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Publisher's Summary

Professor Theo Cray is trained to see patterns where others see chaos. So when mutilated bodies found deep in the Montana woods leave the cops searching blindly for clues, Theo sees something they missed. Something unnatural. Something only he can stop.

As a computational biologist, Theo is more familiar with digital code and microbes than the dark arts of forensic sleuthing. But a field trip to Montana suddenly lands him in the middle of an investigation into the bloody killing of one of his former students. As more details, and bodies, come to light, the local cops determine that the killer is either a grizzly gone rogue...or Theo himself. Racing to stay one step ahead of the police, Theo must use his scientific acumen to uncover the killer. Will he be able to become as cunning as the predator he hunts - before he becomes its prey?

©2017 Andrew Mayne (P)2017 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
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Fantastic! I loved this book!!

When a young woman is killed by a bear while on a camping trip with her boyfriend Professor Theo Cray gets involved. The woman had once been a student of his. Theo is not convinced that it was an animal, he's positive that a man did this. A man killing like an animal would kill.

In an attempt to prove his theory he begins to look for other animal killings that have gone unsolved. When he locates the body of a woman previously assumed missing, he becomes the prime suspect until the police determine that it was another animal killing.

Cray is now driven to find more. With the help of a sophisticated computer program and his biological background he discovers more. Upon meeting an anthropologist with information dating back to the 1980's of an attack by maybe a mountain lion, maybe a man dressed up like a mountain lion. Cray now thinks he's found this murderers beginnings.
This book starts out a little slow as you get background info, it increasingly speeds up until it like a roller coaster and by the end... forget it! This is a downward spiral with nail biting, stomach twisting suspense! I absolutely love books like this and listened to it in one day.

Will Damron does a fantastic job narrating. I don't think anyone could possibly do any better.

This book has my HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION!!
If you found this review helpful please indicate so.
Thank You.

26 of 27 people found this review helpful

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 11-03-17

Different Sort Of Thriller

Entertaining. Couldn't put it down. The science seemed rather dubious, but I just went with it. I would agree about some of the other more critical reviews about loose ends (what happened to Gus? did I miss that part?). And Professor Cray should have encountered at least a few dead ends--seemed like everything he did was spot on every time. But overall, it was an enjoyable book. I can't wait for the next one.

Will Damron was outstanding with the delivery of the story

12 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Piper
  • Washington
  • 11-08-17

Not your typical murder case

I'm going to admit, I give 5 stars to stories pretty easily. As someome who bas done many literature courses, I don't give my reviews just because it was or was not in my interest are. I will give a boom 5 starts if the stroy kept me engaged, was unique and had redeaming qualities. You have to judge a book by its actual contents, not just if it's the type of book you normally like.

That said, I almost never leave written reviews unless I feel a book has done something to stand apart. Without trying to give spoilers, I feel this book kept me guessing and went outside of any normal murder/death mystery I'm used to. This was refreshing and kept making me think and guess the whole way through.

I go through at least 1-2 audio books a week and this one kept me thinking, interested and guessing the whole way through.

If you have gone through any of the murder mysteries that sound ingesting to you, give this a try.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 10-31-17

Very creative plot!

The Naturalist features brilliant but not fully socially acclimated University of Texas computational biology professor Theo Cray is the unlikely protagonist. While in Montana for a summer field trip he learns that one of his former star students, now a PhD, has just been killed apparently by a grizzly bear. He believes it is murder by a human who used sharpened metal claws to simulate bear claws. A few miles away he finds the buried body of another woman who has been missing for months. Again it looks like a bear's work to everyone except Cray. Using the scientific tools he finds several other bodies in forest graves apparently killed by animals. He is not buying the animal killer theory believing instead that all were killed by a man over a long period. From there the story gets really interesting and wild. His life is at risk as are two of the friends he has made.

The plot of this suspense mystery is easily among the most interesting and creative I have read. Author Andrew Mayne is a professional magician and a top selling independently published novelist. Looking Glass, Book 2 in The Naturalist series, is scheduled for release on March 13, 2018. I look forward to the release. Will Damron's narration is superb.

Following Audible Listener Shelley has again led me to a wonderful suspense mystery. If you enjoy the mystery/thriller genre and are not following her, you should.

12 of 13 people found this review helpful

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Good mystery with a different plot.

Overall I enjoyed The Naturalist. I think people who enjoy biology will most likely enjoy the story. However, if you're a fan of realistic action-pack thrillers you might find the plot to slow or unbelievably for your taste. The main character has the heart and brain of a scientist but lacks some of the street smarts needed to confront the bad guys he meets while conducting his unofficial hunt. He meets a couple of friends while he is trying to figure out what's going on to all missing people in Montana.

The narration and quality of the audio is good.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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So much potential

I loved the idea of this book, I loved the science aspect, and I liked the main character, it started out great! so even though this narrator is annoying, and s l o w (compensate by listening to this author on speed 1.25x which helps), as the story went on and developed I felt it lost it's momentum and mystery. lots of eye-rolling moments and by the last quarter it started to feel like just another rushed typical thriller ending.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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new favorite

just exciting and fun. really believed in the characters. good pace. happy i was stuck on traffic. my 15 mile commute which takes 45 minutes foothills to K-town in LA... wow. you have to read/listen to this one. and well performed to boot. character voices well separated. well done by all! <>

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Sequel Please!!!

Andrew Mayne introduces a likable geek investigator, part Columbo and part Sheldon Cooper, in this clever suspense novel that just cries out for a sequel. Our hero, Theo Cray, a college professor and research biologist, feels driven to examine the gruesome death of a former student who authorities believe was slashed to death by a killer bear. Theo is not so sure, and employs his special superpowers (statistics, patterns of predatory behavior, botany, etc) to seek justice for the girl. Great characters, paced at an exciting clip, and on helluva fun read.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Excellent!

I couldn't stop listening. The narrator did a great job, and the story was original and interesting, with a lot of facts thrown in. If I had one complaint, it'd be I'd like to have had a little more wrapping up at the end - find out what happened to the two main characters especially. Maybe I just didn't want it to end!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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The Geek Detective

An interesting start to a new series of novels.
Our protagonist is not your typical macho detective.
In fact he is pretty much an adult version of the scientific geeky kids that got picked on in high school.
He is flung into the middle of a investigation of a former student's killing.
Things tend to go downhill for him from there.
It's brains versus brawn, cunning, and ignorance in various measures as he makes it his not particularly well thought out mission to find the killer.
No, this is not a humorous book, in spite of my review.
It is however, an intriguing listen and worth your time.
I am wondering where we go from her.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Colette
  • 10-21-17

Great listen

I loved everything about this book. It had me gripped from the start and I genuinely didn’t want it to end. I enjoy Jack Reacher/John Milton characters but this nerdy bioinformatics professor is right up there with them. I loved his unusual thought processes and felt his frustration when others didn’t make the mental leaps that he did. Can’t wait for Book 2.

A brilliant narrator enhanced the pleasure.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful