National Book Awards 2014: Crime/Thriller Book of the Year
Can you commit the perfect crime?
Pilgrim is the code name for a man who doesn't exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation. But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down. And it will take him to a run-down New York hotel room where the body of a woman is found facedown in a bath of acid, her features erased, her teeth missing, her fingerprints gone. It is a textbook murder - and Pilgrim wrote the book.
What begins as an unusual and challenging investigation will become a terrifying race against time to save America from oblivion. Pilgrim will have to make a journey from a public beheading in Mecca to a deserted ruin on the Turkish coast via a Nazi death camp in Alsace and the barren wilderness of the Hindu Kush in search of the faceless man who would commit an appalling act of mass murder in the name of his god.
This is now the entire audiobook, not in two parts.
©2012 Terry Hayes (P)2013 Random House Audiobooks
Starts off with a bang and you’re captured straight away. The mystery of the two stories and how they will combine kept me intrigued the whole time. Then towards the end of the book it comes home like a 'steam train'. I went straight to my laptop to get the second volume as soon as I finished.
I think this book could have been savagely edited to make one whole book, I started listening to a story about a murder in the US and then I was listening to a story about a terrorist in Iran or one of these type countries I had to rewind because I thought I had missed something and I was really disappointed when I realised it was only half a book and it didn't captivate me enough to want to buy the second book. I think this may have had the potential to be a good book if it was finished.
From known to unknown and back again, enough facts to make it real and a story that weaves in and out, Terry Hayes has taken the geo-political reality with which we are familiar and entwined within it a minefield of a murder mystery, a terrorist plot and meticulous, intelligent and intuitive investigators to deliver a non-stop ride. A thriller to lose yourself in. Read it - you won't be disappointed.
I found the story compelling and it had me surprised at all the twists and turns.
The Pilgrim - but I felt sorry for his lack of life outside of his missions.
A race against time!
So obviously written with one eye on a film deal. Awful. Didn't finish it. Can't even be bothered to write a longer review.
"Where is the rest of the story"
I feel defrauded. Half a story, and I can't even buy the second half.
I have to go and buy the paperback version now.
Give us the WHOLE book. I'm happy to pay for it, but it's not even available.
Hoe can you release half a book?
Loving the story, Disappointed in Audible
Warn purchasers that it is only half of the story, and the other half isn't available
"Why is it not the whole book?"
Why I was not told it was just half the book, where is the volume 2?
The plot was fantastic, but very sad it stopped when it did. I would like to know when volume 2 is available so I can write the review it deserves.
I don't tend to remember the narrators names, but will keep an ear out for Christopher
None, I would just like to listen to volume 2.
I would like to know when volume 2 is available and why it has been chopped in half? without revealing this to very loyal customers. I feel a little pissed off as I am very keen to know what happens. He is an Australian author so not quite understanding why it is not all available.
"WHERE IS VOLUME 2?"
Audible should make the buyer aware that only half the book is available to download before they download the first half. Who reads half a book? Its available on the uk site. What, are we expected to sign up there and pay them too? Shoddy service audible!
Listened to this book over one wet weekend. Once I started listening, I found it impossible to put down.
What an amazing book. Riveting from page 1. Made me cry, made me laugh, made my heart race. Didn't want it to end.
One of the best books I have read! Could not put it down. Highly recommend it
Well written. A great story that keeps you reading on and on for more info.
"Great story but share Audible frustration"
Great story but I share other reviewers' frustrations that I bought half a book. I do feel Audible pulled a bit of a fast one by selling what is one book in paperback as 2 separate volumes on Audible. A bit underhanded.
Regarding story, it is great. There is a strange first person approach by the author. Telling the story as he knows it but providing details that he couldn't possibly have been exposed to. I found that a bit hard to overlook but everything else was excellent.
"Surprisingly bland and cliched"
Having read the generally positive reviews about the story, I was surprised at how dull and poorly written it is. This is just my opinion and perhaps I've been spoiled by reading a lot of John le Carre, etc recently (I really wasn't expecting a le Carre style thriller believe me), but I was amazed at the lack of imagination. The plot just feels like a bad action movie, filled with predictable events, endless cliches and cardboard cut-out characters...it came as no surprise when the events of 9/11 surfaced in the plot. It doesn't help that the main character has no discernible personality and continuously references his superior skills. I really wanted to like this book but found so much not to like - the wooden dialogue (which often just serves as exposition), cliched characters (with a long and fairly tedious back story to each one), cliched locations, strongly racist overtones (it's pretty clear the author does not like the middle-east), female characters who always seem to have great cleavage, 'wide, beautiful eyes' and 'a perfectly curved mouth' or some such. After a point I'm afraid I just couldn't listen to anymore. Maybe it gets significantly better later on, but I doubt it was ever going to swing it for me.
Based on this, no
I did find the narration fairly corny but to be honest it suits the style of the story, so I don't know that anyone else would do a better job. He does a particularly poor job with the female characters though!
Irritation, and boredom at times. There were moments of interest but these were always let down by the poor characterisation.
I think it's unfair that the book is sold in two parts, especially given that it is not a great novel in the first place. That said, I couldn't get through part one anyway.
"Predictable page turner"
I doubt it. If they had an exhausting job and wanted to listen to something unchallenging on their way home from work then maybe. The literary equivalent of a Bruce Willis movie.
Something that's particularly unfortunate is the casual racism throughout the book towards Islam sometimes bordering on being stomach turning. Also the author manages to spread his right wing agenda by various unsubtle means, the most glaring of which was explaining what a great guy the American president was because he was against unions.
Essentially a long list of cliches borrowed from film and books, a man, reluctantly brought out of retirement because he's "the best", previously of some ultra secret black ops unit, in order to save America, his boss, "the whisperer" who sounds like Clint Eastwood with a sore throat as his handler, agrees to his hair brain scheme because "it just might work"...etc etc.
He was ok.
There's better, much better.
One of the best books I've read. 22hrs flew by and I eagerly awaiting release of the film now!!!
Very good story with many twists and fast paced. Excellent narrator. Really enjoyed listening to the book.
"Less stars because 2nd book to required!!"
American hero who is wonderful at everything but entertainingly so, lots of rambling subplots that will, I presume, all come together brilliantly. UNFORTUNATELY I must presume because I find that I have buy a second volume to complete the story!! first volume is not a stand alone book!
Not made clear at the time of purchase - naughty practice Audible two credits required,
you could be losing a loyal long time customer.
Would I have to go to see two films?
"Insulting pricing policy, misogynistic plot"
Really expected more from this, it's mock 90s Frederick Forsyth spy thriller where the Americans are heroes the 'Arabs' are all villains and the Europeans are complicit or prostitutes depending on gender. Some very offencive stereotypes, and early scene of the innocent daughter of a Swiss banker being threatened with rape and death by the US government is really unpleasant but seems to have been written as if the reader will totally understand that the ends justify the ends. To reach the 10 hour mark and be told that you need to pay another credit to finish the story is high arrogance... I will not be finishing the story.
Could not turn off. Keep me on the edge of my chair because was not sure which new twist there would be
gripping from start to finish well worth the read could not put it down !
"Worth a listen"
Very detailed and an interesting story.
I found the lead character a little too good at what he did with almost zero flaws which leaves you thinking yeah right.
Saying that I enjoyed the chase and the various directions it takes you.
Very stereotypical American view of the muslin world which whilst i didn't find uncomfortable (it's a book) could I suspect offend the more sensitive listener.
"Exciting but a bit too full of cliches"
Firstly I want to highlight that the only version available on Audible in November 2016 is the full complete book. It is not in two parts like other reviewers have apparently experienced.
It was an entertaining book, good pace and fairly well written. The story was a bit far fetched, and a lot of the science was made up or exaggerated, but I didn't mind that so much. - it's fiction and you just have to go with it and enjoy it.
But I agree with other reviewers that it is rather black and white: The Americans are the heroes against a mostly all, either evil or dumb/corrupt etc world of muslims and Russians.
The narrator was mostly very good, in all the non-accent parts - his voice is clear, easy and pleasant to listen to. But his range of accents is quite limited. He has no idea what a Turkish accent sounds like, which was a bit annoying since the book has quite a lot of Turkish characters. His British accent was terrible as was his Italian.
All in all I would probably still recommend this book as an entertaining listen.
"Don't waste a credit"
No I wouldn't
The characters were such stereotypes, the author could have written with more originality
By using a different narrator. The main character who was supposedly this world - wise and mature super - sleuth sounded like a college kid
I was disappointed and bored
I wish I had read the audiobook reviews which were in the main disparaging, I had read the book reviews which were better
Excellent book - intelligent and exciting. English accents are laughably bad, but barely feature. I'd recommend to everyone
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