Regular price: $31.50

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
Select or Add a new payment method

Buy Now with 1 Credit

By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Buy Now for $31.50

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

In the first Alex Delaware novel, Dr. Morton Handler practiced a strange brand of psychiatry. Among his specialties were fraud, extortion, and sexual manipulation. Handler paid for his sins when he was brutally murdered in his luxurious Pacific Palisades apartment. The police have no leads, but they do have one possible witness: seven-year-old Melody Quinn.
It's psychologist Dr. Alex Delaware's job to try to unlock the terrible secret buried in Melody's memory. But as the sinister shadows in the girl's mind begin to take shape, Alex discovers that the mystery touches a shocking incident in his own past.
This connection is only the beginning, a single link in a 40-year-old conspiracy. And behind it lies an unspeakable evil that Alex Delaware must expose before it claims another innocent victim: Melody Quinn.
©2003 Jonathan Kellerman (P)2012 Random House
Show More Show Less

Critic Reviews

"An engrossing thriller.... this knockout of an entertainment is the kind of book which establishes a career in one stroke." ( New York Newsday)
"Suspenseful, neatly spun, fascinating." ( Philadelphia Daily News)
"Grab yourself a copy soon." ( Los Angeles Times)
Show More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Madeleine on 03-11-13

Mixed feelings.

When I started listening to this book, I was delighted that, finally, someone with an analytical eye was creating interesting and believable characters; of course, he is a psychologist, so that figures. However, the descriptions of sex scenes just left me cold. What had started out as an interesting and engrossing mystery got diverted into cheap, gratuitous soft porn that added nothing to the story and only killed off the momentum of the mystery. Too bad, as the topic of child exploitation and abuse is such a horrific ongoing problem in the world and does not need to be ignored while we are subjected to graphic descriptions of the protagonist's own sexual encounters; an uncomfortable juxtaposition under the circumstances. Despite that, I MIGHT listen to another one of his books, but probably free from the library rather than paying for it. We'll see....

Read More Hide me

21 of 23 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Leigh on 09-16-12


Where does When the Bough Breaks rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It is above average and I'm an avid audiobook listener.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

I was about 3/4 of the way through before I started to get a hint of what the plot may be about. That's pretty good suspense in my book!

What about Alexander Adams’s performance did you like?

Not too dramatic.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Not particularly.

Any additional comments?

I am a mental health professional and thought the depiction/commentary of the mental health system in the book was pretty accurate.

Read More Hide me

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

See all Reviews

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By C. Shepherd on 06-09-15

A bit dated, but OK.

When the Bough Breaks is a fairly standard non-police detective story. Our hero (Alex) is a psychologist who finds himself investigating a crime when he is brought in to question a child witness. The opening hour or so of the book is great, and the developing relationship between Alex and the child is well dealt with. The book is less good when it moves into the thick of the mystery. Somehow its all just too stereotypical. The bad guys are all bad in ways which you could guess the moment they were described (rich, poor, black, white, intelligent, ignorant and arrogant characters all act exactly to type).

It’s not a bad book. It's fast paced and never dull, but its not original and even if you have not read anything else by Kellerman, you will feel you have read When the Bough Breaks before.

Read More Hide me

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Sophie Tomms on 03-07-14

Disliked the main character from the start

I tried to keep going with this book but I disliked the main character more and more as the book continued. He is an arrogant know-it-all and I found myself rolling my eyes in disbelief at his irritating habits.
Obviously many people enjoy these books I just couldn't get past the annoying Alex Delaware.

Read More Hide me

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

See all Reviews
© Copyright 1997 - 2018 Audible, Inc