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Chiefs Audiobook
Chiefs
Written by: 
Stuart Woods
Narrated by: 
Mark Hammer
Chiefs Audiobook

Chiefs

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Publisher's Summary

In 1919, Delano, Georgia, appoints its first chief of police. Honest and hardworking, the new chief is puzzled when young men start to disappear. But his investigation is ended by the fatal blast from a shotgun. Delano's second chief-of-police is no hero, yet he is also disturbed by what he sees in the missing-persons bulletins. In 1969, when Delano's third chief takes over, the unsolved disappearances still haunt the police files.

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

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (2355 )
5 star
 (1275)
4 star
 (760)
3 star
 (204)
2 star
 (65)
1 star
 (51)
Overall
4.4 (1675 )
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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Story
4.4 (1680 )
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
 (39)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    A. Moore 05-04-14
    A. Moore 05-04-14

    Sensory HELP!

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Required Reading!"
    Would you listen to Chiefs again? Why?

    This book should be required reading for High School (12th grade) and College students.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Chiefs?

    Understanding of the political system in America and why people do what they do, is all here.


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

    The narrator brings, Mr. Hammer, brings the voice and the attitude of the times so that understanding in context is assured.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Lawler Richmond, VIrginia 05-03-14
    S. Lawler Richmond, VIrginia 05-03-14 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Listen!"
    If you could sum up Chiefs in three words, what would they be?

    Can't put down


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love the story line where it goes through the generations. It is easy to listen to and so interesting you don't want it to end. I love this series and this is one of, if not the best.


    Which character – as performed by Mark Hammer – was your favorite?

    Will Henry Lee


    Any additional comments?

    This is just a great all around read. It has something for everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Victoria LAKE CHARLES, LA, United States 04-21-14
    Victoria LAKE CHARLES, LA, United States 04-21-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
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    33
    22
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    Story
    "Murder mystery, Southern historical flavor"

    A good look at life in a Southern small town between the 1920s and 1960s. The slow pace of life matched by the pace of the narrator. It was a refreshing change after listening to so many novels read with such urgency and drama. Story centered on a small town, but expanded here and there to a state and national level, which I liked. There are three generational stories that flow well from one to the other, with a dark mystery running through all three. I highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Costello 04-09-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    93
    ratings
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    218
    50
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    7
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    Story
    "An Epic Read"
    Any additional comments?

    I was somewhat reluctant to buy a book from 1980, but I was familiar with Stuart Woods and his Stone Barrington series and thought this would be a typical light, fun, read but I was blown by the depth of this book. Reminded my of To Kill a Mockingbird and In the Heat of the Night. This was a generational murder mystery wrapped loosely around an in-depth story of the Deep South in the 20's to the 60's. Wonderfully woven and emotionally charged, this book will have you reading to the wee hours.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LLarsen 04-03-14
    LLarsen 04-03-14

    LLarsen

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    66
    6
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent narrator; slip-shod editing"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    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.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    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.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diane Wolcott, CT, United States 03-28-14
    Diane Wolcott, CT, United States 03-28-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    43
    21
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
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    Story
    "Totally engrossing story...."
    Where does Chiefs rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    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.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Will Henry, the first chief won my heart right from the start.


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

    I was very involved in the story line, as I loved the homespun quality of the setting.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer peg linstrom 03-17-14 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    31
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    87
    13
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
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    Story
    "Narration is a little S L O W"

    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.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    j arden, nc, United States 03-02-14
    j arden, nc, United States 03-02-14 Member Since 2013

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    82
    4
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    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
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    Performance
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    "Ridiculous Narration and Implausible Story"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    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.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim Mentone, CA, United States 02-26-14
    Tim Mentone, CA, United States 02-26-14 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    60
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Couldn't wait to get in my truck to listen"
    What made the experience of listening to Chiefs the most enjoyable?

    Although this story started out slow, I soon was hooked on all the characters and the mystery.


    What did you like best about this story?

    This story covers three generations of families, so it was really interesting to follow the characters as they aged.


    Which character – as performed by Mark Hammer – was your favorite?

    Will Henry Lee.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Yes, the end of the first segment (I won't spoil it). Quite an unexpected ending!


    Any additional comments?

    I've just started listening to Stuart Woods. Now he is one of my favorite authors!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald 02-24-14
    Donald 02-24-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    17
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Age Old Topic"
    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Allan
    Veliko TarnovoBulgaria
    1/30/07
    Overall
    "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.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Sarah
    St Peter Port, Guernsey, United Kingdom
    10/11/07
    Overall
    "Exceptional"

    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.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • A User
    12/23/12
    Overall
    "Gripping"

    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.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Tom
    West Wickham, United Kingdom
    10/18/07
    Overall
    "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.

    Strongly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Ian
    BayworthUnited Kingdom
    7/1/10
    Overall
    "Excellent book"

    one of the best

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Newtownabbey N.I.
    3/6/12
    Overall
    "Faultless!"

    First rate in every respect, wonderful writing wonderful narration and a complete absence of padding. I just did not want this book to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Wendy
    TAUNTON, SOMERSET, United Kingdom
    9/13/07
    Overall
    "Wonderful listen"

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Sara
    LondonUnited Kingdom
    5/1/07
    Overall
    "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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Angela
    London, UK
    4/21/07
    Overall
    "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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bryan
    MineheadUnited Kingdom
    4/10/07
    Overall
    "Absolutely excellent"

    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!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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