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Publisher's Summary

A resident of one of LA's toughest neighborhoods uses his blistering intellect to solve the crimes the LAPD ignores.

East Long Beach. The LAPD is barely keeping up with the neighborhood's high crime rate. Murders go unsolved, lost children unrecovered. But someone from the neighborhood has taken it upon himself to help solve the cases the police can't or won't touch.

They call him IQ. He's a loner and a high school dropout, his unassuming nature disguising a relentless determination and a fierce intelligence. He charges his clients whatever they can afford, which might be a set of tires or a homemade casserole. To get by, he's forced to take on clients who can pay.

This time it's a rap mogul whose life is in danger. As Isaiah investigates, he encounters a vengeful ex-wife, a crew of notorious cutthroats, a monstrous attack dog, and a hit man who even other hit men say is a lunatic. The deeper Isaiah digs, the more far reaching and dangerous the case becomes.

©2016 Joe Ide (P)2016 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"With its street poetics and truer-than-life characters, this beautifully spun first novel is gonna blow through the crime fiction world like a fire hose-blast of fresh air. Joe Ide has that rarest of writerly skills - a wholly unique voice, one that is at once irreverent and compelling, moving and incisive. " (Gregg Hurwitz, author of the New York Times best-selling Orphan X)
"I don't know how fast Joe Ide writes, but from now on he'll have to write faster. Everyone who reads IQ will be clamoring for the next book, and for the one after that. This is one of the most intriguing - and appealing - detective characters to come along in years." (Carl Hiaasen)
"In his debut novel, Ide, a Japanese-American who grew up in the same neighborhood as his mercurial characters, flashes agility with streetwise lingo, facility with local color, and empathy with even the most dissolute of his characters...the roughhousing energy, vivid language, and serrated wit Ide displays throughout this maiden effort make Isiah Quintabe seem a potential rejuvenator of a grand literary tradition. " (Kirkus)
"Author Joe Ide and narrator Sullivan Jones make a phenomenal team. Ide writes a crack debut with charm, wit, and style. Jones delivers it with such ease and perfection that listeners will feel they're living the story instead of listening to it.... Jones will have listeners on the edge of their seats and laughing out loud at the same time. The smart choice is this exemplary audiobook." (AudioFile)

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IQ way better than OK

I don’t think this is as Holmes-ish as reviews state, but maybe it is Holmes in the Hood. It's more of a sober, ace detective and part-time vigilante (and Datsun is certainly not Watson), but whatever, I loved it. I do hesitate to recommend it to everyone. If you like off-beat mysteries, a stalwart hero, crazy but loveable secondary characters, plus car chases, pick this book up right away. If you want to try something different I would also recommend highly. The mystery is not the main thing here, it's about character development and sad real life stories. Be ready for flashbacks and Tupac lyrics, both necessary to understand the story. It would be great if this was the start of series. Hat's off to Mr. Jones on narration.

42 of 44 people found this review helpful

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good listen good narration

Keep it up. I agree with other reviews that this a great start to a lasting series. reminded me os Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins series with a more up to date version with years of stories to come.

58 of 63 people found this review helpful

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Finally! Something new and original ;

... to me anyway. Being a white, middle-aged farm wife in the midwest this was definitely something that was outside my so-called wheelhouse. I really, really enjoyed it and any terms I didn't understand I could figure out solely by the context. It was not a problem for me. ...A very enjoyable book.

64 of 70 people found this review helpful

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  • W. Brooks
  • Seattle, WA United States
  • 04-27-17

Original and Outstanding

First, one of my favorite books of the year. Maybe even the past couple years. I'm pretty sure when I do my year-end top 10, IQ will be on it.

I almost didn't get this book because of the reviews complaining about the language. Well, someone would have to a total prude to be offended by the language. That isn't to say that the language isn't crude at times, but most of the time not. And when the language is crude it is absolutely, totally in character.

