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To Die For | [Linda Howard]

To Die For

Blair Mallory lives the good life. She's pretty, confident, and the owner of a thriving upscale fitness center. But in the shadow of success, a troubled member of the club develops a strange fixation on her, imitating her style and dress. Matters take a darker turn when the look-alike is shot dead - and Blair witnesses the horror.
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Publisher's Summary

Blair Mallory lives the good life. She's pretty, confident, and the owner of a thriving upscale fitness center. But in the shadow of success, a troubled member of the club develops a strange fixation on her, imitating her style and dress. Matters take a darker turn when the look-alike is shot dead - and Blair witnesses the horror.

As the media speculate on the tawdry details of the homicide and push Blair into the harsh spotlight, she locks horns with police lieutenant Wyatt Bloodsworth - he wants to lead an investigation without interference, while she is determined to probe the dead woman's life on her own.

But when someone begins to menace Blair with mounting threats, Wyatt takes notice: Was this murder indeed a lethal case of mistaken identity - and was Blair the intended victim?

©2004 Linda Howard; (P)2004 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (190 )
5 star
 (94)
4 star
 (57)
3 star
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Overall
4.5 (123 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
3.8 (122 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    SassiKassi 05-07-10
    SassiKassi 05-07-10 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    103
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    "Story is great. Narrator, not so much"

    Not your typical Linda Howard heroine. I usually hate high maintainence cheerleaders, but I actually liked Blair. She was funny, fun and smart.
    The narrator started off sounding like she was at least 70. Sounded just like my grandmother's neighbor. An old Okie woman with 12 strands of hair, missing front teeth, wearing a floral housedress everyday, support shoes and her stockings rolled down around her ankles in a donut shape. Not exactly the character you want to picture when you're reading about a beautiful, blond cheerleader. As the story progressed, the narrator's voice lost the quality of my g'ma's neighbor and I was more able to picture what Blair should look like. But in the second part of the book, that sound came back to the narrator's voice and here I was seeing Blair as a 70 yr old again. Yikes. Despite that, I still enjoyed the story and laughed much. Hope you try it for yourself.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lifelong Reader Southwest, USA 01-16-09
    Lifelong Reader Southwest, USA 01-16-09

    Caz

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Narration too horrible to listen to"

    This is a great book, ruined by a horrible narrator. I've read the paperback versions of both of Linda Howard's books about Blair Mallory, and they are a hoot. Some time ago, I bought the audiobook for the second book in the series, Drop Dead Gorgeous, and the narrator was wonderful. Stupid me, I presumed that the narrator for the first book, To Die For, would be the same person. Big mistake. I literally couldn't listen to the narrator for To Die For more than a few sentences. She had a horrible, fake southern accent and spoke in overly dramatic tones. Even worse, her voice was thin, thready, and wobbly, which made her sound like a 70-year-old woman. Since the heroine in this book is 30, the disconnect was too awful to listen to.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane Olive Branch, MS, United States 04-11-09
    Jane Olive Branch, MS, United States 04-11-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The narrator!!!"

    I wish I had read the other reviews before I wasted my credit for this one. I couldn't get past the first 20 minutes. That narrator was horrible!! I have listed to hundreds of audio books. This is the first time I just stopped before I finished the book. It may be a great story, but I'll never find out. I prefer to move on.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nicola APO AP 02-07-13
    Nicola APO AP 02-07-13 Member Since 2010

    Steve

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Gramma is that You?"

    The narrator sounds, like a very old lady ; not very comfortable listening to swearing or sex scenes being read by someone that sounds like my gramma. Linda Howard is a wonderful author; if you are willing to take the chance go for it.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ShySusan 09-01-12
    ShySusan 09-01-12 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great beginning petered out"

    I liked the beginning of this book. I got a kick out of the steel magnolia personality of the main character. I was not irritated by the narrator as so many reviewers were. But as the story went on and on and oooonnnnnn....... I finally just got tired of it. The sharp repartee that was so cute in the beginning got tiring when it never let up. The hero was always acting like a jerk, and the heroine was always punishing him for it. It was funny at first but after a while I thought, "How could anybody stand to live this way?"

    One of my major gripes was that the two main characters had dated in the past, and then the hero stopped calling with no explanation. In the beginning was the promise that we would eventually find out the reason, and the reason was totally lame. Basically, the guy was just one of those jerks most of us have run into from time to time who stops calling and leaves us wondering what went wrong, instead of doing the decent thing and letting us know they are ending it.

