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Lifeline  By  cover art

Lifeline

By: Gerry Boyle
Narrated by: Michael A. Smith,Fern A,Gerry Boyle
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Publisher's Summary

Working as a court reporter for the local paper, Jack McMorrow witnesses the appeal of a woman for protection from her abusive boyfriend and embarks on a search for her murderer when the woman turns up dead in her apartment. 

By the author of Bloodline.

©1996 Gerry Boyle (P)2018 Anaba Publishing

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Addictive

This is the third McMorrow book I have listened to on Audible. I find that listening to books is a very different experience from reading them in print, although I enjoy both. All three of the books I have listened to are read by the same narrator, who uses several voices to make it easy to differentiate between the various characters. He does a remarkable job of linking the characters to the voices and never gets them mixed up. It adds greatly to the experience. The main character and a few supporting characters progress from book to book, leaving the reader / listener hungry for more. The plots are well developed and predictable in some aspects, but always with complete surprise endings. The author has done a great job transitioning from journalist to novelist. For those of us readers who live in Maine, the settings and characters are plausible and familiar. All three of the books I have read have been page turners.

2 people found this helpful

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Another excellent listen!

This murder mystery had a slow start. It needed it because once the ball started rolling, it went like gangbusters!

As is per usual with a Jack McMorrow Mystery, there are a lot of movable parts. Jack is usually the last man standing but he really takes a beating in the process.

When the actual whodunnit was revealed, I was forced out of my seat. (I won't give anything away though.)

I've listened to two or three other books in this series so far, with the same narrator. He's an acquired taste, just like Jack, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Jack has an element of snark and a sense of humor that is an integral part of this listen. The narrator gets that.

I'm not sure if the other books in this series are available as audiobooks but I wouldn't do this book justice on my own, so I will wait.

2 people found this helpful

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Thrilling 🌟

There is murder, mystery, kidnapping, bad guys, good guys and a lot of action. 

I totally recommend this series. The first book is Deadline.

2 people found this helpful

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Deep

crime-fiction, Maine, court-reporter, suspense, journalist, noir, small-town, murder, abusive-spouse, newspapers

Another good but longish read. Jack encounters the woman during his part time job as court reporter in his small town as she is petitioning for a restraining order against an abuser. The plot unfolds in a kind of laid back sardonic way as she is found murdered and Jack finds himself on the suspect list. That, and the real injustice of her murder ramp up his determination to ignore everyone else to avenge her. Solid plot with plenty of distractions, twists, red herrings, and characters who really engage the imagination.
The audio is mainly narrated by Michael A. Smith who has a real gift for it within his voice range.

1 person found this helpful

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Another great Gerry Boyle story!

The cameo of the little girl voice was a pleasant suprise in this storyline. This audiobook proved to be another great Jack story and with another now under my belt, I'm ready to listen to the next one!

1 person found this helpful

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Boyle nails the quandary that is off I95 Maine

Gerry Boyle makes good use of topical issues in Maine. This novel addresses domestic abuse and how a woman, willing to go to extreme lengths to escape the fate she has written for herself, can still end up trapped. We see it in the news every day. Boyle is a reporter at heart. We hear that clearly in the cadence of his sentences. His writing is saved from Joe Friday choppiness by an elegant use of language. An understanding and respect for the rural Maine moral code shines through.

Jack McMorrow, clearly a work in progress, becomes the woman's champion. He provides the perfect eyes through which to see rural Maine, that place in which he will always be "from away," always be greeted with a tinge of suspicion, and always be just a little fuzzy on what local rules are in play. Jack is a former NYTimes reporter, fled to rural Maine, he says, to escape a dead end job in the newsroom. He wants to do better, as a reporter, as a man, as an advocate for others, but he has a hard time figuring out how to navigate the professional and social landmines he encounters. His girlfriend Roxanne, and buddy ex-Marine Claire have his back and speak to his higher self. He eventually listens.

We are with Jack as he follows the clues, makes it to higher ground, and becomes a mentor to a rising local reporter.

My gripe is really with the reader. The accent he uses attempts to be Downeast, but comes off more as Iowa rustic crossed with Boston Southie. Although not a Mainer, I've lived here for 40 years, and it grates on my ears. He does a better job with the narrative portions of the book than the dialogue. But even in the narration and Jack's analysis, the reader uses an odd pronunciation for several words. It's enough to pop me out of the moment.

That said, I liked the audiobook. I had read it when it was first published and it remains part of our library.



1 person found this helpful

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Twists and turns

All the elements of a good mystery. Court reporter, abused woman, unsympathetic judge, crazed boyfriend and murder!

Narrators knew their characters well. was OK.

I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, narrator or publisher in exchange for an unbiased review via audiobookboom com.

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good

a very good and well written book the story is very interesting and I like the twist quite much a very nice book the narrator did a good job the authors are good I liked the book very much
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review

1 person found this helpful

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Another terrific Jack McMorrow Mystery

Jack is a character to follow. A newspaper man interested in the story and in people, he cares. So when a woman he talked to in court is found dead, he is determined to find answers to her murder. Even if law enforcement doesn't seem to care. Great stories, a sarcastic hero to provide some humor, and a very entertaining read (or listen). Michael A Smith seems so well suited to Jack, attitude, pacing and all. The surprise guest narrator was a wonderful addition! Looking forward to the next one.

1 person found this helpful

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Enjoyable series entry

Lifeline is the 3rd book in author Gerry Boyle's Jack McMorrow series. McMorrow is a former New York Times reporter, who is now living in Maine, with his days of burning ambition and career building behind him. He still has a nose for a story though.

McMorrow takes a part-time gig as a court reporter for a local paper. His first report concerns a domestic abuse victim who is seeking the court's protection from a drunken boyfriend. Boyle's report on Donna Marchant, ruffles a few feathers at the newspaper, with the powerful local prosecutor who seems to run the court as her local fiefdom and with the boyfriend himself.

Threats of violence follow and after an escalation involving further menace - physical and verbal - to Donna and McMorrow, Donna winds up dead. McMorrow feeling compelled by guilt and a sense of responsibility continues the search for answers, not believing the police narrative of the boyfriend's obvious guilt.

I found this book a lot more absorbing and interesting than the first couple in the series. This time around we either get where we're going a bit quicker, or maybe I've gotten used to Boyle's storytelling and was invested enough in the tale to enjoy the journey.

I like McMorrow as a character. There's a tenacity and resilience about him. He's experienced and very capable as a reporter, which isn't necessarily the kind of journalist which the Kennebec Observer is looking for. The editor just wants to do non-reporting and to ruffle no feathers. Jack's style isn't a good fit and serves to enliven the local newsroom. He's loyal to his girlfriend, who incidentally has just moved further away from him for work purposes. He's feeling a bit abandoned here and is jealous of the new friendships his girlfriend is making in Portland. He does also have a fondness, if not exactly a reliance on a beer or two at the end of a day.

McMorrow tackles the boyfriend, the victim's sister, and the ex-husband in a bid to get to the truth. He does the hard yards tracking down witnesses and accounts which the police don't seem to have covered. He stands up to bullies and intimidation and eventually uncovers the truth behind Donna's death.

I liked the twists in the story. I had a feeling the outcome was heading in a certain direction, but Boyle wrong-footed me while keeping the outcome plausible. I enjoyed the narration from Michael A. Smith.


4 from 5

Bloodline and Deadline have been previously enjoyed.
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Read - (listened to) August, 2022
Published - 1996
Page count - 360 (11 hrs 18 mins)
Source - Audible purchase
Format - Audible

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  • VoraciousBookDragoness
  • 12-10-21

Good

I was given this free review copy at my request and have voluntarily left this review.
Good

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  • Helen
  • 04-25-20

Wonderful book

Wonderful storyline enjoyed this audio book very much
Love every minute for the storyline
Must buy