Author Stuart Woods' riveting novel spans three generations while also probing deep into Southern small-town attitudes and behavior. The residents of Delano, with their reluctance to disturb a familiar social order, provide the perfect backdrop for this tale of dark secrets and murder.
Over 40 years ago, Woods found a battered chief-of-police badge in his grandmother's house. It had belonged to his grandfather, who had been shot in the line of duty. The story of the lawman's death inspired Woods to write Chiefs, which won an Edgar Award and was made into a popular TV miniseries.
©1981 Stuart Woods; (P)2006 Recorded Books LLC
"A riveting story of the Deep South that mixes murder mystery with political intrigue." (Publishers Weekly)
"A fascinating, compelling tale." (The New York Times)
"The homey wisdom of [Hammer's] voice, coupled with Woods's engaging story, makes this audiobook memorable." (AudioFile)
This is the best Stuart Woods book, but the Audible version was amateur. I could often hear the narrator swallow. Sometimes there was not even a pause between chapters...they just ran together. Someone needs to re-edit this before selling it.
The narrator was professional and skillful; the editing made him seem like a beginner. No doubt he would be embarrassed if he listened to it.
It's up near the top. It had all the elements of great story telling, it presented atmosphere, characters and a story line that wove through multiple levels.
Will Henry, the first chief won my heart right from the start.
I was very involved in the story line, as I loved the homespun quality of the setting.
I listen to lots of books... this is a good story, interesting idea. However, if I didn't have double time speed I would have slept thru the entire book.
Say something about yourself!
An actual southern accent from a narrator that has stepped foot in Georgia, and a more realistic depiction of rampant racism behind closed doors in Georgia before 1970.
Although this story started out slow, I soon was hooked on all the characters and the mystery.
This story covers three generations of families, so it was really interesting to follow the characters as they aged.
Will Henry Lee.
Yes, the end of the first segment (I won't spoil it). Quite an unexpected ending!
I've just started listening to Stuart Woods. Now he is one of my favorite authors!
This book started out much better than it ended...it could have easily been edited down to two volumes, overly descriptive. The performance by Hammer is really top notch and kept me into it. The description of the book is a bit misleading as the real purpose here seems to be to rehash the history of the south and civil rights, which is fine, but I've been through that in many other books. There is a mystery of missing persons and that does get tied in throughout the novel but in reality that is a sub plot.
I think it must be a real challenge to tell a story that crosses so many generations, that keeps up with the evolving society of those generations. Woods did a fabulous job. This is by far my favorite book by him. I like his series characters, but they can wear thin after several books. This book I'll listen to again, definitely.
I'm not sure
Story profile was very good, however I was very much disappointed by the graphic sex and overt violence in an otherwise exceptional story presentation
Exceedingly good delivery, very good inflection and a memorable reading
The violence and sexual parts were too graphic and totally unnecessary to the delivery of an otherwise potential tremendous
I am so sorry
I am someone who enjoys audible books very much now that they exist. As a young student (real young) I can remember a teacher telling me how books can transport people to different places & open up a whole new world. This is how listening to audible books make me feel. Now if I can just stop falling asleep while listening to them at night I would be fine. Ha ha
This was one of the few books that could hold my interest throughout generations of a story & keep me both twisting & turning as a reader. There were times I was almost hesitant or even afraid to find out what would happen next. Yet the story stayed stable & focused throughout. There were good guys & bad guys that played off each other in a fascinating manner such that I didn't want to miss a beat. All of the personalities were both interesting & intriguing as the author spun the story to its final conclusion. I must say this book would definitely be one I would recommend to anyone. The narrator (Mark Hammer) had become a family member by the time I finished this book. What more can I say….it was thrilling, suspenseful, appreciated at times, sad at others. What a book? And when I finished it I felt like it was exactly the right time & the right way for it to end. Yippee for you Stuart Woods!!!!.
All of them.
Could not choose he was that good.
Sometimes I laughed, sometimes I felt like crying but most of all i appreciated all the effort the author put in the story itself to keep me as they say 'on the edge o fmy seat', but make that on my pillow.
Yes ,just a great listen.
None,just a great book end to end
If you get one book this year,get this one.
"A wonderful audiobook"
I have just listened to Chiefs and cannot recommend it too highly; it works both for lovers of a great detective story and those who like a very good story, beautifully narrated.
Like many of the books I've chosen since joining Audible, this is yet another author I seem to have missed - much to my regret - but I certainly cannot wait until next month when I will listen to the same author again.
Over the past couple of years I have listened to a constant stream of crime and thriller audiobooks. Though most are enjoyable, there are very few that stand out as memorable. This is one. It is a well written and beautifully read. It made an impression on me to an extent that I remember the plot and characters and enjoyed the fact that not all the ends were tied up at the end. I can recommend this as a truly entertaining download.
Great book to listen to. I was impressed with the several stories which the author effortlessly assembles in one book. Inevitably, the book is lengthy, but all story lines deserve to be told. Emancipation of afro americans in the south, small town living and a gripping murder story evolving through the years, it all blends together. Since listening to this book, I am a fan of Stuart Woods.
"A very fine book and superbly narrated"
I've not much to add to what other reviewers have said. This is a very fine book indeed, and works on three levels - as a first class thriller/detective story, as a thoughtful novel of the Deep South's painful evolution from racism, and a very convincing picture of how a town evolves and grows over time. Despite its length, the book never slackens in pace or lose the interest.
The narration is really fine too - apart from a rather clunky English accents for one of the characters, but this is only a minor point.
one of the best
First rate in every respect, wonderful writing wonderful narration and a complete absence of padding. I just did not want this book to end.
I was a bit unsure if I would enjoy the political side of this, but it is brilliantly narrated and written. I tried to make it last, but was unable to let go of the ipod as the plot unfolded.
If you do not listen to this you have missed something special.
"Soft and hard"
A fascinating listen. It starts gentle and entices you with the story of a small town at its origins, then just as you are drawn into the characters the vice starts to turn and the darkness underneath comes out. Three times you learn to like people then learn to fear for their lives. Three times the social history of America at the grass roots is exposed. Well worth listening to.
"What a pleasure"
There is nothing of this book I would not recommend: content or narration. The author's knitting together of the crime, the decades, racial issues and three of the town's police chiefs was compelling. There was no point in any of the hours and minutes of listening to this book when I did not care what would happen next. This was also thanks to the beautiful narration. Southern American accents have never been my favourate but I might now have to change my mind.
This is a very fine novel, not just a thriller or crime novel, but a terrific book. Fans of Cormac McCarthy will love both the story and the writing style, as slow as the South but always gripping. The reader is superb and if I could give this book 6 stars I would - listen to it!
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