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The Glass Rainbow Audiobook

The Glass Rainbow: A Dave Robicheaux Novel

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Publisher's Summary

James Lee Burke’s eagerly awaited new novel finds Detective Dave Robicheaux back in New Iberia, Louisiana, and embroiled in the most harrowing and dangerous case of his career. Seven young women in neighboring Jefferson Davis Parish have been brutally murdered. While the crimes have all the telltale signs of a serial killer, the death of Bernadette Latiolais, a high-school honor student, doesn’t fit: she is not the kind of hapless and marginalized victim psychopaths usually prey upon. Robicheaux and his best friend, Clete Purcel, confront Herman Stanga, a notorious pimp and crack dealer whom both men despise. When Stanga turns up dead shortly after a fierce beating by Purcel, in front of numerous witnesses, the case takes a nasty turn, and Clete’s career and life are hanging by threads over the abyss.

Adding to Robicheaux’s troubles is the matter of his daughter, Alafair, on leave from Stanford Law to put the finishing touches on her novel. Her literary pursuit has led her into the arms of Kermit Abelard, celebrated novelist and scion of a once prominent Louisiana family whose fortunes are slowly sinking into the corruption of Louisiana’s subculture. Abelard’s association with best-selling ex-convict author Robert Weingart, a man who uses and discards people like Kleenex, causes Robicheaux to fear that Alafair might be destroyed by the man she loves. As his daughter seems to drift away from him, he wonders if he has become a victim of his own paranoia. But as usual, Robicheaux’s instincts are proven correct and he finds himself dealing with a level of evil that is greater than any enemy he has confronted in the past.

Set against the backdrop of an Edenic paradise threatened by pernicious forces, James Lee Burke’s The Glass Rainbow is already being hailed as perhaps the best novel in the Robicheaux series.

More mayhem? Listen to more of James Lee Burke's Dave Robicheaux thrillers.

©2010 James Lee Burke (P)2010 Simon & Schuster

What the Critics Say

"MWA Grand Master Burke offers everything his readers expect - brilliant prose, prosaic situations that suddenly become mystic experiences, and a complex plot that repeatedly plumbs the depths of human depravity and the heights of nobility - in his superlative 18th novel featuring Iberia, La., deputy sheriff Dave Robicheaux." (Publishers Weekly)

"[S]uperb suspense leading to a gripping, set-piece finale that is a masterpiece of texture and mood, with the high-energy climax in the foreground both contrasted against and supported by the intensely lyrical, heavily melancholic prose that swells and recedes underneath the action. Not to be missed by any follower of the landmark series." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (2775 )
5 star
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4.3 (1363 )
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4.6 (1358 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Ken M. 07-17-10
    Ken M. 07-17-10 Listener Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
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    "Six Stares"

    I've read or Listened to all 18 of Burke's Dave Robicheaux novels. Most are 5 star novels, but GLASS WINDOW in my opinion was his BEST.
    Mr. Burke waiting for # 19????

    Ken

    12 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Helen Bozeman, United States Minor Outlying Islands 07-28-10
    Helen Bozeman, United States Minor Outlying Islands 07-28-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "WOW again"

    This is again a powerful story about LA., and gets you in the heart, just love his prose.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B. brown 07-14-10
    B. brown 07-14-10 Member Since 2014

    moemoe

    HELPFUL VOTES
    283
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    "Great as always"

    Burke's writing combined with Patton's narration makes for a great audiobook....as always when Burke and Patton team up.

    14 of 17 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 09-29-10
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 09-29-10 Member Since 2015

    Dept Q, Harry Hole... where are you?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    6223
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    515
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    "Burke and Patton, The Perfect Combination!"

    I can't think of a better combination of author/performer. I just love the ride!

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eva Gannon Chicago, Illinois, US 07-24-10
    Eva Gannon Chicago, Illinois, US 07-24-10 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    881
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    "WOW!"

    Burke is in top form, and Patton delivers the goods. I agree with other reviewers this may be the best book in the series. It evokes powerful emotions in the reader, and those of us who are of an age with Clete and Dave may well recognize ourselves.

    The bond between Dave and Clete is highlighted, and the theme of friendship and devotion is played out within it. Clete, always my favorite character, virtually leaps off the pages. We understand clearly and without reservation what made Dave drink, and what may lead him to do so again. Helen Swallow, too, is fleshed out in this book. Strangely, Molly is left undefined, and Alafair's development is a bit rote.

