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Justin Messer

  • 8
  • reviews
  • 132
  • helpful votes
  • 32
  • ratings
  • Escape Clause

  • A Virgil Flowers Novel, Book 9
  • By: John Sandford
  • Narrated by: Eric Conger
  • Length: 9 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,542
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,219
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,215

The first storm comes from, of all places, the Minnesota zoo. Two large and very rare Amur tigers have vanished from their cage, and authorities are worried sick that they've been stolen for their body parts. Traditional Chinese medicine prizes those parts for home remedies, and people will do extreme things to get what they need. Some of them are a great deal more extreme than others - as Virgil is about to find out.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Super Sandford

  • By Ted on 03-05-17

A bunch of cliches but put together well

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

Reviewed: 11-22-16

Very good. If you're new to the series this book might be too campy but if you're already invested into the Virgil character it's extremely easy to look past that and enjoy the story.

  • A Time to Die

  • Victor the Assassin, Book 6
  • By: Tom Wood
  • Narrated by: Rob Shapiro
  • Length: 11 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,276
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 1,188
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,186

Now that professional assassin Victor is indentured to British Intelligence, he is tasked with eliminating the worst of the worst. One such man is Milan Rados, a former Serbian paramilitary commander wanted for war crimes and now head of an organized criminal network in Belgrade. He has escaped justice once already, so it's Victor's job to take the justice to him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Victor, the assassin you just hate to love?!?

  • By shelley on 08-04-16

Fantastic return to form...

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

Reviewed: 08-06-16

Any additional comments?

Victor gets back to doing the things he does best in this book. Like many others I was disappointed in the previous installment "The Darkest Day." The plot of that story was ridiculous and it read like the author was trying to write a movie script not a thriller. "A Time To Die" is reminiscent of the the first three books in the series and that is great news.

Victor is best when he is fighting battles that are large in scale but local in scope. He also does best in Europe where the author has a unique talent for describing bleak old world city-scapes that suit Victors personality perfectly. I devoured this book over the course of a couple days and rank it right at the top with the first two books in this series as my favorite thrillers.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • The Short Drop

  • By: Matthew FitzSimmons
  • Narrated by: James Patrick Cronin
  • Length: 11 hrs and 54 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 7,680
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,912
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,895

A decade ago, fourteen-year-old Suzanne Lombard, the daughter of Benjamin Lombard - then a senator, now a powerful vice president running for the presidency - disappeared in the most sensational missing-person case in the nation's history. Still unsolved, the mystery remains a national obsession. For legendary hacker and marine Gibson Vaughn, the case is personal - Suzanne Lombard had been like a sister to him.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Hidden gem hiding among all the generic crap

  • By Justin Messer on 12-27-15

Hidden gem hiding among all the generic crap

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

Reviewed: 12-27-15

What made the experience of listening to The Short Drop the most enjoyable?

A unique and likable main character that I was really rooting for.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

I mean, you know things are going to turn out relatively all right, but there was enough attrition of tertiary character to keep you guessing about who was actually going to make it through unscathed.

Any additional comments?

Pleasantly surprised with this story and the quality of writing. The author has a bright future. Some better editing and attention to detail would put this book right up there with my favorites. Well worth the credit!

70 of 74 people found this review helpful

  • Saturn Run

  • By: John Sandford Ctein
  • Narrated by: Eric Conger
  • Length: 16 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,017
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,809
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,801

The year is 2066. A Caltech intern inadvertently notices an anomaly from a space telescope - something is approaching Saturn and decelerating. Space objects don't decelerate. Spaceships do. A flurry of top-level government meetings produces the inescapable conclusion: Whatever built that ship is at least one hundred years ahead in hard and soft technology, and whoever can get their hands on it exclusively and bring it back will have an advantage so large, no other nation can compete.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Best Sci-Fi Book in a While!

  • By Ted on 05-29-17

I kept waiting for this book to disappoint me...

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

Reviewed: 12-27-15

What other book might you compare Saturn Run to and why?

"20000 Leagues Under the Sea" meets "A Brief History of Time" meets Virgil Flowers. It sounds like a mess, but the authors actually pull it off.

Have you listened to any of Eric Conger’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes. This is his best work to date.

Any additional comments?

Highly satisfying story and master-level narration.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • The Guilty

  • Will Robie, Book 4
  • By: David Baldacci
  • Narrated by: Kyf Brewer
  • Length: 11 hrs and 46 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,913
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9,006
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,980

Will Robie escaped his small Gulf Coast hometown of Cantrell, Mississippi, after high school, severing all personal ties, and never looked back. Not once. Not until the unimaginable occurs. Unlike the missions Robie undertook in the service of his country, where his target was clearly defined, digging into his father's case only reveals more questions. Robie is drawn into the hidden underside of Cantrell, where he must face the unexpected and possibly deadly consequences of the long-ago choices made by father and son.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A fabulous next installment, Robbie &Reel are back

  • By GH on 11-18-15

Who in the hell is rating this book 5 stars?

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

Reviewed: 11-27-15

What did you like best about The Guilty? What did you like least?

Robie and Reel are now completely indistinguishable from King and Maxwell and I don't mean that comment to be flattering.

Would you ever listen to anything by David Baldacci again?

Doubtful.

Which character – as performed by Kyf Brewer – was your favorite?

All the stereotypical Mississippians that say things like "yo herah 'cause of yo daddy?"

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

If you think Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is a good actor then you will probably think this is a well written story with interesting characters.

Any additional comments?

The first few books in this series were pretty good. This is garbage. Robie has completely lost his edge and I find it absurd that the finest black-ops operators that the CIA employees are running around the deep south barely escaping encounters with everyday citizens. It's a cliche story with cliche characters. I was aggravated and couldn't wait till the book was over.

29 of 37 people found this review helpful

  • Storm Prey

  • A Lucas Davenport Novel
  • By: John Sandford
  • Narrated by: Richard Ferrone
  • Length: 10 hrs and 44 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,417
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,534
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,521

Very early, 4:45, on a bitterly cold Minnesota morning, three big men burst through the door of a hospital pharmacy, duct-tape the hands, feet, mouth, and eyes of two pharmacy workers, and clean the place out. But then things swiftly go bad, one of the workers dies, and the robbers hustle out to their truck-and find themselves for just one second face-to-face with a blond woman in the garage: Weather Karkinnen, surgeon, wife of an investigator named Lucas Davenport.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Entertaining & Edgy

  • By book me! on 05-20-10

Very enjoyable

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

Reviewed: 01-25-15

A good story with an interesting subplot that resolves to a satisfying conclusion. This is one of Lucas Davenport's "lighter" adventures, with only a few innocent people meeting tragic endings. Only drawback with the performance was the French/Lebanese accented characters were a bit overdone. Still, a good narration and well worth a credit.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • No Tomorrow

  • Victor the Assassin, Book 4
  • By: Tom Wood
  • Narrated by: Rob Shapiro
  • Length: 12 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,446
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,322
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,322

When Victor is called to meet with an old friend who ultimately betrayed him, what he thought was an ambush is in fact a plea for help. As a Russian gangster, Norimov is accustomed to death threats, but now an unknown enemy wants more than his life. They intend to kill everyone he cares about, including his missing daughter Gisele. This time, Victor's job is not to kill but to protect. Unfortunately, locating Gisele is his first mistake - because someone is watching his every move.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Wood's Dunnit Again! 15 Stars!

  • By Ted on 01-27-16

Gotta keep up with Victor but...

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

Reviewed: 01-14-15

Any additional comments?

This book was less plausible than the others in the series and I loathed the character Giselle. The interaction between Victor and Giselle was nonsensical and contrived. The Victor series is strong but this is the weakest offering in the bunch. Still a fan and I still would pay money for this book and whatever comes after, which I guess is all that matters...

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • The Enemy: Victor the Assassin, Book 2

  • By: Tom Wood
  • Narrated by: Rob Shapiro
  • Length: 14 hrs and 49 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,939
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,763
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,760

Victor, a former assassin-for-hire, has joined forces with a CIA special unit. His first assignment: Three strangers. Three hits. Fast and clean. Victor's a natural for this.It should have been simple. But with each hit Victor is plunged deeper into an unimaginable conspiracy where no one, least of all the people he knows, can be trusted.With the stakes growing higher by the minute, Victor realizes he's been forced into playing a game he never expected. Because he's the next target. And there's no way out.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • I want to be killed by Victor!

  • By David on 01-15-14

Superb

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

Reviewed: 01-14-15

Would you listen to The Enemy: Victor the Assassin, Book 2 again? Why?

I'm currently on my fourth listen in the last year or so.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Victor is the only answer to this question.

What does Rob Shapiro bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Rob Shapiro is very dry and calculated, and I mean that in a good way. He is the perfect voice to portray the slightly bleak world view that exists in this book.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I certainly could listen to the entirety of this book in one long car ride if I ever found myself in that situation.

Any additional comments?

I have listened to a hundred books in this genre over the past few years and simply put, this is a shining example of what a modern thriller should be. The whole series is fantastic, but this book in particular is flawless. Believable plot and characters without sacrificing drama, this book manages to be epic in scale and local at the same time. Bravo.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful