Quantum: A Thriller

Captain Chase, Book 1
Narrated by: January LaVoy
Series: Captain Chase, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 22 mins
3 out of 5 stars (1,811 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

International bestselling author Patricia Cornwell delivers pulse-pounding thrills in a series featuring a brilliant and unusual new heroine, cutting-edge cybertechnology, and stakes that are astronomically high.

On the eve of a top secret space mission, Captain Calli Chase detects a tripped alarm in the tunnels deep below a NASA research center. A NASA pilot, quantum physicist, and cybercrime investigator, Calli knows that a looming blizzard and government shutdown could provide the perfect cover for sabotage, with deadly consequences. 

As it turns out, the danger is worse than she thought. A spatter of dried blood, a missing security badge, a suspicious suicide - a series of disturbing clues point to Calli’s twin sister, Carme, who’s been MIA for days.

Desperate to halt the countdown to disaster and to clear her sister’s name, Captain Chase digs deep into her vast cyber security knowledge and her painful past, probing for answers to her twin’s erratic conduct. As time is running out, she realizes that failure means catastrophe - not just for the space program but for the safety of the whole nation.

©2019 Patricia Cornwell (P)2019 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Critic Reviews

"Thriller fans are in for a treat as narrator January LaVoy performs Patricia Cornwell's latest.... LaVoy is a vocal shape-shifter gliding between fluid narrative; the staccato, gravelly voice of Calli's sister, Fran, a police officer; gruff male characters; and Calli's increasing paranoia. As Calli follows the trail left by her missing sister, LaVoy's tones echo her growing distrust - of herself." (AudioFile Magazine)

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What listeners say about Quantum: A Thriller

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Pointless, Boring, and Unsympathetic Characters

This book's biggest flaw is that there was no ending. We have a possible intruder on a military base and later a murder. Neither one of which are solved in the course of the story. I see that this is book one of the series, but each book should be encapsulated meaning it is a complete story in it's own right.

The story seems to take place mainly in the protagonists head. There's a lot of whining and emotional crap going on showing the main character to be very distracted from her job. There's too much family drama for this to be considered a thriller. There were no chase scenes there wasn't much of an investigation into a suspicious death and ultimately nothing happened all the questions remain on answered.

Second there seem to be a lot of pointless exposition and detailed description that did nothing to further the plot. There were flashbacks that seemed unnecessary and it was hard to tell when the story was taking place in the present and when it was taking place in the past. I assume in written form the text is italicized or in someway indicates that the scene is a flashback.

Her early works were so good & I vaguely remember a satirical series that was pithy.

This was just bad.

23 people found this helpful

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Tihis is a joke, right? Quantum, my patootie !

I couldn't finish this dog. There is no dialogue, no continuity, no characters, no plot, I was six chapters in when it dawned on me that all I'd heard was she was in a tunnel. How do people get away with this crap?

11 people found this helpful

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Disappointing

Overly descriptive to the point I got bored listening. Can’t believe Ms PC wrote this

11 people found this helpful

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Do not buy this book

I usually love Patricia Cornwell books, but this book was horrible. No real story just almost random thoughts. Skips all around. No development of characters and no development of the plot. Even ended without an ending. Listening to this book was pure torture. Don’t waste your money.

19 people found this helpful

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Confused and unresolved

I normally love this author, but this book reads more like a rough draft, or the first half of a book. Much of the NASA talk seems implausible, and the protagonist is riddled with self-doubt. It makes me miss confident, sensible, and sometimes crusty Scarpetta. I’m hoping she either returns or Capt Chase gets some resilience lessons from her.

16 people found this helpful

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Not worth the time or money

I read three other books before finishing this. At times the details were so long I forgot what was going on. I kept wishing it would get better. Save yourself and don’t buy this book. Keep looking.

15 people found this helpful

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Poor book

Was one of the worst books I have read. To much of the main character thoughts, did NOT wrap up the deaths, missing sister, etc. very poor.

