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Publisher's Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of 'Til Death Do Us Part transports listeners to 1930s California, where glamour and seduction spawn a multitude of sins.

At the exclusive Burning Cove Hotel on the coast of California, rookie reporter Irene Glasson finds herself staring down at a beautiful actress at the bottom of a pool. The dead woman had a red-hot secret about an up-and-coming leading man, a scoop that Irene couldn't resist. Seeking the truth about the drowning, Irene finds herself drawn to a master of deception.

Once a world-famous magician whose career was mysteriously cut short, Oliver Ward is now the owner of the hotel. He can't let scandal threaten his livelihood, even if it means trusting Irene, a woman who seems to have appeared in Los Angeles out of nowhere four months ago. With Oliver's help Irene soon learns that the glamorous paradise of Burning Cove hides dark and dangerous secrets. And that the past - always just out of sight - could drag them both under.

©2017 Jayne Ann Krentz (P)2017 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

Earlier Review Exactly Correct

This is the first Amanda Quick/Jayne Ann Krentz/ Jayne Castle I have ever read about which there is nothing to recommend.

Which is really odd because it sounds like a fascinating story. It has a retired magician wounded on stage by one of his own illusions. A heroine dressed in a wardrobe out of a Katherine Hepburn movie being chased across the country by murderer after a book of codes. I really looked forward to this book, but somehow the people who populate this story never really come to life.

I have always liked the character driven action of this author's stories.

This book is filled with people that seem to be interesting but not people that we really get to know. Oddly they don't seem to really connect with each other in the story.

I know that authors, like all other human beings grow and change professionally. But this book is so far from the Amanda Quick quirky, cheerful females who face each challenge with no thought of being defeated. When these women meet the inevitable set back they start off on another solution. The main characters in the middle books seem to like each other. The people in this novel don't even know each other. Well they are polite if wary strangers.

I agree with an earlier reviewer the narrator does do a lot of shouting. I think she is making up for the lack of drama and flat conversation. How being stalked by a murderer can make a person's conversation sound as if they are bored by the whole thing is quite a trick, but even the narrator couldn't breathe life into these people and Ms. Underwood does try.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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

1930's California?

While the story was good and the characters interesting, I didn't get a feel that this really took place in 1930s California. It could have easily been any other time or place. Also, having a narrator with a British accent was jarring. All characters were American, and her American accent was not convincing.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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

Typical Quick...

Strident narration. STOP YELLING!
Too many characters, too many side plots.
none of the usual Quick/Krentz humor.

The premise started well and I was looking forward to enjoying the closer to contemporary timeline and the California location, as I live there and Quick's books almost always take place in historical England.
I love anything by Krentz/Quick/Castle so I might have been able to bear with the characters, plots and lack of humor, but the strident narration drilled the other faults into my head. The narrator has a vaguely British accent herself, which means her American accents are just grating and the odd emphasis of often used phrases (BURNING cove) make listening difficult. Tanya Eby or one of the other usual Krantz narrators might have done a better job, and made this mediocre story pleasurable.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Pamela
  • Mt. Juliet, TN, United States
  • 06-07-17

Buy the book

I'm not sure what accent Ms. Underwood is using but it does not work at all. I'm a huge fan of Jane Ann Krentz in all her incarnations and I loved the old Hollywood time period but I just could not get past the bad narration. The story only got a two because I couldn't listen one more second. I will be returning the audio version and reading the book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

need more from this period

loved the strong heroine WELL able to speak her mind. performers accent was confusing. where were they? in England?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Great escape from my reality.

I have a high stress job and I try to take a walk outside the office every day. Listening to this during my walks took me out of my real world and its problems to a believable time and place. The improbable situations were well enough crafted to feel believable and re-enforced the enjoyment.

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

Do these "performances" not have directors?

Seriously. What's with the iffy Brit accent? Does no one listen to the voice actors to see that they are mispronouncing words, using incorrect inflections??? Amanda Quick (JAK) writes great books, and this one is no exception. But it is PAINFUL to listen to a reader who is somehow under the impression that a born and raised American character would sound like someone with a poor grasp of theatre speech. Please tell the "actors" to leave their pretensions at home and give us a decent, relatable character reading.

AND! This actor, and so many others I've heard, gives a new voice for a new character, say, for example, a high-pitched old man sort of voice, then in the next phrase --THE NEXT PHRASE -- reads the description of his voice as being deep and commanding..and they didn't go back and retape with a more appropriate voice??? Did the actor not read through the material even once before taping so that she was aware of that description??? Was their no director to point out the gaffe? No one willing/able to complain about the actually shocking mismatch? Crickets???

Do better people. Great authors deserve at least a mediocre reader, don't they? An amateur without affectations would be better than a "professional" who's so busy trying to be an "artiste" that she can't even see that her rendering has nothing to do with character, time or place. Seriously.

BTW, loved the book. Great start for a new series.

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

narrator distracting

the story was good. I love Amanda Quick. this narrator however was very distracting I wouldn't want to listen to another book that she was narrating.

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

1 star for narrator; 4 stars for story

I can't imagine why Recorded Books hired a woman with a British accent to narrate a story where all the characters are American and the story takes place in California. The entire thing is narrated in Louisa Jane Underwood's native British accent, except when the characters are speaking, and her American accent is atrocious. Her narration is so melodramatic and irritating I could not finish the book, though the story seemed to be entertaining enough.

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

Amanda Quick is back!!!

What a great story. My problem was with the narration. The performer made most of the characters sound like he or she was shouting. Only the hero, heroine, and villain spoke in a normal tone of voice. Other than that, I say Amanda Quick is back on her stride.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Fosca
  • 07-02-17

Irritating narrator

I am English but I found the accent irritating and the American accents worse. It was a real effort to listen to and completely spoiled the story.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Cecelia
  • 01-30-18

Ace

An extremely entertaining listen, good story, with enough twists to keep you listening all the way.