©2007 Clive Cussler; (P)2007 Penguin
"Cussler takes a breather from his several ongoing series with this historical thriller set in the western states, circa 1906. The U.S. government hires the renowned Van Dorn Detective Agency and its equally renowned lead agent, Isaac Bell, to capture the bank robber known as the Butcher Bandit....Once San Francisco gets hit by the 1906 earthquake and the principals climb aboard a pair of fire-breathing locomotives, the novel cranks up a head of steam and some high-speed thrills." (Publishers Weekly)
Scott Brick's performance, although sometimes a bit melodramatic, is effective and I have and would try other books performed by him.
Probably not another book by Clive Cussler.
Mr. Cussler is clearly a successful author of many books who appeals to many readers. However, for my taste, a more complex, imaginative plot, such as those devised by Scott Turow, Frederick Forsyth, John le Carre or John Grisham would make the book much more engaging and challenging.
Clear, well-articulated, experienced performance.
Absolutely-because some of the very detailed story would be picked up and enjoyed more each time
Yes-enough twists and turns to make the guessing interesting
Loved the narrator-top 5 for sure
Butcher Bandit Strikes Again!
A fun read with the 1906 San Francisco venue a delight. The primary characters were given such intense personalities that the period and people were fascinating
Most definately! Wow, what a change of pace. Clive Cussler goes Steampunk! I was not sure what to expect when I got this book. It sounded different than his last few years and I really liked early Cussler so I thought I'd give it a try and I'm glad I did!
Not sure. Cussler goes back in time to the early 1900's with a detective from the Van Dorn Detective Agency, a man named Issac Bell and being a detective he solves crimes. It is an amazing first person look at early San Fransico during the earthquake of 1906 and it feels like you're there. You really get involved in Bell's life and want him to not only get his man but get the girl and get through the earthquake (which does not happen without some truly awful emotional scars forming).
It made me happy. Listening to a good book, one that hooks you in by investing you in the main characters life is...happiness. It is not a book with deep meanings or messages/lessons to apply to your life/work, but if you want a very well narrated happy book, this is it!
The story line is wonderful, the people and places descriptions were colorful, I especially loved the wonderful historical bits as those bits completely entranced me. The narration, however nearly grated me into a turned off listener with his repetitive singsong redition. Only the story content urged me to finish the story. I will not be a willing listener to this narrator in the future.
I had serious misgivings about wasting money on what has been described to me as a "guy's writer". But, during a sale I decided to try this book of Cussler's, which appeared to have a traditional mystery plot with a historical context. I was really ready to admit my misgivings when the mystery was solved, the perp caught, and it was what I thought was the end of the book. It was an interesting concept. Then it went off track, seeming to change modes, dwelling at great length on the San Francisco earthquake for some unknown reason, seemed filled with corny lines and situations (coming up to his "love", whom he had seen all of a few times, while she was tending to the mangled and dying earthquake victims, with the line "can you help me? My arm is gone"). After that, it was a tedious plunge into the dynamics of railroad trains, and a silent movie-seeming implausibe and unbearably corny ending. I stand by my first impression--shallow characters, corney relationships, and lots of "man-stuff"--not deep
Scott Brick must be one of the worst narrators ever. This is the second book of his I have listened to and I have disliked both. His style is very over-the-top. He is too dramatic and his sentences too often reach an unneeded crescendo. Half the time he cannot keep his voices and accents straight and in one instance a French accent slowly turns into a badly done Irish accent. When he isn't whipping himself into a frenzy or botching the voices, he sounds just plain haughty.
The book itself is just ok. Period references are good if they are done correctly. This book just squeaks by in that department. It starts to get a little annoying with the references (yes, we know 85 miles an hour was fast in 1906), but then backs off before it gets TOO bad. The ending cannot be described as anything but cheesy.
I listen to a lot of books, there are several that I've stayed with for just a short time before I have to quit. This is one of those books that after 5 minutesI was so irritated by the narrator that I turned it off. I went through some of my other books that I've shelved and most of them were narrated by Scott Brick.
His tone is one in which puts you on the edge of your seat through every word spoken. He puts too much emphasis on every word and his enthusiasm is way over the top. I can just imagine him stomping around waving his arms while reading.
It was just too much for me. I won't be buying any more books narrated by him.
I know this book had a lot of positive reviews, but it just was not compelling in the least for me. I gave it a couple of hours and then I was so disinterested I had to turn it off. The narration was good, but the story was flat. Villain is super-evil and supremely competent. Hero is oh-so-handsome with beautiful blue eyes and lighting-quick reflexes. Oh, did I mention he has beautiful blue eyes? Cussler does many times in the first couple of hours. The villain seemed boring even when killing people before jumping in his super-fancy undercover boxcar for his escape. Oh well, on to the next book...
Now I know what that term means! The first half of the book was tolerable, but the second half became cliche after cliche. I expected Guy Noire to show up at every turn. I'm so happy I got this book for cheap, it would have been a waste of a good credit.
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