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Publisher's Summary

Dave Robicheaux felt the bone-grinding pain rip through his body as the .45 did its damage. Through the agonizing haze that enveloped him, he heard an almost inhuman laugh: the hideous, victorious cackling of Jimmie Lee Boggs - a sound he would never forget.

It had started out as an ordinary prisoner transfer, then turned into a blood bath when the convicted murderer got hold of a gun. Robicheaux could still hear that contemptible laughter, replacing the horrors from 'Nam he relived every night, echoing in the still of his darkened bedroom.

When Boggs is spotted in New Orleans, Robicheaux follows, joining a DEA sting operation in the Quarter. Poised for revenge, he prepares to face his fears and silence the laughter once and for all. But, in the murky water of the Pearl River, Robicheaux finds that some things are more important than sweet, simple revenge.

More mayhem? Listen to another of James Lee Burke's Dave Robicheaux thrillers.
©1990 James Lee Burke; (P)1993 Recorded Books

Critic Reviews

"A highly spiced gumbo of vice, violence, voodoo." (Observer)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • Story

Miami moves in to NOLA

Would you listen to A Morning for Flamingoes again? Why?

I doubt it. Was a good story line and I liked the characters overall, but it wasn't one of JLB's best line ups for the souls who inhabit his stories.

What was one of the most memorable moments of A Morning for Flamingoes?

The last convo between Dave and Tony.

Did Mark Hammer do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

Unfortunately, no. More often than not, it was hard to tell when the words of one character stopped and the words of another started when there was an interactive conversation. Add to that the inflection and cadence is all wrong. My husband grew up on the LA/MS state line and he commented:"Dave and company sounds more like your kin, then he does mine."My kin are spread from north to south on the east side of Oklahoma and "Dave" as done by Mr. Hammer, does sound a lot like my dad and Cleet sounds spot on like a cousin of mine, both born and breed just south of the KS state line on route 66, nowhere near route 61 (Airline Hiway). That is how far off base the inflection/cadence is for Dave and Cleet are. I won't even go into how far off the accent/inflection is for Tony and others.Honestly, I get the same annoyed feeling when I watch New Orleans NCSI, ha-ha, but I digress. Overall I can get past all this and enjoy the story.

Any additional comments?

I enjoy this series a lot. I have read all the books and listening to them is like having an old friend with me when I am making a long drive or doing the mundane day to day things. I know a lot of folks don't care for Mark's narration, but it shouldn't be enough to stop anyone from listening the books if they are a strong JLB fan. I listen for the story line, not the actor portrayed voices.

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Good storyline.

The storyline was good but I got lost in the unnecessary descriptions of unimportant factors sometimes. Some characters were ecplored too much, others not enough. Overall, good Robicheaux novel.

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Excellent characters, inconsistent narration tho

Would you consider the audio edition of A Morning for Flamingoes to be better than the print version?

I love audiobooks and I love regular books, and to me, both have their times and their places. The narration on this version wasn't the peerless Will Patton, who does most of JLB's wonderful stories, and it took some getting used to. It wasn't horrible, but there are long pauses in the reading, and it's sometimes distracting. Still though, I would listen to it again, and do recommend this audiobook. The story is so good and the characters so potent, that they shine through all on their own.

What did you like best about this story?


What did I like best about this story? The beautiful language of James Lee Burke's writing. He's a modern-day master, and I never tire of his stories, especially the Dave Robicheaux series.

********************************************************Spoilers**********************************************

What else did I like best about this story? Dave reunites with Bootsie! I do wish this had been a bit more fleshed out, but it was meaningful just the same. We hear so much about Bootsie in other books, and hearing the origin story of their relationship ties up a lot of loose ends for anyone listening to the Dave Robicheaux series out of order.

