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Involuntary Witness: Guido Guerrieri Series, Book 1 | [Gianrico Carofiglio]

Involuntary Witness: Guido Guerrieri Series, Book 1

A nine-year-old boy is found murdered at the bottom of a well near a popular beach resort in southern Italy. In what looks like a hopeless case for Guido Guerrieri, a Senegalese peddler is accused of the crime. Faced with small-town racism, Guido attempts to exploit the esoteric workings of the Italian courts. The voice of Sean Barrett brings this gritty Italian detective series to life.
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Publisher's Summary

A nine-year-old boy is found murdered at the bottom of a well near a popular beach resort in southern Italy. In what looks like a hopeless case for Guido Guerrieri, a Senegalese peddler is accused of the crime. Faced with small-town racism, Guido attempts to exploit the esoteric workings of the Italian courts. The voice of Sean Barrett brings this gritty Italian detective series to life.

©2005 Gianrico Carofiglio (P)2011 Audible Ltd

What the Critics Say

“Hard-boiled and sun-dried in equal parts. Where Philip Marlowe would be knocking back bourbon and listening to the snap of fist on jaw, Guido Guerrieri prefers Sicilian wine and Leonard Cohen. The role of Guerrieri is to take on impossible cases that have little chance of success. His efforts to prove his client's innocence bring him into dangerous conflict with Mafia interests. Everything a legal thriller should be.” (Financial Times)

''At one level an exciting courtroom thriller, but what places it in a superior league is the portrayal of a slice of Italian society not normally encountered in crime fiction and an immensely appealing flawed hero." (The Times, London)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (1039 )
5 star
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3.8 (908 )
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Story
4.1 (905 )
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
 (20)
Performance
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  •  
    elizabitster 02-26-15
    ratings
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    4
    2
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    Story
    "story never got me hooked"

    kept waiting to get into this book and before I knew it, it was over. story is okay...no real suspense and I didn't get attached to any if the characters

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chiangmai Mike 02-14-15 Member Since 2014
    ratings
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    2
    1
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    Story
    "I loved this book"

    I listen to books while I'm driving, and because I drive a lot I've listened to lots of them, mostly mysteries with some classics thrown in. This story is character-based and free from the slam-bang, multiple explosion, gratuitous violence of many current mysteries. The characters are deep, the plot is absorbing, and the reader is perfect for this novel. I will listen to the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan K Massachusetts, USA 02-13-15
    Jan K Massachusetts, USA 02-13-15 Member Since 2014

    Jan K

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Not what I expected"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    The story didn't match the online description; blow-by-blow details of the main character were not necessary. As it is, I found it boring -- and hard to remember what the true story line was all about.


    What could Gianrico Carofiglio have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Give us a novel with a great legal story line.


    What three words best describe Sean Barrett’s performance?

    The voice seemed to belong to someone much older than the character -- since it was written in the first person, it was a bad fit for this narrator, even though the vocal quality was good.


    What character would you cut from Involuntary Witness?

    I would avoid mentioning all the problems that the main character has - such as alcohol abuse... not essential to the story line.


    Any additional comments?

    I started listening to this book much too late --- I would have returned it....

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie B. Farkas 02-13-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wrong narrator for this book"
    Would you try another book from Gianrico Carofiglio and/or Sean Barrett?

    Maybe


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Anticlimatic


    How could the performance have been better?

    The narrator has a beautiful voice and sounds like an established Oxford don. Unfortunately, the character was a 35 year-old, burnt-out attorney with a wry sense of humor. The book needed a younger, edgier narrator to add a little spice and "verisimilitude" (a word that plays a large part in the end--but this not a spoiler) to the storyline.


    Do you think Involuntary Witness needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    If the main character has another good case (this one was not particular interesting and had no plot twists or turns) it might be more interesting. The writing is wonderful and I hope the author does publish another book with a more interesting plot.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is for that sub-genre reader who loves a well-turned sentence and will continue listening even if the plot is not particularly interesting.

