Wolf Hadda's life was a fairytale - successful businessman and adored husband. But a knock on the door one morning ends it all. Universally reviled, thrown into prison, Wolf retreats into silence. Seven years later Wolf begins to talk to the prison psychiatrist and receives parole to return home. But there's a mysterious period in Wolf's past when he was known as the Woodcutter. Now the Woodcutter is back, looking for truth and revenge...
©2010 Reginald Hill (P)2010 WF Howes Ltd
I loved this! Yes its long, yes it takes a long time to get into but so so worth the wait. The second half of the novel is a rollercoaster ride of twists, turns and amazement. I found myself yelling out loud in public in shock when I didn't see things coming.
I'm a big fan of criminal psychology so I really loved the early parts of the book but this might not be everyones cup of tea.
But defiantly stick it out to the end; you won't be disappointed.
List of favorite books: Woodcutter - Reginald Hill, Consent to Kill, First Deadly Sin - Lawrence Sanders, Sniper Elite - Scott McEwen
Great story. Great narration. I enjoyed it so much the first time and rarely get a book this good, I had to listen to it again.
I haven't written a review for a long time, because the audios I have chosen haven't been all that noteworthy.
This book is the exception, prompting me to write a review.
First off, I had never heard of this author. (shame on me)
Second, I only purchased this on the good reviews, and the storyline intriqued me.
It is the first book since Game of Thrones, that I absolutely did NOT want to stop listening to. (btw, game of thrones is a completely different genre, however, both the writing, storyline, and readers are excellent!)
This is a book that I am glad I listened to, rather than buy the hard copy to read.
The reader was exceptional. I could picture this entire book in my head as he read along.
I researched this author, and found that sadly, he had passed on last year I believe.
The literary world has lost a wonderful writer.
Fortunately for me, I listened to this one.
Retired book buyer/book manager for wholesale distributor in the 5 largest northeast states. Prolific reader who was inundated with ARCs.
This listen has it all-momentum, character development, twists and turns, a HUGE final surprise and a tension that keeps the listener listening. Every once in a while you come across a mystery/thriller of shere genius. This is it. This is so good that if I owned Audible I'd give a money back guarantee for this genre's fans!!
I was not sure at one point if I was going to continue with this book. I stayed with it and in the end was very happy that I did. The fact that this story is influence by the "Counte of Monty Cristo" is not hidden in the story, and the trials of the main character are monumental. The story unfolds in layers and soon the reader is hooked wondering where this tale is going to go. I would recommend this book but would caution that it takes a commitment from the reader to work through the character and story development phase, once accomplished the story takes off and moves very well, with great tension building for the exciting ending.
Tell us about yourself!
This is an outstanding novel and very well read, nice twists and turns and a satisfactory conclusion. Very well worth the download
I have been a Reginald Hill fan for many, many years and love his Dalziel and Pascoe books almost to the point that I am disappointed when he has a new novel that does not feature the two detectives. But, the Woodcutter is Hill at his best - and that really puts it high on the chart. Jonathan Keeble is an outstanding narrator and I will look for other books he narrates. This book kept me guessing up to the very end. Hill's love of words always ensures that I will have increased by vocabulary after reading or listening to one of his novels, and he writes both wonderfully descriptive prose as well as intriguing dialogs. His character developments are first rate.
My only complaint is now I have to wait a while until Hill's next book is on the market.
The combination of Reginald Hill and Jonathan Keeble makes for an ideal audio book. The narration is well crafted and is full of cleverly constructed scenes and phraseology. At times the plot dips to the predictable but there are enough non-standard moves to keep it from becoming banal. Keeble's narration is excellent as he displays a wide range of voices and does much to help Hill create the characters. The author's pace is also complemented by the narrator's patience and consistency. This book may be one that is much more enjoyable to listen to than to read. In any medium, it is worth the experience.
What seems like a good story about a seemingly upstanding man turned very bad, turns into a great story about duplicity, the mystery of family, the legacy of spies and the ties of friendship. So many twists and turns - maybe one or two too many (but not really) - I could hardly put this book down. Jonathon Keeble is a terrific narrator. I highly recommend this book.
Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.
I took a long time to warm up to many of the characters, and for some I never got there. Wolf was intentially evasive for good reason, but his manipulations, while understandable, kept him at a distance. Eventually he won me over and in addition to rooting for him, I felt real affection for him by the end. I had more trouble with Alva, whose relentless over analyzing while being amazingly obtuse at times stretched credibility and made her connection to Wolf somewhat unbelievable right through to the end. That relationship remained contrived to me and is the main reason for 4 instead of 5 stars. Supporting characters were more successful - really liked McLucky, Doll, and Trap. I did appreciate the writing with surprising dollops of humor (usually courtesy of Wolf) sprinkled throughout. Overall a good story, much better in the final 3-4 hours as things come to a climax. Recommended with the caveat to hang in there through the first 1-2 hours trying to figure out what is going on.
