Mississippi Blood : Penn Cage

  • by Greg Iles
  • Narrated by Scott Brick
  • Series: Penn Cage
  • 28 hrs and 9 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The endgame is at hand for Penn Cage, his family, and the enemies bent on destroying them in this revelatory volume in the epic trilogy set in modern-day Natchez, Mississippi - Greg Iles' epic tale of love and honor, hatred and revenge that explores how the sins of the past continue to haunt the present.
Shattered by grief and dreaming of vengeance, Penn Cage sees his family and his world collapsing around him. The woman he loves is gone, his principles have been irrevocably compromised, and his father, once a paragon of the community that Penn leads as mayor, is about to be tried for the murder of a former lover. Most terrifying of all, Dr. Cage seems bent on self-destruction. Despite Penn's experience as a prosecutor in major murder trials, his father has frozen him out of the trial preparations - preferring to risk dying in prison to revealing the truth of the crime to his son.
During 40 years practicing medicine, Tom Cage made himself the most respected and beloved physician in Natchez, Mississippi. But this revered Southern figure has secrets known only to himself and a handful of others. Among them, Tom has a second son, the product of a 1960s affair with his devoted African American nurse, Viola Turner. It is Viola who has been murdered, and her bitter son - Penn's half brother - who sets in motion the murder case against his father. The resulting investigation exhumes dangerous ghosts from Mississippi's violent past. In some way that Penn cannot fathom, Viola Turner was a nexus point between his father and the Double Eagles, a savage splinter cell of the KKK. More troubling still, the long-buried secrets shared by Dr. Cage and the former Klansmen may hold the key to the most devastating assassinations of the 1960s. The surviving Double Eagles will stop at nothing to keep their past crimes buried, and with the help of some of the most influential men in the state, they seek to ensure that Dr. Cage either takes the fall for them or takes his secrets to an early grave.
Tom Cage's murder trial sets a terrible clock in motion, and unless Penn can pierce the veil of the past and exonerate his father, his family will be destroyed. Unable to trust anyone around him - not even his own mother - Penn joins forces with Serenity Butler, a famous young black author who has come to Natchez to write about his father's case. Together Penn and Serenity - a former soldier - battle to crack the Double Eagles and discover the secret history of the Cage family and the South itself, a desperate move that risks the only thing they have left to gamble: their lives.
Mississippi Blood is the enthralling conclusion to a breathtaking trilogy seven years in the making - one that has kept listeners on the edges of their seats.

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What the Critics Say

"It takes gravitas and a quiet dignity to capture the people caught in a racial maelstrom in this concluding volume of Iles's atmospheric trilogy. Narrator Scott Brick lends both these qualities to this audiobook's central characters... Thanks to Brick's stellar narration, this lengthy production never drags, and listeners will want to visit Penn's Natchez again as a result." (AudioFile)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

This book hooked me during the prologue ! WOW'!!!

This is such a good book, I almost think it's the best in this trilogy. I was completely hooked within the first few minutes of starting it with the prologue. Wow! Kaitlin has been murdered and Daniel Kelly is missing in Afghanistan. Tom Cage is going on trial and Penn is falling apart.
The bulk of this book takes place in or around the courtroom. Quentin Avery is the attorney but not putting up much of a defense. Everyone begins thinking that he has either lost his courtroom savvy or has dementia.
The story continues by dragging in everyone from past books to come to terms with any evils they may have perpetrated (not just this trilogy, but from prior books as well). Throw the Double Eagles in and a threat on the Cage family lives and you've got a real nail biter going on.
I can't say more without spoiling the book or the outcome for anyone, suffice to say it is a riveting story that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
I can't say enough about this book other than to HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you get it.
If you found this review helpful please indicate so.
Thank You.
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- shelley

Disappointing End to a Long Awaited Conclusion

*POSSIBLE SPOILERS*
I was so incredibly excited when I saw this book in the "Featured Pre-Orders" section, having loved Natchez Burning and the Bone Tree I could not wait for it's release. To begin, I find most people love or hate Scott Brick--I love him but did find his performance in this book to be somewhat over dramatic. That being said, it wasn't intolerable to me.
Moving on, I have to admit I was really hoping that Caitlin's death was some sort of play by the FBI to protect her as a federal witness. While her death was fitting considering her penchant towards putting herself in dangerous situations I felt as though having Penn Cage lose two women who played such a prominent role in his life was somewhat setting him up for martyrdom. Additionally, I assume making Caitlin pregnant at the time of her death was to add to Penn's grief. Yet, his ability to move so swiftly into another sexual relationship was intensely disappointing for me. He states, at one point to his sister, "I haven't been with anyone since Caitlin's death"...but Caitlin had only been dead for 3 months! Had Isles spent any time expressing some inner conflict held by Cage in entering this relationship, I may have found it more respectable. As it was, I found this aspect of the novel to do an exceptional disservice to Caitlin's memory as well as the longstanding relationship they had held.
Next, I found the courtroom scenes unrealistic, specifically the cross examination of Dr. Cage. While it was certainly established that Avery's performance at the beginning of the trial seemed incompetent, at the time of the cross examination that had supposedly changed. And yet the DA spent more time going off on tangents that were so obviously objectionable it was ridiculous. While there was one sustained objection, it continued to play out that way through the course of the cross examination right up to the end. Additionally, Penn persistently commented on how Johnson had the jury's rapt attention, giving the "best closing argument I have ever heard". However, by the end Penn felt more than confident his father would be acquitted based on the fact that Dr. Cage stated he had the lethal drug responsible for Viola's death in his bag and didn't use it. At this information the DA was thrown into a tizzy, knocked off his game, not previously having that information. This made absolutely no sense to me. Wouldn't Dr. Cage's confession he had the drug point more to his guilt than innocence? And finally, why didn't the DA call Penn to the stand? Whether he had any revealing information or not, given their longstanding contentious relationship this would seem like an obvious move.
I gave this novel 4 stars because I absolutely love Greg Isles and the previous two books in this series were among the best I've ever read. But I have to admit the final installment felt somewhat contrived and not very well thought out. I don't believe this is the end of the Penn Cage series and will continue to read whatever Isles puts out. However, I do hope more thought goes into creating situations that are more believable in the future.
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- Calmeridian Tink

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-21-2017
  • Publisher: HarperAudio