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Still Life with Crows | [Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child]

Still Life with Crows

Medicine Creek, Kansas, has been slowly dying for the last century. In a town where nothing changes, the community is terrified after a series of grisly murders takes place. Even more alarming, the bodies are displayed in bizarre tableaus. With the entire town in shock, FBI Agent Pendergast arrives from New Orleans to investigate. From the fields to the local caves, Pendergast discovers the remnants of a Prohibition-era moonshine operation and the truth behind one of the town's greatest mysteries.
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Publisher's Summary

Medicine Creek, Kansas. In a town where nothing changes, where Main Street is a two-block stretch of old and dusty businesses, a ghastly murder has taken place. The unknown victim has been placed in a small clearing in a sea of corn, mutilated and arranged in an elaborate tableau. Within twenty-four hours the sheriff is assuring a flood of reporters and tense residents that this is an isolated death - until Special Agent Pendergast arrives in the stifling August heat to declare it the work of a serial killer.

Soon neighbors begin to disappear - only to reappear as the lifeless centerpieces of unspeakable displays. Convulsed with terror, the townsfolk whisper of the legendary Curse of the Forty-fives. No one is safe from a killer who stalks his prey in the blackness of night...and whose grotesque crimes are revealed by circling buzzards under the cruel summer sun.

With the help of Corrie Swanson, an eighteen-year-old misfit, Pendergast unearths the secrets of this isolated town - from the dark histories of its inhabitants to the darker mysteries hidden in the endless cornfields. And ultimately, as he unravels the local curse and the truth of Medicine Creek's greatest enigma, the Ghost Warrior Massacre of 1865, Pendergast comes face-to-face with the unimaginable evil that lies at the heart of this small town.

©2003 Splendide Mendax, Inc. and Lincoln Child; (P)2003 Time Warner AudioBooks. A division of AOL Time Warner Book Group.

What the Critics Say

"The Preston-Child team scores another big winner, perfect for the summer; highly recommended¿" (Library Journal)
"Yummy beach reading." (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (815 )
5 star
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3 star
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4.3 (201 )
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4 star
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3 star
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4.6 (198 )
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
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Performance
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  •  
    Doreen Park Ridge, IL, USA 10-07-04
    Doreen Park Ridge, IL, USA 10-07-04 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Terrible!"

    I have to agree with Jeanne from Virginia, this book was terrible. Ridiculous story line and very annoying voices and sound effects. I only listened to the entire book because I felt compelled after paying for it. Fortunately I spend a lot of time on the road so it was over with quickly. The only good part was the Agent Pendergast character. Without him I would rate it as a zero star instead of one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Helen vista, CA, USA 03-04-04
    Helen vista, CA, USA 03-04-04
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting story"

    This is a nice book. The suspense and plot kept me interested. The narrarator makes it easy to follow along and has the right pace for the story. The music was a little weird - I felt like I was listening to an old-time mystery radio show, but it didn't bother me enough to take away from the story. I won't blow the ending for you, but I will say it did surprise me.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patricia 10-25-03
    Patricia 10-25-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Still Life with Crows"

    "Cabinet of Curiosities" was my first encounter with these 2 authors and found it very gripping thru the whole story. I found "Still Life with Crows" to be very engaging from the onset but the ending slowed a bit and was somewhat disappointed by the ending. All in all, a fairly good story and I will definitely come back for more from these 2 spellbinding authors.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doug Houston, TX, USA 08-29-03
    Doug Houston, TX, USA 08-29-03
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Preston and Child have done better"

    I am a big fan of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child and have read or listed to all of their books. This book doesn't keep the reader as engaged as their other books and the plot is just a showcase for the central character. Special Agent Pendergast never makes a false move or mistake and has mystical powers that allow him to transport to other times. This is stretching it a little too far. I hope Preston and Child start focusing on the plot again and stop trying to create a new superhero - we have enough of those already.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrea UPTON, MA, United States 10-18-14
    Andrea UPTON, MA, United States 10-18-14 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Storyline pulled me in from the beginning..."
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    It was time well-spent. The hours flew by as I listened because the story was so intriguing.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    My favourite character was Aloysius Pendergast. His demeanor and subtleties are fascinating. He stuck out like a soar thumb in the town, however it did not distract him from the case on hand.


    Which character – as performed by Rene Auberjonois – was your favorite?

    Aloysius Pendergast. Rene Auberjonois' Louisiana drawl is wonderful. He is by far the best performer of the Pendergast performers.


    Did Still Life with Crows inspire you to do anything?

    It inspired my to begin reading the Pendergast series.


    Any additional comments?

    Fantastic read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Talia TULSA, OK, United States 03-11-13
    Talia TULSA, OK, United States 03-11-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Murder is afoot in Kansas"

    Set in Medicine Creek, Kansas, this story starts off with a particularly gruesome murder and takes off from there. Having spent time in small towns growing up, the local flavor of small-town America is pretty accurate. The overall atmosphere set out in the books during various stages - the locals, attitudes, the weather - it all adds to make the book very believable.

    I have to admit to being seriously creeped out by this at times, and sometimes even a bit grossed out. I chose not to read certain parts of it while eating. The lack of an apparent motive for the serial killings, the deviation from a set pattern which usually defines a killer all held my attention and made me eager to keeping coming back for more.

    The revelation at the finale of the book made my hair stand on end and just be seriously creeped out. Another fine story from Lincoln and Child!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Micah Burke California 12-27-12
    Micah Burke California 12-27-12 Member Since 2012

    Lockheed

    ratings
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    "Melodrama"
    Would you try another book from Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child and/or Rene Auberjonois?

    I've read other books by Preston, but this was a overly formulaic.


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

    The character of Corrie Swanson held the most interest for me. Believable and resourceful, I found myself wanting to hear more about her.


    Which character – as performed by Rene Auberjonois – was your favorite?

    Corries Swanson


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Knight 04-29-12
    R. Knight 04-29-12 Member Since 2006

    coffin raider

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "even abridged...Amazing!"
    Where does Still Life with Crows rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    3rd of all time


    What other book might you compare Still Life with Crows to and why?

    no compare for me


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

    I will listen to anything he narrates, and i have so far....he is wonderful as Pendergast, as always.


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

    When Pendergast saves Cora from small town life and gives her the opportunity to make something of herself....makes me cry everytime!


    Any additional comments?

    another hit out of the park for Preston, Child, Auberjonois and Pendergast himself

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LaurelOlivia Carlsbad, ca, United States 10-03-11
    LaurelOlivia Carlsbad, ca, United States 10-03-11 Member Since 2011

    LauralOlivia

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "My least favorite Pendergrast novel."
    Would you try another book from Douglas Preston, and Lincoln Child and/or Rene Auberjonois?

    Absolutely!!! I have read and listened to most of their books and by far like them even more than the Dresden series. I am not a well read person, so take this with a grain of salt.
    I recommend Cabinet of Curiosities, Book of the Dead, Fever… and Cold Vengence.


    What was most disappointing about Douglas Preston, and Lincoln Child’s story?

    I usually am enjoying the moment in the books so I don't even try to guess the end. This book I guessed without even trying. I don't mind that but I missed the dialog banter.


    Which character – as performed by Rene Auberjonois – was your favorite?

    I am sure I am spelling it wrong, Pendergrast.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Yes, I would read it once. I just read and listen most their books more than once.


    Any additional comments?

    I did like the girl in the book and I am glad she is in a later book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lorraine 08-16-11
    lorraine 08-16-11 Member Since 2011

    rainwallace

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Still Life with Crows"

    What can I say I'm now hooked on this albino detective. I love the writing style of Preston/Child, my favorite narrator is Rene Auberjonois for this series. This time length doesn't get slow in the middle. I would recommend it highly.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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