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Publisher's Summary

Heralded by Gillian Flynn as "so spectacular...amazing", Lyndsay Faye is back with her biggest adventure yet!

No one in 1840s New York likes fires, but Copper Star Timothy Wilde least of all. So when an arsonist with an agenda begins threatening Alderman Robert Symmes, a corrupt and powerful leader high in the Tammany Hall ranks, Wilde isn't thrilled to be involved. His reservations escalate further when his brother, Valentine, announces that he'll be running against Symmes in the upcoming election, making both himself and Timothy a host of powerful enemies.

Meanwhile the love of Wilde's life, Mercy Underhill, unexpectedly shows up on his doorstep and takes under her wing a starving orphan with a tenuous grasp on reality. It soon becomes clear that this wisp of a girl may be the key to stopping those who have been setting fire to buildings across the city - if only they can understand her cryptic descriptions and find out what she knows. Boisterous and suspenseful, The Fatal Flame is filled with beloved Gotham personalities as well as several new stars, culminating in a fiery and shocking conclusion.

©2015 Lyndsay Faye (P)2015 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Fatal Flame

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

horrible narrator ruins good story

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

If you have listened to the other books in this series you know how great the narrator was. Unfortunately this volume has a different narrator. A horrible narrator. No feeling in his voice, monotone, the characters suffer for it. They just don't seem like the characters we have grown to love. I listened for 30 minutes and had to shut it off. It just wasn't right with the new narrator. All the passion and liveliness was lost. It is always disappointing when a new narrator starts in the middle of a series but what makes it worse is when the narrator ruins a very good story. I will happily read this book, but I will not suffer through listening to this atrocity of a narrator.

How could the performance have been better?

go back to the original narrator

24 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

This is what it would sound like if Siri read a book....

I miss the narrator for the other Timothy Wild books in this series. This narrator is terrible. It sounds like a computer and not a human. Totally devoid of emotion and an odd lilting of voice that doesn't follow the natural flow of human voice.
Good story (as usual) - but I will have to read it because this is the worst narrator ever.

11 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Compelling historical fiction to be read in order

No Spoilers!
In the third volume of the Gods of Gotham series, Lindsay Faye continues the story of Timothy Wilde, a "Copper Star" (cop) who becomes the first detective in the recently formed police department of 1840s New York City. Poverty, slavery, racism, the fight for women's rights, the early labor movement exploited children, sweatshops, and political corruption, are all part of the scope of these books, as well as drug addiction, and intolerance toward gays, Catholics, and immigrants. Ever present just under the surface is the decades long lead up to the Civil War. This all sounds relentlessly bleak, yet Faye's evocative descriptions and knowledge of history pull the reader into this world, and his sense of humor, compassion for his characters and understanding of human beings in their infinite variety and imperfection are ultimately uplifting. I look forward to reading more of Faye's work.
A word about the narrator, Kirby Heybourne: His ability to voice myriad accents and dialects is impressive, but it's his female voices that I really appreciated. No simpering or weird high-pitched caricatures here. All the women's voices sound like they should, yet all (and there are many) are distinctive and varied. I would love to hear him again.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Warning!

PLEASE NOTE, the third book in this awesome series is narrated by someone else! He in no way gives you (the character) Timothy's gift of flash and the anticipated feeling is lost in seconds as the narrator of the third title of the series begins. He eventually warms up and has his compelling version of "Timmy" that has yearning to it, not all together inconsistent with the main character, but it's a loss just the same.

7 people found this helpful

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why did the narrator change?

I was disappointed that there was a different narrator from the from the other 2 books . Unfortunately this narrator doesn't do Timothy Wilde justice.

2 people found this helpful

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Excellent historical mystery

Lyndsay Faye's trilogy about New York City's first police is stunning -- well written with vibrant characters and authentic dialogue as well as remarkable stories. My only regret is that she is now done.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Bring back the real narrator.

The original narrator for the first two books created wonderful voices and built the characters out so superbly. I cannot comprehend the reasoning for changing mid-series. I am really disappointed. The author is wonderful and I will purchase more written, but definitely stick with the same narrator through an entire series.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Performance was abysmal

I read the two previous books in this series and thoroughly enjoyed them, before my audible subscription. I was excited when I saw this book listed and was looking forward to the continued saga. What a complete and utter disappointment. The narrator sounded as if he was reading words as opposed to reading a story. I found it near impossible to follow the story and would constantly have to rewind to figure out what I was listening to as my mind tended to wander due to the dull presentation. Thank goodness for refunds. I’ll take this book out of the library instead.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

New narrator

The previous two books were much better cast. The new narrator lapses into some sort of iambic monotony 75% of the time....
The book itself is on par with the previous two. Not amazing, but fun to read. Being a New Yorker I feel compelled sticking with it.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

An Excellent Trilogy by an Excellent Author

Love Lyndsay Faye's books. This trilogy is outstanding, though this is the weakest plot. It's a very good story with well developed characters. I think I'm a bit biased against this third book in the series because they changed narrators. Story is set in NYC just before the Civil War and after the founding of the first police department in NYC. Highly recommend the first two books in the series, and then, of course you'll listen to the third and final book. Very enjoyable.