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Every Dead Thing | [John Connolly]

Every Dead Thing

Former NYPD detective Charlie "Bird" Parker is on the verge of madness. Tortured by the unsolved slayings of his wife and young daughter, he is a man consumed by guilt, regret, and the desire for revenge. When his former partner asks him to track down a missing girl, Parker finds himself drawn into a world beyond his imagining - one where 30 year old killings remain shrouded in fear and lies, a world where the ghosts of the dead torment the living....
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Publisher's Summary

Have faith. I will find you.

Former NYPD detective Charlie "Bird" Parker is on the verge of madness. Tortured by the unsolved slayings of his wife and young daughter, he is a man consumed by guilt, regret, and the desire for revenge.

When his former partner asks him to track down a missing girl, Parker finds himself drawn into a world beyond his imagining - one where 30 year old killings remain shrouded in fear and lies, a world where the ghosts of the dead torment the living, a world haunted by the murderer responsible for the deaths in his family, a serial killer unlike any other, a monster who uses the human body to create works of art and takes faces as his prize. But the search awakens buried instincts in Parker: instincts for survival, for compassion, for love, and, ultimately, for killing.

Aided by a beautiful young psychologist and a pair of career criminals, he becomes the bait in a trap set in the humid bayous of Louisiana, a trap that threatens the lives of everyone in its reach. Driven by visions of the dead and the voice of an old black psychic who met a terrible end, Parker must seek a final, brutal confrontation with a murderer who has moved beyond all notions of humanity, who has set out to create a hell on earth: the serial killer known only as the Travelling Man.

In the tradition of classic American detective fiction, Every Dead Thing is a tense, richly-plotted thriller, filled with memorable characters and gripping action. It is also a profoundly moving novel, concerned with the nature of loyalty, of love, and of forgiveness. Lyrical and terrifying, it is an ambitious debut, triumphantly realized.

©2012 John Connolly (P)2012 Simon & Schuster, Inc

What the Critics Say

"A stunner...as riveting and chilling as The Silence of the Lambs." (San Francisco Examiner)

"Every Dead Thing is intelligent, deep, and literate, and it is difficult to believe that this is John Connolly's first novel, so confident is the writing.... Buy it and be scared." (The Saturday Times, London)

"[A] darkly ingenious debut novel." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (29 )
5 star
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4.2 (27 )
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3.8 (25 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mike Bethesda, MD, United States 05-01-13
    Mike Bethesda, MD, United States 05-01-13 Member Since 2005

    Semi retired / worked mostly Nonprofits. Lv Blues into Rock & Roll Lv mysteries (mstly Pol procs) Lv Baseball / Played til 55 - umpd til 63

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Horrible narration"

    I actually enjoyed the book. It was classic Connolly, with maybe even a bit of Dave Robicheaux's South Louisiana tossed in, for good measure. Not great literature, but a much better than average detective novel.

    The real problem was with the narrator. Yes, I know that he made no real attempt to add a serious Louisiana accent, and I can deal with that, since some accents are very tough to get right. Or, in the case of a Scottish accent, if you get it right, the narration is totally unintelligible. The problem is that there were 1/2 dozen words that he completely mispronounced. Since some of them were place names and not just N'Awleans, but when he mispronounces Metarie, Ponchartrain, etc. and they are words/place names that come up repeatedly, it's like fingernails on a chalk board. It should have been basic research to check on those names.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cleaning Commando Fort Bragg, NC 11-24-12
    Cleaning Commando Fort Bragg, NC 11-24-12 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Story vs Narrator"
    What made the experience of listening to Every Dead Thing the most enjoyable?

    I love Charlie Parker and all of his retinue but I had issues with the narrator! He mispronounced his butt off! He made so many mispronunciations, so often it really detracted from the overall experience.

    I've read a few of the later CP novels and loved the blend of detectives + supernatural scary stuff! Mr. Harding's sterile, high school biology teacher's delivery of the material was only exacerbated by his weird pronunciations of mainstream locations and terms.

    Maybe I'm being a pain in the *ss but there was so much of it I couldn't get away from it.

    I look forward to future CP stories but not with this narrator!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    I enjoy Louie and Angel. They are a gay couple who break all mainstream perceptions of male homosexual couples! They are total badasses! Louie is a scary dude and Angel is no slouch!


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    I've already whined about the narration.


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

    Ummm no, not extreme.


    Any additional comments?

    I have always enjoyed the depth of the stories and the characters of the CP novels. The author strikes unexpected nails. He mentions the horrors of being a teenager thrown into a trunk and smelling the biological smells of those who preceded him in the trunk as they faced impending doom. His description of many of his characters leave me feeling a little creepy, somewhat uncomfortable... this is what I pay for in a story!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen United States 11-18-12
    Karen United States 11-18-12 Member Since 2011

    BigZ's Mom

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent story, mediocre narrator"
    Would you try another book from John Connolly and/or Jeff Harding?

    I adore John Connolly and all his Charlie Parker books. Jeff Harding, not so much.


    What other book might you compare Every Dead Thing to and why?

    Hum. Interesting question. Maybe Dennis Lehane's Kenzie &Gennaro series. I can't think of any other writer who marries mystery with supernatural undertones and makes the characters so flawed and yet still likable.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Jeff Harding?

    RAY PORTER. The other readers who have done this series either make Charlie sound too old or totally get Angel and Louis wrong.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Yes.


    Any additional comments?

    Please, Audio Gods, let me win the lottery so I can hire Ray Porter to read this entire series to me!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Silver Spring, MD, United States 04-17-13
    Stephen Silver Spring, MD, United States 04-17-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Awful Beyond Description"
    What disappointed you about Every Dead Thing?

    To call it warmed over James Lee Burke (the mysticism of the Bayou), Robert B. Parker (the relationship between the protagonist and his love interest and his relationship with violent criminal colleagues with a heart of gold) and Mickey Spillane (violence) would be a disservice to those writers. This was absolutely wretched. Predictable and boring. The only audio book that I hated more was The Gray Man by Mark Greaney. REALLY avoid that one. I have read (probably way too much) crime fiction. I love it. This book seemed like the author learned all of the cliches but none of what makes the best of crime fiction transcend the genre.


    What was most disappointing about John Connolly’s story?

    Even the action scenes were boring. I found my mind wandering as the bodies piled up. I fired off two quick shots from the blah blah blah... The tragedy that Parker faces at the beginning of the book doesn't seem to phase him. He tells us it does but nowhere does he show us that it does. The book is also predictable. If you have read 2 or more crime fiction novels in your life you will be way ahead of the plot.


    How could the performance have been better?

    It would be nice if the narrator learned how to properly pronounce words. His mispronunciations, especially of locations where the pronunciation can easily be discovered (my favorite was Ro-hee-buth for Rehoboth Beach, DE), are really distracting. The narrator seemed to have no interest in proper pronunciation. There were more mispronunciations from this reader than I have heard in all the other books I have listened to combined.


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

    Sorry to say it did not.


    Any additional comments?

    Avoid this book! It is the first one for which I am going to seek a refund from Audible.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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