Nine years ago, Claymore Beller tried to do the right thing. It was the last thing he did. In retaliation for his efforts, his mafia bosses laid waste to his family. Only the youngest–Cynthia–came up fighting.
Three years ago, Lee Maxwell made the same error. His wife and daughter paid for his mistake. In a haze of booze and regret, Lee disappeared.
Now, Owen Dunham is following the trail of the ‘Grudge Ninja’–only all his evidence is false and the profilers can’t get their heads around anything except the obvious fact that the Ninja is extracting a deadly revenge for an old wrong.
As the Ninja gets bolder and far more dangerous, Owen is forced to recognize that he hasn’t always made the right decisions–he’s spent far too much time trying to be right. Even as he questions whether bringing in the Ninja is the right thing to do, the voice in the back of his head is telling him that it will make his career.
©2008 Griffyn Ink (P)2010 Griffyn Ink
Listening to this story, I couldn't help but think that perhaps the author was paid by the word. The plot plods along with occasional bursts of excitement and activity that were much too far apart to keep my interest. By the end of the first part, I had lost interest in the characters and what happens to them.
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
Not a big fan of the sound effects or the musical "interludes" at the end of various chapters. Sometimes there was a 1-2 minute guitar interlude which was just plain annoying. And the "bop, pow, bang" sounds of the fights were pretty lame.
Not a big fan of the [often subtle] sexism i.e. where Lee lectures Cyn over her "man-baiting" (Lee, apparently, believes that as long as Cyn led a guy on, it's okay for the guy to rape her since she asked for it by leading him on) and where he thinks it's perfectly acceptable for him to break into her home and expect her not to want to attack him.
Not a big fan of the book being too long for its content: too much repetition about how skillful Cyn was and how much Lee missed his family. Not a big fan of the (almost) sexual tension that was juxtaposed against Lee thinking of Cyn as his daughter. This was probably the creepiest part of the story - and distracting - if a 20 year old wants to fool around with an older guy, okay, I can accept that, but if that older guy had been thinking of her in terms of his daughter... that's just kinda gross.
Oh, and if Owen went on one more time about how he loves his wife so much that he's going to leave the Bureau I'd have biffed the book - every single time he shows up in the story, he mentions that he wants to leave his job and spend more time with his family. Okay buddy, go for it, just shuttup about it.
But, overall, I actually liked the story. I like the type of justice they deal out and how the characters were so well-developed. I just wish I hadn't had to skim so much to get past Cyn doing her forms, or Lee thinking about how Cyn is so much like his daughter. And they really only had to kill/kidnap about half the number of people they did in order to make the point of the story. There was nothing new in each additional "kill", just more of the same - preparing for the kill and driving here and there - which dragged the story on about 3 hours/100 pages too long.
The narration was okay. Different narrators for different characters made them easily identifiable, but the sound effects really detracted from the overall experience.
I liked the story and the cast. The characters were interesting and the plot moved well. I only give it 3 stars because the audiobook's sound effects and music almost stopped me from listening to it. The sound effects (police sirens, punches landing, bullets flying, phones ringing,...) were a distraction from the story and somewhat dangerous if you are listening while driving. (Perhaps I am just jumpy?) I think that the music was supposed to enhance the mood but I found the interludes too long and sometimes heavy handed. It felt like they were padding out the audiobook. If I would have realized just how much of the book was effects, I wouldn't have bought it.
I ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS BOOK. I WAS HOOKED BY THE SAMPLE AND BOUGHT THE BOOK WITH THE HOPE THAT I WOULDN'T BE DISAPPOINTED, AND I WASN'T. WHILE NORMALLY I DON'T LIKE BOOKS WITH SOUND EFFECTS OR MUSIC, IN THIS CASE THEY ONLY ADDED TO THE ENJOYMENT OF THE EXPERIENCE. THE MUSIC HEARD IN THE SAMPLE REMINDED ME OF THE MUSIC FROM THE MOVIE "KILL BILL". YOU'RE GOING TO LOVE THE RIDE.
The two super heros were made sort of believable by their circumstances. But it was so pleasurable when the bad guys got their just rewards that I wanted to believe in them. It was an entertaining story.
Wonderful character development, superb pacing and a unique plot. I highly recommend it!
I loved this book. The plot is great. The character development is very well done. What I REALLY like is the music and sound effects! I listen to a lot of audio books and have never heard one with this much sound effects and music. I think it greatly enhanced the story. There were 5 or 6 different narrators, one for each character which really added to the narration.
Love audio books, collecting and shooting guns . Spent 12 years in the US Army, got out in '94. Been a Surveyor ever since. Married w/3 sons
This book had it all, you really got to know the heroes with all their baggage. Well developed story line and outstanding narration. I could have done without the sound effects. This is one that you hate to see end, however it is a really good ending.
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