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When the Bough Breaks Audiobook

When the Bough Breaks: An Alex Delaware Novel, Book 1

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Publisher's Summary

In the first Alex Delaware novel, Dr. Morton Handler practiced a strange brand of psychiatry. Among his specialties were fraud, extortion, and sexual manipulation. Handler paid for his sins when he was brutally murdered in his luxurious Pacific Palisades apartment. The police have no leads, but they do have one possible witness: seven-year-old Melody Quinn.

It's psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware's job to try to unlock the terrible secret buried in Melody's memory. But as the sinister shadows in the girl's mind begin to take shape, Alex discovers that the mystery touches a shocking incident in his own past.

This connection is only the beginning, a single link in a 40-year-old conspiracy. And behind it lies an unspeakable evil that Alex Delaware must expose before it claims another innocent victim: Melody Quinn.

©2003 Jonathan Kellerman (P)2012 Random House

What the Critics Say

"An engrossing thriller.... this knockout of an entertainment is the kind of book which establishes a career in one stroke." (New York Newsday)
"Suspenseful, neatly spun, fascinating." (Philadelphia Daily News)
"Grab yourself a copy soon." (Los Angeles Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (586 )
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4.1 (510 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Ozifarmer Gippsland, Australia 12-19-12
    Ozifarmer Gippsland, Australia 12-19-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "When the Bough Breaks"
    Where does When the Bough Breaks rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    One of the better ones.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It is an easy listening story, well written and easy to follow but enough intrigue to keep you interested. Very well narrated too, good storytellers all round


    What does Alexander Adams bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He read it along similar veins to the way I may have if I read the book myself.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, just an enjoyable listen.


    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    P. Giorgio Illinois 05-24-13
    P. Giorgio Illinois 05-24-13 Member Since 2011

    TheWriter

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Tedious, trite and unbelievable."

    I know this is an oldie, and we cannot judge it by Kellerman's recent work, but really, it was a little too preposterous. ALERT: There are scenes that describe graphic child sexual abuse here. There are words/phrases that would be unspeakable in today's sensitive times. But we cannot slight JK for that -- that was then and this is now.

    No, my complaints are about the way the story unfolds. First there is some detective work that combines Milo & Alex, then Milo disappears and Alex is a psychologist, detective, and near-mercenary. There are some nice homey scenes between Milo and Alex and their respective amours, but not enough of them.

    At any rate, the bad guys are rounded up and the most hated of them have stories to tell; long, stories, told in retrospect, as if it justified their adult behavior.

    Alex treks to other states, gets in fights, shoots, captures and threatens people until the truth comes out. When it does, all the truths link up into a somewhat surprising outcome.

    I am glad that JK decided to take the weapons away from Alex in his later, more mature books.

    I know it was the launch of the series, so for me, having read all the subsequent books, this one lacks the cohesiveness and logic of the best and most modern of the Alex/Milo canon.

    I would not recommend this book, however, because of the graphic descriptions of child sexual abuse. I would feel responsible to someone who read it on my recommendation and encountered this content. I would not recommend it to anyone who loves the Milo/Alex pairings because this one does not illustrate their relationship as we have come to expect.

    For a first time reader of JK, it is always best to begin a series at the beginning, and this one, because of some of the content, might turn someone away.

    I had to check to be sure, but there is a movie (1994) of the same title, which seems to include some aspects of this plot, though it doesn't seem an exact rendering.







    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janels 05-23-13
    Janels 05-23-13
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    "Every sentence artfully crafted, witty--a delight!"

    I didn't remember Kellerman's novels being so incredibly well-written, witty, and so very thoroughly enjoyable! The narrator was perfect, but somehow I couldn't help but be reminded of the books by David Rosenfelt, and his Andy Carpenter character--could have been a brother to Alex Delaware. I loved Rosenfelt's clever books, and Kellerman somehow succeeds at bringing incredible depth of character, while artfully crafting every word and every sentence so that the result is an uninterrupted and hilarious delight.

    Alex Delaware, a wise-cracking, self-effacing delight of a psychologist, best buddy of gay detective Milo Sturgis, somehow deduces his way into the midst of unsolvable crimes, and escapes by the skin of his teeth. It is a joy-ride to amble through peoples' minds with him.

    I am going to stock up on more Kellerman books; I was sorry this ended!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David 12-14-12
    David 12-14-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "All tell, no show"
    What didn’t you like about Alexander Adams’s performance?

    It kind of felt like watching an old '80s rerun of Magnum PI or Colombo.


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

    Interesting potential for unique plot, character, setting, if told with a more interesting voice and focus.


    Any additional comments?

    The plot is revealed through long monologues by characters speaking about what they did. The prose is replete with grandiose superfluous verbiage, as if Kellerman is trying to write too hard. He also wants to describe each room and character in excruciating detail, which leaves no room for imagination, if you pay attention and don't drift off out of boredom.

    5 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cory R. 04-06-16
    Cory R. 04-06-16 Member Since 2013
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    "great"

    I guess it's easy to give it a five, when your a fan of the characters!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sherry 08-23-15
    Sherry 08-23-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Looks like I found a new favorite author."

    Looks like I found a new favorite author. I can't wait to hear the rest of the series!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sean 08-17-15
    Sean 08-17-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A little too spectacular"

    The narrator was very good, he did well between the characters and kept the story going. However, the story was just a little too far fetched; it seemed very fictional and not something too plausible.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. K. Brewer 07-15-15

    California

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    "Not the Alex Delaware in later books."

    Had I nor listened to quite a few other Alex Delaware books I would have stopped at this one--#1.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terry Owens 06-04-15
    Terry Owens 06-04-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Tooooo wordy"

    My least favorite of his books. Way too many words. Could have been at least 1/3 shorter.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Hirsch Denver, CO 05-10-15
    Mary Hirsch Denver, CO 05-10-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Always interesting"

    I understand this was Kellerman's first Alex Delaware novel. The premise is dated to the era of the 1980s, but taken just for the storytelling, it is a good read. Quite a few characters, Kellerman's way of exploring different psyches. If you are a fan of Alex Delaware novels I think this is enjoyable. It is an important point in the ongoing development of the relationships that run throughout the series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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