When the Bough Breaks

An Alex Delaware Novel
Narrated by: John Rubinstein
Series: Alex Delaware (abridged), Book 1
Length: 3 hrs and 1 min
3.8 out of 5 stars (116 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Child psychologist Alex Delaware thought he'd put it all behind him - all the tense hours of dealing with disturbed kids and their equally disturbed parents. But he can't resist Melody Quinn. Pathetically skinny with huge, frightened eyes, 7-year-old Melody is the only witness the LAPD has in a grisly double murder.

"Two hours of your time...that's all it will take," says Alex's friend, Detective Milo Sturgis. Delaware quickly finds it's not that simple. What the little girl saw becomes a personal obsession that threatens his career and his life. Snared in a web of evil that stretches from the barrio to an elite island community, he approaches a ghastly secret that makes even murder seem like child's play.

©1988 Jonathan Kellerman and Bantam Audio Publishing (P)1988 Bantam Audio Publishing, Random House AudioBooks, a Division of Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"A compelling, exceptionally exciting thriller!" (The New York Times)
"Suspenseful, neatly spun, fascinating...spooky." (Philadelphia Daily News)

What listeners say about When the Bough Breaks

Average Customer Ratings
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Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Insufficiently Audible

An interesting plot, although the hero has too many wonderful qualities to be believable. The biggest problem is the recording - the reader's voice sounds muffled, and it's often very difficult to find out what is being said.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

I liked this mystery.

I bought this mystery on a whim, but once I started to listen to it I couldn't stop. The protagonist's obsession to solve the mystery becomes personal and that's when the action explodes into every corner of his life.

The dramatic music was entertaining, but also ruined a few moments in the book for me because it cued me to know what was coming next.

The narrator made the characters come to life with his ever changing voice. I liked his articulations of softly spoken females, foreign accents, and high-pitched voices of children.
The book is short, but entertaining and I'm going to listen to When The Bough Breaks again and again.

5 people found this helpful

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

Ordinary and dull

The plot was obvious; the surprises non-existent. I was bored. I would not recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Butchered

This book is a prime example of why I normally buy unabridged books. I admire the clear thought process of Jonathan Kellerman, but this title was so badly butchered there was no story line. Whole segments are obviously missing. The book hardly starts before we are jumping to the thrilling conclusion with no clue how we got there. It was a waste of money.

1 person found this helpful

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

terrible reading!

The book itself is awesome! The reader is terrible and the "music" in the background at certian points made me feel like I was listening to a porno! I don't want to hear music while they are reading, just read the book! Would've only given 1 star for overall and p er rformance but apparently 2 is the lowest it will take.

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

Excellent!

The first book is always the best. I have rad all of his books and was thrilled when I saw this on audible.

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

Good story, fas t paced, a few twists

The story was good, the narration was good, the music throughout the narration was obnoxious and off-putting

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

Super Listen!

I've always liked Jonathan Kellerman's books. They're always read by very good actors. I enjoy them immensely.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book

The first of the Alex Delaware novels and a little more simplistic than others that followed. Still a great read.