Gus LeGarde's life essentially ended four years ago, when his beloved wife, Elsbeth, leapt from the Letchworth Gorge cliffs. These days, the music professor plays endless Chopin etudes on his antique piano and lavishes love on his family and dog - but nothing buries the pain or answers his burning questions. What made her jump? Why didn't she say goodbye? And how will he be able to live without her?
Trouble comes to Gus and his daughter, Freddie, when her arrogant husband, Harold, is caught in several love affairs and begins to verbally abuse her. To protect his daughter and two-year-old grandson, Gus threatens to throw Harold out himself the next time he messes up. But when Harold's law partner goes missing, a police search in the woods on Gus's property reveals a shocking find. The mystery deepens as Gus's innocent friend is set up to take the fall.
In the deep cold of winter, threats erupt from the dark woods, spinning events out of hand - and Gus braces for the fight of his life.
The author's alternate suggested listening order for the LeGarde Mysteries series:
©2011 Aaron Paul Lazar (P)2012 Aaron Paul Lazar
This audiobook was given to me as a gift, the first I've read by Aaron Paul Lazar. I found Gus LeGarde an enjoyable companion on an interstate drive. The plot was involving but not so edge-of-seat as to make me a menace on the highway - a perfect drive-time book. Some people might object to the lengthy breaks between action sequences and concrete plot developments, but they can write their own reviews! IMO, the pace suited Gus's character and gave Lazar time to paint wonderfully sense-appealing details about the setting and to develop the romantic element.
I docked Robert King Ross a star because he often crooned the ends of words to no purpose and because his pronunciation of some words was distractingly incorrect, especially Siegfried's German comments. (I'm not expecting a perfect accent, just correct basics.) Otherwise, the performance was very good.
I definitely will read more by this author. (In fact, I already did - I liked Tremolo even better!)
I'm not an avid bookie and this is really my first foray into mystery stories... so not much to compare with for me. If you have a mystery book that weaves multiple plot threads with a wonderful sense of place and the everyday joys and not so everyday tragedies of life... You would be getting close on this one.
There is genuine tension in several scenes, but especially when The professor is snooping where he probably shouldn't... And you sense the moral dilemma and character traits under making his decisions. There is also genuine joy at points. There are times you can't believe one guy can have such bad luck, patience and good fortune, all at the same time.
I had several verbal moments while listening... A few chuckles and a "good grief", or two.
Mr. lazar writes about an area of the country I am familiar with. His sense of place and descriptive writing style will draw pictures in your brain for you. You'll smell the food cooking, feel the chill in the air, see how the relationships built over time and sense what the characters are going through. All the plot lines resolve in the end and leave the future wide open. At no point did I fast forward, but admit I sped up the playback a bit during a few sections. Very enjoyable and I think I will follow up on the next in the series. Great down time for me. I'm a busy guy and this story created a great escape for me. Wouldn't mind meeting Gus, some day. He seems a decent fellow. Yah!
Music professor Gus LeGarde's wife Elspeth died four years ago, and he hasn't really recovered. There's still a huge hole in his life. He keeps going, though, teaching, playing Chopin, and lavishing love on his daughter Freddie, his grandson, and his dog Max.
It all starts to unravel when he rescues a child in the snow, who is too scared even to give a name.
Finding out where the little child belongs is the beginning, not the end, of the trouble, and soon expands to endanger Gus, his family, and the first fragile shoots of possible new love.
I very quickly became totally caught up in Gus's story. He's upright, decent, gentle, and kind. His friends, neighbors, and wider circle are mostly good people, too. There's action here, but Gus is not presented as improbably heroically formidable. He's just a guy who is well-built and has kept himself physically active, so that when he needs to, he can put in a creditable showing in a fight.
Lazar provides a good, involving mystery, with good, involving characters, and in trying times for me, I found it but enjoyable and comforting. The narrator, Robert King Ross, also has an excellent voice for Gus LeGarde and his story, and added to the pleasure.
I received a free copy of this audiobook from the author, and am reviewing it by my personal choice.
I am a working woman in a man's world but it's ok because I really love being around men !! I've been happily married for 48 years!
Double Forte is definitely in the top 5 of all of the books I have listened to. From the very beginning until the end the listener is totally involved in the story and is kept guessing what could possibly happen next ! I
The main character Gus is such a caring and loving father and grandfather. While listening to the book the listener is allowed inside his heart and mind. While a movie of this story would be fantastic, an audio book allows the listener to know his innermost thoughts and feelings. Gus is devoted to his family and will go any extreme to keep them happy and safe.
Robert King Ross has a voice that gives the listener a sense of wonderment about what is going to happen next. He knows how to keep the listener at ease when needed and how to prepare the listener for upcoming exciting scenes.
I really wished I could have listened to this all in one sitting. Every time I had to stop my mind kept hearing the story in my head and I was totally involved in getting back to it as quickly as I could.
Aaron Lazar books have recently become my favorite ever since I listened to "The Seacroft". What I love most is how he is able to bring the characters to life and how the listener becomes an actual character in the story as well. I felt as if I was "in the room" watching but even better I was allowed to hear the thoughts and feelings inside the characters' minds. Thanks so much to Aaron for writing such wonderful books !!
I really enjoyed Double Forte, which I read some time ago. I’ve recently found audio books an excellent way to make time pass when doing chores and got this one. The characters and the easy, pleasant descriptions of life in Gus’s house, his interactions with members of his family, and the overtones of suspense appeal to me. This isn’t edge-of-your-seat action but a steady threat that sometimes comes to the fore, sometimes hovers below the surface—perfect for listening to over several days. I even cook more so I can listen. :-)
Lazar’s writing is smooth and easy to follow without being simple. The story is rich and the subplots add depth. The characters are (mostly) people you’d like to spend time and be friends with. Gus, the protagonist, is a strong family man with many facets--a quiet hero. Siegfried is a wonderful character, Harold is portrayed quite well, and the others are clearly drawn and stand out as individuals.
Overall, the narrator did a decent job, but to my ear, he made Gus sound like a man in his late fifties, older than I think Gus is. He also mispronounced a number of words, and in some of the tense situations, I thought the dialogue sounded too casual and laid back. Still, it was an enjoyable performance and I’d recommend it. I’ll listen to it again sometime.
It was a sweet book that had some interesting twist and turns.
I liked most all the characters but found the brother-in-law's character pulling at my heart strings.
I enjoyed the description of characters at the winter BBQ.
When the little girl finally spoke
It's a good book but several questions were left unanswered or felt left behind. why didn't they get Harald alone to arrest him rather than with the family, how could Sigfried stand the sight of Harold after getting him arrested....things like that. It had great descriptions and images.
I loved the characters. But Robert King Ross voice for this particular book did not fit. His rugged raspy and often sarcastic voice detracted form the characters. I love suspense and mystery books but this one did not cut the cake. I never did find out where Baxter was hiding in the forest. The characters were not well developed.
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