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Publisher's Summary

Alan Gregory is a clinical psychologist with a thriving practice in Boulder, Colorado. His life begins to unravel when one of his female patients is found in an apparent suicide and the local paper begins printing accusations from an unnamed source of sexual impropriety between the woman and Dr. Gregory. He launches a psychological and personal quest for the truth that rapidly intensifies when more of his patients die untimely deaths, and Gregory suspects not only that the deaths are related but that another one of his patients may be somehow involved. Lacking facts but roused by suspicion and troubled by seemingly random acts of terror around him, Gregory starts to fear for the safety of the people he loves. The question of the inviolability of confidential disclosures made to Gregory by his patients - privileged information - becomes crucial as the psychologist pursues an unsettling romance with Lauren Crowder, a lovely deputy district attorney investigating one of the deaths. Bound to silence, Gregory follows the psychological tracks of someone he fears may be a cunning and disturbed killer, while turning to his enigmatic but supportive partner, Diane Estevez, for counsel, and to his tart-tongued female urologist neighbor for support. The sinister, surprising drama unfolds against Boulder's Rocky Mountain backdrop, in the arresting natural beauty of Aspen, and in the midst of a baroque Halloween costume party in downtown Boulder. Finally, in a lonely mountain lodge enshrouded in menace, the story comes to its breathtaking climax.
©2013 Stephen White (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
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  • Story

Four and a half stars, actually....

Excellent book -- but a half star subtracted for the inclusion of the completely unnecessary element of having a much-loved dog killed. It added nothing to the story, didn't serve to heighten tension or move the plot ahead, in fact it served no purpose at all that I can see. Granted, the event doesn't occupy center stage for very long, so it's not serious demerit, but nevertheless, for all of these reasons, it should have been left out.

Other than that, a really excellent listen. This was the first book in the long-running series, and on the whole, one of the best. It's easy to see how this book, new on the stands, became a best seller, propelling Stephen White on to publishing one of the best amateur detective series out there. Even though it was published back in 1991, it's completely fresh. The single element that dates it was when one of the characters demands that some photographs be turned over. "And make sure I get the negatives, too," he adds. Right.

It's interesting, listening to this first book, meeting the characters for the first time, pretending we don't know what will happen in later installments. The delightful cop Sam Purdy doesn't play a large role here, nothing like he does in the later books, but Madeline -- Dr. Gregory's first wife -- does, and it's interesting to see how their marriage failed. And of course Lauren, the new love interest, enters the picture, just as big a termagant in the beginning as she is in every book. Once again, I found myself wondering why Dr. Alan puts up with that shrewish woman, who demands everything from everyone in her life, and offers almost nothing in return. The relationship does give rise to a philosophical question though: Lauren is afflicted with Multiple Sclerosis, in this book, in its early stages. It's a horrible affliction, no question about that. Anyone who suffers from it deserves our sympathy. But the question is, how much sympathy? Does having a devastating, obviously frustrating, non-curable -- although not life threatening -- affliction give Lauren - or anyone else, for that matter -- the right to run roughshod over everyone with whom she comes in contact? At times, during this first book, I found myself hoping that Dr. Gregory would just walk away -- he'd have saved himself a lot of abuse if he had. But of course he doesn't. Apparently he, the great healer, sees something in Lauren that doesn't come across all that well to the reader. Maybe he just loves to play caretaker in all aspects of his life.

Whatever, this was a great listen -- great characters, innovative but reasonably plausible plot, psychological insights courtesy of several of Dr. Gregory's nutty patients we readers have come to enjoy. It's a credit very well spent. I know I'll enjoy it again sometime in the future.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Lee
  • California,USA
  • 07-01-13

Love the Alan Gregory series

What did you love best about Privileged Information?

It was well plotted and thought out. Not an easy one to figure out.

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

It did, I kept waiting for the clue that would help figure out what was going on!

Which character – as performed by Dick Hill – was your favorite?

Dick Hill is one of my favorite narrators. He does the perfect Alan Gregory

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Suspense to the end!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Laura
  • Montgomery Village, MD, United States
  • 05-29-13

Dick Hill Overkill

Sorry, but I have no sense of whether this book is good or not. It's one of Dick Hill's mumbling, word dropping, cigarette smoking (?) performances. I know Hill is inconsistent and took a few minutes to look over his ratings to verify my opinion.

To ALL Audible authors: Many of us are up to our very ears in listening to Dick Hill. There are many competent narrators, so please give us a narrator who isn't overused and inconsistent.

Do authors listens to these narrators during the editing process? Please, authors, switch up narrators from time to time.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Paula
  • Overland Park, KS USA
  • 12-06-13

Psychological Thriller. . . and More!

Great story! This one will boggle the mind in the beginning. . . I kept wondering where it was leading me, even though I found it very engaging and couldn't stop listening. Stephen White was leading me to an incredible climactic ending that left me shaking my head about the nature of "privileged information" that doctors, psychologists and lawyers legally protect. This is an informative story that has all the great characteristics of a thrilling crime mystery. True, you have to like Dick Hill to get through it, but I tend to like him more than not, so it was okay by me.

A good book! Gets my recommendation for those who enjoy crime thrillers.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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great book read terribly

I do not think this novel was done justice through the oral interpretation of the actor.

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Like Walking Through Molasses

This was the first book I tried by Stephen White. The only reason I got it on audio was because I couldn't get it for my Kindle. I wish I had just bought the paperback, then I could have skimmed over the boring parts of the story. Oh, wait, that would be all of it! This was truly painful to get through for the pitiful story and ending.

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  • Jill
  • Charlote, NC, United States
  • 05-19-15

Halfway through and no plot movement

I listened to about 6 hours and STILL nothing had happened and I had no idea what the book was about. Very disappointing.

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Story interesting but SLOW Sound was splotchy

What did you love best about Privileged Information?

The story introduces the main character Alan Gregory. He is OK but it is very SLOW getting to know him & his life. The most memorable thing about him at first (spoiler alert) is his dog Cicero & well every one around Gregory dies. The sound quality is terrible like the narrator is swallowing his words.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Privileged Information?

Cicero and the chase s energy at the Halower party are fun and the confrontation in Gregory's office with Michael McDonald is pretty exciting too. Also stay alert to figure out when the prolog events take place...

What three words best describe Dick Hill’s performance?

Deep Rich Baratone

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

Cicero

Any additional comments?

I bought this through Amazon and not Audible. The sound quality is not perfect and sometime sounds like the words are being swallowed... but it was managable

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Maybe the Next Book(s) in the Series are Better

Would you try another book from Stephen White and/or Dick Hill?

I'm not moved to buy another book by Stephen White, this is his first book in the series and since there are 19 more books, I'm going to assume some body liked them. I like Dick Hill but I don't think this was is best performance; yes I would try another book.

Would you ever listen to anything by Stephen White again?

I bought this book which is book 1 in the series, and the 2nd book at the same time, at some point I'll listen to the 2nd book, but if it doesn't improve I want listen to anything else.

What three words best describe Dick Hill’s voice?

He's done better

What character would you cut from Privileged Information?

All of them.

Any additional comments?

Psychologist Alan Gregory is the dumbest educated character I've come across. I figured out what was happening way ahead of him.

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  • adrienne
  • EAGLE RIVER, AK, United States
  • 11-12-13

Rather ordinary...

This book, to me, is very predictable. The main character's profession is unusual, but the rest is pretty formulaic. Patients are dying, the police are focused on Alan Gregory and nobody else, and the "love interest" seems indifferent, The author lets readers know early on who the prime suspect is. I felt that the author was dragging it out, making it more difficult for me to finish it.

I won't pursue the remaining books in the series.

Dick Hill did a professional job of reading the book. The performance was not outstanding nor terrible.