    There are no screaming nutrias in this book. I wonder if that means something? Rather, there are blue herons. The blue heron can be a symbol of someone who has chosen to claim their life as their own. Or it can indicate that it is time to assert our own authority and to follow our own unique path in life. This symbolism seems to work on several levels and for multiple characters, including Clete and several of the antagonists.

    The ending took me like a tsunami, blowing my emotions end for end and flattening me against my chair. Only a master like Burke could craft an ending of such intense emotional and metaphysical impact. Don't hold back; let yourself experience its raw emotional power with all your heart (and head too).

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brett Charlotte, NC, United States 08-29-14
    Brett Charlotte, NC, United States 08-29-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    80
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    Performance
    Story
    "First and Last"

    Seems like people love the Dave Robicheaux mysteries but I don't see it.

    This book had all the get-up-and-go of a Mississippi barge during a drought. Sure, there was action but it all seemed gratuitous. To me the mystery almost seemed secondary to this story. I didn't feel like there was a plot force driving all the characters towards a conclusion. It was just Dave and his pal Clete meandering around and beating up bad guys. Speaking of "bad", the class-hate (rich=bad) is so cliche these days that it often drives all mystery right out of mysteries.

    I did like the descriptions of Louisiana and the people. I also loved the narration. Having said this, the novel was too long for me and not much fun. I only recommend it to Robicheaux fans. For me...it was my first and last of Monsieur Robicheaux. To you sir, I must say adieu.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Pontiflet Fairfield, CA USA 04-19-14
    R. Pontiflet Fairfield, CA USA 04-19-14 Member Since 2015

    retired writer

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "Great Writing, Good Plot... But....."

    I agree with the other reviewers who commented that the writing is rich and poetic, and when compared to other novels their writings are lacking. I can listen to Will Patton perform Burke's poetic stories all day long, but like another reviewer said the performance of the female parts is a bit dull and they all sounds the same. Yet, it does not take away from the overall goodness of the performance.

    Also, I thought Alafair's trust of her homosexual ex-boyfriend was a little too much, especially after learning that he was homosexual. Why would she not only let him get into her car, but let him get in behind the wheel and take her keys!. Anyway, that part of the story seemed an afterthought that conveniently paved the way to the ending. And, yes, I thought the science fiction-type meanderings were just too much and well over the top. That stuff should have been written in a novel of the scientific genre.

    On the whole, I enjoyed the novel although it did deviate from the plot too much. The deviations were mini stories in themselves. But the writing and performance was top notch that it held my interest throughout. I was in the story and wanted to know what happens next.

    I am a Burke newbee. When compared to other novels of this thriller/mystery genre, this Writer is by far the best and easiest that I've found to listen to for 12 to 15 or more hours. If you like well written literature, then you will like Burke and Patton!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K.D. Chicago, IL, United States 12-02-11
    K.D. Chicago, IL, United States 12-02-11 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "If you're in this for the plot- KEEP MOVING!"
    What disappointed you about The Glass Rainbow?

    The description of this book has all the elements that I typically like in a novel- danger, murder, mystery... how unfortunate that the actual story line barely touches on the description that you're given when you hit the 'purchase' button! This book meanders on, coming back to the 'plot' every once in awhile, and feels more like reflections on Robicheaux's family, his friend Purcel's dramas... towards the end you find yourself in what feels like a completely different story line. I'm honestly surprised at all the positive reviews of this book...I assume many are from long-time fans of the Robicheaux series (this is the 18th book). A review that I read described this book as


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Hunger Games.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    The narrator was pretty good... my only complaint was that all the female characters sounded the same, and his voice conveyed no personality when narrating their parts, which made them all seem dull.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    When the author did get back to the plot I was interested, but by the time he did I was so lost in all the 'excess' that it really didn't matter in the end.


    Any additional comments?

    If you're not already a Robicheaux fan... just keep it moving.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 10-23-10 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "DISAPPOINTING"

    THE WORST ENDING POSSIBLE AFTER A VERY LONG STORY. MR. BURKE SEEMS TO HAVE LOST IT.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chapel Hillian 10-02-10 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "another fine Robicheaux story"

    I like this series, and this one is good, but I did get a little impatient toward the middle when the story drags and some of the dialog is repetitive. And after having listened to several Burke novels, the portrayal of Molly is just a little too perfect. But he is a fine storyteller and some of his descriptions leave me smiling and replaying to hear them again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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