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Light of the World Audiobook

Light of the World: A Dave Robicheaux Novel, Book 20

In Light of the World, sadist and serial killer Asa Surrette narrowly escaped the death penalty for the string of heinous murders. But following a series of damning articles written by Dave Robicheaux’s daughter Alafair about possible other crimes committed by Surette, the killer escapes from a prison transport van and heads to Montana - where an unsuspecting Dave happens to have gone to take in the sweet summer air, accompanied by Alafair, his wife Molly, faithful partner Clete, and Clete’s newfound daughter, Gretchen Horowitz.
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Publisher's Summary

"America’s best novelist" (The Denver Post) and "the reigning champ of nostalgia noir" (The New York Times Book Review) introduces his most evil character yet in the 20th thriller in the best-selling Dave Robicheaux series.

A New York Times best-selling author many times over, James Lee Burke is a two-time Edgar Award-winner whose every book is cause for excitement, especially those in the wildly popular Dave Robicheaux series.

In Light of the World, sadist and serial killer Asa Surrette narrowly escaped the death penalty for the string of heinous murders he committed while capital punishment was outlawed in Kansas. But following a series of damning articles written by Dave Robicheaux’s daughter Alafair about possible other crimes committed by Surette, the killer escapes from a prison transport van and heads to Montana - where an unsuspecting Dave happens to have gone to take in the sweet summer air, accompanied by Alafair, his wife Molly, faithful partner Clete, and Clete’s newfound daughter, Gretchen Horowitz, whom listeners met in Burke’s most recent best seller Creole Belle.

"James Lee Burke remains the heavy weight champ," says New York Times best-seller Michael Connelly, "a great American novelist whose work...is unsurpassed." The master proves it once again with this harrowing novel that examines the nature of evil and pits Dave Robicheaux against the most diabolical villain he has ever faced.

©2013 James Lee Burke (P)2013 Simon & Schuster

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1457 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Brian Apple Valley, CA, United States 08-18-13
    Brian Apple Valley, CA, United States 08-18-13 Member Since 2010

    Long haul commuter. Audiobooks keep me from causing serious physical harm to my fellow commuters. Bless you, Audible!

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    "The Bobbsey Twins from Homicide Ride Again"

    JLB once again weaves a wonderful mystery full of vivid imagery and unsavory characters. If you have followed the adventures of Dave and Clete you will not be disappointed. In addition to the usual cast of characters, we learn more about Clete's daughter, Gretchen - who is a chip off the old block. A colorful character from Bitterroot, Wyatt Dixon plays a large role in the story and provides some of the best scenes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeffrey Wieseman 08-17-13 Member Since 2007

    Gosoxjsw

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    "Summertime JLBurke"

    I've listened to a Will Patton performance of James Lee Burke's work every summer for a while. His narration is always perfect and always a great story to go along with it. Good stuff!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Anaconda, MT, United States 08-17-13
    Michael Anaconda, MT, United States 08-17-13 Member Since 2010

    Mike Grayson

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    "Not Burke's best."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    It is too long. Burke could have taken a bit more time and edited this one a bit more. It feels like a rough draft, rambling around without a point, with too many loose ends. Not as tight and well written as most of the series.


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

    Weird ending. Too many characters just stop doing anything for the last ten minutes of the book.


    Any additional comments?

    While I still enjoyed the book, the themes are getting repetitive and tired. I am glad it took place in Montana, but it wasn't that accurate. All the final action seems to take place near Flathead Lake, yet he refers to the same sheriff as in Missoula (Flathead Lake is part in Lake County, part in Flathead County: different sheriffs).

    Too many people die in these books for it to be realistic. I didn't add up the total death toll, but it is high. Too much gore, more than is needed. There are as many murders in this one book as Missoula would see in a year.

    Yet I still enjoy Burke's prose. It is poetic and beautiful, and Patton's wonderful narration makes it sing. Despite my complaints, I am still glad I listened to this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    jackie LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 08-16-13
    jackie LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 08-16-13 Member Since 2015
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    "One of the great writers!"
    If you could sum up Light of the World in three words, what would they be?

    FAN TAS TIC


    What other book might you compare Light of the World to and why?

    None. James Lee Burke is a unique writer.


    Which character – as performed by Will Patton – was your favorite?

    Will Patton is such a great narrator that each character is distinct enough to love.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Fast paced and thought provoking.


    Any additional comments?

    Love Gretchen. She really adds a fresh character to this series, one I would be disappointed to see not included in every book. Also glad that Aliphair has more to do. This gives the novels a chance to grow up and into a new generation. And Wyatt and his woman are such welcome additions. How will Burke deprive us of them now? They are amazing new characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanie Westbrook Eufaula, AL United States 08-15-13
    Stephanie Westbrook Eufaula, AL United States 08-15-13 Member Since 2012
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    "First Rate Everything"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    The writing is impeccable. The characters are well developed and the way James Lee Burke crafts a scene is spectacular. On top of this, the narration by Will Patton absolutely captures the color and feel of this novel. I can't say enough good things about his nuanced performance. The writer and narrator have created a masterpiece together.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Cardiff by the Sea, CA 08-15-13
    Amazon Customer Cardiff by the Sea, CA 08-15-13 Member Since 2011
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    "The osmosis of evil"
    Where does Light of the World rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    about in the middle


    What other book might you compare Light of the World to and why?

