Dave Robicheaux has spent his life confronting the age-old adage that the sins of the father pass on to the son. But what was his mother's legacy? Dead to him since his youth, Mae Guillory has been shuttered away in the deep recesses of Robicheaux's mind. He's lived with the fact that he would never really know what happened to the woman who left him to the devices of a whiskey-driven father. But deep down, Dave still feels the loss of his mother and knows that the infinite series of disappointments in her life could not have come to a good end.
While helping out an old friend, Dave is stunned when a pimp looks at him sideways and asks if he is the son of Mae Guillory, the whore a bunch of cops murdered 30 years ago. Her body was dumped in the bayou bordering Purple Cane Road, and the cops who left her there are still on the job.
Dave's search for his mother's killers leads him to the darker places in his past, and solving this case teaches him what it means to be his mother's son. Purple Cane Road has the dimensions of a classic - passion, murder, and nearly heartbreaking poignancy - wrapped in a wonderfully executed plot that surprises from start to finish.
©2000 James Lee Burke (P)2012 Simon & Schuster Audio
I have all of Burke's books. When Mark Hammer or Will Patton narrate, it is time well spent. With Nick Sullivan, not so much. The man doesn't even have a mild southern accent let alone any hope of giving Dave and Cletus the Cajun inflections and cadence. What were you thinking, Audio.com??
This narrator did not relate to the characters being read. AT.ALL. The narration is rushed and has none of the cadence or personality of the southern Louisiana dialect. It greatly distracted from one of the best stories in the series. My brain kept trying to disconnect from the reading.
This performance was a huge disappointment because of the narrator. Really prefer Will Patton.
Yes but not a Burke book.
The book was fantastic but wrong narrator.
I love New Orleans though I never spent much time there. It is the culture and language that set it apart from almost anywhere else in the world. So the narration is important to the story. Nick Sullivan is a good narrator but his interpretation of the French-Cajun dialect does determent to the story.
People of Louisianan are a mixture of almost all Caribbean cultures but the narrator uses a distinctively Jamaican accent to interpret the French creole. Burke is a great student of language in his stories. In many of his books, he can determine a person’s origin by listening to the dialect. So we as his readers and listeners know how important this is to him and the story line.
It is akin to substituting Maurice Chevalier with Jar Jar Binks and hoping no one notices.
As always Burke has a point of view or observation that is completely fresh, naked, and free from self delusion. He is like Hemingway. He writes about the things he knows and dares anyone to deny its truth.
Nick Sullivan is a good narrator but his interpretation of the French-Cajun dialect does determent to the story.
It is with extreme effort that Burke centers Dave Robicheaux’s character on his concepts of good versus evil. We understand him best through his weaknesses. When he is wrong, he is driven to drink and not until he makes amends does his ability to resist his greater temptations find victory. Except for the perfect among us, this is a path of contrition we all could use in our daily lives.
I once thought I could write until I read James Lee Burke. It is a shame his work has not garnered more serious attention just because he is a mystery writer.
Purple Cane Road is the best of the Burke/ Robicheaux Series(4) that I have read so far.
The quest for the truth about his mother and addressing the harm that was done to her.
Nick Sullivan gave the narration clarity and the characters personality. I much prefer his narration as compared to the mouth full of mush narration of Will Patton as for example in Neon Rain.
Justice in the cane fields.
Nick Sullivan is a good narrator, but Will Patton and Mark Hammer bring Dave Robicheaux to life with their great Cajun dialect.
After enjoying the first block of novels in the series read by Mark Hammer ... this was a disappointment.
The pronunciations, the patterning, the loss of the characters voices really spoiled this book for me.
I bought this book on the strength of James Lee Burke talent, despite the poor reviews of this book's narrator. As much as I love Burke's writing I almost quit this book half a dozen times due to the poor narration. Shouldn't Nick Sullivan listen to a Southern African- American before he just creates a new dialect? All the African- Americans sound like they are from the Carriabian Islands. Clete sounds like a polished business executive. Nick you failed. I hope Burke bans Mr. Sullivan from ever reading his books again.
Tell us about yourself!
No, the absence of a narrator with a cajun accent destroyed this story. What happened to Will Patton or Mark Hammer?????
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