It's the week before Christmas when a lone robber bursts into a busy Glasgow post office carrying an AK-47. An elderly man suddenly hands his young grandson to a stranger and wordlessly helps the gunman fill bags with cash, then carries them to the door. He opens the door and bows his head; the robber fires off the AK-47, tearing the grandfather in two.
DS Alex Morrow arrives on the scene and finds that the alarm system had been disabled before the robbery. Yet upon investigation, none of the employees can be linked to the gunman. And the grandfather-a life-long campaigner for social justice-is above reproach. As Morrow searches for the killer, she discovers a hidden, sinister political network. Soon it is chillingly clear: no corner of the city is safe, and her involvement will go deeper than she could ever have imagined.
©2013 Denise Mina (P)2013 Hachette Audio
Why, oh why, oh why didn't they have the wonderful Jane McFarlane perform this one? The writing is typical smart, lucid Mina -- the performance is distractingly mediocre. Not sure I'm going to finish listening -- and I've never done that before. Pity.
This was an interesting continuation of the Alex Morrow series. The book itself was good, with the intricate plots I expect from Denise Mina. The performance, however, was barely average. I had enjoyed the performance of the first two books in the series, and wasn't concerned about the poor reviews of Moira Quirk's performance. After listening to at least 100 audiobooks, I can only think of two that I did not finish because of the performance. Well, this one was almost the third. For the next book they need to go back to the narrator from the first two books.
The only other comment was that I did not like the ending - or rather I did not like that the book seemed to end without resolving a number of the plot lines. The ending made it obvious that there will be a fourth book. It just seemed to end at an incomplete point.
blue collar intellectual
Mina's Alex Morrow series is one of the best available in the mystery genre. Gods and Beasts may not rank as high as the two earlier entries in the series but it's still a great listen.
Quirk is not as good as previous narrators, but for me she did not detract from my enjoyment of the novel.
Addicted to Audible
If you have enjoyed the first two books in the Alex Morrow police detective series do not hesitate to listen to "Gods and Beasts" just because of the change in narrator. The story is to good to be missed.
Moira Quirk does a very creditable job of reading this book, it will not take long to for you to accept her as the voice of Alex Morrow. She also does the variety of new characters introduced very well.
As the this series continues with "The Red Road" due to be published in early 2014, I will be a happy listener with either Jane Macfarlane or Moira Quirk
I recommend the story. Denise Mina's writing is strong and this is no exception - the story moves well, the characters are clear and strong, the storyline is well-written and a good read.
She didn't hit the range and depth of the characters. She made some of them sound whiny and I didn't feel the same connection to the story and characters that I did with the earlier narrator - who I felt was a great match for Mina's writing. This narrator didn't seem to be able to get into the world of the writing and it created a disconnect with it at times as I listened. Some of the characterizations were way off base and at times I felt like I was listening to an elementary school teacher in a room with young children - it just did not fit the story and characters.
The writing is solid. Solid enough that I can listen through the narrator's lack of "getting" a good handle on it. I'd say it's still worth a listen - or at least buy the book and read it. The story is good.
I've quite enjoyed all three of the Alex Morrow books. Well-written, believable with good characters. I was concerned when I read one review that trashed the reader, someone different than the wonderful lady who voiced the first two books, but after listening for just a short while I thought she did just as good a job as her predecessor. Will certainly read more of this author's work,
Denise Mina's narrative voice is so genuine. There's nothing like it. She has been my favorite author for years.
The conversations between Rosie and Martin were captured with such nuance I felt as if they could be real people.
Her use of accents seems right-on.
Though not Denise Mina's best work, perhaps, I loved soaking up every minute of the story.
Overall I thought this was a good book, but the ending was confusing. I don't think that catching the criminal was really the primary point of this book. I just found it confusing as there are a lot of characters with several different plots.
Moira Quirk did a fantastic job.
I do like the character Alex Marrow, but I'd prefer that the book be more focused on her and her team and not so many extra characters.
The story is gritty and dishearteningly realistic. It presents a depiction of corruption and its workings in an all-too-believeable weaving of elements of society and politics. I think Mina will go down as one of the finest writers of mystery fiction of our time.
I read a lot of criticism of the reader of this book. I think she did a great job! Outstanding, in fact. But I, too, was disappointed at first not to hear the same reader who has done earlier performances and who seemed to me to be the voice of Denise Mina. As the reading went on, I got used to the new voice and I am sorry to hear her disparaged just because she wasn't the expected. I thought she gave a very measured and nuanced performance. In fact she was very clear and perhaps a little bit more easily understood than the previous reader.
I did not guess the ending in this story, it entertained throughout. Mina can paint the depressing Scottish economy quite well and you can understand why the crime happens. However, the narrator's voice was not right for this book--too bouncy or young or stylized Scottish accent-- except for the short period she was doing the American character's accents.
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