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Publisher's Summary

Few authors inspire the kind of passion that Arturo Pérez-Reverte does. Reviewers, readers, and booksellers alike have embraced his fiction as the perfect blend of suspense and literary ambition. A global best seller, he is one of the most admired and widely read authors in the world. And his stunning new novel is his best yet. A remarkable tale, The Queen of the South spans continents, from the dusty streets of Mexico to the sparkling waters off the coast of Morocco, to Spain and the Strait of Gibraltar. A sweeping story set to the irresistible beat of the drug smugglers' ballads, it encompasses sensuality and cruelty, love and betrayal, as its heroine's story unfolds. Teresa Mendoza's boyfriend is a drug smuggler who the narcos of Sinaloa, Mexico, call "the king of the short runway", because he can get a plane full of coke off the ground in 300 yards. But in a ruthless business, life can be short, and Teresa even has a special cell phone that Guero gave her along with a dark warning. If that phone rings, it means he's dead, and she'd better run, because they're coming for her next. Then the call comes. In order to survive, she will have to say goodbye to the old Teresa, an innocent girl who once entrusted her life to a drug smuggler. She will have to find inside herself a woman who is tough enough to inhabit a world as ugly and dangerous as that of the narcos, a woman she never before knew existed. Indeed, the woman who emerges will surprise even those who know her legend, that of the Queen of the South.
©2002 Arturo Perez-Reverte, Translation ©2004 Andrew Hurley; (P)2004 Penguin Audio and Books on Tape, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"A frightening, fascinating look at the international business of transporting cocaine and hashish as well as a portrait of a smart, fast, daring and lucky woman, Teresa Mendoza." (Publishers Weekly)
"A thriller with an almost meditative tone, the novel's energy comes not only from the action scenes, which are expertly delivered, but also from the monologues in which Mendoza struggles with the multiple contradictions in her life. Many Perez-Reverte readers will be...drawn in by the author's remarkable eloquence and ability to plumb the recesses of a character's psyche." (Booklist)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Jessica on 09-07-11

excellent story unfortunate narratio

The story is excellent, I love this author and have read several of his books, however the narration on this particular book was beyond bad. The narrator's pronunciation of the Spanish words made it impossible for me to listen to, I wouldn't expect excellent pronunciation but this was just horrible. I never finished it, I bought the book and read it. I would not recommend the audible version.

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8 of 9 people found this review helpful


By Maria Jette on 01-06-15

Monotonous, inaccurate narration

What disappointed you about The Queen of the South?

A very long book, which seemed ten times its length thanks to the stultifying monotone of the narrator! It was one of the most robotic readings I've ever heard, and I listen to books continually. To add to the irritation, it's full of Spanish words, and about 40% of them were mispronounced. I cringed every time Don Epifanio's name had to be mentioned again-- epifa-NEE-o, as she interpreted it. Some repeated words got different pronunciations as she went along. Absolutely no characterization of the zillions of characters-- they might have all been the same person- with the exception of a couple of characters toward the end, who suddenly sported unplaceable accents. Just one of the worst audio experiences I've had! I would've given up after the first couple of hours, but I found the book itself unpleasant enough that I knew marooning myself in the car with it was the only chance I had of getting through it-- I was reading it for a bookclub. I do NOT recommend this performance-- and while I'm not a fan of the book, I wonder how much of my antipathy stems from the performance. If I were the author, I'd ask for it to be re-recorded with a superior narrator.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

least interesting: endless descriptions of speedboats and motors and other technical things. Perhaps it was an homage to MOBY DICK's famous pages of whaling minutiae!

How could the performance have been better?

I fear that reader may be a hopeless cause. That sort of monotone in an adult doesn't just go away! however, she, or a director, could've made sure they at least got all the Spanish right.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Bitter disappointment! Also, irritation at the number of hours squandered listening to it.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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