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Publisher's Summary

A young woman is viciously murdered in Queens. The killer has left every indication that this will be the first in a long reign of terror. Detective Kate Manning is hunting the elusive butcher while desperately trying to decipher his message. Following the trail of blood, Kate will be pushed to her limits, as she is drawn into an age-old battle that challenges what it means to have faith in God and in man.

©2015 Claymore1745 Press (P)2017 Claymore1745 Press

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Great Murder Mystery

Any additional comments?

If you consume murder mystery content like I do, they can get pretty redundant pretty fast. "An Absence of Faith" however, was an interesting take on psychosis, faith, and one woman's journey towards stopping a senseless killing spree. The book features some strong female characters, which I always appreciate. It was a tight, fun read that I finished over the course of a day or two - I couldn't put it down. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good murder mystery! <br/><br/>I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Very Good Woman Detective Crime/Mystery Novel

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, it is well-written with great characters. Every character is likable and well-developed. The writing is memorable and descriptive. In one scene as the villain carves the meat, you are not sure if he is carving a victim or eating a steak. The action moves swiftly and there is both foreshadowing and suspense. While religious themes are an important part of the book, they are an organic part of it. It is not at all preachy and may be a bit graphic for some readers. It is a great story.

What other book might you compare An Absence of Faith to and why?

It reminds me of a Patricia Cornwell book. The story is good. The writing style is similar. It is both graphic and relatively clean like a Cornwell story.

Have you listened to any of Collene Curran’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but Collene Curran is a very good narrator. I did not notice her in the story which is the mark of a good narrator.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Yes, several. Spoiler alert***when the father jumps from the balcony, when Kate discovers she is pregnant, the heart-warming relationship Kate has with her niece, the romance scenes.... This book is well-written and has many moving scenes.

Any additional comments?

Great book. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review from the author, narrator, or publisher.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Thrilling Read!!!

This was a thrilling story that held me captivated from start to finish. It is very thought provoking. Collene Curran did a great job as narrator with easily distinguishable character voices. I look forward to more form this Author &amp; Narrator. I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Promises made - Promises kept. Could be better

David W. Gordon attempted to write a mystery/psychology thriller based on God’s presence of lack of presence based on the atrocities in the world. The finished product is a story which lacks originality and flawed characters.

As usual there is the protagonist, Kate, is a detective, has problems with showing emotions and has a lack of faith. She is frustrated because she desperately wants a family, like her sister, but she cannot open herself to anyone. She is the same old story of being an independent woman, in a predominated male job and is emotional closed.
Mike her partner, who has been her lap puppy for 5 years in the hopes that she will one day realize that he loves her.

There is the antagonist, Victor, whose main objective in his life is to show his older brother, Gregory, a catholic priest, that there is no God. The boys endure a horrendous childhood where their mother was a heroin addict and a whore. We are given a picture of their life as Gregory is attempting to wake his mother from a stupor. He is hitting her and asking God to make her wake up and her promises to serve him
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In both siblings’ relationship, there is the slight resentment that one sibling is smarter/more talent than the other while they also desire a closer relationship.
For Kate and her sister, the question of God centers around how can God be presence when there is senseless death that happens daily. Kate’s sister is gently pushing her to become active in the church and seek comfort with Father Gregory.
With the brothers, there is the warped bond of an older brother keeping his younger brother safe. Of making and keeping promises to God and a parent.

While the damage to Victor is illustrated in his insane killing, Gregory is equally damaged. His inability to understand that his pledge to God supersedes any promise that you made earlier in life. In making a promise to protect his brother does not mean to become complicit in his brother’s crimes by keeping silent. Protection is to keep others safe from Victor as well.
Early in the story we know who is the killer. Victor, and we know the distress that it causes his brother, Gregory. All Victor wants is for Gregory to deny the presence of God. Succinctly Gregory’s point is, if there was a God why does he let me do this.

Gregory regurgitates the banal reasoning that we must experience the dark to appreciate the light. How would we know good if evil did not exist? Victor removing the heart of the victims, we, the community sees the heart in so many of us by. Families, police and other coming together is the heart – goodness to offset the evil.

The Sacramental Seal is inviolable. Gregory distress is real about turning in Victor and serving God. But these people getting killed or being threaten by Victor presence, are his flock. He, Gregory, is responsible for them. To stand by and let the evil, reign is reprehensible.

Suicide was a cop out ending for Gregory. What about the option of having Gregory turn in Victor? That would illustrate that Gregory realizes how the promises he made as a youth, to his family, were wrongly put about the promise of God. A better ending, Gregory accept the consequence of being excommunicated for breaking the sacramental seal. He would be at peace for showing the sovereignty of life instead of protecting an insane brother.

I finished the book. I was disappointed with the ending. For the discussion of faith, good, and evil, this missed the mark.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Chilling

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, very good story and the narrator was great.

What was one of the most memorable moments of An Absence of Faith?

When Vincent attacks his first victim.

Which character – as performed by Collene Curran – was your favorite?

Kate

Any additional comments?

Excellent listen! I requested a free review copy of this audiobook and I have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Interesting Thriller

Any additional comments?

This book offers an interesting view on the differences between religion and faith. Throughout the story we follow several different characters and through their growth gain some perspective on how individuals view these concepts and how experiences in their lives change these views. The characters were well thought out and interesting to follow. The narrator did a great job with reading and consistency. Overall, a very enjoyable listen.<br/><br/>I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Thrilling!

