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Publisher's Summary

Tormented and racked with guilt over the brutal slaying of his wife and daughter, Charlie Parker, ex-cop with the NYPD, agrees to track down a missing girl. It is a search that will lead him into an abyss of evil.
At the same time, he is warned by an old black woman in Louisiana that "The Travelling Man" is about to strike again. Multiple strands converge with a horrific confrontation in which hunter and hunted are intimately connected by guilt.
©1999 John Connolly (P)2003 ISIS Publishing Ltd
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Customer Reviews

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By Claude on 10-31-17

A symphony of noir and macabre

This is the first installment of the Charlie Parker series. A well-written rollercoaster of pain and loss that will grab you by the throat and never let go.
The plot is intricate, the characters well-developed.
Literary references are undeniable and well-put.
I had a great time listening to the narrator. He effortlessly led me through this nightmarish episode with elan and a captivating and mysterious cadence of words.

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By knittyboot on 07-03-12

good book if you like this kind of thing

This is the first in the Charlie Parker series and I'd listen to this before listening to any of the others as it's story is often referred to in the other books. The story is very much in the style of the Phillip Marlow books; lots of hard boiled patter and tough guy philosophising. This gives it an old fashioned feel so it just depends on whether you like your detectives macho and just a tiny bit cheesy; I do and so loved this book. It's also worth noting that the murders are truly gruesome so if you've got a weak stomach I'd avoid this title. Turns out I'd read this title years ago and remembered who the murderer was half way through listening but this didn't lessen my enjoyment. It does on the other hand make it difficult to assess the effectiveness of the red herrings and eventual twist but as I said before even knowing who did it didn’t spoil my enjoyment. The narration really fits the story; an inspired choice of reader

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11 of 11 people found this review helpful

By P1969 on 02-21-15

Gratuitous violence wrapped in stodgy prose

Where do you start with this one? Jeff Harding's reading is clearly the best feature of this audiobook: his gravelly voice lends some credence even to the most hackneyed prose and he is surprisingly good at female characters (also in Lee Child adaptations and Carl Hiaasen books). But even he cannot rescue this.
The book is far too long and rolls two barely connected stories into one. Or rather, you get one story about gruesome child killing and torture at the end of which everyone is left dead and then another one starts that involves live flaying and arranging of corpses into positions depicted in obscure Renaissance studies of anatomy. Their only connection is an improbable link between two different sets of perpetrator. Both are equally risible stories that might have had a semblance of originality before Patricia Cornwell and Thomas Harris wrote their books. And I do resent that nothing in the short plot synopsis on audible prepares you for the sheer salaciousness of the violence.
Do listen to this if you have low expectations of prose; if you fancy endless descriptions of guns and gun battles; if you don't mind spotting the killer three hours before the ploddy reveal; if your murders must be serial, horrific, involve children and women, torture and gratuitous detail; if you haven't yet had your fill of cliches in terms of melancholic, haunted ex-cops, pathology lab-speak, outlandish violence, cardboard serial killers with zero psychology and metaphysical twaddle about the nature of evil.
If I hadn't been on the longest motorway journey ever with the only alternative being a series of uninspiring radio programmes, I would have stopped. On reflection, Gardener's Question Time on a loop would have been less torturous than this. Awful.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By delia on 05-03-17


Well all I can say is l won't be coming to America any time soon

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By Jolene on 05-23-16

I couldn't get into it...

I have read a lot of John Connollys books.. some time ago. I couldn't concentrate on the story and found it boring and hard to follow. I can't really put my finger on why. the narrator was okay, the story seemed interesting but ended up being jumbled and my mind kept meandering away from the story so I couldn't remember what was going on. I returned it before I finished it.

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