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Lia

Sutton, Australia
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  • The Pardon

  • By: James Grippando
  • Narrated by: Ron McLarty
  • Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 110
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 85
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 85

Fans of John Grisham's legal thrillers will love the suspenseful action and intriguing courtroom drama of James Grippando's bestsellers. In The Pardon, Grippando delivers a scorching tale of vengeance that stains the sultry streets of southern Florida. Miami defense attorney Jack Swytek has long rebelled against his father, Harry, now Florida's governor. The two disagree on nearly everything, especially the death penalty.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • First legal thrillerl in the Jack Swytek series

  • By Wayne on 03-03-18

Great Series

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-09-18

I love listening to James's books. His characters have human vulnerabilities and i am on the edge of my seat every time I read one. I think the pardon was his first book and although it had a bit of a slow start, suddenly it twisted and I was riveted and couldn't put it down. I love that it is obvious that integrity and personal relationships are an important part of the development of his cast of main characters. Most enjoyable, and my mission is to plough my way through all of his books. Jack the main character sometimes comes across as being naive and it makes me nervous especially when he is dealing with women. I think that this is on purpose and it just makes the story more nerve-racking to see how Jack will come through and not be sucked in by 'wiley women', we know he is basically a good guy. It will be interesting to see how he progresses in the books to come.

  • When Darkness Falls

  • By: James Grippando
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 10 hrs and 28 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 148
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 84
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 83

Miami criminal defense attorney Jack Swyteck isn't looking for a new client, at least not one who is homeless and in jail for threatening to jump off a bridge. But from the moment Jack is called to defend the man, who calls himself Falcon, something is amiss. For one thing, Falcon comes up with the $10,000 bail in cash. Then, the body of a brutally murdered woman is found in the trunk of the abandoned car in which he is living.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Better Than Expected

  • By angel on 08-20-07

Good addition to the series

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-09-18

This book, like all previous I've listened to, was great in several categories: plot, story flow (by which I mean I did not have to re-read pages when I came back to the book after putting it down for whatever reason), and character development. Although in fairness, as to story flow, and like the others, I could not put this book down.
Grippando/Swytek has a style about him that keeps the reader glued from page one to page last. What I really liked about this book was how the action kept rising and rising to a climax and then the anti-climax kept rising to finally the falling action and resolution took place. As I say, character development was very strong particularly with the chief antagonist, "Falcon" and fellow protagonist, police negotiator "Vince". Of course, chief protagonist Jack Swytek is strongly developed. Theo Knight, Jack's "side kick" played a pivotal role as well.
I don't re tell story lines in my reviews, but kudos to Grippando for his character development of the blind Miami Police negotiator Vince. The research spent unraveling that character's inner thoughts and instincts was not only time well spent story wise, but educational as well in understanding what goes on in the professional and personal life of a blind police officer/negotiator.
No question, this was a great read. I highly recommend it to any Grippando fan.

  • Genesis

  • By: Karin Slaughter
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Woodward
  • Length: 15 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 18
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

Someone had spent time with her – someone well-practised in the art of pain.... Three and a half years ago former Grant County medical examiner Sara Linton moved to Atlanta hoping to leave her tragic past behind her. Now working as a doctor in Atlanta’s Grady Hospital, she is starting to piece her life together. But when a severely wounded young woman is brought in to the emergency room, she finds herself drawn back into a world of violence and terror.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Listen

  • By Lia on 11-06-18

Excellent Listen

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-06-18

First, the author locates a devastating crime scene on GA state road 316, the road to Conyers - NOT. She acknowledges in the Afterword that 316 goes to Dacula, not Conyers. With that potentially glaring mistake laid to rest, the focus turns to finding out who is abducting dark, attractive, thin thirty-something women and subjecting them to grizzly torture. Of at least equal interest are the battles of GBI agents Will Trent and Faith Mitchell and Grady emergency room doc Sara Linton in dealing with some very difficult personal issues in their lives - both past and present - including their involvement in this current case.

