Sarai was only fourteen when her mother uprooted her to live in Mexico with a notorious drug lord. Over time she forgot what it was like to live a normal life, but she never let go of her hope to escape the compound where she has been held for the past nine years. Victor is a cold-blooded assassin who, like Sarai, has known only death and violence since he was a young boy. When Victor arrives at the compound to collect details and payment for a hit, Sarai sees him as her only opportunity for escape. But things don't go as planned and instead of finding transport back to Tucson, she finds herself free from one dangerous man and caught in the clutches of another. While on the run, Victor strays from his primal nature as he succumbs to his conscience and resolves to help Sarai. As they grow closer, he finds himself willing to risk everything to keep her alive; even his relationship with his devoted brother and liaison, Niklas, who now like everyone else wants Sarai dead. As Victor and Sarai slowly build a trust, the differences between them seem to lessen, and an unlikely attraction intensifies. But Victor's brutal skills and experience may not be enough in the end to save her, as the power she unknowingly holds over him may ultimately be what gets her killed.
©2013 J. A. Redmerski (P)2014 Audible Inc.
I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!
JA Redmerski is best known for her romance novels, but the In the Company of Killers is an outstanding psychological thriller series. I've written 5 star reviews for two later books in the series, but the series should be read in order. The series is profane, raunchy and even sadistic at times, but the stories are riveting. Killing Sarai is about teenager Sarai being escaping from bondage (she is being held and raped by a Mexican drug gang leader). Narration of the book is superb.
The first 4 books of the 5 book series are available in audiobook format from Audible. The 5th novel (The Black Wolf) is available in Kindle format. I'm still waiting for The Black Wolf to be released by Audible although I have read the Kindle version.
Believe I would have liked it a little more if there were different narrators. Kate Reinders sounded like a valley girl teenager at times instead of a 23 year old woman by her voice and by Redmerski's writing and Stephen Bel Davies had no intonation in his voice whatsoever. Hard to tell when he was speaking the words of Victor or Victor's thoughts. He had no depth as the voice of a trained assassin. He did much better faking an accent with Niklas. The sex scenes seemed crude rather than sexy. Doubt I'll read/listen to other books by Redmerski. Especially if they're read by the same narrators.
Nurse, mom, loved to read....but now I love to listen. When I retire I hope to hear waves crashing in 1 ear and audible in the other!
I enjoyed this listen, a different take on a thriller/romance. There were complaints that the male narrator sounded too old but I thought the female narrator sounded too young; however, they both grow on you. This is a series and I am looking forward to #2 and #3 as there were a lot of open ended questions that were left unanswered.
I really enjoy the world of books! Narration just add layers to that world... don't u think? :)
Dude! This was so good... Ok... so no this was not in the romance section...but who cares...it was still romance... but the true story lies with Sarai and Victor... OMG! So good.
So Sarai was kidnapped like years ago...when she was 14 I think...but she grew up the play thing of a drug cartel king pin... so when Victor comes strolling in, she knows he is her only way out.. So she eventually gets out, by hiding in Victor's car...but Victor is like the bad-to-the-bone assassin and so he knows she was back there...
Anyway...a lot of stuff happens, and Victor ends up keep Sarai with him... and which is not a good thing...because the company he works for...wants Sarai dead... So... what a roller-coaster this book was... I was on pins and needles throughout most of it...
The romance is a bit subtle in this one... but it is there... the angsty tension between Sarai and Victor...WOWZA!
Again with dual narration... Ok... I hate dual narration...hate it... but this one I tolerated because the book was just so darn good. I like the male and female narrators alone, and I wish if they were going to do the dual narration thing...they would do it simultaneously... but it wasn't... When your in Sarai's head...the female narrator reads, and when your in Victor's head the male narrator reads... it works, but it could have been a bit better...
All in all.. the book deserves a 5 for awesome of the storyline, a 4.5 for narration, and a 5 for overallness... The rest of the series is an Instant Download...
Great Buy, Credit or Sale!
I love Audible! Being a full time wife, mother, and career leaves no time to actually read. Audio books give me my fix anytime and anywhere.
First I want to say that author J.A. Redmerski is a very good writer. Her style is thoroughly descriptive and imaginative without being to much and has a way of developing unusual characters to the point of them becoming real people within your mind. Redmerski's skill and authentic talent for story telling is reason enough to read/listen to any one of her books but
In The Company Killers series has become my favorite.
