He hid the old pencil-drawn map for 40 years.
The guards never found it.
After 40 years in San Quentin, Luke Palmer leaves with a state-issued suit, $100 dollars to buy a bus ticket, and a map that will lead to a promise and into the heart of a dark forest.
College graduate student Molly Monroe is about to release rare butterflies not far from where the FBI used 4,000 bullets in a shootout to kill Ma Barker and one of her gangster sons in 1935. Molly snaps a picture that will frame something she never sees coming.
Sean O'Brien does see something -- a predator. Between the sea of cars in a Walmart parking lot. Walking quickly. Stalking two women.
As O'Brien tries to prevent the abduction, he opens the door to a new relationship. And he opens a dark door to a horror that is secluded within the forest. He follows veiled tracks that lead him farther into the woods where an evil from the past intersects with a frightening presence to form a volatile trap with only one way out.
©2011 Tom Lowe (P)2014 TomLowe
I thought Michael David Axtell did a fantastic performance. His many voices and inflections made it very easy to distinguish between the characters. I did look to see if there were any other books that he narrated but unfortunately there is only one other. I hope to hear more from him in the near future.
I really enjoyed this book. I thought the story line was easy to follow and the plot was certainly realistic. The action started almost immediately and continued right through to the end. No lulls but my heart broke for Luke Palmer, but I can't say why. I also didn't expect two of the other murders. But I can't say why! The protagonist (Sean O'Brien) is very likable, he has his own sad story that makes him a "good" guy. Of course he knows experts, carries all the right medical supplies, can recognize poisoning at a glance even when the MDs can't and shoots as good as any sniper but what kind of a hero would he be without his skills? This was very entertaining and I hope the rest of the series is available on Audible soon. I recommend this one. I got it on sale but it would have been worth a credit had it not been.
Excellent action story. Good diversity of characters. The writing transcends the typical mystery genre with near poetic phrasing. This is better than the latest Jack Reacher stories and nearly as good as C J Box!I'll be looking for other books by Tom Lowe.
It was absorbing....couldn't wait till I could get back into the story.
Please try this hidden gem!
Yep. I got it at a discount and thought, "Oh, it'll probably not be so great." But happily, that wasn't true. Although, I rarely listen to suspense/murder stuff so maybe I'm not much of a critic. But I really was hooked. I was happy that there wasn't any abuse of women, overly gory violence (ok, lots of people get killed- but it wasn't too gross), not much swearing (I don't mind the occasional f--- or s--- but not when there is a ton of it, it's off-putting.
Also, I HATE it when men refer to women as objects and use offensive terms for body parts. To me, that screams, "This is written by an guy who emotionally and intellectually didn't move past 12 and I can't write a great plot so I'll resort to these testosterone-idiot-infused terms and moments as fillers." Happily, there was none of this.Just a compelling story, great characters and great narration.
Loved his ex-CIA friend, the neighbors at the marina, the whole setting.
Hmmm, something that quietly builds and pulls you in. Since I don't read much in this genre, I can't compare. But the characterization was great. The reading was great.
Of course, Sean O'Brien, the main protagonist. Talented, smart, resourceful veteran and loves his dog. What's not to love?
(Also loved his Seminole friend. Would love to see more on him)
No but I loved the surprises. Twists and turns...
Unless you like zombies gnawing on babies and violence against women, I think you can't go wrong with this one! Well crafted.
One of the best, wish there were more.
Not on the edge but firmly planted. Would like to listen to more from Tom Lowe but Audible doesn't have the 2 before nor the 1 after. What gives? The characters were well thought out and enjoyable to see them evolve. I expect Mr. Lowe will have a good long run if any of his other books are like the Butterfly Forest.
I can't chose just one. There are far to many good scenes for that.
Sit back and enjoy. If they make the movie like the book was written.
I hope to hear more of Sean O'Brien he is a good character.