What makes this audiobook is the fantastic narration by Jonathan Keeble, he really understands the characters and made the book come alive. It isn't the best thriller I've ever read but I enjoyed it and looked forward to listening to it on the way to work.
"Just Brilliant - can't recommend enough"
Excellent book, great plot that keeps you riveted - I also postponed doing lots of things because I wanted to listen more. The narrator is one of the best I've heard, with really believable accents and a difference to all the voices he uses so you have no difficulty distinguishing who you are hearing speak. Do listen - its well worth it.
"Very good, but a little long"
First, I agree with other reviewers that the reader of this book should be applauded. He does an really outstanding job. The story itself is well crafted and is definitely a 'page turner'. In places Mr Hill is outstanding in creating a driving pace during a chase which was excellent. There are some points where the suspense of disbelief is pushed quite alot and some cliches. And it is longer than I think necessary, but overall an excellent adventure that I recommend.
"Very poorly written book of no substance"
I really cannot understand the good reviews this book has received. Despite the excellent performance by Jonathan Keeble, there's no getting away from the fact this just isn't a very good book. It's badly written with two-dimentional characters, not a single one of which is likeable in any way.
The storyline is just ridiculous and not thought through at all. It's totally incongruous that a man like Wolf Hadder, whom 'everyone can't help liking or falling in love with' (though heaven only know why) should have found himself without a friend in the world. And (I'm trying to avoid spoilers here) the one person who does find themself befriending him is one person who is in a professional position where they really just wouldn't cross that line, so it's totally unbelieveable.
As the plot unravels it just gets quite silly and is dealt with in an equally silly way. The book frequently finds itself in some murky moral waters on the matters of revenge, justice and the law, but shys away from making any sense of them. It's quite a frivilous story of some some quite unpleasant issues. I felt that as a reader I was expected not to think about any of it too deeply, and just go along with a really ridiculous happy-ever-after ending.
Waste of time.
Well paced, original and entertaining
Wolf Hadda is abrasive and devious enough to be an anti-hero and there are moments in the story when it's possible to doubt him; certainly, it's entirely possible to dislike him. However, thanks to the multi-strand structure, in which the adolescent Hadda appears in the shadowy past, the complexity of the character gradually emerges.
Certainly, Keeble's interpretation of Hadda greatly enhances Reginald Hill's creation and I found myself undeniably attracted to the character, as many female listeners probably are! Surly, seductive and downright unpleasant in places, Jonathan Keeble's reading adds colour and depth.
I actually welcomed a couple of sleepless nights which allowed me to complete this addictive book in record time! I felt I cheated myself by not lingering longer, especially over the final phase.
Thoroughly recommended as an intelligent 'read'.
"Not well written"
Poorly written book. Little idea of how to write character dialogue. The story is quite interesting, but feels like a student writer. couldn't finish it.
"The best book from Audible so far...."
Yes in a little while. The story line was very good and the narrator was excellent, the best I've ever heard. I even looked him up on line I was that impressed.
No, I haven't got another book I would compare it to.
The main character of course, and because he was the smart thinking hero.
Yes, but I can't say here as it would give a part of the plot away!
This book kept me listening keenly for hours. Both the story line and the narration are excellent and you will not be disappointed by choosing this book.
"Predicable; populated by 1 dimensional characters"
People who like to identify with pre-packaged streotypes
Made the plot less predictable and taken time to develop the characters instead of relying on ready made stereotypes (the ambitious young female black psychiatrist, the clueless but savant toff, the uncouth country boy who becomes part of the establishment but is ultimately destroyed by it, the manipulative rich bitch etc). Come on Reginald, there's nothing new there!
Range of accents but somehow managed to make Wolf sound older than he probably meant to be and the northern accents were exaggerated and a bit comic hall on occasions
A gripping book from the start right through to the last sentence. Not too many characters, so easy to follow in the unlikely event that you leave a bit of time between listenings (though you are likely to be making more time available to listen to this book, than you normally would). Total involvement in Wolf's character has made this the best book I have listened to so far. Not frightening, or horrific, but with a few violent scenes described without unnecessary gore. Brilliantly read - good quality throughout. Go for it, you won't regret it!
"Really got me gripped"
This was a new author for me and I was gripped from the start, not to mention the great narration. An unusual story line sets the scene for an unconventional thriller. Plenty of twists and turns to keep the interest up and full of excitement right to the end.
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