thrown in for good measure.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Beat the Reaper?

    I won't spoil the good moments by pointing them out. It has many.


    What does Robert Petkoff bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Robert Petkoff is one of the best readers - in the top 3 - I've heard, absolutely no doubt. I wouldn't say he is #3 either. Or #2. He delivers the confidence of the characters and has enough range to make the differences count between them. The main character's voice is delivered with power, and you don't fatigue. He curses well.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I had some laughs. I'm not done yet, so I'll get back to you on the crying.


    Any additional comments?

    I love the combination of crime, action, grit, history, and medical procedural insights. It's always good to learn about the real world through engrossing fiction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kimberly Fair Oaks, CA, United States 01-30-13
    kimberly Fair Oaks, CA, United States 01-30-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Total Blast"

    Couldnt put it down! Fun and well dramatized! If you're squeamish then don't drive while listening to the conclusion of the story. I almost lost it on the freeway!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diane 01-23-13
    Diane 01-23-13
    ratings
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    18
    2
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    Performance
    Story
    "Not pleased with the language"
    Would you try another book from Josh Bazell and/or Robert Petkoff?

    No, I was not please with the language or the feel of the book.


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

    Did not complete the book. It was not what I thought I was getting. Very displeased.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    p 12-30-12
    p 12-30-12 Member Since 2016

    A Traveling Listener

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Took Me By Surprise"

    I began my listen and almost pulled the plug! Background music, short, clipped first person dialog, and outrageous storyline. It slapped me into listening. Then, I began to understand that this was not just an audio book, it was an audio experience! The main character told his story with outlandish seriousness. I laughed out loud at his internal dialog. This was a fun listen. Looking for more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Coleen Newark, NJ 12-28-12
    Coleen Newark, NJ 12-28-12

    Hi dudes!

    ratings
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    "Loved this book, not necessarily my cuppa tea."

    **A couple of very mild spoilers below**

    I want to say first and foremost that this book was very good. It was very action-packed, interesting and the audio quality was gangbusters. I believe another reviewer compared it to being similar to what you would get if Chuck Palahniuk wrote a book combining the best elements of "House" and "The Sopranos". That reviewer was correct. This is a really interesting take on two old themes: hospital dramas and mob movies. The author, being a med student himself, inserts a lot of medical expertise into the book. The protagonist, much like Dr. House, has an off-beat way of approaching his job. He does his job well, isn't necessarily emotionally entangled in his charges and has somewhat of a laissez-faire all-around 'tude. When his former mob life careens into his current med life, a series of flashes backward and forward take place to give you the sum of his character. It is a very interesting character study and there is surely a ton of action going on for adrenaline junkies.

    The narration and audio presentation are top notch. I mostly enjoyed the music and sound effects added throughout but once or twice they took me out of the flow of the story.

    Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for an exciting book to read. As a person who loves to re-read books, I probably won't ever re-read this one but I will likely listen to the second part.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Raindance 12-14-12
    Raindance 12-14-12
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    "Pulp Audio!!"

    This book is part noir, part pulp, and very entertaining! You believe this story from start to finish. No one could make up this stuff, right? Wrong, but enjoy it anyway! It is reminiscent of Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, which is one of my favorite books. It's is raw, hard-boiled, gritty, and really in your face but fun to read!! I would read or listen to anything written by this author!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    dana 12-14-12
    dana 12-14-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved it"
    Where does Beat the Reaper rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    At the top. Incredibly clever - amazing writing. This will be the first book I listen to more than once.


    What other book might you compare Beat the Reaper to and why?

    This book is fresh, truly original.


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

    This is the first. This narrator is excellent and perfect in this book.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Laughed out loud and often. Engaged - listened in one day.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shawn Temperance, Michigan, United States 12-02-12
    Shawn Temperance, Michigan, United States 12-02-12 Member Since 2010

    Ex-military high school math teacher.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Action Escapism to the Max"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    If you are looking to relax your hold on reality and what is physically possible, then yes this is a good book. Reminds me of the Remo Williams books.


    Would you recommend Beat the Reaper to your friends? Why or why not?

    It requires a reader to forget a person's physical limits and know that the goverment WITSEC program is utterly stupid putting a person back in the same city they are from.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Robert Petkoff?

    Yes


    Do you think Beat the Reaper needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I know he wrote one, but for me to read it would, it would have to be on sale, drastically.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Norman Santa Monica, CA, United States 11-22-12
    Norman Santa Monica, CA, United States 11-22-12 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bazell is an author to watch"

    To graphic for my tastes but this book was a brilliant surprise, a contender for the best book of the year.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chablis from Seattle Seattle, WA USA 11-11-12
    Chablis from Seattle Seattle, WA USA 11-11-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very uneven in plot, pacing and language"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Parts of this book were delightful and interesting, but some sections (the two trips to Coney Island, the fight with the assassin, the deliberation before the final altercation) were maddeningly egregious in the writer's use of excessive detail, exhausting thought processes, and boring tedium. This writer does not belong to the minimalist school of writing. Every movement is described with nothing left out.......slowing the pace to such a degree that I simply left the room to retrieve a cup of coffee, letting the narrative drone on. In addition, I think that many of the sexual references, including one unbelievable scene in the Coney Island "fright scene" are so unreal that the terminology and the actions seem a bit juvenile.....and the sort that would appeal to adolescent males. (I did repeat some of these references to my female friends; none of them were the slightest bit amused.)The earlier flashbacks, the main character's trip to Poland, his earlier life are extremely interesting. In addition, the author's description of many of the medical decisions made by his "doctor" delighted me with the unexpected deductions...and his view of life is undeniably humorous. Some plot devices seemed undeveloped (such as the courtroom scene, the strangely abbreviated love affair, and his stupid, fateful decision to accompany his former friend), but I suspect that this is probably considered to be humor by younger readers.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    After the snail's pace of much of the rest of the book, the abrupt ending annoyed me. Also, I didn't understand why the character, who had previously announced that he disliked his profession, now, all of a sudden, seemed anxious to continue. I also was nonplussed that his former mentor, who, earlier was not available for help (for no apparent reason), then offered him tepid advice, all of a sudden showed up at the end to give him some advice (like some things can't be helped) and, bingo! The story is concluded with little plot resolution. (For example, what about his nemesis' gangster father? And what does the character do at the end?) Very Strange.


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

    This is the first performance of Petkoff that I have heard. His voice and timbre is excellent.


    Do you think Beat the Reaper needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    I would probably not be interested.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was so interesting in some parts and so deadly dull or irritating in others that I can only wish that he'd had a better editor.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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