What did you love best about An Absence of Faith?

I loved the way the David W. Gordon leads you through the story. Each scene builds on prior scenes and leads you through a labyrinth of emotions. I found myself interacting with the audible story - trying to warn the characters or giving advice as to what they should do next.

What was one of the most memorable moments of An Absence of Faith?

There were many memorable moments. As Detective Kate Manning comes to grip with her own beliefs and emotions you are right there with her feeling a lot of the same things.

What does Collene Curran bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Collene Curran brings a lot of emotion into her voice as she narrates the story. I felt lots of different emotions as I listened, both from how David W. Gordon described scenes and how Collene Curran used her voice talents.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

There are several moving moments in the book, particularly when Kate has break throughs to her deeper feelings and emotions.

Any additional comments?

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

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I really don't know what to think about it...

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

There may be spoilers here...<br/>It's a difficult book for me to review... The blurb suggests it's a crime novel, although it mentions "an age-old battle that challenges what it means to have faith in God and in man" - which would have been OK if the "battle" had not overshadowed the "crime" part... I mean, it's such a strange mixture of a crime novel and a religious essay that I had a really hard time deciding what it really was about... The author introduces two viewpoints: there are parts concentrated on Kate and (theoretically) on her investigation and parts concentrated on Victor and his crimes; both of them do not believe in God for different reasons, in case of one it ends really badly for others, in case of the other there are a lot on inner monologues concerning doubts as to God's existence... But - and that's a huge BUT - except for the introduction of the reasons for which Victor and Kate behave in the way they behave, those "religious" parts do not bring anything new to the plot, really - at least not for me... And they are definitely too numerous, too frequent and too long in a book whose main plot is about serial murders - one paragraph would have been enough, the reader is an intelligent person and doesn't need to be constantly reminded of some facts every other page (or half-hour of listening in the case of an audiobook)... The biggest fault of the book for me is the fact that besides the descriptions of the crime scenes and the bodies of the victims (and there's a lot of gore in those, which I really didn't like so much), there is no real description of the investigation itself... Kate and Mike think more about their own relationship than about the murders - there's no evidence gathering, no talking to witnesses (except one), no details of the police work and thought-processing leading to the discovery of the perpetrator (or if there is, I didn't notice it - it drowned in all the religiously metaphysical blah-blah-blah...) Kate just talks to one person and then, boom, she knows who the killer is.... It just doesn't work for me.<br/>But all that said, I have to explain that I am not a very religious person and believe that religious beliefs are a personal matter and that we should just follow the rules, not talk about them loudly in public... Maybe that's why the book doesn't work so well for me - it may, however, work for others. It is, on the whole, a book that is quite well written - some of the characters are more believable than others, the plot in general flows smoothly and it did keep me listen to the end (although I always listen to the end to be able to write an honest review:)).<br/>So, this is one of those books that I would leave the decision whether to read it or not to my friends...:)

Would you be willing to try another book from David W. Gordon? Why or why not?

Yes, I would; I'd like to see whether "The Absence of Faith" is typical for his writing or not:)

What about Collene Curran’s performance did you like?

Ms Curran's performance was quite good - clear and engaging. The only thing I had some doubts about were some of the voices; Mike, for example, sounded too hoarse for me - it gave his character a little vicious quality which I don't think he was supposed to have:) But generally it was a good interpretation of this strange book.

Any additional comments?

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

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Not for the faint of heart

Where does An Absence of Faith rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

7/10

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

With all the twists and turns, it held my attention to the end.

What about Collene Curran’s performance did you like?

Good voice and diction. Knew her characters well.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The description of the mutilating of the victims was very chilling.

Any additional comments?

"I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review”.<br/><br/>

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Excellent thriller!!!

I really enjoyed this book! I actually blew through it in 2 days. The characters are likable and I think well thought out. The story surrounds a female detective who struggles with faith and her feelings for her partner as they track a viscous serial killer. Don't let the faith thing scare you off though, I am not a religious person and much like Kate the main character struggle with the whole God thing so its not super preachy or anything that will take away from a good murder story. The narrator does a decent job with the various character voices involved, a little squeaky at times but not as to be distracting. I will certainly listen to more by this author and narrator. was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Norma Miles
  • 08-28-17

Did I buy you with roses?

Any additional comments?

A serial killer has started murdering and mutilating women in Queens, leaving behind a single red rose. From the beginning of this strange novel, we know who the killer is and, as the book progresses, we learn why he believes he is doing it. There is also a Catholic priest, devout but tearing himself apart because of promises made as a boy, and a detective duo, Kate and her partner of five years standing, Mike, who seem far more absorbed in the rights and wrongs of their growing romance than in bothering to work hard at solving the killings, prefering inspiration to investigation. There are a lot of introspective ramblings on the part of all of the main protagonist (though less from Mike), and constant detailed descriptions of what everyone was wearing and eating. The contrast, too, between the idyllic family life of Kate's sister and the sickly sweet little niece, and the grim horror of the killings was too extreme.<br/><br/>All that having been said, this is an unusual book of two parts and mostly enjoyable. Narrator Collene Curran was very good, although I did increase the delivery speed to 1.25 part way through as it seemed slightly too slow in pace. Her reading voice was clear and pleasant with distinctive interpretations of the various protagonists. <br/><br/>Overall, I enjoyed An Absence of Faith, which was freely gifted to me by the rights holder, at my request, via Audiobook Boom. Would I recommend it to a friend? Probably not.