From the author of the New York Times best-selling and Edgar Award-winning The Expats
As dawn approaches in New York, literary agent Isabel Reed is turning the final pages of a mysterious, anonymous manuscript, racing through the explosive revelations about powerful people, as well as long-hidden secrets about her own past. In Copenhagen, veteran CIA operative Hayden Gray, determined that this sweeping story be buried, is suddenly staring down the barrel of an unexpected gun. And in Zurich, the author himself is hiding in a shadowy expat life, trying to atone for a lifetime’s worth of lies and betrayals with publication of The Accident, while always looking over his shoulder.
Over the course of one long, desperate, increasingly perilous day, these lives collide as the book begins its dangerous march toward publication, toward saving or ruining careers and companies, placing everything at risk - and everyone in mortal peril. The rich cast of characters - in publishing and film, politics and espionage - are all forced to confront the consequences of their ambitions, the schisms between their ideal selves and the people they actually became.
The action rockets around Europe and across America, with an intricate web of duplicities stretching back a quarter-century to a dark winding road in upstate New York, where the shocking truth about the accident itself is buried.
Gripping, sophisticated, layered, and impossible to put down, The Accident proves once again that Chris Pavone is a true master of suspense.
©2014 Chris Pavone (P)2014 Random House Audio
"[A] high-wire thriller.... The suspense is palpable." (Publishers Weekly)
"Pavone’s plot twists tirelessly, shifting focus among a large cast of well-drawn characters.... Many readers will read this one through the night." (Booklist)
"The world of book publishing has never been more perilous or mesmerizing than in Chris Pavone’s dizzyingly good follow-up to The Expats. The dark eruption of long-buried secrets, complex betrayals further snagged by sex and greed, and 11th-hour desperate gambits for reinvention all propel a whirlwind story that will keep you up way past your bedtime. Crafty, stylish, satisfying." (Paula McLain, New York Times best-selling author of The Paris Wife)
I would like to begin by saying, I finished listening. This book is fine enough entertainment. However, there was something slightly annoying about the book and I have been thinking about it in order to write this review, trying to distill what irritated me about "The Accident" and this is what I have landed upon:
The author's writing style has what I would liken to a verbal tick or twitch - he has a tendency to write in laundry lists. I don't have a specific quote but he tends to go off on list like tangents (this is my own example) "she drove down the street, by the lawns where the kids played, with the lemonade stands and the the sprinklers and the yard men raking grass clippings and the ….. " these lists go on and on. And it happens over and over throughout the book. I think this is lazy writing. Also, these lists all seem have a judgmental tone to them, in fact the whole book seems to be judgmental of having an affluent life style in general. New York is portrayed as soulless, the publishing industry is hopeless, everything is grim and the people greedy, card board cutouts.
As for the characters - I did not like anyone in this book. They were either two dimensional or just irritating stereotypes. The book feels like a grown up Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys with an edge. Part of this may be due to the narrator. While she has a nice voice to listen to, I can't quite decide if it is the writing style that made her voice sound pretentious, or her reading style that made the writing sound pretentious. There is a whine in there somewhere.
I figured out what was what plot wise very early on. Yet, in spite of all this, I finished. Writing this review a day later, it does feel a little like having eaten a meal of Chinese food, it leaves you kind of empty afterwards. So, if you want a kind of quick, fun-ish, implausible corporate spy sort of story to listen to on your trip to and from your beach house, this might be a good choice. However, I don't think I will choose another book by this author.
While not quite as fun as "The Expats," I have to say that I can't wait until Chris Pavone's next novel. When "The Accident" starts, you think you know it all -- an anonymous book has been written telling a Big Fat Secret from a media mogul's past life; people will do anything to make sure the book never gets published. OK, you say, how can this story go on for X-number of hours?...Then the plot twists and turns. Connections are made and broken. While I agree with the reviewer who said that the characters were mostly unlikable (and some way too superficial), "The Accident" kept me entertained from beginning to end. The anonymous book in the novel, "The Accident," is supposed to be a book the reader can't put down...and Chris Pavone's "The Accident" comes close to being that as well.
The ending is so disappointing, I would not recommend it. It's as if the author was not sure if it should have a sequel or not. I enjoyed the first 3/4 of the book so much I was anticipating listening or reading his first book--The Expats. I will pass on that.
The pendantic writing style. His endless lists of observances go like this: "she picked up a pen. The pen was bright nickel that she bought from a clerk, in a fashionable boutique, with polished walnut floors, a moslty lesbian staff, all dressed in black...., chilly in disposition" It's so tiresome. I would have preferred reading this,as it's easier to skip through fillers like this as opposed to listening..
She's an excellent readier. Loved her on House of Cards and would listen to anything she's reading.
No need to resurrect the dead. Isabel is not an interesting-enough character. I don't think anyone benefits from knowing more.
The author, I believe, was an editor. He needs to take a hard look at what he writes. He's extemely talented, and I was extolling this book to everyone I know till the last 2 chapters.I know there are better stories coming from Mr. Pavone.
I thought this book had a great story line, a good twist at the end. But overly descriptive. You can only describe a room, a car, a cloud in so many ways. I caught myself skimming over many pages just to keep the story going. That shortened the book to keep me interested. This is the first book from this author I've read so I don't know if others are like this.
This book was beautifully read and the story is intriguing. I find the narrative structure to be both wonderful and distracting. There is something about the narrative that makes it both useful and cumbersome at the same time. It both moves the story forward and holds it back at the same time.
Over all I think this is a worthwhile listen.
Intricately plotted, a near perfect mystery/thriller and pretty well written within that genre, it is painful to have to interrupt listening. You will NEVER guess the ending. Narration is very good as well.
I had to binge listen to this audiobook. It was good that the reviews I read beforehand were equivocal because I didn't have huge expectations. But I went ahead since its for my book club. The story engaged me right away and despite the jumping back and forth and some repeated phrases and a couple of loose ends, it kept me thinking and trying to figure it out ahead of the reveals. I was imagining other endings too. The sign of a great story. So while it might not be the most precisely crafted book I've read, I'm glad my friends picked it. I'm sure we will talk about motivations and ethical dilemmas and imperfect characters. I'm looking forward to that too.
Engrossing read with quality plot twists that kept you guessing. The characters are not as badass as his other novels, but a very enjoyable read nonetheless.
This was one of those best-case scenarios, where you have a strong story, characters you can invest in (whether you want them to live or not) and has an uncomfortable echo of that-can-happen...I found myself making up errands so I could listen in the car...
I read most of the book but since I have less time to read than I do to listen given my 2-1/2 hour commute each day - I enjoyed listening more than reading!
That would give away too much!
Better to leave this a book though if you structured the film properly it would be a great film!
I really like this author and look forward to more from him? her? - great female characters with a spy /espionage flavor to it
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