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The Five  By  cover art

The Five

By: Robert R. McCammon
Narrated by: Nick Landrum
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Publisher's summary

With works such as Swan Song and the historical thriller Mister Slaughter, best-selling author Robert McCammon has proven himself an extraordinarily accomplished storyteller. The Five features a rock band skirting the margins of success while touring the American Southwest. Life on the road, however, takes a strange turn when they encounter an Iraq War veteran. Soon thereafter, violence descends on the group, and their lives are tuned to a terrifying pitch.

©2011 The McCammon Corporation (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC

What listeners say about The Five

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    1 out of 5 stars

Stop SINGING!

Would you try another book from Robert McCammon and/or Nick Landrum?

I love Robert McCammon's as an author. I anxiously await the book "Baal" on audio. I read some of the review prior to ordering "The Five", and for the first time, didn't pay attention to some of the in depth comments.

McCammon rambles in this novel. On and on it seems. I always loved his turn of a phrase, but in this case, it was all filling and no turkey. But by far, the worst...and I mean what stopped me DEAD in my tracks, was the narrator SINGING...yes, singing in the worst voice you can imagine...some of the songs in story. If you want the listener to be drawn in by the dynamic rock group, and real buy into the persona...don't hire Uncle Larry to belt out the tunes. Total buzz kill. Literally made me snap the plugs for my ear and contemplate just deleting the story.

Onward to Baal. At least I know there is no music in that tome.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Stephen King - Joyland

What didn’t you like about Nick Landrum’s performance?

Zero. Zip. Nothing. Take singing lessons or just DON'T sing. Thanks for ruining what little was there.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

I felt like someone just picked my pocket...or that feeling you get when you put twenty bucks in a slot machine and get nothing for the trouble.

Any additional comments?

Next time there is music involved, read the lyrics...or hire a band.

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27 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

This story flows like a river

With every word of this book, Robert McCammon builds an elaborate web that goes across the American southwest, an epic and yet still a personnel battle between good and evil, makes you question your decisions and lays the groundwork and the reasoning behind deeds done later. The heroes of this book are hugely flawed, and the villains even after doing horrible crimes, aren't beyond redemption. The book is magic but it's not quite a fantasy, there are magical elements. It's the magic of what lies under our perceptions and the movers that are behind the scene.

The book takes place from the viewpoints of the band members, their manager and a damaged Veteran of the Iraq war who was at the point of suicide at the beginning of the book and see's a music video that the band made protesting the war and it touched him.... but not in a good way.

Like most of McCammon's work, at the end of the day, you'll leave after grieving, laughing with joy, shivering in the shadows, saying, "Oh no!" and falling in love with the characters. Good job Sir!

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17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not his best writing

Wordy, sophmoric and tedious. Not at all like the Mathew Corbet books. A good editor might have helped but in the end I just didn't care what happened to the characters

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12 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Not what I expected

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

Robert McCannon wrote a couple of books that are in my all time favorite list (Swan's Song, and Boys Life) so I expected a story that would draw me in and be interesting. I was disappointed. The story seemed to ramble along, and was kind of pointless. No suspense--no suprises.

What do you think your next listen will be?

I will probably go back to supernatural stories.

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

The narrator was OK, but couldn't save the story.

What character would you cut from The Five?

All of them.

Any additional comments?

Maybe someone who really likes rock bands would like this one.

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7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Mystical and Mysterious in a Bad Way

I really wanted to like this story. Mr. McCammon is a first rate writer and I???ve enjoyed all of his previous work. This one???it was a struggle to get through. The premise (I think) is a little known rock band being stalked by a ex-Marine suffering PTSD who hears voices and thinks the band is disrespectful of soldiers. The ex-Marine may or may not be a tool of some evil force who doesn???t want the band to write a particular song. The problem is that story line only covers about a third of the book. The rest is a wandering journey that goes everywhere and nowhere. There are a lot of repetitive symbols, dreams, portents and characters and issues that pop in and out randomly. I???m still not sure what the point was. Good vs. Evil? The tragedy of war? The tragedy of family? The power of music? Self-destruction? An ancient curse? Insanity? The story is disjointed, uneven and at least for me was an uphill battle to get through. The last third of the book was especially rambling.

I suppose if you???re interested in ???rock band culture??? you MIGHT find it more appealing than I did but I doubt it.

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4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Written like a song with a purpose.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this to anyone who likes a subtle thriller with twists. I particularly like the fact that McCammon has presented this story as a quest for the reason to write a last song. The fact that there is an ever-present threat to this group takes a back seat to the true story.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I liked True. He is a Marine veteran FBI agent who is fighting an internal battle. He is conflicted because he needs to save the band, but wants to help the antagonist (fellow veteran) get the help he desperately needs.

Which character – as performed by Nick Landrum – was your favorite?

I particularly liked Nick Landrum's portrayal of the country gas station owner at the end of the book. Also, the bell-bearded member of the 13th Floors.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I was moved by Terry's climactic moment from meeting the 13th Floors keyboardist to his meeting of Pett.

Any additional comments?

As usual, McCammon has given us the most descriptive settings and characters. He has given us background of characters to allow them to develop not only in our minds, but also in our hearts. He makes us hate and love the same person. This is his talent: he knows humanity, he knows forgiveness, he knows how to write people.

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3 people found this helpful

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

A McCammon Disappointment

I first listened to A Boy's Life, then several others by this author but this one left so much wanting. The 10 to 12 examples/illustrations of every detail added nothing and took much away from the story line. I say don't waste your time on this book as life's too short to spend on substandard products.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

If you've never read McCammon, don't start here!

Where does The Five rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Somewhere in the middle. It wasn't great, but it wasn't awful either.

If you’ve listened to books by Robert McCammon before, how does this one compare?

I've read a lot of McCammon. He's one of my favorite authors. However, the only other audio book by him that I've listened to at this time is 'Swan Song' and it was better (but I enjoyed reading that one more than listening to it)

Which character – as performed by Nick Landrum – was your favorite?

I'm not a huge fan of Nick Landrum.

Any additional comments?

My Favorite McCammon book is 'Speaks the Night Bird'. I haven't listened to the audio version yet.

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

McCammon bombs this time...and not in a good way

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I am a McCammon fan! I think his "Boy's LIfe" is one of the smartest books ever written (though not on Audible as they only have an abridged version). But this is the first McCammon I've come across that I would advise people to steer clear of, it lacks the brilliance I've come to expect of McCammon's books.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

In the other McCammon books it moves with interesting stories and interweaved plots, unfortunately this book drags and as a few of the characters die...well, frankly, I don't care as I haven't really formed a connection with any of them and I'm pretty sure McCammon hasn't either.

Which scene was your favorite?

Not out to spoil what meager enjoyment there is in the book by giving out too much information but the final shoot out is probably the best part of the book.

Was The Five worth the listening time?

I feel the narrator did as good a job as possible considering the material he was working with. I did listen to the end, thinking he might redeem it and make it all worth while...He didin't.

Any additional comments?

I definitely don't want to turn people off of McCammon's work. "Swan's Song" is brilliant and if audible ever does a unabridged version of "Boy's LIfe", well, it's one of my all time favorite books and you can see just how great a writer McCammon can be.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing book from an amazing writer!

I chose this book because I love Robert McCammon's early American series. Historical mysteries are my main interest, but he is such a good author that I took a chance on this story - and I am sure glad I did! This story is amazing. It takes a little while to get into the flow, but if you read McCammon, you'd best prick up your ears from the very first word, becuaue every sentence and scene is there for a reason.

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