Case Histories

A Novel
Narrated by: Susan Jameson
Series: Jackson Brodie Mysteries, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
4 out of 5 stars (1,983 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Case One: A little girl goes missing in the night.

Case Two: A beautiful young office worker falls victim to a maniac's apparently random attack.

Case Three: A new mother finds herself trapped in a hell of her own making - with a very needy baby and a very demanding husband - until a fit of rage creates a grisly, bloody escape.

Thirty years after the first incident, as private detective Jackson Brodie begins investigating all three cases, startling connections and discoveries emerge.

©2004 Kate Atkinson (P)2005 BBC Audiobooks Ltd.
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Trippy book

I liked this book a lot, it was really different. At first, the story seemed disjointed. You are slowly introduced to the tie-ins but it comes together smoothly. The characters in the stories are explored and exposed. The ending was kind of abrupt, I thought I missed something. I liked the narrator. She had perfect delivery and emotion. I was looking forward to listening to the second in the series, but it is abridged. I don't do abridged. Instead I look forward to listening to the third in the series, which has been highly rated. Give this one a try.

52 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

captivating story

i loved this book. i was fascinated by the stories and the structure of the novel, watching the characters and their stories unfold. when it ended, i so wanted it not to be over. the narration was excellent. lots of characters, but she managed to imbue them with enough individuality that a listener can easily follow. i'm looking for other works by this novelist for my library.

42 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

A fun listen with an edge

Kate Atkinsons' writing is on the sunny side of popular fiction. Mostly because, it's her story-telling talent which make her books enjoyable, and not a low common denominator type of popularity.

I must admit the core plot is just a tv series type of "cold cases" suspense story. However, what makes it a worthwhile listen is the focus on the individuals left behind these "cold case" stories.
In addition, the book provides a variety of bitter-sweet lovable characters, that make the story captivating.
(and ofcourse there's Susan Jameson's next to perfect narration).

33 people found this helpful

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

Excellent!

It always surprises me when I read negative reviews of a book I completely enjoyed, and in this instance I couldn't disagree with the naysayers more. If you prefer your characters well rounded and real, the story line captivating and the narration a delight to listen to, you'll enjoy this listen.

25 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Deftly written, completely original mystery

I was looking for a lightly entertaining british mystery novel, but instead found this artfully interwoven collection of timeshifting stories that manages to never feel gimmicky and delivers terrific payoffs. I regret the former reviewer didn't stick with the story, because they missed out on some fantastic character development, truly fine writing and what ends up being a really satifying narrative. Speaking of narrator, Susan Jameson does a fantastic job and her rich delivery of the many different dialects really brings the story to life. She also does a great job with the male characters, which is so often the downfall of opposite sex audiobook artists. Highly reccomend!

38 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Structure That Drew Me In

Ms. Atkinson's writing is silky smooth constantly going down little lanes full of character details. I was totally drawn in to this book which is full of tension. The biggest tension is between the smooth, slow pace of the sentences and the feeling something big is just around the corner. When that big thing comes, it really isn't as big as the details of the characters' lives. For some readers, this is a let down; for me, this is an honest approach, very grounded, very real. I can't wait for more of Kate's voice.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • S.
  • 11-01-14

Very interesting -

It is unusual in some ways, although not a unique format. It took me a bit to get into the book, but I am glad I stuck with it. I very much enjoyed the book, although I agree with some of the other reviews, the ending is a bit of a disappointment. The performance is outstanding and the book is a worthwhile listen. I would read other books by this author.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Not a typical mystery

I got this book despite some negative reviews because many people said it was really good. The story was good and eventually I did become engaged in it, despite the fact that the first chapter was really quite annoying. I think the narration harmed the book rather than helped it, the narrator was fine when just reading but as soon as she did dialogue her voice became very grating and men and women took on a strange high pitched tone which made many characters very unlikeable. I think this book would be better in paper form and I do plan on getting the next one but will probably read it myself although I might listen carefully to the audible preview to see if the different narrators do a better job.

15 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Random wanderings through a dream

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

Clearly some people enjoyed it because it was the previous good reviews that convinced me to try the book.

Would you ever listen to anything by Kate Atkinson again?

Absolutely not. God In Ruins annoyed me no end and I should have never bought this one. She's a good writer (of sentences) but a terrible storyteller. It's a detective novel without any substantial detecting. All of these old unsolved cases solve themselves with a few questions. In between the non-detecting we are treated to flashback scenes of characters losing their virginity, fights with his ex-wife and a bizarre inheritance. None of that is relevant to solving cases.

What aspect of Susan Jameson’s performance would you have changed?

She's a fine narrator but her high pitched tone and snooty affectation makes some of the characters immediately unlikable.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

One big giant eye roll. This book is simply a collection of random nonsense stories.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Interesting mesh of stories

This novel is a well written collage of several stories which intertwine mysteriously. I enjoyed it very much.

14 people found this helpful