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Publisher's Summary

Tabula Rasa is not only a gripping and entertaining crime novel but also a sensitive, warm exploration of the deeper issues of what defines a family and an individual.

Arson investigator Billy Nightingale and his brother-in-law, Officer Sebastian Bly, are called in to investigate a house fire that killed two young children. The discovery of a baby hiding underneath the porch put Billy and Sebastian on the trail of a murderous mother while Sebastian and his wife, Annie, raise baby Meredith without revealing her dangerous and frightening past. Meredith grows up to be a promising young ballerina fueled in part by the fictional past that Sebastian and Annie have invented for her. But the truth threatens their charmed family circle as Merry's biological mother returns to finish what she started.

©2005 Shelly Reuben; (P)2005 Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

"Tabula Rasa is a stunning novel. It shocks and revolts you, and then restores your faith in humanity. Reuben writes not only of fire, but with fire." (Dorothy Salisbury Davis)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Dawn
  • Henrico, VA, United States
  • 07-19-07

Snooze

Why is this book in the Mysteries & Thrillers category? It's neither. It's description. Endless character history and description, on and on and on. I suffered through the overly drawn-out background on the birth parents. I suffered through a couple of hours devoted to the parents and uncle creating a convoluted birth-parent lie for this adopted child. Then, in Book Three, with only about an hour left, when the author began another endless description of a ballerina and her history, I gave up. It takes a lot for me to give up on an audiobook. But as much as I love Anna Fields and will miss her sorely, I gave this one up. The two stars are for her; the book gets none.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Dark subject

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No this one did not do it for me. I loved the Skirted man, and I thought this was Billy's story. Alas, he had very little spot light, but what he did have was great. This is really Mary's story. It did not have the flow of the Skirted man. I wanted to stop, but I kept thinking author would get better. Ending has a twister, but whole subject to alarming for me.

Would you recommend Tabula Rasa to your friends? Why or why not?

No more of this author for me. I only purchased this as the late great Anna Fields read it.<br/>

Which character – as performed by Anna Fields – was your favorite?

Billy...all of ms Fields men voices are great for me

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

subject too dark

  • Overall

a favorite

this is the story of mortimer nightingale, his daughter annie and marmelade, an escaped arson victim ... part sleeping beauty (wicked witch and all) ... part campfire tale (emphasis on fire), this is artful story telling, one i'll listen to again ... through the glass darkly of arson investigation, various aspects of family love, adoption and psychopathy are explored through the prism of a charmed life.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful