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Speaks the Nightbird Audiobook

Speaks the Nightbird

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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Fiction, 2013

Judgment of the Witch

The Carolinas, 1699: The citizens of Fount Royal believe a witch has cursed their town with inexplicable tragedies - and they demand that beautiful widow Rachel Howarth be tried and executed for witchcraft. Presiding over the trial is traveling magistrate Issac Woodward, aided by his astute young clerk, Matthew Corbett. Believing in Rachel's innocence, Matthew will soon confront the true evil at work in Fount Royal....

Evil Unveiled

After hearing damning testimony, magistrate Woodward sentences the accused witch to death by burning. Desperate to exonerate the woman he has come to love, Matthew begins his own investigation among the townspeople. Piecing together the truth, he has no choice but to vanquish a force more malevolent than witchcraft in order to save his beloved Rachel - and free Fount Royal from the menace claiming innocent lives.

©2002 Robert McCammon (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Edoardo Ballerini performs this story of accusation and fear flawlessly. He effortlessly switches his pitch, accents, and timbre to suit the unfortunate Rachel Howarth, the endless curious Corbett, and the various determined characters, good and evil.” (AudioFile)

"a compelling story that should find a wide readership. Highly recommended for popular fiction collections." (Library Journal)

"An excellent story, full of tension and suspense.” (Stephen King)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (5080 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Kimberly Ypsilanti, MI, United States 11-05-13
    Kimberly Ypsilanti, MI, United States 11-05-13 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Well Done Historical Fiction"

    Looking at the length of this audiobook you will probably not be surprised that the story is slow paced. At times I was totally frustrated by the actions of the protagonist, but I'm glad I stuck it out. Overall it was a good story, with well defined characters. The narration was very well done and the writing was technically good. I will give the 2nd book a go.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alessandro Blacktown, Australia 11-04-13
    Alessandro Blacktown, Australia 11-04-13 Member Since 2015
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    "one of the best books.
    "

    RM does not merely write but paints a vivid picture, so real that one is sure that the whole thing was a great movie. EB narrates it to perfection.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Driftless Nana 10-29-13 Member Since 2016

    leahiniowa

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    "A complicated, enjoyable tale"

    When I purchased the book I was unsure as to whether it would be something I would enjoy, especially as I am writing the first review of the novel. The bare bones of the story is that of a magistrate and his clerk in the year 1699, who have come to an embryonic city to judge whether a young woman is a witch. The clerk becomes interested in the way that the facts don't add up as regards her case; he also falls in love with her and tries to rescue her.

    Don't let simple descriptions of the plot deter you from listening to this audiobook. It grasps you from the very beginning of the novel and keeps your attention the entire way through. The characters are well thought out and include an iinvestor, colonists from England, servants, slaves and Native Americans.

    The main character, the clerk Matthew Corbett, is likeable even when his actions might appear to be foolish. As he works out the truth behind why a widow is named as a witch he encounters the undercurrent of the city's society. His relationships with the other characters, whether filial as regards to the magistrate, antagonistic with the town's investor, tender with Rachel (the accused with) or fearful. The twists and turns he experiences as he seeks the truth are compelling and sometimes quite surprising.

    A word about the performance: Ballerini masterfully peforms a wide variety of characters. I did find his portrayal of Rachel, the accused witch, less credible but it is a very minor complaint compared to his portrayal of every other character in the book. He characterizes a charlatan who is introduced a bit into the book brilliantly, enhancing the character's outrageous claims and offers.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. R. Green 10-21-13
    D. R. Green 10-21-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Take a Trip Back to 1699"

    This is a wonderful, complex tale of life in 1699 in the Carolinas. There are many characters (including some very strange ones), and many plot twists. I found myself surprised by the changes in direction of the story several times. The language of the story is beautiful, but there are some very corrupt characters and depraved events, so not a story for the faint of heart. I have read most of the author's other works and place this one at the top, along with A Boy's Life. At first I felt that the length of the book was too much, but I was sad to see it end. I now plan to read the other Matthew books. I highly recommend this title and enjoyed the narrator's voice very much.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    wbc 10-16-13
    wbc 10-16-13
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    "VERY long, but now I want to listen to the sequel!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This was a well researched exceptional piece of historical fiction. I was not sure I would stick with it, but it held my interest and I became caught up in this lengthy novel. It was, however, a dark story that made me very grateful I live in the 21st century.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    There were many interesting and unusual characters. Very few of them were likable.


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

    I listened to this book because of the narrator. I enjoyed his reading of Beautiful Ruins and was anxious to hear another book with this fabulous narrator. He once again did an excellent job.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wendy Lawrenceville, GA, United States 10-08-13
    Wendy Lawrenceville, GA, United States 10-08-13 Member Since 2011

    To All My Favorite Narrators: You are the voices in my head...

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Holy Plot Nightbird!"
    Any additional comments?

    This book has been sitting in my library for over 6 months. I attempted to start the book when I first purchased it, but I found it too slow to grab my attention. My second attempt was much more successful.

    This is a book that you need to invest in a few chapters before the story really hits its stride. But once it does, oh man! Think, Sherlock Holmes set in Colonial America. I don't do plot summaries in my reviews, but I will say that its been a while since I have come across a book with such a twisting plot...it kept me guessing the entire time.

    The narrator was outstanding and very well cast for this story. He's one of my favorites!

    Credit worthy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jack Enzo San Diego 09-14-13
    Jack Enzo San Diego 09-14-13 Member Since 2013

    To live, to love, to leave a legacy.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Masterful Storytelling"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Speaks the Nightbird to be better than the print version?

    I do not know. I did not read the print version. Bellerani's performance was absolutely amazing so I imagine just reading it pales in comparison.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Speaks the Nightbird?

    So many, but I'll go with the rising tension between Sarkholm, Mathew and the Magistrate in the very beginning also noted was Mathew being hypnotized in Lancaster's doorway (very intense), oh and Lancaster's song of the rat (who can forget that).


    Which character – as performed by Edoardo Ballerini – was your favorite?

    Sarkholm (Rough,Frightening and downright mean). "Fancy you wanna look at her oyster basket". Still LMAO.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. I relished sitting on my porch an hour at a time waiting for my night bird to deliver.


    Any additional comments?

    My first McCammon book. I was ecstatic to find there still four more books in the series, though I don't know how he can top the first. The characters lingers long after Bellarini uttered the last words and Fount Royal is still vivid and alive in my mind. Mr. Green, Rachcel, schucks even Bidwell still have me wondering how their lives will pay out as I'm sure Fount Royal will thrive in the future. I thought Mr. Winston's betrayal of Bidwell did not really fit into the narrative nor did Corbet's assiduity that he would be loyal in the future. AS William Blake said, "It is easier to forgive an enemy than it is a friend."

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Molly Encino, CA, United States 09-13-13
    Molly Encino, CA, United States 09-13-13 Member Since 2013

    M.A. in English. Avid reader and listener.

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    "captivating"

    While there are a few grisly scenes in McCammon's books I could do without, overall the whole series is excellent. It is such a pleasure to listen to a well-fleshed out plot and engaging characters while picking up quite a bit of history along the way. It is narrated beautifully, too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 09-12-13
    John 09-12-13
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    "Move over Follett, Flynn, Baldacci, Grisham"

    And yes, George Guidall as narrator.
    I have hundreds and hundreds of E-Book.
    This book is in the top three I have listened to.
    THIS IS A MUST READ.
    This book will take you back to "1659"
    I have never heard better Narration.
    Every sentence flows to the next.
    Don't miss this jewell.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carrie Houston, TX, United States 09-08-13
    Carrie Houston, TX, United States 09-08-13 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved this!"

    The narrator was fantastic. Each character had depth which kept this interesting until the end. Very highly recommended!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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