Shot in the Heart

  • by Mikal Gilmore
  • Narrated by Will Patton
  • 3 hrs and 30 mins
  • Abridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

National Book Critics Circle Award, Biography/Autobiography, 1995
Mikal Gilmore is the youngest brother of Gary Gilmore, executed at his own urging for the murder of two innocent men. His execution by firing squad in 1977 was the first enactment of the death penalty in America in over a decade; it became the first of many, inspiring a new enthusiasm, some believe, for capital punishment in the U.S. Gary Gilmore's last days became the subject of The Executioner's Song, an award-winning book by Norman Mailer and a television film starring Tommy Lee Jones.But the true story of Gary Gilmore lies in the story of his family, a painful and difficult one that has taken Mikal Gilmore many years to face. In researching his family's history, he searched through 300 years of ancestral records, many of which were provided by the extensive archives of the Mormon Church - the history of which plays a fascinating role in this haunting memoir. Mikal also tracked down lost family members, discovering in the end a story even more troubling than his memories.In an eloquent, mesmerizing voice, Mikal Gilmore weaves us through generations of his family's history to uncover the sources that led Gary Gilmore to murder, and the crippling aftermath of Gary's deed on his family. A vital and deeply American story, Shot in the Heart raises many compelling issues of concern in a country that grows ever more violent.

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What the Critics Say

"Articulate, brave, and heartbreaking." (Kirkus Reviews)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

too bad it's abridged

This is the first audiobook I ever read, but since then I have heard hundreds. It remains one of my favorites, although I believe it is a crime to abridge books, and didn't realize they did such a thing when I bought it years ago. Mikal Gilmore is a wonderful writer, and the story of his family is haunting and transfixing. He paints a portrait of his family, beginning with his mysterious paternal grandmother and his mother's mormon family in Utah, and reviewing the physical and psychological destruction that follows. It is far better than any Stephen King novel, and it is the true story of a family, told by its only successful member.
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- Lisa

Affected writing and production

The story, although dark and troubling, is moving. The writing is a bit affected -- the author tries too hard to be expressive and insightful. The same over-effort can be seen in the production as well. The narrators?f whispery voice is too dramatic and the musical interludes remind me more of Public Radio's Mystery Theater than a narrated book. The overall effect is the feeling of someone trying to manipulate the listener?fs emotions. This is a book that I would recommend, but it could be much better if the author and producers didn't try so hard for the dramatic and theatrical.
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- Enquiring Mind

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-12-2001
  • Publisher: Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio