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Black: Black Series, Volume 1 | [Russell Blake]

Black: Black Series, Volume 1

Artemus Black. Perennially down-on-his-luck Hollywood PI whose Bogie fixation is as dated as his wardrobe. With an assistant who mocks him relentlessly, an obese cat that loathes him, a romantic life that's deader than Elvis, money problems, booze, nicotine, and anger management issues, how much worse can it get?
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Publisher's Summary

Artemus Black. Perennially down-on-his-luck Hollywood PI whose Bogie fixation is as dated as his wardrobe. With an assistant who mocks him relentlessly, an obese cat that loathes him, a romantic life that's deader than Elvis, money problems, booze, nicotine, and anger management issues, how much worse can it get? When he takes a case that's supposed to be easy money working for a celebrity whose colleagues and surrounding paparazzi are dropping faster than interest in the star's big comeback, the cakewalk turns ugly and Black finds himself in a web of deceit, betrayal, and murder - and bad hair days. The first in a new series from best-selling author Russell Blake, Black is a detective mystery with a difference that fans of the genre are sure to enjoy.

©2013 Russell Blake (P)2014 Russell Blake

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (19 )
5 star
 (4)
4 star
 (11)
3 star
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2 star
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Overall
3.9 (17 )
5 star
 (4)
4 star
 (9)
3 star
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1 star
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Story
4.3 (17 )
5 star
 (9)
4 star
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3 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Amazon Customer PATERSON, NJ, United States 06-02-14
    Amazon Customer PATERSON, NJ, United States 06-02-14 Member Since 2010

    Scent

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Roxy is a must have for the entire series"

    I love the dialogue between Roxy and Black.. without her this may have been a 3 star listen for me. The only reason I sought this one out is because of the narrator and like always he did an excellent job.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bennie Marietta, GA USA 06-04-14
    Bennie Marietta, GA USA 06-04-14 Member Since 2014

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    "Excellent 21st Century Noir"

    Fedoras, Dames, and Everything! A book for Goldilocks. Not too heavy, not too light. The bantered dialogue was intelligent and didn't try to hard and was carried off beautifully by narrator R.C. Bray.

    In fact, Bray did a terrific job with all his characters, ranging from heavies to heroes to hippies to ... okay, I don't know a good 'H' word for little old ladies.

    This is a great start to a new series. I'm so glad it came my way.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Carnation, WA United States 06-20-14
    Amazon Customer Carnation, WA United States 06-20-14

    robbie_d51

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    "Absolutely perfect, sharp and witty"

    Black is an incredible listen, and is voiced perfectly by the talented RC Bray. The dialogue is sharp, the plot moves swiftly and unpredictably, and the jokes are timed perfectly. This is an excellent story and I look forward to listening to the rest of the Black series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley 06-05-14
    Ashley 06-05-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "A nice suspense novel - with a nice twist"
    What made the experience of listening to Black the most enjoyable?

    The characters were interesting and realistic. Loved loved the extreme difference in how his secretary viewed his wardrobe and how he did.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Black - because he appeared to almost be a different person when with the each of the other characters. Tolerant with his secretary. Irritated with his therapist. Professional and bossy with his client...etc.


    What does R.C. Bray bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The voice changes


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

    I laughed and told Black out loud what NOT to do.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved it... but I only give 5 stars to books I would re-read or listen to twice, those are extremely rare. So from me this gets just about the very best rating.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth L. Liberty, SC, United States 05-06-14
    Elizabeth L. Liberty, SC, United States 05-06-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "."
    What did you love best about Black?

    I really liked that Black was 'human'. He had everyday struggles both in his professional and personal life. I enjoyed his relationship with Roxie and hope that this continues in future books.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I really like how the author was consistent with Black's character. The mystery was interesting and I really didn't see the answer until it was told to me. I like that in a mystery.


    Have you listened to any of R.C. Bray’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    This is the 3rd book by Mr. Bray that I have listened to. He is a very relaxed reader who can draw you into the story. I think that he adds to the authors words with his performance.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    While the book was rather long (not a problem by the way), I don't think I could have listened to it in one sitting. The chapters were placed in good breaks in the story and it was easy to get back into the book when I came back to it.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gretchen 07-08-14
    Gretchen 07-08-14

    Use books for escape- typically avoid nonfiction. Enjoy action-romance, espionage/military, sci-fi. Skilled writing is most important.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Witty dialog makes this worth a listen"

    A private investigator, Artemus Black, lives in Hollywood where he works for the rich and famous. He has had little success in life, including his relationships, professions, and finances. Black lives a satire of a noir detective movie, even dressing the part. He takes on a case to help a has-been actor turned director, which promises a much needed financial boost, but brings betrayal and murder.

    In this book, Russell Blake shows he is a master of dialog and fun characters. Black's assistant, Roxy, banters with him at a level equivalent to Grant and Russell in "His Girl Friday" In fact, Black engages in witty dialog with most characters, which is the element that makes this book worth the time to hear.

    Overall, the plot is not particularly intriguing, but Blake's solid writing skills, character building, and balanced humor make this book fun - entertaining. I'm getting the next one in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ronald Colvin 06-09-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Boring"
    What would have made Black better?

    More suspense, less predictable.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    not sure


    What didn’t you like about R.C. Bray’s performance?

    tolerable


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

    Dialogue


    Any additional comments?

    How does someone manage to get dribble like this published.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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