Progress is made on all fronts. Will, Faith, and Sara start coping with their demons, though with much pain, and at the same time diligent investigation into connections among the victims and the past's of seemingly innocent characters starts to pay off. However, as is usually the case, it is a matter of too little too late. Why is it that those who do know or should know about the criminal potential of someone, often family members, do little to prevent or reveal, or worse conceal, those possibilities? The book holds the interest in its two track approach: key, appealing characters and the criminal case.

Jennifer Woodward was outstanding with the delivery of the story

  • Dark Sacred Night

  • By: Michael Connelly
  • Narrated by: Titus Welliver, Christine Lakin
  • Length: 10 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 93
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 85
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 84

At the end of a long, dark night Detectives Renée Ballard and Harry Bosch cross paths for the very first time. Detective Renée Ballard is working the graveyard shift again and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours only to find that an older man has snuck in and is rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is none other than legendary LAPD detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin. Ballard kicks him out, but eventually Bosch persuades her to help, and she relents.

  • 1 out of 5 stars
  • Narration is woeful

  • By Susan on 11-02-18

Michael Connelly Never Dissapoints

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-01-18

Harry is as human as he has ever been. I was born the same year as the Bosch of the books so I can relate to his sore knees and his slowing down and his doubting his sharpness. In contrast we have the much younger Renée Ballard whose sharp skills complement Bosch. The development of the mutual trust between them was a bit surprising to me but very satisfying.
I love it most when there is a new episode of the old Bosch, that is, a new novel. This one is everything I want to think and feel about the Harry Bosch I have come to know over more than 20 installments.

I have mixed feeling regarding the narration. Both narrator were good but together it made the story feel a bit disjointed. Stick with Titus he was the better of the two.

  • Cash Landing

  • A Novel
  • By: James Grippando
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Davis
  • Length: 12 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 118
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 106
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 107

Every week a hundred million dollars in cash arrives at Miami International Airport, shipped by German banks to the Federal Reserve. A select group of trusted workers moves the bags through customs and loads them into armored trucks.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • not the worst ever, but close

  • By Kelli on 12-05-15

Good Start To The Series

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-21-18

This is a good book but not really anything about Jack Swytek, although a great tale of a gang who pulls off a large money heist at the Miami Airport. The heist is efficiently executed. It is well planned. But crime does not pay. After the heist, all the gang members fall over each other in betrayal. They are all greedy and criminal and do themselves in. There is a dauntless FBI agent and her colleagues who are able to watch all the deceiving and find the mistakes and pick up the pieces and solve the crime. The book is fast paced. You do not know who is going to double-cross whom next? The protagonist is Ruben, a Cuban refugee and ex-con, living in Miami. You mainly see the story through his eyes. The antagonist is Andie, a competent and clever FBI agent . Like Ruben, Andie has to fight through the double-dealing and bureaucracy of the FBI and other police agencies to solve the crime and catch the gang members. There is double-dealing on both sides. You wonder how anything succeeds in life? That is what the theme of this book is about. It is well worth a credit?

Jonathan Davis was excellent with the delivery of the story

  • Looking Glass

  • By: Andrew Mayne
  • Narrated by: Will Damron
  • Length: 8 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,555
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,409
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,407

Professor Theo Cray caught one of the most prolific serial killers in history using revolutionary scientific methods. Cut off from university research because of the shroud of suspicion around him after the death of his former student and the aftermath of catching his quarry, Cray tries to rebuild his life but finds himself drawn into another unsolved case. The desperate father of a missing child, ignored by the authorities and abandoned by his community, turns to Theo for help. The only clues are children's drawings and an inner-city urban legend about someone called the Toy Man.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent follow up to The Naturalist...

  • By shelley on 03-14-18

Good Follow Up

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-21-18

This is the second book in Mayne’s Naturalist series (that was the name of the first book), about Dr. Theo Cray, a former professor whose combined expertise in biology and computer analysis and ability to spot patterns that no one else sees helped him identify a prolific serial killer of young women and brought him to the (mostly positive) attention of the intelligence community. Here he hunts a second killer, the Toy Man, whose preferred victims are young boys. It would be a good idea to read the first book before you read this one, both to gain useful background on Cray and because the author repeatedly refers to the murderer in the first book by name, so you will lose some of the suspense in that book if you read it after this one.

