Murder on Nob Hill : Sarah Woolson

  • by Shirley Tallman
  • Narrated by Anna Fields
  • Series: Sarah Woolson
  • 8 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This book is one of a new series featuring Sarah Woolson, an intelligent, outspoken young attorney in San Francisco in 1889. Sarah Woolson has always dreamed of becoming a lawyer. The trouble is that, in 1880, everyone believes a woman belongs in the home, married and taking care of babies. Using her brains and a little bit of subterfuge, Sarah somehow manages to finagle her way into one of the city's most prestigious law firms, becoming an associate attorney and acquiring her very first client, a lovely young society matron accused of brutally stabbing to death her wealthy but abusive husband. Sarah's sure of her client's innocence, but with the discovery of her secret lover, it becomes nearly impossible to prove.
When four more victims fall prey to the killer's knife, Sarah fears she's bitten off more than she can chew. Bucking her boorish employer, the judicial system, and the very people who should have been on her side, Sarah finds herself embroiled in shady legal maneuvers, a daring Chinatown raid, a secret and very scandalous sex club, and the most powerful and dangerous tong lord in the city's Chinese District.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Delightful

This is a delightful book. While I usually like more contemporary settings for my mysteries, having this book set in a "more civilized" time was really enjoyable. Sarah Woolson is a woman before her time, aspiring to a man's job in a man's world. It's a reminder that there was a time when "women's rights" were a novelty. Thankfully, the author avoided stereotypically portraying the men as stupid and the women as strong and all knowing. Indeed, the characters are believable and well distinguished. The plot is nicely paced and nothing important is given away before its time. Best of all, Anna Fields is in top form. She reads this with great enthusiasm and sounds like she really enjoyed herself. Her characterizations are phenomenal!
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- Dawn

Major disappointment

This book had been well recommended, and I was looking forward to it. Unfortunately, it has been difficult to hang in there with it. I'm about half finished, and would drop it if my "I paid for it so I'll finish it" mentality would let me. The protagonist is preachy and self-righteous. I can't decide if her total lack of charm is due to the writing or the narration, but Sarah Woolsen is an arrogant man-hating prig. And actually, only a couple women receive the Sarah Woolsen Seal of Approval. The rest are too weak, colorless, and submissive, in her estimation. Most of he men, so far, are portrayed as boorish or boring. (Honestly, men aren't really all that bad! Some of them are downright wonderful!!) Yes, this was before suffrage, etc., but does it have to be hammered home over and over again in such a forthright "up on a soap-box fashion"? Constant interjections of moral/social pronouncements are artificlal, reeking of "holier-than-thou" attitude.
If you are a listener with an agenda similar to Sarah Woolsen's you'll love this book. It will give you lots of chances to stand up, cheer, reach for the nearest meat cleaver, and poise yourself to implant it in the head of the first man who walks by...poor unfortunate soul. If you are seeking a "cozy" mystery with a charming quality, look elsewhere.
The Narration is labored. The narrator tries hard to do all the men's voices, but honestly, a more straightforward style would be preferable. After a little while, the male voices all sound the same. Instead of adding to the story, it gets to be a huge distraction. And the narrator's inflections make Sarah that much more unlikeable.
I realize my review is not politically correct, but I would rather hear a great story than be PC. It is not my desire to be a downer, but Sarah started it first!
Only 4 more hours to go...Sigh
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- Eunice

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-07-2004
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.