    There is supposedly a mystery being solved, but it occupies only a small portion of the book. Mostly we just get the two main characters sparring with each other day after endless day with neither of them willing to compromise and each of them angry at the other for good reason with no resolution.

    This is not one of Linda Howard's better books. If you love her, and have read everything else, then you may want to read this one, but I wouldn't start with this one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan 02-16-11
    Susan 02-16-11

    C. C.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I liked the narrator"

    Contrary to most who have review this book, I really liked the narrator. I thought she was hilarious and perfect for this character. She does have an unusual voice and I can see why some would not like it. It is high pitched but I found it realisitic. I listened to the sequel with a different narrator and did not like it nearly as much. Good listen!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ashley Watkins Glen, NY, USA 02-24-09
    Ashley Watkins Glen, NY, USA 02-24-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Really good story, almost ruined by narrator..."

    I love all things Linda Howard, and To Die For is no exception. The story was good. The heroine did grate on my nerves in places, and this was exemplified by the narrator. Holy Moses, this woman's voice BUGGED me. If you are able to sort of distance yourself from her inflections and delivery, then it's worth a listen. If you don't think you are able to do that, I recommend devouring this one the old fashioned way....I would give 3 stars solely for the narration, but b/c I did enjoy the story I bumped it up to 4 stars.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jill Tampa, FL, United States 11-05-08
    Jill Tampa, FL, United States 11-05-08 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Disappointed"

    I love absolutely everything I have ever read by Linda Howard EXCEPT THIS BOOK!! The writing was ok but the narrator was so annoying I wanted to shoot the main character by the end of the first half. This book moved slowly but the narration made it AWFUL!!! Try any one of Ms. Howard's OTHER books.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leah369 10-27-14
    Leah369 10-27-14 Member Since 2014

    Nicole

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    "LOVE the book, hate the Narrator's accent"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I love this author and story. It's always worth listening to time and time again. I had already read the book when I purchase the much beloved audio book.


    What other book might you compare To Die For to and why?

    I would say this book reminds me of a mix of Elizabeth Lowell and Janet Evanovich. You have a mix of good humor and suspense.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I can't say how much I HATED the narrator's southern accent. I had read this book multiple time and never picked up on such a thick southern accent. The book is set in North Carolina NOT southern Georgia! I've seen that they have a different narrator for the second book in the series, one can only hope they have made the much needed improvement.


    What would have made this romance irresistible?

    A more truthful North Carolina accent!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anastasia Lester Peachtree City, GA United States 10-03-14
    Anastasia Lester Peachtree City, GA United States 10-03-14 Member Since 2012

    Reading Mom

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not The Best Use of Time"
    Would you try another book from Linda Howard and/or Franette Liebow?

    I actually enjoy most of Linda Howard's books. Of all the ones I've read previously, I didn't care much for the one about the man-eating bear because it was so gruesome, but THIS one was borderline awful. The voice of the narrator sounded WAY too old to be a woman in her late twenties to early thirties... it sounded more like the mother of the main character. In addition, Ms. Howard did not make the main character very likeable. In every single chapter, she was pouting, rude, condescending and just generally got on my nerves. I found myself literally saying 'oh, shut up' out loud when Blair was griping and complaining.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    The reason that I picked up this book is because the next Linda Howard book that I want to read is some sort of "follow-up" to this one. When I read the reviews of the next book, it was recommended that I read To Die For first... in my opinion, that was terrible advice. I simply suffered through this book and couldn't wait for it to be done so that I wouldn't have to listen to that voice or hear any more of Blair's little hissy fits.


    How could the performance have been better?

    In my opinion, the narrator needs to SOUND younger. I don't mind the Southern drawl (although that gets old after a couple of hours), but the cracking voice and the high pitched wails just don't sound like anyone who is supposed to be around 30. I'd be willing to bet that if you selected a different narrator, more people would enjoy the book - or at least tolerate the main character a little better.


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

    The basic story was a good one and I enjoyed how the relationship between the two main characters developed. Ms. Howard does a great job at developing the characters so that the reader feels as if s/he actually knows the person.


    Any additional comments?

    I sure do hope that the next Linda Howard book is SO much better than this one... and I do not think that I will ever be able to listen to this narrator again. Sorry.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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