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Publisher's Summary

This is an Audible IndieFirst selection.

Enthralling, atmospheric, and suspenseful, Stray Dog Winter is at once an unconventional Cold War thriller and an original, unforgettable love story set in 1980s Moscow.

Darcy, a restless young artist, travels to the Soviet Union to visit his elusive half-sister, Fin. Together only briefly during their youth, Darcy and Fin are estranged by the distance between them, yet inextricably bound by the secrets and betrayals of their childhood.

Upon his arrival in the depths of a bleak Moscow winter, Darcy is immediately embroiled in Fin's mysterious life there and also drawn to Moscow's forbidden underground, finding himself swept up in political and sexual intrigues of a nature he could never have imagined.

As the past resurfaces and the present closes in, the intricacies of their bond as brother and sister are revealed, and Darcy uncovers Fin's involvement in a dangerous game of her own. Their worlds threaten to collide with profound and deadly consequences.

With Stray Dog Winter, David Francis has entered Graham Greene territory, placing a naive hero in the center of political intrigue and betrayal at the end of the Cold War. Written with a stark, haunting beauty, this novel is pure Soviet noir, a remarkable tale of love, passion, politics, identity, and espionage.

©2008 David Francis; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

AudioFile Earphones Award

"Elegantly written and grippingly suspenseful, David Francis's Stray Dog Winter takes readers right into the heart of Graham Greene country." (Janet Fitch, author of White Oleander and Paint It Black)
"David Francis may not be a poet, but he sure writes like one. His prose is lean but dreamy, full of sensual detail - done with skill and elegance." (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Stray Dog Winter contains the ingredients of a classic thriller, but Francis invests these elements with a resonance that ranges beyond social commentary and genre play." (Los Angeles Magazine)
"Australian narrator David Kirwan gives a performance that will generate feelings of sadness, shock, and joy in his listeners....Kirwan's characters are well rounded, and he uses no forced accents, just the simplicity of prose in its purest form." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • B.J.
  • Minneapolis, MN, United States
  • 10-06-08

Really dreadful

I can't tell you if it's the reader or the story, but this was a complete waste of money for me. I could not get past a few hours. It's torture.

The reader's voice is jarring. The book really wasn't written well for this format so there's so many "she said" and "he said" that it becomes distracting. Beyond that, I didn't care a bit what happened to the characters after listening for 2 or 3 hours. Perhaps the written version is terrific. I can tell you that the audible version is not.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Cayce
  • Atlanta, GA, United States
  • 10-24-08

Unlistenable

I agree that audible owes us a refund on this one. I don't care at all about the gay content, but the reader is the worst I've heard in my 3 years on audible. I have no idea if this is a good book. I find it unlistenable.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Jennifer
  • Morrison, CO, United States
  • 10-13-08

Awful reader ruined this book for me

I only could get through about 2 hours; the reader sounded like an elementary school student with his uplift at the end of nearly every sentence. If this was a good story, I never found out because of this.

6 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Stray Dog Winter

Culd not get into it, did not bother to finish it.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Worse than dreadful

Ditto the above review - and there should have been mention about the homosexuality in the synopsis.

6 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Robert
  • Roswell, GA, USA
  • 10-19-08

Deceptive Description Does Not Help This Book

Audible owes us all refunds on this book for not being upfront with a notice of the homosexual content.

With the suicede of my gay son 4 years ago I don't seek out literature that will make me remember his pain, nor his mother's and my pain.

I am deeply disappointed with Audlble. We had no book jacket with which to evaluate our purchase.

4 of 21 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
  • The Fool
  • 02-24-09

Please do listen to the clip first

A truly horrendous narrator - I lasted 15 mins and I'm a very forgiving listener - takes a lot to make me switch off.