Diver Ulysses Vidal finds a 14th-century bronze bell of Templar origin buried under a reef off the Honduras coast. It turns out it's been lying there for more than one century....
Army epidemiologist Frank Slater is facing a court-martial, but after his punishment is mysteriously lifted, he is offered a job no one else wants....
As war rages in 1944, young army lieutenant Lucas Athan recovers a sarcophagus excavated from an Egyptian tomb....
A manuscript illuminated with fantastical creatures said to have roamed the Garden of Eden, the bestiary has been handed down throughout the centuries....
While on routine patrol in the tinder-dry Topanga Canyon, environmental scientist Rafael Salazar expects to find animal poachers, not a dilapidated antique steamer trunk....
In the caves beneath an Italian lake, the fossil of a creature older than the Earth has been disinterred. In the Judaean desert, a legendary parchment has been discovered....
Benvenuto Cellini, master artisan of Renaissance Italy, once crafted a beautiful amulet prized for its unimaginable power - and untold menace....
Journalist Michael Wilde - his world recently shattered by tragedy - hopes that a monthlong assignment to the South Pole will give him a new lease on life....
In 1559, 49 Spaniards exploring a tributary of the Orinoco River reached a sheer-sided, cloud-capped mountain called Tepui Zupay. When they tried to climb it, all but six were slaughtered....
Two hundred years ago a loyalist family fled to England to escape the American War of Independence and seemingly vanished into thin air....
Deep in the Caribbean Sea, a nuclear submarine is forced to suddenly abort its mission under mysterious circumstances....
An innocent discovery on a Montana ranch two years ago, sets off a series of events that may very well change the world . . . if it doesn't end it first....
Rumor has it there's a Russian you can turn to if you're very rich, and need dirty deeds done without a trace....
New York City, New Year's weekend, 2001. Jillian Guthrie, a troubled young journalist, stumbles onto a tantalizing mystery....
At forty-five, Hannah Smith is at a crossroads. That's her spin on it. The reality is she's divorced, jobless, and moving back to her family home....
On Christmas Day in 1893, every man, woman, and child in a remote gold-mining town disappeared....
Stumbling in the dark of an unfinished tomb beneath the sands of Saqqara, American tourist Tim Hope unknowingly passes through a time portal that leads to ancient Egypt....
Just beyond the Gilded Age, in the mist-covered streets of New York, the deadly Spanish influenza ripples through the city....
When Michelle receives a call from a Richmond historian, she sees the chance for a much-needed adventure. All she has to do is find a century-old key.
Three others - a guitarist, an engineer, and a retiree - receive similar calls. Each family possesses a key to a four-lock safe found buried in a Virginia courthouse, though their connection is as mysterious as the safe itself. Their ancestors should not have interacted, had no apparent reason to bury the safe, and should not have disappeared thereafter.
Bearing their keys, Michelle and the other descendants converge in the courthouse basement and open the safe, revealing the truth about their ancestors - a truth stranger, more deadly, and potentially more world-changing than any of them could have imagined. Now it's up to them to keep their discovery out of the wrong hands.
What made the experience of listening to The Fourth Descendant the most enjoyable?
The plot twists were the best part. The story kept me guessing. I can't say more without giving things away. I'd like to talk about the ending, but it would spoil it.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Jonah. At the start you think he'll be just your stereotypical dread-locked musician, but he turns out to be much deeper.
Which character – as performed by Donald R. Emero – was your favorite?
He didn't perform any of the characters better or worse than the others. I was impressed with the narration; he has a nice, resonant voice. In a few places, perhaps, he overdoes the difference in voices between the different characters, but it's not a problem. He doesn't overact. His voice sounded a little deeper in later chapters.
If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?
Four ordinary lives, brought together by one extraordinary discovery.
Any additional comments?
I was puzzled by some of the other reviews. This is well-crafted and satisfying fiction. I enjoyed it all the way through. Concerning the storyline, be sure to check out the many positive reviews of the written version of this book on Amazon.com (which has, of course, the same storyline).
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
What disappointed you about The Fourth Descendant?
All of it. Poorly edited, poorly constructed, and lacking a true sense of direction. The premise, and the overall start of the story began well, but it descended into treacle.
What could Allison Maruska have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?
Chose another career.
What three words best describe Donald R. Emero’s performance?
Look, Donald had a mess to deal with here, so it's unfair characterize his stuff with the crap he had to deal with. On balance he did all do under the limited circumstances.
If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Fourth Descendant?
All of it.
Any additional comments?
3 of 4 people found this review helpful
Based on the summary, I was really looking forward to listening to this. At first, I thought it was the horrible, staccato delivery of the narrator. Regretfully, that was just the first of many things wrong...absolutely no character development or explanation of what was the driving force behind the actions of key characters, the ending was as if the author thought, "I have no clue where to go with this, so I will wrap it up in the most abrupt unsatisfying way possible."
What disappointed you about The Fourth Descendant?
Everything. Lousy writing, terrible narrator. Ending left a lot to be desired as it seems the author tried to tie everything together without a clue as to how to go about doing that.
Has The Fourth Descendant turned you off from other books in this genre?
Would you be willing to try another one of Donald R. Emero’s performances?
What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?
This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?
I think someone who has not read many books MIGHT enjoy this book. The story idea was decent, but the writing style was very basic and the reader was horrible.
Would you recommend The Fourth Descendant to your friends? Why or why not?
I would be ashamed to recommend this book to my friends.
How could the performance have been better?
The reader over dramatized every passage as though he were reading to young children.
You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?
I can think of no aspect of this book that would make it worth reading.
Dumb plot. Poorly written. Poorly narrated. Meaningless dribble dialogues and meandering unlikely storyline and plot.
Imagining a what if and the consequences thereof ....good story, the ending caught me by surprise, I do not know if it was good or bad.
the narrator was monotonous and dull. the storyline was sporadic, plot development was basic. overall not a good book
Awful narration. He sounded like a surfer "dude" reading to a group of kindergartners. To be fair, what he was reading was equally awful. Nothing was plausible about the plot, the characters or their behaviors. Pass this one up.
After logging hundreds of pleasurable hours listening to audio books I knew it would someday happen. I would come across the combination of a mediocre story and a terrible narrator. I have made note of his name so I can avoid any other book he narrates. I had 6th grade students who could read far more expressively. He rushed his speech so much that I had to set my play speed to the lowest setting to be able to tolerate him. I checked the book out from the Kindle lending library & bought the audio for $1.99. Thank goodness I didn't waste an Audio credit on this one!