Also, this story features one of the best JLB characters ever, Tony Cordo, who is a mafia don fighting to keep control of his empire, while caring for his disabled little boy. JLB has an unparalleled talent for finding the humanity in even the most despicable of characters. In Tony, he shows us yet another deeply textured man who makes us feel what he feels, and who is far more than an initial summation of him might suggest. His relationships with his son, Paul, and with Dave, and even with Jess, his bodyguard, are so thoughtful and nuanced.

T-Bow (I might be spelling that incorrectly) is another wonderful character, who despite all hardships, captures your heart whether you want to like him or not. Even when he is terrified for his life, he makes the right decisions, and his vulnerability and fierce ties to his family make you care as much about his welfare as Dave does.

The ending is excellent, though there was one bad guy/gal I wish had been punished properly. Still though, a satisfying story that illuminates the darkest recesses that people can go to, and humanizes them in the process.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

Sometimes, but unfortunately there were many moments where it didn't match at all, almost like the reader had just woken up and was still roaring to life. However, this wasn't always an issue. In all of JLB's books, there are long moments of dream-like reflection, and this book is no exception. During those chapters, the narration did fit the pace perfectly, and I didn't mind it at all.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I didn't have as extreme a reaction to this book as I have to some of JLB's others, but it did make me cry a few times. The ending is so poignant and the character relationships are tender and beautiful.

Any additional comments?

I would recommend this audiobook, despite the inconsistent narration. JLB fans will love the story, and it answers many questions in Dave's timeline across the books.

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Prefer different reader

I enjoyed the story line, however, the reader made it difficult to understand which character was speaking.

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Yet another excellent read.

Another excellent read by James Burke. This story line is exceptional and the narration flawless. love this series.

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Another great one!

Gripping until the end! I got used to the narrator when I listened to the book before this. not my favorite.

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Loved it

Burke catches the "shades of gray" between good and evil better than other cop novelists. His resolutions are satisfyingly just.

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  • Tim
  • Poulsbo, WA, United States
  • 05-06-15

Early Robicheaux, a little slow,

Is there anything you would change about this book?

I favor Will Patton but Mark Hammer has a similar presentation, slow and drawn out. In this case its a little too slow. I cant really fault the reading too much as it was still compelling enough.

If you’ve listened to books by James Lee Burke before, how does this one compare?

I didnt like this one as well as most others. It was too long given the story/plot. I found many of the characters, including Dave Robicheaux to be inconsistent and a bit unreal. righteous anger that didnt seem to last, moralizing on one subject but neutral on another that would have required equal outrage. Anyway, as always Burkes writing is near poetry, and very compelling.

What aspect of Mark Hammer’s performance would you have changed?

Hammer reads too slow, even though he is trying to impart the feeling of the moment, it just drags.

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  • Stevon
  • Tempe, AZ, United States
  • 04-23-15

a good early one by Burke in the Robicheaux series

I started somewhere in the middle with the Dave Robicheaux series and have listened to them all going forward from there. I got this one on a 2 for 1 audible sale and didn't notice that Mark Hammer not Will Patton was the narrator. To me, Will Patton is Dave Robicheaux and Hackberry Holland, he is James Lee Burke's characters. I didn't think I'd listened to any by Hammer but when I looked through my audible history I had. I would never turn down a good Burke book, especially since I'd already bought it. But like most novels, after initially thinking about Patton not being the narrator I got into the story and quit thinking about who the narrator was, the story just flowed. I still prefer Patton but Hammer is OK.

In the end it was still all about the characters that Burke created, his insight into human nature, his flowery writing style, and the stories themselves. This one was no different. There are some south Louisiana nasties he's in contact with, he's just beginning to work with Clete Purcell, and there are some women. Dave has lived and lives quite the life. I will eventually get to all of the books in the series. It will be a sad day when Burke writes no more.

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Awesome book!

This book was a good story which is narrated very well. I could listen to this one over and over. The fact that the setting is New Orleans is a bonus because the storyline edges along the superstitious nature of modern times and the dark voodoo from the past.