Unquestionably this book is a very good thriller: think Jonathan Kellerman with fewer interviews, a sprinkling of “spook” (as in spy, mysterious agencies with alphabet-letter titles) stuff, and some really cool science (fluorescent bacteria! CSI, eat your heart out!). The villain is certainly a quintessence of Evil, and the hunt for him is definitely suspenseful. However, at least for me, the book did not reach the almost painful level of intensity that the first volume did, nor was the character development as complex. In short, very good, yes; outstanding, no. Mayne can do better.

Will Damron was excellent with the delivery of the story

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • A Gathering of Secrets

  • A Kate Burkholder Novel
  • By: Linda Castillo
  • Narrated by: Kathleen McInerney
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 374
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 341
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 341

When a historic barn burns to the ground in the middle of the night, Chief of Police Kate Burkholder is called in to investigate. At first it looks like an accident, but when the body of 18-year-old Daniel Gingerich is found inside - burned alive - Kate suspects murder. But who would want a well-liked, hardworking Amish man dead? Kate delves into the investigation and discovers Daniel had a dark side. He was a sexual predator. His victims were mainly Amish women, too afraid to come forward, and he's been getting away with it for far too long. Now someone has stopped him, but who?

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This series has my HIGHEST RECOMMENDATIONS!!!!

  • By shelley on 09-10-18

Weakest Book Of The Series

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-13-18

I've listened to most of Linda Castillo's Kate Burkholder mysteries and listened to them as audiobooks. I've really enjoyed the series. I was eager to purchase this latest book as soon as it came out. Unfortunately, I have to say that this is the weakest book in the series. It seems more like recycled, random parts strung together rather than a cohesive, compelling, and interesting mystery. Once again, there's a fire. Once again, an Amish girl commits suicide. Once again, we hear about Kate's past. What's lacking this time out is Castillo's normally intricate plotting. I figured out the likely suspects almost immediately. There was literally NO suspense. Also, when Kate discovered the truth of what happened, she did no follow up with the fire victim's family, which I found odd given the circumstances surrounding the death and the victim, himself.
Kathleen McInerney again was fantastic with the delivery of the story.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Down a Dark Road

  • A Kate Burkholder Novel
  • By: Linda Castillo
  • Narrated by: Kathleen McInerney
  • Length: 9 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 393
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 360
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 359

Two years ago Joseph King was convicted of murdering his wife and sentenced to life in prison. He was a "fallen" Amish man and, according to local law enforcement, a known drug user with a violent temper. Now King has escaped, and he’s headed for Painters Mill.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Another Great Installment To The Series

  • By Lia on 10-12-18

Another Great Installment To The Series

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-12-18

I've enjoyed every book in the Kate Burkholder series so far.

I noticed a (very) few comments saying "Down a Dark Road" was too predictable, the same premise as previous works, etc.. Personally, based on what I've seen or read both on the news or read in novels; murder, mystery and suspense are, unfortunately, bottomless pit genres in both fiction and real life. If there WERE limits to the base category, we'd never have had a reason to form our own city's police forces let alone consider state or federal bureaus of investigation.

Consider the TV show, "Criminal Minds" and what we've learned about "un-subs" in the world of fiction. Also, "Law and Order" and its many spin-offs, "C.S.I., [name that city], etc." All were (or are) pretty predictable but look how long they were (and still are), on the air in both original formats and reruns. And many of us probably sit and watch them all, over and over.

I happen to feel comfortable with a familiarity of characters and settings. It allows me to try to figure out who, what, why, and so on, without trying to remember new background details about the settings every single time. And, while I can certainly understand how some people might find them predictable; to me, that makes them no less enjoyable to read.

