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Publisher's Summary

2020 Arthur Ellis Award for Best Non-Fiction

NATIONAL BEST SELLER

A top journalist crosses the yellow tape to investigate a shocking high-society crime.

Billionaires, philanthropists, socialites...victims. Barry and Honey Sherman appeared to lead charmed lives. But the world was shocked in late 2017 when their bodies were found in a bizarre tableau in their elegant Toronto home. First described as murder-suicide - belts looped around their necks, they were found seated beside their basement swimming pool - police later ruled it a staged, targeted double murder. Nothing about the case made sense to friends of the founder of one of the world’s largest generic pharmaceutical firms and his wife, a powerhouse in Canada’s charity world. Together, their wealth has been estimated at well over $4.7 billion. 

There was another side to the story. A strategic genius who built a large generic drug company - Apotex Inc. - Barry Sherman was a self-described workaholic, renowned risk-taker, and disruptor during his 50-year career. Regarded as a generous friend by many, Sherman was also feared by others. He was criticized for stifling academic freedom and using the courts to win at all costs. Upset with building issues at his mansion, he sued and recouped millions from tradespeople. At the time of his death, Sherman had just won a decades-old legal case involving four cousins who wanted 20 percent of his fortune. 

Toronto Star investigative journalist Kevin Donovan chronicles the unsettling story from the beginning, interviewing family members, friends, and colleagues, and sheds new light on the Shermans’ lives and the disturbing double murder. Deeply researched and authoritative, The Billionaire Murders is a compulsively listenable tale of a strange and perplexing crime.

©2019 Kevin Donovan (P)2019 Viking

What listeners say about The Billionaire Murders

Average Customer Ratings
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    1 out of 5 stars
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Boring

This is not a book about a murder investigation. It's a book about the generic pharmaceutical industry. It just drones on and on. Kept waiting on something to happen. I finally gave up. Could not finish.

11 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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The Honey Boo Boo Murders

Well researched, written and narrated. While the murders remain a mystery, the author does raise some suspicion upon Honey and Barry’s close inner circle.

I don’t agree with other reviewers who posit that much of the text is devoted to telling a history of Barry’s Sherman’s pharmaceutical company, Apotex Inc., providing a brief background isn’t a reason to dismiss the book entirely.

8 people found this helpful

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Skips around alot.

Story telling is not so intriguing. Some facts given but not really in a concurrent manner that keeps you interested.

6 people found this helpful

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Good but not great

Its a good book and you learn a great deal about the victims. In fact the book is more about the victims than the murders. Still the book is good and interesting.

5 people found this helpful

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Dull beyond words

I wanted to like this book given the good reviews. I listen to a lot of true crime and was bored to tears by this, even though I sat through the whole thing. This book goes on the supposition that because two billionaires were murdered that they are immediately interesting. They're not. This couple was impressively boring. There was no juiciness here at all. And the author seemed to insert himself into the story in a weird way that was...journalistic hubris. Hard skip. I recommend anything by Jerry Bledsoe or Fatal Vision by Joe McGinnis if you want a real success + weirdness + murder story.

4 people found this helpful

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Illuminating and well researched.

Performance: One of the mysteries of this book is the one where authors think they can read their own books for the audible community. As writers and therefore artists, they ought to understand that narrating books is a distinct and specific skill and if they have no such skill or talent, they should immediately put that thought out of their minds. Alas, this author failed to do that and the resulting narration is poor. The cadence and enunciation of words and sentences is quite annoying. Even Torontonians (of which I am one) will not appreciate the repeated, grating "Tronno" (for Toronto) throughout the book as well as other mispronunciations. I found the reading to be very poor indeed, but not so awful that I needed to stop listening.
Story: The story was obviously very well researched and Mr. Donovan has assembled it in a relatively logical way. The writing is fairly utilitarian with many descriptions of events. Where the writing improves is in his thoughtful characterizations of how the Shermans lived, interacted with family and friends and business associates and, through interviews and observations, what seemed to be in their minds. A frustrating story because (in my view) of police incompetence but a long needed exposure of the facts as available. Mr. Donovan brings some light to a very dark tragedy.

3 people found this helpful

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Fascinating crime, boring biography

I was interested in this because of the fascinating circumstances of the murder, but despite having “murder” in the title this reads more as a biography than anything else. If you want to read a biography of Barry Sherman (who, were it not for his murder, you would almost certainly not be aware of) this will be of great interest. If you like true crime, avoid it.

2 people found this helpful

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I Was So Excited About This Book

I'm an author and I really wanted to like this book. Plus, this book is my very first Audible experience. I thought this book was going to be about the murders, but it is more of a biography. The title of this book is a bit misleading, I feel bad saying this, but I wanted it to be more about the murder investigation.

2 people found this helpful

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Really enjoyed

Highly recommended if you’re looking for a real thriller where you get to know all parties involved. Provides just enough background info

1 person found this helpful

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Where was the editor?

Ooof! Unfortunately, I think that the author was just too close to this story. There were so many times that I thought, “wait-didn’t he just explain all of that an hour ago?” There was so much that was redundant. I don’t blame the author, but certainly an editor should have helped. Additionally, a professional voice actor could have added needed expression to the words. I think what was most disappointing though, was that the author didn’t offer any perspective. After that much research, there must be an opinion. The flat journalistic writing makes sense for a newspaper, but it would have been great to have feeling inserted.

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Profile Image for greatasby
  • greatasby
  • 11-24-19

Have to agree, boring......

Expecting a murder investigation what we got was a biography of Sherman, which in truth is boring. It's a biography without depth or family input, no surprise facts and no insight to "who dun it". Finished it because I bought it, had it been radio I would have switched off very early.