I would listen to this novel again, just to hear the narrator retell the story. Michael David Axtell does a remarkable job bringing the story and characters in this novel to life. He is a gifted story teller - his pacing and delivery were spot on. He kept me engaged from beginning to end. I frequently found myself listening longer and later into the night than I had planned. I have listened to many audio books and a really good narrator is a real pleasure to find! I will listen to anything that he is a part of in the future.
Sassy dialogue, humor, and a great reader are important to me.
reader made this story come to life.
our hero, just didn't give up and was a breath of freshness to these type of stories.
this is a new reader who is GREAT!. Audible please request him for Romance/mysteries.
when the tracking dogs did their work RIGHT. It was a wow moment
more from this author with this reader, please. This was on sale! What a great find and listen
I've always loved books. Even before I could read I've loved them. Fact or Fiction, I love books. I'd sooner read a book than see a movie.
The lovely descriptions of the forest, butterflies and ocean. The interesting mystery of why and who, and in this case not to typical.
Only to the point of wishing people were not killed.
I somewhat enjoyed his narration. His performance add to the characters and the hero. However; the volume of his voice was too low or too high. This caused me to adjust my volume control.
Beauty can be deadly.
The only issue I had with the story was the woman's (Lizzy) reaction after under going her trauma. It wasn't realistic. I seriously doubt she would fall into the hero's lap and have an affair so quickly. Then leave the quick affair so unattached. Defiantly this story caters to men's fantasy of sex and women.
Enjoying one good listen after the next!
Narration is superb, although there are several "flaws" in the recording where short sentences are repeated. The story, while somewhat interesting, just didn't ring true for me. Improbable events and actions left me hanging a bit and feeling a little "used" by the author. There is plenty of mayhem, death, destruction and such in this book and the "detecting" by the actual detectives and a former detective are often in conflict. The former did more detecting than the actual, which just didn't seem plausible.
Nevertheless, it is an interesting 3-star story. . . average in many ways. But on sale, it's a buy.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
Two college kids go deep into the Ocala Forest of central Florida to release rare butterflies at the same time an ex-con goes in to dig for Ma Barker's long-buried loot. When the kids turn up dead, the ex-con is the obvious suspect. But former homicide detective Sean O'Brien doesn't think so and, as is often true of him, his sixth sense leads him to uncover a deeper mystery.
Although this is the third of six Sean O'Brien books by Tom Rowe, it is the only one available through Audible. I found it to be a good, concise, straight-ahead mystery thriller in the rich tradition of Florida crime fiction, of which I am a fan (particularly Carl Hiaasen and Tim Dorsey, although Rowe does not share their subversive sense of humor -- and in a minor note, one of the major characters in Dorsey's first book is Sean Breen, who if memory serves is a cop).
This was a solid three and a half star listen from start to finish. Through the first five hours, I was leaning strongly toward giving it four stars, since half-star ratings are not an option. But the final quarter of the book knocked me down to three. One problem is that the ultimate reveal is never analyzed as a moral issue -- why on god's green earth should anyone have to die for this reason in this day and age? (I don't want to give it away.) I wanted Rowe to take a stand on the matter.
But that's just me. More importantly to the readership at large, the mystery is over and done with two-thirds the way in, yet there is still two hours to go. That section has been done too many times before, with Rowe adding nothing new. This story is catalyzed by a series of coincidences, never uses its butterfly metaphor for much effect, and ends with a talking villain -- three strikes = three stars.
This was a good book but since you know who did it and pretty much why only a couple of hours into the book, I cannot call it a mystery; so on that end I was disappointed. there is some of a thriller aspect in the story: who will live/who will die? How will they get the bad guy? It was more of a police procedural, except the hero is often at odds with the local sheriff.
Another reader said that this was better than Jack Reacher. I'd be more inclined to say that this book was a lighter, softer version of Jack Reacher.
It was a good book but nothing that I was expecting from the blurb or the classification.
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