Let me say that I loved EVERYTHING about IQ. The plot is a breath of fresh air. Not your usual
whodunnit. I liked IQ's thought process. I also found myself laughing out loud a few times. The writing is crisp and clean. Character-development was rich. Settings were well drawn.

I've never listened to anything read by Sullivan Jones. He was perfect for this book. I saw a couple reviews that said he was bad. What? They must have been smokin' something. Sullivan Jones was spot on.

I hope IQ is first in a series. I'd preorder the next one in a flash.

26 of 28 people found this review helpful

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  • Ted
  • Lancaster, PA, United States
  • 02-25-17

What A Voice! A Must Listen!!!

Blown away... That's what "IQ" did.

Joe Ide has a different voice from the detective writer's I've enjoyed (or hated). He speaks from inside of a culture as foreign to me as say, street crowds in Kampala, year-round residents of Greenland's Ittoqqortoormiit, or maybe the people who cling to one of the 33 islands of Kiribati.

And Sullivan Jones filters Ide's voice through his own tongue fuzzy with a familiarity with this book's gripping sense of place. Stripped of its atmosphere, IQ's a cool detective story. But I can't strip away the atmosphere. Don't want to. Want more....

Want another novel exploring Isaiah's growth (or worse, his decay) as he explores a place as near to me as a short bike ride (If I'd dare to ride along those particular city streets) yet as distant (and risky) to me as Yemen's capital of Sana’a.

I have never recommended a detective book more strongly.

91 of 101 people found this review helpful

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Wow! What a narrator!

I really enjoyed this book. It was an interesting look into a scene far removed from me, but it seemed realistic. I saw the resolution to the main mystery coming a mile away, and I still enjoyed it. But the narrator, Sullivan Jones, was simply amazing. Each character's voice was nuanced and distinctive. I hope Joe Ide writes more IQ books, and I definitely hope Sullivan Jones reads them.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Kudos for a great debut novel

Fun, well written, with excellent narration.
IQ, is a modern hero, brought to life by the creative writing of Joe Ide and amazing narration of Sullivan Jones.
Great production.
Well worth the credit.

30 of 33 people found this review helpful

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Narrator makes the Book

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

Sullivan Jones does a wonderful job creating believable characters, and his narration makes the book worth the listen.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

Several reviewers have complained about the dual plot lines. Reading the book might be easier than listening to it, but then you would miss Jones's narration. What I find least interesting is that the plot lags a great deal with what might be unnecessary parts and then seems to wrap up too quickly with a summary rather than playing out the story through dialog description, and events.

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

Jones creates the characters with his vocal abilities. Without his narration, the book would be a much more difficult listen.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

The book could easily be a movie. Ide creates some fun characters who are brought to life by Jones. It is clear that Ide was much more concerned with character development than with plot, which more or less works in this book.

Any additional comments?

I do not like to seem critical of any author's work because writing a compelling story is no easy task, so I would emphasize that the book is worth reading or listening to, and I suspect that Ide will produce more mature plots as he develops this series. I hope Jones remains the narrator.

53 of 59 people found this review helpful

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  • brie
  • utah
  • 02-24-17

I tried to like this book

I gave up with only 1:55 left, but it became unbearable. The narrator sounded just about as bored as I was, listening to it. I will be returning this book to Audible - I tried and tried and TRIED.

I am not a reader who even minds language, but there was SO MUCH bad language that was so over the top and gratuitous. I began to wonder if the author had any other words in his vocabulary.

I know I'm in the minority in not liking this book..... but I do wish I hadn't wasted 8 or so hours trying and trying to keep giving it a shot, and then when I have less than 2 hours left to so thoroughly NOT CARE about the ending that you throw in the towel..... I wish I would have quit listening a lot earlier.

55 of 62 people found this review helpful

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  • R. Regli
  • St. Petersburg, FL United States
  • 11-03-16

You won't forget this one.

Crime novels and authors tend to blend together and after a few days I can't remember who wrote what. This book is different. Real life, originality, and a protagonist I can relate to. Great job, can't wait for the next one.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful