Smooth Talker: Trail of Death

  • by Steve Jackson
  • Narrated by Kevin Pierce
  • 4 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

One morning in July 1974, Anita Andrews, the owner and bartender at Fagiani's Cocktail Lounge in Napa, California was found dead in her bar - raped, beaten, and stabbed to death in a bloody frenzy. She'd last been seen alive the night before talking to a drifter who sat at the end of the bar, playing cards and flirting with her. But the stranger, along with Anita's Cadillac, had disappeared. Unable to locate a suspect, police investigators sadly watched the case grow cold over the years.
Meanwhile, a month after Anita's murder, young Michele Wallace was driving down a road in the mountains near Crested Butte, Colorado, when she gave two stranded motorists, Chuck Matthews and a man named Roy, a ride. Dropping Matthews off at a bar in Gunnison, she agreed to take Roy to his truck. She was never seen alive again, nor could a massive search of the mountains locate her remains. The trail leading to her killer also ran into dead-ends.
Fourteen years later, Charlotte Sauerwin, engaged to be married, met a smooth-talking man at a laundromat in Livingston Parish, Louisiana. The next evening, her body was found in the woods; she'd been raped, tortured, and her throat slashed. The police suspected her fiance, Vince LeJeune, though he proclaimed his innocence to anyone who would listen. Meanwhile, the man from the laundromat couldn't be located. The three murders would remain unsolved, eating at the hearts, minds and lives of the women's families, friends and communities.
Then in the early 1990s, a rookie Gunnison County sheriff's investigator named Kathy Young began looking into the Wallace case and identified a suspect named Roy Melanson, a serial rapist from Texas.
Smooth Talker is the story of Melanson, his depredations, and the intrepid police work that went into bringing him to justice.


See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

There's a Special Place in Hell for Him

This is a true crime nonfiction account of how a serial rapist/murderer was brought to justice. It starts with the gruesome murder of a woman in CA in the 70's and a woman's disappearance a month later in CO, both of which became cold cases for years until a rookie investigator in CO started to put the pieces of the CO case together. The book is like an episode of Forensic Files but more detailed and in-depth. I found it fascinating and couldn't stop listening.

Kevin Pierce does an excellent job of telling the story while also performing the dialogue of the various players in this case. He used the right inflection, emotion and cadence for this type of audiobook. He did a good job with both male and female voices, as well as accents. Since I own that I am extremely picky and honestly can't think of one time I got distracted from the story to notice a narration mistake, this essentially means that his performance was either perfect or damn close to it. He is the perfect narrator for true crime audiobooks.

I received this audiobook in exchange for an unbiased review. The number of stars is based on where I believe this audiobook rates with other audiobooks of the same type, length and general feel-- not where it rates in comparison to all audiobooks of all time.
Read full review

- Erin "Audiobook Addict. It's all about the Listen. Mostly Romance, but I do branch out a bit. Reviews are my honest opinions-popular or not."

I thought it was a well researched accoun

If you could sum up Smooth Talker: Trail of Death in three words, what would they be?

Worth a credit.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Well I felt Steve Jackson did a very thorough investigation with well researched information.

Have you listened to any of Kevin Pierce’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Kevin is like a warm cup of chicken soup on a cool autumn day. He narrated the first audible book I listened to and I've been a fan ever since. I usually read most of the true crime books he narrates. There is something very sincere, and kind in his delivery and I enjoy listening m

If you could give Smooth Talker: Trail of Death a new subtitle, what would it be?

Stranger in the woods.

Read full review

- leelee8888 "Say something about yourself!"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-02-2016
  • Publisher: WildBlue Press