Tom Weiner's narration and voice characterizations were distracting and irritating. The original ten Martin Beck books were well-written, and the plot..Show More »s and character developments were exceptional. I can recommend the books, but not this audiobook. The narrator's performance ruined the experience for me. I still plan to buy the other audiobooks in the series, but I wish someone else had been chosen to narrate the stories because Per Wahloo and Maj Sjowall wrote a great series of novels when they penned the Martin Beck mysteries. "Roseanne," along with the other books in the series, deserves 5 Stars, but Tom Weiner's narration only rates 1 Star. My overall rating for this audiobook is 3 Stars, and that's only out of respect for Per Wahloo and Maj Sjowall.
While not my favorite, all 10 novels in the Sjowall/Wahloo Martin Beck detective series are part of the exceptional ground-breaking evolution of po..Show More »lice procedural s. As the current popular authors who do the intros for the audio versions all note, these novels, including The Man on the Balcony grow with time and have influenced and delighted at least two new generations of readers and writers.
The Man on the Balcony may not stand on its own as an exciting or riveting novel, but in the context of the series it carries the main characters forward and supports a unique mood that is hard to characterize in a brief review. There is suspense, but it is muted by the irony, complex protagonist and crew of cronies and coworkers, subtle dialogue, descriptions of the pathetic state of affairs in the Swedish Police Force and society, struggles to find meaning, etc. All in all it is a work of art that may require some time for appreciation.
I can fully understand why another reviewer only gave it one star. It is not surprising, that from the middle of the series, a seemingly weak and anti-climatic ending could be disappointing; actually, it was just part of the beautiful ,sad, sympathetic, unfulfilled, cathartic ‘not with a bang, but a whimper’- like point. One can certainly see many influences, from the detective series side, if you liked the Ed McBain 87th precinct novels, you will probably love this.
I hadn't seen the film before listening (for all of fifteen minutes) to this book, nor had I read the book, but the narrator's clumsy characterization..Show More »s of Beck and his sidekick sound like a parody, a bad imitation of a 1940's actor, and really put me off listening any further. I expect it might be a fun book to READ, but I cannot recommend LISTENING to it.
I now have the entire Martin Beck mystery collection. I will enjoy listening to the complete series for years to come. What can I say except every boo..Show More »k in this series, including the "Terrorists" is the best mystery I have read or heard. I give 6 stars. Thank you, Audible, for intruducing me to Maj Stowall and Per Wahloo. This has given me the opportunity to explore all the wonderful Swedish mystery writers like Asa and Steig Larsson and Henning Mankell.