Sam Moore's little brother vanished 50 years ago. No body. No answers. What Sam has is a boatload of guilt, since he failed to accompany Billy on his final, fateful bike ride.
While struggling to eliminate the rapacious Japanese Knotweed from his gardens, Sam discovers a glowing marble. It warms to his touch and whisks him back in time to his childhood. Billy and Sam's childhood pals appear beside him - breathing,sweating, laughing - and very much alive. Sam is drawn into the strong young body of his 12-year-old self to re-experience his past and to unlock the secret of his brother's fate.
Demonic teenager Manfred Healey tortures the boys, exactly as he did in Sam's youth. Recently released from prison in real time, Healey haunts Sam and becomes a prime suspect. Did he murder Billy? Or were Sam'schildhood friends involved? What about his old buddy, Bruce MacDonald, who'd risen to New York State senator and was about to be tapped for the presidential nomination? Or Doug Smythe, the most annoying guy in the world? It couldn't be Harvey Allen, that puppy dog of a man with the shock of white hair who staunchly served his country in the Marines. Could it?
When Sam uncovers the skull of a young boy in the knotweed patch, the FBI flocks to his property, sifting through the soil to search for evidence. Sam is sure it's Billy's body, but he's astounded when he learns that the bones belong to young boy who disappeared five years before Billy.
Aging FBI agent Mac Stewart befriends Sam and reveals the history of a serial killer who engaged in ghastly crimes for the past 50 years, and who may return to the scene of his first crime to make his final kill. Boys have been murdered every five years since Billy disappeared. Was Billy one ofh is victims?
What's worse, Sam's grandson fits the profile of the murdered boys. Will the killer return to Sam's town to claim his final kill? Can Sam untangle the truth in time to save him?
©2010 Aaron Paul Lazar (P)2011 Aaron Paul Lazar
"[A] delightfully diabolical mystery with a chilling paranormal plot. Exceptionally written, this book will capture readers with a unique chase for a murderer that transcends time and space." (In the Library Reviews)
The story is set in upstate New York and for those of us who remember the promise of spring and long summer days the backdrop will bring a wistful smile. The mystery involves betrayal, revenge and the price of silence. While I don't normally like 'time travel' as a literary element, it was modified in a way that was palatable. It was an easy listen and kept my attention.
I would recommend Healey's Cave as a solid mystery with unexpected plot twists that I definitely didn't see coming.
The narration by John Thomas Frazer was a good fit for the retired Dr. Moore. I didn't like when he was talking like the baby. It would take a great talent to go from the studied and raspy voice of a retired doctor to the ramblings of a toddler.
It was my pleasure to be given a copy of this audiobook in exchange for this review.
I'm going to start with the elephant in the room, by which I mean the narration. Now, I had no problems with Mr. Fraser's voice. I thought he was a pretty good fit for the retired Dr. Moore. That said, there were a few choices that I found to be less than ideal and that took me out of the story for a few moments.
For example, and in my best attempt to avoid spoilers, there was a scene that involved Sam and his son in which I would have expected the characters to be flooded with a range of emotions like concern or compassion, but the way it was read made the characters seem like nothing had just happened and that they didn't have a care in the world (If you listen to this, you may have an idea of the scene I am speaking of).
I found this to be odd, because it seemed as if Mr. Fraser wanted to include some feeling of immersion. When the narration stated that a character had chuckled, Fraser chuckled the line. It just seemed wrong that the narrative included more emotion than the actual dialogue did.
There also seemed to be a complete lack of spacing between chapters. Instead of a new chapter starting at the beginning of a new paragraph, it seemed as if the chapters started right in the middle. Again, this can be an example of the narrator's attempts at immersion (or an example at my attempts at nitpicking). An attempt to keep the flow of the story going with little distraction, but instead it caused me to pause and take notice.
This story is award winning, and with good reason. Its an excellent read, and I'd hate for people to disregard it because the narration isn't all it could be. I still would suggest people take the time to read this book, just maybe that they stick with print and read it on their own instead.
I couldn't get past the first hour. Here's a warning...... LISTEN TO THE SAMPLE BEFORE ordering this audiobook!!! The narrator is by far the worst (in about 100 audiobooks) that I've come across. Besides the gravelly, mucousy quality to his voice, the inflections are all wrong. Then, on top of that, the story itself is unbearable. Such drivel, silly, inane descriptions and totally unnecessary filler were made 100 times worse by the narrator. I was looking forward to a good mystery with a twist, and all I got was a wasted credit.
I liked all the descriptions of gardening because I can't grow anything and I liked the family relationships, especially the grandsons. I have a grandson about the same age as Timmy even though the author couldn't make up his mind about Timmy's age. He was nineteen months, twenty-one months and finally eighteen months.
What I liked least: The suspense kept me glued to my mp3 player and I hated the narrator blurting out the chapter number in the middle of an intense scene. It made me want to slap someone silly.
When Sam saw how Billy died. It was a plot twist I didn't expect.
Joe Barrett maybe.
Yes, I would.
The story was good enough to keep me listening and was a perfect length. In fact, I finished it in a day. The narrator did well with the suspenseful scenes but he has a tendency to mispronounce words.
I have enjoyed other Aaron Lazar books, but this one felt like he just phoned it in. I think he had a good idea for a short story and then filled in the text with gardening and landscaping details.
I will continue to read Aaron Lazar; as I said i have liked his other series, But before I download another I will closely check what reviewers say.
Oh, my word, he was terrible! Evan lobbied the ball? Timmy picked up the Binky and handed it to Timmy? And there were SO many words mispronounced. Clearly no one listened to the book after it was recorded, or they would have rerecorded the whole thing.
I would not write a follow up to this book unless the author decided to care about the material and about the production.
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