"Killing Sarai" is not for the faint of heart. It is not from the cookie cutter mold of familiar romances or action suspense....It is of its own mold all together
It is a literary sculpture sophisticatedly created to enthrall you, thrill you, break your heart, painfully put it back together, and completely change the way you think for a little while.The end result bringing you just enough satisfaction to have you ADDICTED!!
At least, for me, that is how I interpret this dark and disturbingly beautiful novel.
"Killing Sarai" is no story of redemption or absolution or good conquering all. This is a story of survival, retribution, vengeance, and being bound by deathly obligations. There are really no "good guys". This is about how sometimes only bad can defeat bad; on how you must have one wing in the fire in order to beat back demons. The romance built with in the walls of this alarming and bone-chilling world can hardly be referred to as "true love" or anything so conventional. The developing connection between these two conflicted-complicated-multifaceted characters is so strong and impacting it reaches beyond the simple guide lines of "falling in love" and touches more on a sense of belonging and ownership in equal measurements. The sense so heavily forceful and strange that they aren't able to really comprehend only left to follow carnal instinct that they can never be separated or go back to the way they were. Its so atypical that I am having a hard time explaining....but the notion grips me and I can't seem to let it go.
I don't want to really touch on the narration since the other reviewers give explanation enough. All I want to say is that while the pairing of voice and character might not seem perfectly matched, as this novel progresses it will hardly detract from the experience. "Killing Sarai" is COMPLETELY worth your credit/money. Download NOW!
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
The first 1/2 is much better than the second half of the book. It started as an assassin/action story and ended up as a weak "romance" novel. From just after the midway point onward, the book is entirely about her drooling over him and him drooling over her but both being so "strong" that instead of getting together they just wring their hands and cry out to the skies in great angst and pain...
oh wait, that might be exaggerating... they just talk (in their own heads) about why they can't be together. We don't believe it, they don't believe it, and we all know where it goes from there... (best sex EV-A). (Actually, the sex, when it comes, is not very satisfying - it's short and unsubtle and the angst has already been dispelled by the time it occurs).
The concept of the novel is great. I love assassin books, especially the dark and troubled ones. Unfortunately, there is no dark and no trouble here, just lots of "ring around the romance"...
I'm not going to read more in the series; I'll stick to real assassins (such as John Rain or Keller, heck, even Estep's assassin is better than this guy, and that's a pretty low bar), not bad romance novels masquerading as assassin-action. Oh, and it probably didn't help that the author "defined" rape and women's responses to it on a couple occasions - it came across as if the author didn't really know what her own feelings on the subject were: at one moment allowing an adult male to "seduce" a 14 year old is rape, the next moment it wasn't really since the girl went along with it.
Bah. The more I think about it, the less I like it. At least with the rapes in the zombie novels I usually read, the author is clear on the subject.
The narration is just shy of being annoying. The female voice is on the edge of whiny and the male voice is a bit too... I dunno... "silky"... like he's trying to sell us a car. There is some foul language (not excessive), and some sexual descriptions that are a bit on the detailed side. There is nothing gory.
The story was really good. I really like dual narration except I did not care for the male narration on this one. He sounded to old for the part. That took away from the story and how it was presented. The male part sounded like he was old enough to be her father not her lover.
I loved the story and the relationship Sarai and Victor. I liked how Victor was not on board with getting too close with Sarai at the beginning. I liked that it took him most of the book and was not an instant connection for him and it was for her. It was great to see her have to "fight" for him in a sense.
No....I loved the lady who read for Sarai. She was great! The guy who read for Victor....not so much. I pictured a very good looking man in mid-30's but when I heard the voice of the reader it sounded like someone in his mid-60's....He did not match what the story had portrayed Victor to be.
Yes! Cannot wait to read the next one
Having read the story, I was reintroduced to the exceptional writing and story of these characters in the audio version
I loved the scene where Sarai/Izabelle is at Victor's home and she goes to his room in the night to try to seduce him. They audio on that - the dialogue between the two is amazing, spot on.
I loved both of their performances. The emotion of the characters came out in their vocal performance perfectly
yes! I pretty much did listen to it in one sitting
I love JA Redmerski and In the Company of Killers Series!
I still remember how excited I was to read Killing Sarai when it was first published. For whatever reason, I didn’t read it right away – but it was always sitting on the back burner. Yet, after receiving The Swan and the Jackal for review, I realized – belatedly – that these should be read in order. So, I drove in.
This book is messed up. Not in a BAD WAY. On the contrary, I loved the world with assassins, the mob and all that fun jazz. It’s always been fascinating to me to read about because even though you know what they are doing is wrong – it’s interesting to see how the characters were molded this way and how their moral compass works. Loyalties and such.
Sarai and Victor are both pretty damaged, fucked up people. But for different reasons. Sarai puts on a good front – but you can feel the determination and desperation poring out of her. All she wanted was to live a “normal” life. But after finally having a (small) opportunity to, she realizes it isn’t what she wants.
Victor, the assassin that helping Sarai, is not a good person, yet… he isn’t bad either. Granted, his line of work isn’t the most moral of things, but there is a small (and I am, SMALL) part of him that is still soft, kind and just a good man.
Their romance isn’t the sole focus of the book – and I am SO happy about this. Yes, there is attraction, sexual tension and more, but what we really see is how Sarai is coping since her escape. How the life she has lived has affected her. There was a tiny part of me that felt like her feelings for Victor were only because he was the only man to HELP her. But, again, there is so much more to it than that.
Also, kudos to the fact that people die. I mean, good people die. That sounds awful, I know. But it makes the situation more REAL. It adds more tension and anxiety. They aren’t just random kills either – they MEAN something.
Now the narrators. I don’t’ think I will read the next one on audio, because the narrators didn’t fit. Kate Reinders sounds 16. Innocent, and it was weird hearing the word FUCK come out of her month. It had me wincing every time. And Stephen Bel Davies sounds… old. There is an age different between Sarai and Victor, but not 16 and 50. It was just so ODD. Their voices just didn’t work FOR ME. (Sadly, I think it’s the same narrators for the other books, and one of them IS for review).
The set up for book 2 was PERFECT and I can’t wait to read it! If you love books that are challenging and dangerous, you’ll enjoy Killing Sarai.
"My first from J.A, and what a First!!!"
My first from J.A Redmerski and what an introduction!!! Wow. So deep, complex, gripping, riddled with a dark dirty underworld of secrets..Have to read more for J.A now... I am Hooked!
I listened to this on Audible.... and I loved Sarai's narrator, she was perfect! Perfect for her...I really enjoyed having the male narrator for Viktor too. Although he seemed a little older than i was expecting, but got used to him and grew to love his tones!
Now the story, oh my goodness i was not expecting this at all, so intense, so gripping, so emotional, so ohhhhhh.
I was hanging on every word spoken, I couldn't wait to listen more, Grabbing every chance to take a listen.....
I loved Sarai's fight, with everything she has been through, she had an inner strength like no other. Determined.
Viktor, oh I can see the attraction Sarai had to him, I was engrossed, such control, but Sarai got under his skin, made me chuckle how she managed what no one else could.
Loved the ending.... loved it, I do like a 'What is going to happen with them?' I can not wait for the sequel.
The overall story is compelling and once I got past the first few chapters I kept listening. The female narrator was a lot better than the male.
"Good story, really enjoyed the female narrator"
Didn't read the book but the audio version was great. It was good to have two narrators for the main characters.
Definitely Sarai, but the narrator was really believable. Victor's narrator was good just didn't feel the aloofness in the characters voice as much as character meant to be. His voice was too friendly, I know that sounds strange.
Only after this in next book.
No laughing or crying but willed Syrai and Victor to connect
Good story although just like a good action movie not entirely believable but who wants reality! Went straight onto next book.
"I found it a bit of a plodder!"
I am afraid that I would not as I found it rather boring overall. It did have some good parts but they were few and far between.
Probably not after reading this book!
No problems with the narrator!
Please God, no!
I'm really sorry to say that I did not like the book. The story, simply, could have moved along at a quicker pace!
Better Narration. Kate Reinders attempt at a deep mans voice was awful, and both attempts at a german accent were laughable 'allo allo' parodies. The story was dull, no real twists or surprises, I couldn't wait to finish it.
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