7 people found this helpful

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Such a waste of my time!

I love this author but OMG...the story never could get started. Just when I thought something may start making sense to me...it would take an entire chapter to get down the driveway. Having to bring up childhood memories, then the multitude of different neighbors, flowers, clowns, BB’, rockets, space dust & fenceposts!! Argh! I TRIED to get interested in the story, I TRIED to understand the rambling on & on about nothing, I TRIED but I simply can not go on! Sorry! I just don’t have that kind of time to listen to something that makes no sense to me!

4 people found this helpful

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boring

can't finish. boring. I toughed it out through 27)37 chapters, but it just doesn't hold my interest.

4 people found this helpful

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This book is horrible!!

I tried so hard to listen to this book, I just couldn't do it! I love Patricia Cornwall other books too!

3 people found this helpful

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  • A. Pringle
  • 10-03-19

What a let down

Really thought this was going to be a great read, but after a lot of listening - it ran out of speed - the next book will need to finish up a lot of loose ends - disappointed.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-05-19

What has happened to Patricia Cornwell

I have been a fan since the very first book and have never missed a title. However the most recent Scarpetta books have a vein of paranoia and increasing the main characters have become flat and unpleasant I bought this book with hope for a new set of characters/situations which a fresh start might bring but no the same unsettling paranoia abounds, characters who just lie or dissemble with little redeeming features. Smug use of technical knowledge is everywhere wasting space, energy and patience and the repeated use of a countdown clock is irritating and lazy build your tension with words not gimmicks. I truly don’t know what to do, continue buying Cornwell books or give up on a favorite author?

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  • judith 55
  • 04-16-20

Poor

I usually enjoy Patricia Cornwell stories but this has left me cold. Not a thriller so much as a lecture on space activities I don’t even know what the outcome was and not interested enough should there be a part 2
Really disappointing

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  • D J.
  • 03-15-20

Oh not good

Very difficult to listen too, had to fast forward a lot. Won’t be getting another book from this author.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mark Say
  • 02-16-20

Quantum: Not really that thrilling

I'm not sure what I expected when I bought this book, but what i got wasn't what I expected either so there we go.

If that last sentence left you confused, then the feeling you're feeling is quite possibly similar to the feeling I was feeling whilst listening to this book.

I read the synopsis when the book was on early release for Prime members, but forgot all about it when it came time to listen. Pro tip, if you get early access to a book through prime you can quite often add Audible narration for a little over £3 which is usually a bargain!

So the book centres around Callie, an identical twin who is if I remember rightly a Nasa scientist type person, but also a cop and also waiting to hear if she's going to be an astronaut, oh and she also helps invent quite possibly billion dollar inventions with her dad which can be used by everyone from the military to Joe public. So it's safe to say she's a busy gal.

Anyhow Callie is gearing to supervise a spacewalk and a shuttle launch which are due to happen at the same time, oh and she has to solve a murder too.

Remember I said Callie had a twin? Well she's hoping to be an astronaut too but she's gone missing, is everything connected? Who knows, I've finished the book and i still don't know.

Interspersed through the book are what I assume to be flashbacks, from either Callie's childhood or recent past but they're not exactly explained, they're just pasted into the narrative with no warning and it can be quite confusing, as soon as they have started then they stop again and the story goes on. This is quite a well used trope but it's not very well executed in this book. Many of the flashbacks had no relevance and added nothing to the story.

The narrator was decent so that's a good point. I'm struggling to find any others.

I don't want to spoil anything but when the book ended I was like "What? That's the end?" I suppose it could qualify as a cliffhanger but it felt like Patricia just thought, "You know what, that's enough for this book, I've reached my word count, the next chapter can be the next book."

