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Lou Berney writes with gentle power here. I respect tight plotting, dimensional characters, and a story arc that's nimble and quick as a mechanical rabbit teasing runners on a dog track. There's just no down side to "The Long and Faraway Gone". Its ensemble's cut and pasted from different places in time and Berney uses them to create two whodunits that ride parallel tracks seamlessly and comfortably. Wyatt, a troubled PI and Julianna the traumatized nurse share a common neurosis - each triggered by mysterious tragedies that happened long ago and faraway from the moment where they live today.
Brian Hutchison and Amy McFadden share a note-perfect talent to deepen this complex story way farther than I'd have imagined if I merely read this novel. Look up there... I gave Bermey, McFadden and Hutchison 15 stars! And I only stopped 'cause I couldn't figure out how to sniggle more into the star-space.
You like mysteries that resonate literary as well? I do and I'll look for more Berney books... Right now!
67 of 68 people found this review helpful
Would you consider the audio edition of The Long and Faraway Gone to be better than the print version?
I haven't read the print version. I always prefer the audiobook, as a good one gives you the gift of the narrators' performance, which, when it's excellent, is like a twelve hour movie in which you can cast the actors.
Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?
Yes. It's very clever. Alternating characters between Giuliana and Wyatt turns out to be an excellent device, as both are very talented readers, and the material which Mr. Berney has given them to read is just great. Sometimes I had to stifle my own laughter, because I didn't want to miss the next joke. Seriously, or, srsly, as my 23 yr old son would text that word. The disappearance of Genevieve Morales and the brutal murders/robbery at the movie theater are woven together masterfully. Some might feel that it goes on a bit long, and that Giuliana's pursuit of her sister's fate is obsessive, but those are quibbles. Mr. Berney's first book, Gutshot Straight (I believe) was great. The second book was not so good, but this third book is Mr. Berney's best work, and I hope it garners a larger audience for him. Like Tim Hallinan, who recommended this author to me, Mr. Berney is a very entertaining writer. He is so inventive and humorous and creative that he is irresistible. Have fun.
Which character – as performed by Brian Hutchison and Amy McFadden – was your favorite?
I think that both of the main characters are just excellent. The secondary characters also come alive (even those who are no longer with us) and the plot twists are interwoven so cleverly that you wonder: why aren't there more authors who can write like this?
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
The confrontation between Giuliana and the thug Crowley at the lake is amazing. You just cannot believe that she is giving this sleazebag ("he lies like he breathes," according to one cop) $20K in cash to tell her utterly useless information that might well be a pack of lies. Crowley is a perfectly drawn psychopath. He could be training material for a course in Psychopathology.
Any additional comments?
Nope. Buy this book right now. You will LYAO (laugh your a-- off) for many pleasureable hours. I guarantee it, as some clothing salesman once said. What a hustle.
59 of 62 people found this review helpful