    Another narrator could make this book come alive. I hope a narrator that matches the character is considered if there is another book in this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carl A Balsillie SANTA ROSA, CA, US 02-10-15
    Carl A Balsillie SANTA ROSA, CA, US 02-10-15 Member Since 2009
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    "Excellent Read by the winter fireplace"

    First time to read this author. I love protagonists with believable character flaws. I look forward to reading more of Giancarlo's writing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cheryl Douglasville, GA, United States 07-31-14
    Cheryl Douglasville, GA, United States 07-31-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "A Character Study"

    This is the first novel in a fiction crime mystery series about an attorney, Guido Guerrieri, in Italy. It is written by Gianrico Carofiglio, a real criminal lawyer, and narrated by Sean Barrett.

    The story mainly focuses on the attorney and the difficult time he is currently going through with depression and anxiety and separation from his wife. The book was very well written, it was interesting and different, plus the narrator was very, very good. I doubt, however, that I will continue on the attorney’s journey. There are currently 3 other books in the series.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 07-30-14
    Kathy Davis, CA, United States 07-30-14 Member Since 2008

    Newly retired, I am a reading fiend! I like many types of books, both fiction and non-fiction, with the exception of romance and fantasy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Fabulous Find!!"

    This book was such a surprise for me. I didn't expect to be so riveted to the mp3 player--I finished the book in a day and a half! This is an audiobook I really hated to end and it is a hard act to follow for my next book.

    Firstly, the narration is the best! Sean Barrett nails the main character, Guido Guerrieri, but without even needing an Italian accent. He also portrays the defendent, Abdou Thiam, impeccably. I will definitely seek our more books by this narrator.

    I really like this sort of story. I felt I really got into the head of the main character, that he was actually speaking to me. What some other reviewers found "tedious", I found compelling. I could have listened to the character, Guido, musing on about his life for a really long time; I found myself interested in it all! I loved his incidental relationships, too. Perhaps this is an indication of the narrator's skill and the author's talent combined. The author and the narrator are an unbeatable combination for me.

    I liked the story very much too. I could not imagine how all the circumstantial evidence and prejudices of the main players could be overcome. It certainly wasn't how I expected it to turn out. I also found the Italian justice system very interesting.

    All in all, this was a fun listening experience for me, much to soon over. I am definitely wanting more of Carofiglio and Barrett!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jessica LYNCHBURG, VA, United States 07-21-14
    jessica LYNCHBURG, VA, United States 07-21-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "snooze"
    What would have made Involuntary Witness better?

    the crux of the entire story was just really very lackluster. the characters were boring and it was just not exactly a page turner. i listened to this book while driving and it nearly put me to sleep on the road.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roberta 07-09-14
    Roberta 07-09-14
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    "great character"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes, again, I purchased this book as a daily special and was so please that I was introduced to a good story and a good character. He had didn't exactly have personality but he was real.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    not on the edge of my seat but certainly kept me interested


    Which scene was your favorite?

    can't say now - doing the review a little late - have read several other books but I found the book real so must be the scene where he is satisfied with himself


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no - but none are. don't have time to do thatbut I listen to long stretches of time, driving or doing mindless work etc.


    Any additional comments?

    thought the accent would bother me but it didn't, it actually made it better, I think

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gregory MD 07-09-14
    Gregory MD 07-09-14 Member Since 2013

    Keep your mind active.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very Good Legal Drama"

    Translated from Italian, the author provides a great view of Italy’s criminal legal process which is very different than ours. Also, the reader must remember that the story was set in about the year 2000, before the world determined that only DNA offers conclusive proof of a crime. The story is well written and the main character well developed and likable. The narration was very good with just a bit of Italy mixed in so the reader does not forget the story was taking place overseas. If you like legal stories, this one is worth a look. I will likely listen to others in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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