The Innocent: A Vanessa Michael Munroe Novel, Book 2 : Vanessa Munroe

  • by Taylor Stevens
  • Narrated by Hillary Huber
  • Series: Vanessa Munroe
  • 12 hrs and 26 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

With The Innocent, Taylor Stevens, the best-selling author of The Informationist, returns with another blockbuster thriller featuring the fearless Vanessa Michael Munroe.
Eight years ago, a man walked five-year-old Hannah out the front doors of her school and spirited her over the Mexican border, taking her into the world of a cult known as The Chosen. For eight years, followers of The Prophet have hidden the child, moving her from country to country, shielding the man who stole her.
Now, those who’ve searched the longest know where to find her. They are childhood survivors of The Chosen, thirty-somethings born and raised inside the cult who’ve managed to make lives for themselves on the outside. They understand the mindset, the culture within that world, and turn to Vanessa Michael Munroe for help, knowing that the only possibility of stealing Hannah back and getting her safely out of Argentina is to trust someone who doesn’t trust them, and get Munroe on the inside.
Tautly written, brilliantly paced, and with the same evocation of the exotic combined with chilling violence that made The Informationist such a success, The Innocent confirms Taylor Stevens’ reputation as a thriller writer of the first rank.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The Sequel That Isn't Equal

My understanding is that this is the second of a trilogy that Taylor Stevens is writing that features the character Munroe. I read The Informationist (book one) and thought it was entertaining enough to go another round. "I wanted to like this," sounds like an idiotic thing to say--of course you want to like anything you read--but alas, wanting didn't make it so, and I reluctantly have to say this was a bit of a stinker. Definitely several notches down from The Informationist. You can't say the author doesn't know her material (having escaped her own cult upbringing), but aside from her lucid observations of the cult mentality, the story stumbles, fettered by cliches and predictability, and falls flat. Had narrator Hillary Huber not made this such a smooth and painless listen--I probably would not have stuck it out.
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- Mel

An excellent story - will pull you in

Every now and then I pick up an audiobook that just sucks me in and when I emerge from the other side of it, all I remember is the rush of the ride and none of the rocks I may have bounced off along the way. This is one of those books. The slow build of tension, the moments of lightning quick violence, the vivid settings, and the well-developed characters that seemed almost real kept me listening until all hours of the morning.

Munroe is a fascinating character and in the second book in this series the reader gets more insight into the complexity of her psychological makeup as well as the changes she’s undergoing based on events in the previous book and the choices she makes in this one. The story plays itself out with both a sense of inevitability, like a boulder building speed down a long slope, as well as sharp moments of action. Layered in with the physical action that drives the story forward are the instances of recognition and connection the reader can find with any/all of these fully-formed characters.

Hillary Huber’s narration was excellent. I often take issue with the performance of narrators who present with a very specific and structured cadence but in this case, Huber’s rough voice and deliberate pacing and delivery admirably ratchets up the tension and adeptly portrays Munroe’s moral ambivalence and matter-of-fact attitude toward doing what needs to be done. The characters are easy to track through sections of dialogue and I experienced an almost physical shiver while listening to the voices given two specific characters whose belief in what they were doing, combined with the fact that what they did was just wrong, was masterfully blended together to create a complex vocal portrayal.
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- Kelli

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-27-2011
  • Publisher: Random House Audio