So, I'll be watching and waiting for Ms. Castillo's next Kate Burkholder novel. She hasn't let me down yet and I seriously doubt she will because, regardless of the category, there are still many sub-plots, conclusions and stones left unturned.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Among the Wicked

  • A Kate Burkholder Novel
  • By: Linda Castillo
  • Narrated by: Kathleen McInerney
  • Length: 9 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 577
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 512
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 512

Chief of Police Kate Burkholder is called upon by the sheriff's department in rural upstate New York to assist in a developing situation that involves a reclusive Amish settlement and the death of a young girl. Unable to penetrate the wall of silence between the Amish and English communities, the sheriff asks Kate to travel to New York, pose as an Amish woman, and infiltrate the community. Kate's longtime love interest, State Agent John Tomasetti, is dead set against her taking on such an unorthodox assignment.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Love This Series

  • By Lia on 10-11-18

Love This Series

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-11-18

Maybe Tomasetti was right. Maybe I’d get up there and find myself in over my head. Then I thought of the dead fifteen-year-old Amish girl, the forty children at risk, and an Amish community that has fallen under suspicion, and I realize that I didn’t have a choice. All I can do is my best. It’s all any of us can offer. I hope it’s enough.”

FINAL DECISION: I am in love with these books. They satisfy my love for mystery and romance. This book has a mystery that kept me guessing and even gave me a jolt of surprise at the end. At the same time, I felt a deep connection with Kate as a character.

THE STORY: Police Chief Kate Burkholder is asked to take on a potentially dangerous undercover assignment. She is to infiltrate an Amish community in New York to see what is going on in the reclusive group because there are hints that children may be at risk including a teenager recently found dead. Kate’s background growing up Amish makes her the only reasonable option, but this assignment increases tensions with her live in lover.

OPINION: I have become a big fan of the Kate Burkholder books. They are a perfect melding of mystery with romance. This book allows Kate to consider her choice to leave her Amish community and explore a what-if life while aggressively pursing the mystery of what is happening in this New York state Amish community.

This case cries out for Kate’s particular talents since she grew up Amish. There is something strange going on in this small Amish community and police need someone to go undercover. With a charismatic and intensely conservative bishop, the community has shut itself almost completely from the surrounding community. Kate is pretty happy in her current situation and so this assignment shakes up her life a bit.
Kathleen McInerney was truly amazing with the delivery of the story

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • After the Storm

  • A Kate Burkholder Novel
  • By: Linda Castillo
  • Narrated by: Kathleen McInerney
  • Length: 11 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 432
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 401
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 403

In this electrifying thriller by New York Times best seller Linda Castillo, Kate Burkholder must uncover a family's long-hidden past to solve a brutal murder. When a tornado tears through Painters Mill and unearths human remains, Chief of Police Kate Burkholder finds herself tasked with the responsibility of identifying the bones - and notifying the family. Evidence quickly emerges that the death was no accident, and Kate finds herself plunged into a 30-year-old case that takes her deep into the Amish community to which she once belonged.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazing Addition To The Series

  • By Lia on 10-11-18

Amazing Addition To The Series

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 10-11-18

WOW! Linda does it again! I've said in previous reviews that the worst part of reading a Linda Castillo book is having to come to the end, turning that last page, closing the book. The best thing about reading a Linda Castillo book, aside from a riveting story, is that, if the author remains inspired, a year from now there will be another Kate Burkholder book. Can't wait. This series, set in the near-idyllic village of Painter's Mill, has not disappointed yet. Each story has its particular twists and turns and surprises. To even hint at what goes on here will only take away from the "fun" you're going to have with "After the Storm." If this is your introduction to Linda, I'd suggest going back to the beginning of the series., for her development of characters who then appear, book to book, grows more complex. especially this relationship between Kate and John Tomasetti. It's like slow and steady wins the race...with each book this relationship, which began tentatively, grows in complexity. This time around I was genuinely moved by the interaction between the two. This was the first time I bought a book; in the past I've acquired them from the Vine program. I don't regret the purchase at all; I've already begun sharing with other friends who have also found themselves becoming involved in this absorbing series.
Kathleen McInerney was outstanding with the delivery of the story.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful