Death of a Stranger

A William Monk Novel #13
Narrated by: David Colacci
Series: William Monk, Book 13
Length: 11 hrs and 35 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (257 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

For the prostitutes of Leather Lane, nurse Hester Monk's clinic is a lifeline, providing medicine, food, and a modicum of peace - especially since lately their ailments have escalated from bruises and fevers to broken bones and knife wounds. At the moment, however, the mysterious death of railway magnate Nolan Baltimore in a sleazy neighborhood brothel overshadows all else. Whether he fell or was pushed, the shocking question in everyone's mind is: What was such a pillar of respectability doing in a seedy place of sin?

Meanwhile, brilliant private investigator William Monk acquires a new client, a mysterious beauty who asks him to ascertain beyond a shadow of a doubt whether or not her fiance, an executive in Nolan Baltimore's thriving railway firm, has become enmeshed in fraudulent practices that could ruin him.

As Hester ventures into violent streets to learn who is responsible for the brutal abuse of her patients, Monk embarks upon a journey into the English countryside, where the last rails are being laid for a new line. But the sight of the tracks stretching into the distance revives memories once stripped from his consciousness by amnesia - as a past almost impossible to bear returns, eerily paralleling a fresh tragedy that has already begun its inexorable unfolding.

Crack another case with William Monk.
©2004 Anne Perry (P)2004 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Perry is without par

She's done it again. Interwoven several story lines and even some breathtaking action while contrasting the mores and beliefs of Victorian England. I truely admire her work.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Death of a Stranger

This is another great story from Anne Perry. This one has a lot to do with the building of the railway between London and Liverpool. I have read a number of the Monk series but unfortunately out of order so was fascinated about the story of how Hester got the house for her Hospital for poor women. The court room action was a bit different in this story as Monk and Hester had no idea what the barrister was up to during the trial. In past stories he depended on the information provided to him by Hester and Monk. Monk learned more about his past that showed him in a good light so he was relieved. Nice twists and turns in the story keeps on guessing. If you like historical/social issue type novels about London in the 1850s you will enjoy this series.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Wlliam and Hester

I am an unabashed WIllaim Monk and Hester Fan. Forget Edward and Bella, these two have me riveted. This is my least favorite of all their stories, but its still very good, and should not be skipped

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Slow and Painful

I've long been a fan of Anne Perry and her series. This book was way too slow to keep anyone's interest other than a die-hard fan (that would be a good description of me). Yes it does pick up at the end and reach an exhilarating conclusion -- but waiting for it was painful. Besides being slow beyond duration, the only sympathetic characters with any depth were the ones we know from the series. None of the characters unique to this story were at all likable. Yes, there were sympathetic victims (almost all "women of the street") but their stories and characters were not developed in a way that would catch the reader's imagination or empathy. I'm truly hoping that this book was a hiccup and that the next one in the series will return to the excellence that is typical of Perry.

If you're thinking of listening to this book as your first venture into the William Monk series -- my advice is, don't do it!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Colacci not a good fit for Perry

I like Colacci narrating American voices. I like him narrating Donna Leon's Inspector Brunelli (perhaps because I don't understand Italian and can let the device of an Italian accent fool me -and maybe he does a good Italian accent) -- but I CAN'T BEAR Colacci trying to be Victorian British. Perry's novels need a different narrator to work. They're not in Colacci's range, so with him as voice, they fail almostly completely as a listen for me. I can sneak a few chapters by when I'm half asleep, and so I got through the book - my second Perry with his narration.

It's frustrating -- all those later Hester and Monk novels out now - and I know I'll just be annoyed if I download them!

(If you can take the "Victorian" Colacci, then this would a better than average listen if you enjoy the mystery of Monk's past.)

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

What happened to Davina?

What would have made Death of a Stranger better?

A better narrator. I don't like the was he does female voices. He didn't do a great job with lower class accents either.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

Less navel gazing, more action

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of David Colacci?

Davina Porter

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

It would be a spoiler to say.

Any additional comments?

No

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Finally!

For those of us who have been following this series from book 1, here is the payoff! We finally get the into the meaty details of Monk's unremembered past. This is one of my favorites of the series. Love Hester and William!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Read this series!

This was another good book with a good plot that tackled some difficult issues.
I swear Anne Perry was a social worker in a former life. She takes the "lamp of truth" into the more sordid aspects of our society, the areas everyone wants to just go away and pretend they're not there.
Well, they are and Ms. Perry will not allow us to turn away from these problems with ambivalence. She writes about them and humanizes them and challenges us to ask,"Why am I not DOING something about this?"
This series, her writing, and characters are fantastic. This series has brought me much enjoyment and I hope you enjoy it, too.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Exciting!

As well as a good mystery this is an interesting peek into the medical / nursing situation of this time in history. I totally enjoy “knowing” Hester.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Better than most Monk books

I liked this book a lot. The story was more involved than most. I liked the narration, too.