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The Suspect

Length: 10 hrs and 54 mins
4 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of The Widow returns with a brand new novel of twisting psychological suspense about every parent's worst nightmare.... 

When two 18-year-old girls go missing in Thailand, their families are thrust into the international spotlight: desperate, bereft and frantic with worry. What were the girls up to before they disappeared? 

Journalist Kate Waters always does everything she can to be first to the story, first with the exclusive, first to discover the truth - and this time is no exception. But she can't help but think of her own son, whom she hasn't seen in two years, since he left home to go travelling. 

As the case of the missing girls unfolds, they will all find that even this far away, danger can lie closer to home than you might think.... 

Cover credit: Richard Shailer

©2018 Fiona Barton (P)2018 Audible, Ltd

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Simon
  • Simon
  • 01-29-19

Kate's Muddied Waters

This is another well-written delivery from Fiona Barton, with her proven lead Kate Waters once again pitched into a dark story. This time though the lines are blurred and the waters muddied as an incredible coincidence drags Kate in far deeper than she would have imagined. Barton delivers her main characters well and there is a lot of human interest in the background, it's a fairly compelling read once again in that sense. The premise of two young girls travelling alone to Thailand, both very different characters, both divided in what they wanted to experience during the trip is definitely an interesting one.

It's also pretty well narrated though both main narrators didn't feel perfectly suited. Clare Corbett made the male characters sound just a little bit gormless at times and Mark Meadows never felt quite right depicting Detective Sparks. The performances are good overall though.

Unfortunately though I wasn't hugely taken by the book. It moved fairly slowly and a lot was revealed early meaning that it took a long time for the reveals at the end, and possibly unluckily for me most of the later twists turned out according to my guesses and it seemed to take a long time to confirm what I already thought I knew. That happens sometimes, you just happen to guess right. Plenty of other people seem to have enjoyed it much more than me.

I still really like the Kate Walters character and the Detective Sparks back story is quite touching with you would suspect much more to come! So I'm sure I'll still look out for future books in the series but this one didn't light any fires for me.

24 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • R
  • 01-25-19

Gripping

Never before have I walked around my house talking (sometimes shouting) out loud to characters in an audiobook. The tension was almost unbearable - I was so invested that I binge listened to the whole thing in one day.

Definitely listen to the previous two books first if you can.

29 of 31 people found this review helpful

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  • lucy adams
  • 01-27-19

Gripping

Really enjoyed this and the first book I’ve listened to in just one day ! Narration was spot on final twist came along just as I thought I had it all figured out.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • D
  • 02-15-19

Nice twists that were ruined by bad narration.

I thought this book was well written. Just your basic crime drama. Super explanatory and perhaps with too many characters but overall a nice, average story. I figured out most of the twists early on but that's because this book was very formulaic and by the numbers. It did not take away from my enjoyment of the story.

What did take away from my enjoyment was some of the narration. I'm a huge Clare Corbett fan and I usually get books because of her narration. As usual, she was great and the only bright spot in the book. Mark Meadows was not memorable but was ok. However, the other two female narrators kept taking me out of the story. They just didn't fit with rest of the book. I was especially frustrated with whoever narrated the Alex character. That dry, deadpan voice grated on my nerves. There was just no LIFE IN HER Voice. I don't understand how one voices an 18 year old girl but sounds like she's reading Bible scriptures or the weather forecast. My goodness, it's a story! Please don't ruin what could have been an enjoyable experience with such a monotonous tone. I got so frustrated that I just started skipping her parts in the book. Good grief.

I don't mind that the characters all felt a little underdeveloped and I didn't actually care about any of them (ha, maybe that's how the Alex narrator felt) because I really like unraveling the mystery and finding our whodunnit and why. But it would have been nice if there'd been one interesting character with whom I could relate or at least care about. I think the part about the officer (police chief?) whose wife died was a nice try but overall it felt forced as we never met the dying wife so... Ah well she died. That whole B story felt forced and I found it a bit tedious to get through. But I always hate when crime thrillers try to give us insight or back story for the detectives etc. I don't care about the detectives. I just want to know whodunnit and why. Give me back story on the victims and culprits and stop with the unnecessary filler information.

I like Fiona Barton's writing. Her story concepts are good and the summaries are usually enough to get me to buy the book. But I'm never quite satisfied in the end. There's just always something a little lacking in the story that leaves me feeling a bit empty.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Alia
  • 02-04-19

Just not as good as The Widow

I just ploughed on with The Suspect. The narration was disjointed by the multiple voices, and the story was predictable, unadventurous and disappointing.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Cabaspre
  • 02-01-19

Not as good as I had hoped

Clare Corbett somehow made the men voices sound really drippy and has used the same "male" voices in past books. Rather annoying. The story itself was okay but somehow predictable and felt as though twists and turns had to be put in to add interest. I just have a feeling this may have been rushed out to publication and probably with a second one in mind with love interest between the detective and the press!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Sandra
  • 10-02-19

Good story poor narration

Interesting storyline but ruined by the male narrator. The Sparks character accent annoying and the narrator’s attempts at female voices sounded like a pantomime dame!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Pootle_around
  • 02-06-19