I was thoroughly disappointed with the way that it ended and I just don't care enough about the story or the characters to bother picking up the next book when it comes out. If you're a particular fan of Cornwell and her work then you might enjoy it. I would recommend waiting until the series is complete so you don't suffer the letdown that is the end of this book. There really should be a warning about this. It's like going to see a football match and it just ending with no explanation at 78 minutes as the ball goes out for a throw in.

EDIT: the next book in the series "Spin" was advertised for pre order when I submitted this review and it said: "Captain Calli Chase returns in a pause resisting thriller from international bestselling author Patricia Cornwell"

I have no idea what a "pause resisting" thriller is but I assume it is meant to read "page turning", so much attention to detail should tell you all you need to know about this series. Due for release in August 2020 you might want to book a summer holiday so you miss it.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-10-19

Don’t bother

I enjoyed reading the Scarpetta books until I read Chaos possibly the worst book of all time .. I thought I’d give this a whirl .. again what’s happened Patricia ? Nothing happens it’s just so tedious .. go back to what made you successful and stop experimenting you aren’t any good at it ... I’ve listened to 100’s of audio books and I never leave reviews but I had to tell people not to waste 10 + hours listening to chaos or this turkey quantum ... it’s awful

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  • TJF
  • 01-15-20

Stop with the internal monologue PLEASE

I had really high hopes for this book. Premise sounded interesting, the new character should be really interesting, but, why oh why, the pages and pages of internal dialogue, over thinking everything, making every action and event have some deep meaning. I had to bail after a few chapters not caring about the story or the characters.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-24-19

Disappointing

I used to love Cornwell. This book was awful. By 6 hours in all that had happened was 1 suspicious suicide. By the end I was none the wiser as to what it was all about.

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  • Julie D (Audio and Book Jewels)
  • 11-13-19

Wait!!! What?

This was phenomenal, as I expected it to be. I have always loved Patricia Cornwell writing and this was no exception.

There’s more to know about this story... I’m going to look for it! I want to know more about Callie and Carma and what happens. This was a breath catching listen and kept me in the edge of my seat through the whole book!

It’s well worth the time!

January LaVoy was an excellent choice of narrator and the characters were easily distinguishable.

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  • Ruggertiff
  • 11-12-19

disappointing

nothing really happened, characters were thin and didn't really engender any emotion. ended feeling let down and bored.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-24-19

It was okay<br /><br /><br />

Not her best book. I felt the end was abrupt. The plot was good . The narrator was very much a reader.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Bozena
  • 11-15-19

Boring!

Begun listening with excitement and soon released that the story line goes on and on with too much detail and without saying anything. The plot of the book takes place over continuous 12 hour period and the nothing really happens to justify listening to it for 10 plus hours. There is no conclusion to the ending leaving a seamless opening for the next book but written in a very unsatisfactory manner. The whole book could be easily summarised in 2 hours and it would not be considered a summary. Its the same style of story line telling Cornwell has adopted in the last few of Scarpetta book series as well and I was hopping this was not going to be the case for the new book and series. Very disappointed with this book and it will be the last one of Cornwell books I will ever listen to or read.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-01-20

Absolutely terrible

I’m a Patricia Cornwell fan from way back, but this was the most overwritten piece of nonsense I have listen to in a very long time.

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  • jackosyd
  • 06-18-20

No real ending !

This story starts nowhere, is full of totally useless detail to fill it out and ends nowhere with many questions unanswered as if there is to be a book II !

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  • Nadia David
  • 01-23-20

Completely frustrating!

I am a massive Cornwell fan and have read all the Scarpetta books multiple times. But this was such a let down! Confusing, rambling, with no satisfactory ending. I honestly have no idea what the hell was going on throughout the book and Captain Chase is wholly unbelievable. A cop/robotics nerd/NASA astronaut candidate?? Seriously?? I’m pretty annoyed that I just listened to ten hours of rambling story (the narrator was fantastic at least) and it just ends, practically mid-paragraph. Did Cornwell just miss deadline? Is she just trying to milk her audience for another book? So frustrated!!