    Burke's books


    What about Will Patton’s performance did you like?

    Incredibly good changes of voice and accent for each character


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

    No


    Any additional comments?

    It's a good story but pretty heavy on the evil and deranged minds. Sometimes I had to shut it off-- feeling too much like I was absorbing the vibes of bad company.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    a 08-13-13
    a 08-13-13
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    "Disappointed this time around by J.L. Burke"
    What disappointed you about Light of the World?

    The whole book appeared to be an amalgamation of prior Robicheaux storylines. The character Gretchen Horowitz, who was introduced in the prior novel, Creole Belle, is in this one again. I guess she is now destined to be a main character in future books. I can not wrap my head around her character at all. Wyatt Dixon and Asa appear to me to be resurrected characters from Burke's prior work. I am a Will Patton fan and to me he is one of the best voice actors in the business. I have been listening to him narrate the Robicheaux series for years. However, in this performance, it appears that he had too many characters to work with. There were times that Dave sounded like Clete; the Sheriff at times sounded like Dave; and for some reason the voice he lent to Gretchen just put me off.Overall, I regret having spent a credit on this long-anticipated release. I guess from now on I will instead wait for the book to come to the city library and check it out first before I invest in the audio version.


    What could James Lee Burke have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Keep it in Iberia and for gosh sakes, you do not need new characters. I still like to hear about Nig and the rest of the old gang. Also, there was very little in the way of Molly in this book, and come to think of it, in the past recent ones.


    What didn’t you like about Will Patton’s performance?

    I think he had too many characters to lend voice too.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Light of the World?

    Most of the scenes involving Gretchen and Alafair. The dialogue between the two ultimately becomes predictable. Gretchen pisses Alafair off; Alf rebukes her for it, Gretchen apologizes, Alafair again forgives Gretchen and reaffirms love and loyalty.

    Also the firefight scene near the end. Dave too easily allows Alifair to be a part of the kill team. This from Dave who is always overprotective of Alf.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Seattle, WA, United States 08-12-13
    Chris Seattle, WA, United States 08-12-13
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    "Its probably just me."
    What did you like best about Light of the World? What did you like least?

    Will Pattons reading was perfect for a Robicheaux story.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The setting in Montana


    Have you listened to any of Will Patton’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Could you see Light of the World being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    Yes. Too hard to cast


    Any additional comments?

    I think it is changes in my life and my age that may have tainted this Burke story. I found the characters too cryptic and odd and there did not seem to be even one character who wasn't overly odd or dark. The story seemed lacking in any police procedural aspects compared to previous Burke books. Certainly a classic Burke/Robicheaux but was a downer for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Bainbridge Island, WA, United States 08-12-13
    Charles Bainbridge Island, WA, United States 08-12-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Ambiviolence, or the Bobbsey Twins Letdown"

    I've read/listened to every Burke/Robischeaux/Patton effort and am not quite finished with this one so maybe I should wait to write this, but a few things stand out. I know that all the books are violent but I got through that because the writing and description is so extraordinary that it didn't matter so much, but it seems a bit more acute here. I'd have to go back and listen again to some of the others for a comparison, but I find the brutality in this book unsettling when before it took a back seat.
    The second problem for me is Will Patton. He's a great narrator, and his voices for Dave and Clete (especially) are spot on. Except his voicing of the women here doesn't quite work. He pushes into the higher register for Gretchen and Alafair and it sounds like a falsetto. Both women, in "real life" would have strong voices. Again, I need to go back and compare it to what he's done before, but here the high pitch is irritating.
    The writing is still first rate. Burke could tell the same story in half the pages but his tendency to describe people and places and smells and light lifts up the whole experience. This is still true here, but I'd still be happy with less descriptions of the blood and stuff.
    As I said I've read them all and enjoyed some more than others (faves are "Jolie Blon's Bounce," "Tin Roof Blowdown" and "Creole Belle"). Neil Young characterizes his output as "It's all one song." Burke has that characteristic too, there is a unifying theme and feeling that lifts all of his books to a remarkable level. Neil has a greater quality variance quotient than Burke, but neither is consistently great.
    Writing one really good book let alone 20 is a tremendous feat so I feel a bit churlish about this note. On the other hand, this is not the best of the Burke/Robischeaux/Patton series. Those already on the train will dig this but newbies should start elsewhere.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    deb Cave Creek, AZ, United States 08-11-13
    deb Cave Creek, AZ, United States 08-11-13 Member Since 2013
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    "The Best Yet"
    If you could sum up Light of the World in three words, what would they be?

    Exciting, riveting beautifully written.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Gretchen is relentless and strong.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The final scene with Dave and Cletus.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    My fear that Cletus would actually die.


    Any additional comments?

    This was one of my favorites because the writing was so beautifully eloquent but he didn't get too verbose and become irritating!

    And, of course, Will Patton ads an enticing flavor with his gift.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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