Like a bad episode of Hollyoaks

I read "The Widow" a couple of years ago and it still is one of my top 20 books. However I struggled with the subsequent "The Child" but thought this new one, "The Suspect" might be worth a go. Unfortunately it missed the mark for me. Predictable plot and quite early on I'd worked out what happened. Kept waiting for an amazing twist but sadly I was disappointed. The parts narrated by the young women played out like a bad cheesy Hollyoaks story line. I'm sure I was never that pathetic at their age and the silly, childish arguments about boys was just cringeworthy. I've returned this book but I will still keep my eyes peeled for any further offerings from Fiona Barton. The narrator of Kate was excellent, though a little shrill for my tastes, and the one narrating Alex was wooden and lacked any sort of emotion. Will be returning this one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Sigrin
  • Sigrin
  • 10-10-19

Another Kate Waters instalment


I have listened to all of Fiona Barton novels and despite not liking her leading lady Kate Waters I seem to return for more.

I think the formula works well although using a reporter with less than the best scruples and morals makes me personally feel less than comfortable.

Great narration although the voice of Alex is a real sulky teenager.

Despite all said above, Ms Bartonhe does deliver a good book, and I would highly recommend and suggest you read them in order to get the most from the book.

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  • Milly63
  • 10-10-19

Interesting storyline but terrible narration

The subject of this storyline is topical with so many young people backpacking now and it show the dangers of travelling and dealing with a different justice system and culture. The story slowly unfolded and there were a few twists along the way which makes you want to know the end although when this comes it is a little flat and predictable. Although I enjoyed the intrigue I didn't particularly like any of the characters. I wish I had read this book as the narration was very poor in parts. Kate and Bob's voices were on the whole OK although it appeared that when Bob was in a chapter with Kate a different narrator was used which sounded like a gruff female smoker. I actually didn't mind Alex's voice which sounded OK for a fed up 18 year old when things weren't going as she wanted. There were male and female narrators and yet male narrators played female roles and vice versa and the result was very poor. The girl's mothers sounded like posh neurotic shrieking creatures better suited to a pantomime. The female to male narration sounded like a female smoker from the east end. There were also inconsistencies within a scene where Momma went from having a generic south east Asian accent with broken English to a British one. In short I would recommend that you buy the book and read it and avoid the audible version at all costs

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-02-19

Easy listening

I don't often listen or read fiction books but I wanted an easy listen on a long flight and that is exactly what this is.
The story line is good, with a few twists and turns which keeps it interesting.
The chapters are short so its easy to go in and out of listening to.
The narration is ok, some of the voices didn't seem to fit but nothing to put me off.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Lexi
  • 02-12-19

Excellent (as always!)

My new fave author! Kept me guessing till the end, likeable main characters and all round enjoyable read, can’t wait for her next book!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Georgina
  • 10-02-19

Compelling

The story and performance are compelling. Kept me hooked till the end. Well written and performed.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-15-19

Kept me intrigued

Enjoyed the mix of narrators and the style of the telling. Easy to pick up the thread each time I listened.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-15-19

Cultural insensitivity.

Portrayal of Thai doctors accents in this book were unnecessary and offensive. If it’s imperative to the story, hire someone who can accurately play the part.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-08-19

Average

Lame story made worse by the narration, especially the male (terrible). I won't purchase another by this author. her first book was....okay, nothing special.

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  • Bonnie B
  • 05-07-19

Incredible Writing - Loved Every Moment

Jumping from perspective to perspective, The Suspect is a deeply intriguing novel about two missing girls, and an ensuing murder case. The narration is excellent for all and I found the characters easy to understand and comprehend as the story proceeds.
It's a well-written thrilling story that is wild enough to shock you, but realistic enough to bring the chill of 'this could be me' into the equation. The bittersweet mixture of sadness, frustration, loss and guilt is prevalent throughout the entire novel.

While there are many 'plot twist' moments, there is one final twist, toward the very end, that truly surprised and stunned me. I read a lot of psychological thrillers, and am not often caught by surprise with a twist, however in this case, I was. I went back and listened to it once or twice more, just to experience the entirety of its meaning.

Overall, a really well-executed and heartfelt novel that I will likely read again and will certainly be recommending.

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  • carol Vona
  • 04-30-19

Great story

Love Fiona Barton’s stories. Great narrators and characters every time. This book was hard to stop listening to and can almost be taken as a true story. Loved it.

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  • Matthew
  • 04-15-19

A journalist-mystery as opposed to a “detective” mystery

Casting multiple voice actors to voice one another’s characters as their own characters interact, is interesting though sometimes a tad distracting, as listeners familiarise particular voices with respective people.
For this production, unlike some wherein different voices are heard at the same time as in reality, the chapters are each read entirely by the respective actor whose appointed character said chapters happen to be narrating from their perspective.

The story as a whole, is occasionally confusing, due to the aforementioned, but is increasingly enticing towards the end with a superb, if a little unsettling conclusion.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 04-14-19

Blah

The story is predictable and uninteresting, whilst I found narrators to be sub par. Wouldn't recommend.